Mar 10 2010

Rocking Retro: MC Hammer – Pumps and a Bump

There are many reasons why MC Hammer’s attempt at a gangsta-rap comeback with The Funky Headhunter failed miserably.  For one thing, the man was already overexposed and ridiculed ad nauseum by the time the album dropped.  Another point is the pure and simple fact that the whole act seemed (and was) forced; Hammer wasn’t a thug, he was a talented dancer and composer.  The first single, “Pumps and a Bump,” featured two music videos, both of which feel artificial compared to the classic Hammer strutting and crabwalking that littered the video for his hit “U Can’t Touch This.”

Of course, by this time, that was 4 or 5 years past, and Hammer was dated.  He had to redesign his image to pay for the now-multiplying debt and support his family.  He also needed a break back into the spotlight.  Death Row and Tupac were huge, so a move to the gangsta genre seemed reasonable.  But he didn’t fit in, and everyone knew it.

That’s not to say that Hammer isn’t in top form with “Pumps and a Bump.”  Quite the opposite, in fact.  Sure, the first video, filmed at Hammer’s stupid-expensive mansion, is overtly sexual and, at times, disgusting.  But the second is prime Hammer, making love to the camera with smooth lip-synching charisma and a new badass dance made for the song.  The track alone is a bumping club jam that probably would have been a radio hit with any other Death Row labelmate at the time; Hammer’s name had been dragged through the mud too much at this point.

He may have been aimless, lost, and on his way out at this point, but even then, when you let him have the stage, Hammer shined.

Mc Hammer Remix pumps in a bump – MyVideo