While speaking to New York’s Power 105.1, Nicki Minaj presented the public with a preemptive explanation as to why her latest offering — Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded – The Re-Up, released Nov. 19 — is suffering sales-wise. The official first-week tally for the album (which is a rerelease of her last album, plus eight new songs) won’t be in for a couple more days, but early indications of low sales have already put Minaj on the defensive.
“It is hard to get the album because the stores basically said that the last few re-releases they had put out did not do well and they didn’t want to take a chance,” Minaj told the radio station. “So, Target and Walmart is not selling the album. Target is actually my biggest retailer — they’ve always been my biggest retailer. They’ve sold the most Nicki Minaj albums ever, so, thank you, Target. But I wish you could’ve sold this one.”
She then moved on to discuss Best Buy, which she says “only took limited [quantities] because they’re like, ‘Oh, we don’t know, we want to play it safe.'”
“So it’s very difficult and it kind of sets you up to fail,” she added, explaining that a number of her fans “have been driving hours — literally hours! — to get one CD. But it is what it is, and I appreciate the support, and I’m excited about the music.”
Of course, there’s also the fact that fans likely already own most of the new release, the bulk of which came out as the now-platinum Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded back in April — which effectively makes The Re-Up an expensive EP.
Lana Del Rey’s Paradise EP, on the other hand, was available as both a separate disc and as a part of her Born to Die rerelease, and it debuted at No. 10 on Billboard’s album chart with 67,000 in sales. That’s only 10,000 less than Born to Die‘s original release, which ranked at No. 2 back in February.
Update: Target has issued the following statement: “We carry Nicki Minaj’s re-released album, Pink Friday: Roman Reloaded Re-Up, at Target.com. Target will continue to evaluate guest demand to determine if the album will be carried in store at a future date.”