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I keep hearing the phrase "popping bottle" in contemporary music. Does it simply mean "opening an alcoholic drink"? Why do they keep using it?

  • I invented swag, poppin bottles, putting supermodels in the cab.
    Otis — Kanye West

  • popping bottles in the club
    Love In This Club — Usher

  • popping bottles in the club
    Lollipop — Lil' Wayne ft. Static

  • Poppin Bottles — T.I. feat. Drake

  • Popping bottles with model
    Troublemaker — Akon

  • Popping bottles in LA
    Best Night — LMFAO

  • Popping bottles up for free
    Reminds Me — LMFAO

  • Popping bottle in the house with model in the V-I-P
    Sorry for party rocking — LMFAO

  • Popping these bottles, touching these model Right Round — Flo Rida

  • Popping bottles in the ice
    Like a G6 — Far East Movement

Why this choice of words? Does this phrase symbolise something?

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@Kris. I posted my answer before seeing your comment. Honest. –  Barrie England Jan 22 '13 at 8:52
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@BarrieEngland Mine was just a comment in any case. :) –  Kris Jan 22 '13 at 8:54
    
Uh. If you are not even sure what the phrase means, how can you say the people using it "keep misusing it" and something is "wrong with them"? −1 for peeving bordering on insults. –  RegDwigнt Jan 22 '13 at 9:59
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@Barrie all comments and answers have exact timestamps. Just hover over the time specification with your mouse pointer. Kris's comment is from 08:49:00Z, your answer is from 08:48:19Z. So no need to make a solemn vow, you were 41 seconds faster for everybody to see. –  RegDwigнt Jan 22 '13 at 10:04

3 Answers 3

up vote 3 down vote accepted

These refer to the popping of champagne bottles, that, due to being carbonated, make an audible pop sound when opened - or louder, if shaken before opening. The use of champagne in these lyrics is linked to the popular conception of champagne as symbols of wealth and power. See what Wikipedia says:

Royalty from throughout Europe spread the message of the unique sparkling wine from Champagne and its association with luxury and power in the 17th, 18th and 19th century. [...] Through advertising and packaging they sought to associate Champagne with high luxury, festivities, and rites of passage. Their efforts coincided with the emergence of a middle class that was looking for ways to spend its money on symbols of upward mobility

The key passage is the one I emphasised - it's not only that champagne was expensive and became a drink for the rich and powerful, but it became (through both luck, timing and careful branding) a product for the nouveau riche, middle-class people with access to money who want the trappings of nobility.

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It indicates they are opening champagne bottles, ie living an expensive, extravagant lifestyle because they are rich beyond the wildest dreams of normal men.

A lot of this type of music is effectively showing off - dancing/sleeping with attractive models, drinking the most expensive drinks in exclusive nightclubs etc. At the end of the day, they are just shouting, "Look how successful I am!"

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Champagne bottles certainly pop, but do you have any independent source for the association with champagne? –  Barrie England Jan 22 '13 at 8:51
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Written citations, no, but the use in three of those songs (I have seen the videos) is directly connected with Crystal champagne, the de facto R&B artist's drink of choice - and also one of the most expensive. These songs are all about demonstrating wealth and success. –  Rory Alsop Jan 22 '13 at 8:54
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However, the phrase is also used elsewhere, by those who open other kinds of bottles, by those just referring to a session of 'drinking' or even just partying in general. –  Kris Jan 22 '13 at 8:56
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Not my downvote, by the way. –  Barrie England Jan 22 '13 at 8:57
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no worries - I'm never precious about votes. They are what people think. –  Rory Alsop Jan 22 '13 at 9:01

It’s new to me, but it’s not surprise that the Urban Dictionary offers ‘to open an alcoholic beverage (to drink liquor)’.

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