What does ‘O.P.P.’ stand for?
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What does 'O.P.P.' stand for?

Naughty By Nature was an exciting rap trio from the 1990s that rose out of New Jersey at the start of the decade. The crew were mentored by the iconic female emcee, Queen Latifah and in 1991, they had a classic with their first hit ‘O.P.P.’

The song speaks about cheating in a relationship, with rappers Treach and Vin Rock asking who’s “down with O.P.P.” During the track, they demystify the meaning of the acronym, rapping, The first two words are “Other People’s,” but for guys, the last P is a “five-letter word rhyming with cleanest and meanest.” For girls, it’s “Another way to call a cat a kitten.”

‘O.P.P.’ was one of the first rap songs to become a pop hit, debuting at number six on the Billboard Hot 100. However, the track’s groove was very familiar to many as it borrowed heavily from the Jackson 5 song ‘ABC’.

The song borrowed so much from the track it could almost be considered a cover. However, it was released in the summer of 1991, mere months before Irish singer Gilbert O’Sullivan won his lawsuit against Biz Markie for sampling his song without clearance.

The song incorporated various snippets of Michael Jackson’s vocals from the original track. However, following its release, Naughty By Nature’s label, Tommy Boy, did get permission to use ‘ABC’ as the four writers of the 1970 track ended up on the official credits.

“Down Wit’ OPP” became a catchphrase on the East Coast, where the track got a lot of local radio play. From Newark to Philadelphia and New York City, people wore T-shirts saying, “Ya Down Wit OPP?” The song from the reasonably new trio even got a music video, which was a big hit on the show Yo! MTV Raps.

Queen Latifah makes an appearance in the music video, and only a year later Treach would appear in the iconic movie Juice alongside 2Pac and Janet Jackson. You can watch the visuals for ‘O.P.P.’ below.