Nicki Minaj on 'American Idol': MC Lyte Weighs In, 'I Think She'll Do Well'
But already, talk of hiring Nicki Minaj as American Idol's newest judge is enough to give some artists pause.
"I think she's vocal enough to come up with constructive criticism, as well as being an artist," MC Lyte told Celebuzz Wednesday at the Big Easy Juke Joint gala in Hollywood benefiting charity Aid Still Required's ongoing disaster relief in New Orleans.
What else did MC Lyte say about Nicki Minaj on Idol?
"Going to a performing arts school, you're able to hone in on different skills. And, one of those skill sets is knowing what something creative is, and when it's worth nurturing," Lyte says. "So, I think she'll do well."
MC Lyte released the first solo CD, Lyte as a Rock, for a female hip-hop artist, in 1988. The release was hailed by hip-hop magazine The Source as one of rap's 100 best records.
Minaj has not fared poorly herself as a hip-hop musician. As the first female solo artist to have seven singles on the Billboard Hot 100 Chart at one time, in 2010, Minaj built her musical credibility by combining pop, electronic and traditional singing into rapping.
Minaj, who attended New York City's prestigious LaGuardia High School of the Performing Arts, has won the BET Awards' Best Female Hip-Hop Artist for three years running -- and has been named by the New York Times as perhaps the most influential hip-hop female MC of all time.
She also appeared (as a voice) in this year's more than $150 million-earning animated film, Ice Age: Continental Drift.
When asked if Minaj's musical success should preclude her from taking on a TV show -- MC Lyte gave pause.
"There is no box. No box should exist around any artist to feel and do what it is that they want to do with their careers. TV, film, radio -- whatever she wants to do, whatever they all want to do," Lyte told Celebuzz. "You can focus on whatever you want."
MC Lyte is finishing writing the manuscript for her first memoir, which is yet to be titled.
"A bunch of revelations that happen throughout the book. And I'm willing to share," MC Lyte said. "It's going to be quite a revolution for myself, in terms of the release of this book. But I'm happy with it. I'm happy I waited so long. I'm 41 -- so to have made it this far, and lived that much of life, I'm ecstatic to share."
Do you agree with MC Lyte? Why or why not?