Mariah Carey: ‘Nicki Minaj feud made me feel unsafe’

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'American Idol' judge hires extra security staff after bust-up with the 'Starships' singer

Mariah Carey has revealed she had to hire extra security staff while working alongside Nicki Minaj on American Idol as the rapper made her feel “unsafe”.

The singer has spoken about her much-publicised bust-up with Minaj on the American talent show and said that the heated argument between the pair, which was caught on camera, resulted in an “unsafe work environment”.

Last October, Minaj threatened to “knock out” Carey during a taping of the American Idol auditions. The warring duo came to blows when a disagreement over a contestant’s performance prompted Minaj to launch a tirade of insults towards Carey. According to, the fight started after Carey called Minaj “a bitch”.

Speaking about the incident to US TV presenter Barbara Walters, Mariah Carey said: “It felt like an unsafe work environment. Anytime anybody’s reeling threats at somebody, you know, that’s just not appropriate. Sitting there on the road with two babies, I’m not gonna take any chances, so yeah I did hire more security.”

The 12th season of American Idol, which is due to start later this month on digital channel 5*, has been fraught with controversy. In November last year, Nicki Minaj accused Steven Tyler of racism after he made comments about her judging on the programme.

The Aerosmith frontman, who Minaj replaced as a judge on the new season, said that if Bob Dylan turned up in the Idol auditions, Minaj would “have had him sent to the cornfield!”