Song of the day: Penny McLean – "Lady Bump"

September 29, 2009

Today’s Song of the day is “Lady Bump” by disco artist Penny McLean, but it’s not here today because it’s an Australian song (it’s not) or even because it’s a good song (it’s… well, you can decide for yourself). No, the reason for “Lady Bump” being Song of the day is:

The Scream.

This song contains the most unsettling and disturbing scream I’ve ever heard in any song – disco or otherwise.

Up until a few minutes ago when I pestered Wikipedia, I knew nothing whatsoever about Penny McLean. I now know that Penny McLean was in a German disco act called Silver Convention who had two huge hits, “Fly, Robin, Fly” and “Get Up And Boogie,” and that Penny McLean’s real name is the very German Gertrude Wirschinger. Apparently the lyrics of both those songs consists of precisely six words each. (Apart from the lack of value-for-money in the lyrics department, I must say that the cover art for the “Fly, Robin, Fly” single is distinctly distasteful.)

“Fly, Robin, Fly” and “Get Up And Boogie” are just two reasons why so many people hated disco music. I mean, really:

That tune will stick in your head all day. And that’s not a good thing.

But back to “Lady Bump” and The Scream. What makes “Lady Bump” even more unsettling is The Scream appears not once, but eight times during the course of the song.

Here then, if you’re game, is Penny McLean with “Lady Bump” (1975) and The Scream:


There were plenty of videos for the song to choose, but this one was only I could find in which Penny was holding a microphone, at least giving the illusion of not miming:

In the spirit of disco, with its habit of releasing extra-long versions of songs to keep people on the dance floor, here as an anti-bonus – or “punishment” perhaps – is the interminable 12″ version:

Penny McLean – “Lady Bump” (12″ version) (1975)