Shoop

Album: Very Necessary (1993)
Charted: 29 4

Songfacts®:

  • In this song, Salt-n-Pepa rhyme about a man who gets it done for them, and all the freaky things they are willing to do for him. This kind of stuff exists mostly in the realm of male rappers, which makes the lyrics kind of surprising when you break them down. Ellen DeGeneres did just that on her 2003 HBO comedy special, Here and Now, where she did a spoken word performance of the song after explaining that it's one she can really relate to.

    The lyrics are rather racy, but the loping beat somehow took the edge off lines line "Lick him like a lollipop should be licked," and "I wanna know how does it hang?"
  • What does it mean to "Shoop"? Just about anything you want. "It's whatever" Pepa explained. "It's a whole vibe."
  • Most of Salt-N-Pepa's hits, including "Push It" and "Let's Talk About Sex," were written by their producer Hurby "Luv Bug" Azor. "Shoop" was written by the group's rappers, Cheryl "Salt" James and Sandra "Pepa" Denton, along with the producers Mark Sparks (Johnathon Marc Blount - he also worked with Nice & Smooth, Lost Boyz and King Tee), and Otwane Roberts, who is the male rapper on the track.

    Ike Turner also got a writing credit on the song because it samples the Ikettes hit he wrote, "I'm Blue (The Gong Gong Song)."
  • Salt-N-Pepa's lineup at the time was Salt, Pepa and Deidra "Spinderella" Roper, who replaced the original Spinderella Latoya Hanson in 1987. They are the best-selling female rap group of all time, high honors but a narrow category, at least if you take away R&B groups with a rap appeal like TLC. They've picked up Grammy and MTV awards and been VH1 Hip Hop Honors Honorees.
  • "Shoop" was the first single from the group's fourth album Very Necessary. When it landed at #4 US in December 1993 it became their highest-charting single. The follow-up, "Whatta Man," did even better, reaching #3.

    Very Necessary sold five millions copies in the US, and another two million internationally, making it - true to its title - a very necessary addition to any rap collection.
  • Three minutes into this song, the "cutest brother in here" comes over and offers a male perspective on how he's going to please the ladies. The rapper here is Otwane Roberts, who goes by "Big Twan Lov-Her" or "Sixx Two." In his verse, he offers up his "hot rod" and brags that he's "Twelve inches to a yard and have you sounding like a retard" - a line offensive enough to get excised on the radio edit.

    Little has been heard from Roberts since, although he did appear on the 1997 Salt-N-Pepa track "Boy Toy."
  • According to James and Denton, their producer Hurby Azor, didn't like this song (probably because he didn't write it) and they had to fight to get it released as the first single from the album. This marked a turning point for the rappers, as they began to take more control of their music.
  • Betty Everett had a hit in 1964 with "The Shoop Shoop Song (It's In His Kiss)," which Cher covered in 1990, setting off a shoop revival. The R&B singer Michael Cooper released "Shoop Shoop (Never Stop Givin' You Love)" in 1992, the year before S&P did their "Shoop." Whitney Houston recorded "Exhale (Shoop Shoop)" for the 1995 movie Waiting To Exhale. All of these songs are unrelated.
  • The video was shot in Coney Island, New York, which is known for its boardwalk and amusement park. The ladies are seen checking out an assortment of hot guys as they make their selections. Kermit Holmes, a professional basketball player, was dating Roper at the time - he appears in the hoop scenes (Holmes has the distinction of getting traded four times in one day when he played in the CBA).

    Pepa says they hand-picked the guys in video, holding an audition where they got to choose.

    The clip did very well on MTV, but it exploded on BET, where it made #1 on their countdown.
  • All three members of the group had recently had children by the time they shot the video. They got in shape for their beach scenes in an unfortunate way: when they toured Russia, the food was terrible, so they didn't eat much.
  • This plays early on in the 2016 superhero film Deadpool as the title character cheerfully prepares to kill his rivals. It also soundtracks the movie's closing credits.

    According to the film's star Ryan Reynolds, they used the song because they couldn't afford their first choice: "Hollaback Girl" by Gwen Stefani.
  • A snippet of this was used to introduce Donald Faison's character in the 1995 movie Clueless.

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