Naughty By Nature: Another Great Musical Group That Ignited The Hip-Hop World

Naughty 2Vin Rock, DJ Kay Gee and Treach of Naughty By Nature

I love reggae music and been following the activities of those great musicians and the players of the instruments for a very long time. But my passion for hip-hop music came naturally after knowing and listening to some few hip-hop groups in the United States of America.

Apart from ‘Public Enemy, A Tribe Called Quest, Arrested Development and Digital Underground, the group that made a great impact in the Hip-Hop world was simply known as ‘Naughty By Nature. Like others, they were too good. Hip-Hop was and still present, but how many people in the world of Rap Music still remember this formidable group that changed the musical world?

A quick glance at the background of Naughty By Nature 

Since the release of their single “O.P.P.” in 1991, the rap group Naughty by Nature has been hailed by their fans and reviewers as the embodiment of the “street”—the day-to-day existence of the inner-city, African-American population that gave birth to rap. Ed Lover, co-host of Yo! MTV Raps, described his impression of Treach, lead rapper and unofficial head of the group inVibe magazine: “Treach is the first authentic hip-hopper I’ve seen in a long time….

Yeah, he wants to get his, like everybody else, but there’s a sincerity there too. Look at him; you can see that he’s had a hard life, and it comes out in his music. His hard-core ain’t made-up; it’s real.”Treach and his Naughty colleagues, DJ Kay Gee and rapper Vinnie, appreciate such compliments and intend to maintain their street credentials. Indeed, despite the double-platinum success of their first two albums, all three have remained in the East Orange, New Jersey, neighborhood where they grew up.

Treach and Vinnie, born Anthony Criss and Vincent Brown, respectively, spent their 1970s childhoods only a few blocks away from one another. Both have credited much of their experience on the street to the difficulties of growing up in poor, single-parent homes. Treach’s mother had to work full-time, as a nurse, while she raised her two sons. Partly from her experience, Treach has become a strong proponent of birth control and support for the black family, often expressing his belief that his father’s absence contributed to his years on the street.

Hooked Up for High School Talent Show

Although none of the three felt that East Orange High School had much to offer them, it was there that they began rapping. According to Vibe’s Kevin Powell, “Treach knew he wanted to be a weaver of words—a rapper—since he was in the seventh grade.” Treach and Vinnie first collaborated in order to enliven a junior year health class: whenever the class became unbearably dull, they would break into an improvised rap, Treach rapping and Vinnie providing the beat.

Friend Kay Gee, who was a year ahead of Treach and Vinnie in school, in the meantime, had been polishing his skills as a DJ. When the senior talent show came up, Kay Gee asked his “homeboys” to perform with him. They walked away with the adulation of their audience.

Up to this point, aside from occasional jobs, the main occupation of the Naughty boys had been hanging around with their neighborhood gang, the 118th Street Posse. That life offered some income, largely from the drug trade or other illegal sources, and plenty of risk: fights, shootings, and jail time. After graduating from high school, Treach briefly held a job at Grand Union

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O.P.P by Naughty By Nature

Hip-Hop Hooray by Naughty By Nature page of the group: