Barbie Dreams

Album: Queen (2018)
Charted: 36 18

Songfacts®:

  • Nicki Minaj flips The Notorious B.I.G.'s "Just Playing (Dreams)" beat on this track during which she barbs several rappers. The Queen Barbz previously sampled the same Biggie track on "Dreams '07" from her debut mixtape Playtime Is Over. She said, "Notorious B.I.G. R.I.P - he's still inspiring me, four albums in. That's what you call greatness."
  • "Just Playing (Dreams)" was a bonus track on The Notorious B.I.G.'s debut album Ready To Die. Its content was hugely misogynistic featuring Biggie going after numerous singers and actresses. Minaj reverses the gender by spitting about a series of fantasy sexual encounters with famous male rappers. Most of the names mentioned are artist she's previously collaborated with and/or are her friends. Some such as Swae Lee and Lil Wayne are even featured on Queen.
  • Among the people that Nicki roasts is Meek Mill, whom she dated for a couple of years between 2015 and 2017. She pokes fun at him for wearing her DMs.

    Meek still be in my DMs
    I be havin' to duck em


    Another victim is frequent collaborator Drake, with whom Minaj fell out with for a time as a result of her relationship with the Toronto MC's bête noir Meek Mill. She slams Drizzy's tendency towards emotional, heartfelt rap:

    Drake worth a hundred milli, always buying me s--t
    But I don't know if the p---y wet or if he's crying and s--t


    Also ridiculed is DJ Khaled, with whom Minaj has worked on several occasions, including the Miami producer's Grateful tracks "Nobody" and "I Can't Even Lie" plus his Major Key song "Do You Mind." According to the lyric, Minaj isn't talking to the portly musician because of his huge appetite. It also acts as a double entendre referencing a Breakfast Club interview where he talked about refusing to perform oral sex:

    Had to cancel DJ Khaled, boy, we ain't speaking
    Ain't no fat ni--a telling me what he ain't eating


    Young Thug, who enlisted Minaj for an assist on "Anybody" from his 2018 Hear No Evil EP, is also on her hit list. Thugger is renowned for his gender-bending fashion sense and Minaj claims that she caught Young Thug in her dressing room, "stealing dresses."
  • Speaking on Beats 1 radio show, Minaj pointed out the track is intended to be lighthearted and funny with people she messes with, rather than stirring up some serious beef. "I love them," she said. "I said things about people who I know can take a joke and won't be emotional about it."
  • Nicki Minaj recorded almost the entire track in one take. The Queens rapper's recording engineer, Aubry "Big Juice" Delaine, recalled the story of the song to Rolling Stone:

    "She told me to load up that beat, put it on loop, and give her about 20 or 30 minutes. Then she goes in the booth and lays that s--t down, and that's what you got. I didn't know what she was gonna say. I wanna say she did 90% of that in one take. She mumbled the hook when she was laying the verses, laid the rest of it, went back and put the hook in the middle."
  • Nicki Minaj reconnected with Hype Williams for the song's video. Minaj had worked with the legendary music video director on six previous music visuals, including 2012's fairytale fantasy "Va Va Voom." The colorful clip finds Minaj joined onscreen by puppet versions of Lil Wayne, DJ Khalid, 6ix9ine, Drake, Kanye West, and many more.
  • Speaking in an interview with Vulture, Meek Mill denied ever wearing Minaj's DMs, but admitted to finding the line funny. "I actually was laughing at it, too. 'Cause there's no limits! I felt it and I liked it. That's a dope rap."

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