Meghan Trainor Talks Collaborating with Nicki Minaj, Pussycat Dolls and Her Family on New Album

The pop star dropped her third studio album, Treat Myself, on Friday

Meghan Trainor is back!

On Friday, the pop star returned with Treat Myself, her first album in nearly four years — and Trainor features an A-list slew of collaborators on the genre-spanning record.

“This is just my childhood dream of an album,” Trainor says of the LP. “It was too good to be true.”

One such collaboration was a dream come true for Trainor: "Nice to Meet Ya" with Nicki Minaj, which the Grammy winner calls “legendary.”

Meghan Trainor
Meghan Trainor. Hanna Hillier

“My manager started managing her so that was my in. They told me she doesn’t do a feature, she has to really like the song. So I was so excited,” Trainor, 26, says of working with the rapper, 37. “Dude, in high school I used to party to her songs all the time and learned every single word. So this was like a huge deal for me. She actually is one of my favorite songwriters.”

Trainor says that the track was a true partnership, and Minaj didn’t just spit a verse for the sassy song, which they recorded last fall. (“I’ve been holding this, this is the biggest secret I’ve ever had to hold my entire life!” Trainor adds.)

Meghan Trainor
Hanna Hillier

“She came back and was like, ‘Hey, I don’t really like this line. Is there any other way we could change it?’ I changed it immediately then she was like, ‘This is awesome,'” Trainor recalls of working with Minaj. “She’s smart and she was right. It’s a better move. So I was really happy about that and was really impressed. And then she laid down one of my favorite verses of all time by her on my song and I freaked out, especially when she’s like, ‘Meghan Trainor.’

Nicki Minaj
Paras Griffin/VMN18/Getty

Trainor also got in the studio with another pop hero from her youth — Nicole Scherzinger, 41, of the recently reunited Pussycat Dolls — for the sexy, empowering standout "Genetics." The “All About That Bass” was filming the reality competition The Four on the same lot where Scherzinger was working on The Masked Singer, and they hit it off immediately when they met.

“I sent her this song because she was like, ‘Pussycat Dolls need songs, please write some songs with me,'” Trainor, who grew up singing along to Pussycat Dolls hits like “Buttons” and “Beep,” says. “I sent her this one and she was like, ‘This is amazing.’ I asked her to feature on it and she did — and she was incredible.”

Nicole Scherzinger
Nicole Scherzinger.

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In addition to established acts like Minaj and PCD, Trainor also worked with some emerging talent, including AJ Mitchell, Lennon Stella and Sasha Sloan.

And Treat Myself was also a family affair — and includes some guest vocals (and lyrics) courtesy of Trainor’s husband Daryl Sabara, 27, and her brothers Ryan, 27, and Justin, 24.

Meghan Trainor, Daryl Sabara
Daryl Sabara & Meghan Trainor. Paul Archuleta/FilmMagic

“Everywhere I go my family comes with me so it was just another day,” Trainor says of having her family sing background vocals on the record.

“I noticed I can help them out and they can help me out: They can sing backgrounds for free. And then they could get paid later if it’s in a commercial and then everyone wins,” Trainor adds, alluding to royalties.

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