Meaning of “O.P.P.” by Naughty by Nature

“O.P.P.” is a song by the Grammy Award-winning American rap group Naughty by Nature. The lyrics of O.P.P., which are by the way not family friendly, are about being unfaithful to your partner.

Officially the initials O.P.P. stand for the phrase: “other people’s property”. However, what it actually stands for is ‘other people’s p****’ for guys and ‘other people’s p****’ for females. The band used the phrase ‘other people’s property’ as a euphemistic way to refer to either of the aforementioned offensive phrases.

The interesting thing about this song is that despite its meaning being very family unfriendly, its lyrics do not contain even contain a single offensive word.

Down with O.P.P.

Anyone who is “down with O.P.P.” is the type of person ready to cheat on his/her significant other.

Lyrics of "O.P.P." by Naughty by Nature

Inspiration for the phrase

According to Treach (lead rapper of Naughty by Nature), he got the idea for the iconic line “down with O.P.P.” from a man who sold illicit drugs near where he lived. According to him, this man would often encroach upon the territories of other dealers to steal their customers. And in doing so, he’d say the phrase: “Down with O.P.M. – Other People’s Money”. According to Treach, he found the man’s words so interesting that he took it and used it in the song.

Facts about “O.P.P.”

  • The song was written by all members of Naughty by Nature (Treach, DJ Kay Gee, and Vin Rock). And since the song heavily samples two other songs, including The Jackson 5’s global hit song “ABC“, 5 other songwriters are given credit on the track. These writers are: Berry Gordy, Jr., Alphonzo Mizell, Deke Richards, Liam Kantwill, and Freddie Perren.
  • The track was produced by Naughty by Nature.
  • “O.P.P.” officially came out on August 24, 1991 as the first single from the group’s second studio album entitled Naughty by Nature.
  • The song not only became one of the group’s most successful single, but also one of the most successful hip hop songs of all time. The fact that the lyrics appeal to both males and females contributed significantly to its success. On the US Billboard Hot 100, “O.P.P” peaked at number 6. On the U.K. Singles Chart, it peaked at the number 35 position.
  • Shortly after the song came out, the phrase “down with OPP” became one of the most common phrases in the United States.
  • In the early 90s, only a few rap songs had the strength to make the transition into pop radio. “O.P.P.” was one of the few rap songs of that time to make this remarkable transition. The song went on to become one of the most popular songs of the 90s.
  • In 2008, VH1 placed this track at the number 22 position on its list of the 100 Greatest Songs of Hip Hop.

 

Which songs does “O.P.P.” sample?

It samples the following songs:

  1. The 1970 smash hit “ABC” by the American family music group The Jackson 5 (The Jacksons).
  2. The 1973 funk/soul song “Synthetic Substitution” by the late American rhythm and blues singer Melvin Bliss.
  3. The 1978 hit song “Oh Honey” by the English soul group Delegation.

Did “O.P.P.” win a Grammy Award?

No. However, “O.P.P.” was nominated for a Grammy at the 34th Annual Grammy Awards in 1992. It lost to the 1991 hit “Summertime” by DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince.

Which movies and TV shows has this song been featured in?

One of the most notable appearances of this song on television was in the sitcom The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. Below is a clip from the episode on which the song was used. NOTE: The song starts from 1:33.

The video above is from the 9th episode of season 2 of The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air. The episode is called “Cased Up”.

The “Naughty by Nature” Album

American hip-hop trio, Naughty by Nature, released their self-titled second album on September 3, 1991 through Tommy Silverman’s record label, Tommy Boy records. The 60 minutes 15 second-length album was recorded at the Unique Recording Studios in New York City and produced by the group in collaboration with Louie Vega

The album gained commercial success and peaked at the top of most American music charts shortly after its release. One of the tracks on the album, “O.P.P” was one of the biggest hits America in 1991.

Naughty by Nature is considered one of the all-time great albums to date, by many fans of the East Coast Rap genre.

As of this writing however, the album is out of print.

The album consisted of twelve songs in initial releases, but later another song, “Uptown Anthem” was added to subsequent editions of the album, bringing it to a 13-track collection. The album’s certified singles are as follows:

  • “O.P.P” released on 24th August 1991
  • “Everything’s Gonna Be Alright” released on 26th November 1991
  • “Uptown Anthem” released on 22nd January 1991

3 Responses

  1. Yvette Sonya Lawton-henderson says:

    After I graduated from S.U.N.Y./College at Old Westbury, my life was ruined over this deranged group also. Steve Harvey has been harassing, torturing, tormenting and etc. I haven’t done a damn thing to deserve this kind of treatment at all.

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