“I will always respect an artist's wishes”: RedOne remains proud of Starships, the Nicki Minaj hit he co-wrote and co-produced, despite the star calling it “stupid” and saying she no longer performs it

Nicki Minaj
(Image credit: Getty Images)

RedOne has responded to Nicki Minaj’s claim that she will no longer perform Starships, the 2012 hit that he co-wrote and co-produced.

In footage shared on TikTok of a New Year’s Eve performance by Minaj in Miami, she’s seen to perform the first couple of lines of Starships before calling the song to a halt. “I don’t perform that song no more, y’all,” she tells the crowd. “I don’t like it, what y’all want me to do? Stupid song.” 

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Responding to Minaj’s decision to expunge Starships from her live sets, RedOne has now told TMZ: "I have the utmost respect for Nicki Minaj and I love her work very much. I will always respect an artist's wishes... I feel very proud to have made that record with her along with the global success it made."

RedOne (Nadir Khayat) has also scored multiple hits with other artists, notably Lady Gaga, Jennifer Lopez and Nicole Scherzinger.

This isn’t the first time that Minaj has expressed her dislike of Starships. In fact, in a 2020 interview with Pollstar Live, she said that she regretted several songs from her discography.

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“I wish I’d never recorded [2014 hit] Anaconda,” she began. “I like the video but uh.” She then moved on to 2010 release Your Love - “I like the video but I hate the song” - before adding, “I hate Starships… why did I do that? I really think that every time I hear it.”

With its mainstream EDM leanings, Starships certainly isn’t the most interesting song in Minaj’s back catalogue, but it was a huge hit, and a certain section of her fanbase may be disappointed that they won’t hear her perform it live again. Whether the star will relent at some point and bring it back into the fold remains to be seen.

Ben Rogerson

I’m the Deputy Editor of MusicRadar, having worked on the site since its launch in 2007. I previously spent eight years working on our sister magazine, Computer Music. I’ve been playing the piano, gigging in bands and failing to finish tracks at home for more than 30 years, 24 of which I’ve also spent writing about music and the ever-changing technology used to make it.