It really isn’t easy to turn cancer into comedy. This might be the only time I did it with any success.
I have a very clear memory of writing this one; it popped into my head while I was “squatting” in Gordon McVie’s office while doing some work for Cancer Research Campaign (which became part of Cancer Research UK), back in the Binders days.
I assigned the rights to the lyric to the charity, which will have made it a few bob.
The version below is dated November 1995 on the computer, but the original was written in March 1994; I think I might have revived it unchanged because of a fresh sunbed cancer scare story.
(To the Tune of “Sunny”)
Sunbed, yesterday my skin was pale and white,
Sunbed, until I used your ultraviolet light;
Now my sunbed is made, I look like a joke,
Indoors with my shades and rum and coke;
Sunbed tan of gold, I’ve been sold.
Sunbed, thank you for your ultraviolet rays,
Sunbed, you took away the acne from my face;
You gave to me a golden tan,
But may decrease my life span;
Sunbed I feel swell, I look well.
Sunbed, now my skin looks like taramasalata,
Sunbed, I hope these blotches aren’t melanomata,
You made me dream of Barcelona,
Now I’ve gleaned carcinoma,
Sunbed I’m not telling, I’ve seen swelling.
Sunbed, yesterday I lost my sense of humour,
Sunbed, when they diagnosed malignant tumour;
I spent all my cash, to try to look sunned,
I wish I’d endowed a cancer fund;
Sunbed you’re a curse,
I look worse,
Than my Macmillan nurse.
(Rather sinister looking Macmillan nurse – man in drag? – helps the victim off the stage)
Here’s Bobby Hebb singing Sunny with lyrics: