Roman's Revenge
by Nicki Minaj (featuring Eminem)

Album: Pink Friday (2010)
Charted: 56
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  • Lyrics
  • This is a track from American rapper Nicki Minaj's debut album Pink Friday. The song features Eminem, who also produced the tune along with Swizz Beatz. The duo rap as their alter egos Roman Zolanski and Slim Shady.
  • Want to hear the story of how the New York MC got Slim Shady on board this track? Minaj told Sway during an appearance on MTV's RapFix Live that she originally sent Eminem a different cut in the hope of persuading the Detroit MC to collaborate with her. "We went out on a whim and put it in the air like, 'It'd be great if he would collaborate with us,' " she said. "I remember I kept talking about it, and I thought, 'It can't hurt.' I sent him one record, and he didn't love it. He didn't say, 'I don't love it'; he just said, 'Can you send me something that's a little more me?' I sent him an e-mail and thanked him for that, just having enough respect. Sometimes people don't respond. He had the respect, at least, to treat me like a peer."

    Minaj dug out a Swiss Beatz beat that she'd been holding onto and completed the song. Unsure at first if she wanted a feature on the track, she decided to reach out to Eminem. "He picked up the phone for that one," she said.

    The duo then worked out a new chorus after clearance issues killed the first one before wrapping the number. "It was the most fun song Pink Friday,"she said. "It gave me life. Absolutely, darling."
  • Minaj ends the song by taking on the character of the mother of her noisy British alter ego, Roman. She reprimands her son and Slim Shady telling them, "Wash your mouth out with soap, boys."
  • Various music writers have interpreted some of Minaj's bars to be jabs at Lil Kim, who publicly took issue with the Harajuku Barbie earlier in 2010 accusing the MC of copying her style without contacting her. "Nicki she just mad 'cause you took the spot,' word, that bitch mad cause I took the spot? Well, bitch if you ain't sh--ting then get off the pot/Got some n--gas out in Brooklyn that'll off your top." Minaj spits.
  • In an interview on DJ Khaled's 99 Jamz Radio show in Miami, Minaj explained she's targeting in this song all her haters who just happen to be female emcees: "I'm talking about everyone who has been in interviews talking," she said. "I think it's good for people to hear me respond to a lot. People have said so much about me so I don't ever single anyone out because no one is worth being singled out."

    The New York rapper added that naming names is not her style. "No one is worth having their name mentioned out of my mouth and they never will get that. But you know, I've been quiet for such a long time, I've been the nice guy, I've been the person that gave everybody their props. I complemented everybody from day one and I think that as a rapper, you can't be a rapper and not speak on things being said about you. So, I use my music to say what I have to say."
  • Minaj explained during her MTV News documentary My Time Now her alter ego Roman Zolanski who trades bars with Eminem's Slim Shady persona in this song: "Roman is a crazy boy who lives in me and he says the things that I don't want to say. He was born just a few months ago. I think he was born out of rage. He was conceived in rage so he bashes everyone and he threatens to beat people and he's violent."
  • Minaj commented to Rolling Stone regarding the lyric, "Shoulda sent a thank-you note, you lil' ho — now I'm a wrap your coffin with a bow," which without using her name, most see as directed at Lil Kim. "Every great rapper has a great sense of humor," said the MC. "I think that I obviously pull from Lil Wayne and people like Jay; they're great. I also pull from comedians like Larry David — he has a lot of sarcasm."
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