19. Nicki Minaj, Beam Me Up Scotty (2009)
The phrase "Beam me up, Scotty" has a few meanings: It relates to drugs, it's been famously misquoted from Star Trek (The closest quote is "Scotty, beam me up"), and it's the title of the mixtape that landed Nicki Minaj atop the rap game. Nearly two years after her feature on "Can't Stop Won't Stop" off Wayne's Da Drought 3, Nicki killed practically every verse on all 23 tracks—even the "Intro" that gives a most proper introduction to Ms. Minaj.
When "I Get Crazy" hit the radio, it reached No. 20 on the Hot Rap Songs chart, but beyond its commercial success, this mixtape defined the sound, the arrogance, and the wildly entertaining multifaceted talent and multiple personalities that Nicki brought to hip-hop—solidifying her position as the first lady of Young Money and the hottest female MC in the game. With Beam Me Up Scotty, Minaj showed she was here to stay. —Lauren Nostro