Love Rollercoaster

Album: Honey (1975)
Charted: 1


  • For the sake of a good story, Angus Young used to tell reporters that "Thunderstruck" was born from a flight where AC/DC's plane was struck by lightning. While that tale was embellished, The Ohio Players "Love Rollercoaster" really did come from a harrowing flight. The group was traveling to a show in a twin engine airplane (a Navajo), while flying through turbulent, stormy weather. As their drummer Jimmy "Diamond" Williams tells it, he was in the co-pilot seat when the plane hit air pockets that dropped it at least 400 feet (he saw the instruments). Someone on the plane commented that they must love their jobs, since the airplane ride was a "love rollercoaster." Lead singer Leroy "Sugarfoot" Bonner wrote the lyrics around that phrase, with the band working up the track. Both the writing and production credits on the song go to the band.
  • This song is the subject of an urban myth. During an instrumental break, there is a scream that sounds a little out of place. It was rumored that the scream was the sound of a woman being murdered in the studio. According to the story, which was started by a DJ in California, this woman was the model who appeared on the album cover. She was kneeling on glass and pouring honey in her mouth. While she was doing it, she found out that the glass was actually fiber glass and the honey reacted with the fiber glass by sticking to her legs and ripping all the skin off. She went in the manager's studio while the band was still recording and threatened to sue the band, which is when the manager stabbed her to death. The band left in the scream as a cruel joke. The scream was actually keyboard player Billy Beck. Instead of telling the truth, the band agreed to coyly answer "no comment" when asked about the rumor, claiming they took a vow of silence. The ploy worked, as the urban legend gave the song a buzz and helped sell records.
  • The Red Hot Chili Peppers recorded a version of this for the soundtrack of the 1996 movie Beavis And Butthead Do America. Their version hit #7 in the UK.
  • This song was used for the movie Final Destination 3, which follows a group of teenagers who avoid death by rollercoaster, but cannot escape fate. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Kat - Grafton, MA
  • In the US, this was used in a TV commercial for Volkswagen. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • The Ohio Players's leader, singer, and guitarist Leroy "Sugarfoot" Bonner died on January 26, 2013 at the age of 71 from cancer. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Bertrand - Paris, France
  • This was the second single from the funk band's seventh studio album, Honey, which peaked at #2 on the US albums chart. It was shut out of the top spot by Jefferson Starship's Red Octopus.
  • The mythologized model on the cover is Ester Cordet, Playboy magazine's Playmate Of The Month for October 1974. Despite urban legends to the contrary, the photo shoot left her alive and unscathed - albeit a little bit sticky.
  • The cover art earned art director Jim Ladwig the Grammy Award for Best Album Package in 1976.
  • In the 1998 horror movie Urban Legend, the myth of the mangled model from "Love Rollercoaster" is told at a frat party when a DJ spins the record.
  • The song seems to capture the exhilarating emotions that come with the ups and downs of a relationship, but in actuality Bonner didn't have a clue. "I wrote it, but to this day I don't know what I wrote," he told Fred Bronson, author of The Billboard Book Of #1 R&B Hits. "The words didn't really make sense to me. But it was a hit."
  • Bonner wasn't even a fan of the song and thought it was too corny, but he couldn't deny that the vocals sounded different from anything that was on the radio at the time. "A lot of the stuff we do is very experimental," he conceded. "We wanted to do what nobody else wanted to do. We don't ever want to do what other people do. I personally live my life like that. I don't care what the industry says or what people do in the business. It's not important to me. It's what I do that's important. That's the way you get to be your own individual and have your own style."
  • This was also used in these movies:

    Birds Of Prey (2020)
    Semi-Pro (2008)
    After The Sunset (2004)
    Johnson Family Vacation (2004)
    High Crimes (2002)
    Reindeer Games (2000)
    House Arrest (1996)
    Rush (1991)

    And in these TV shows:

    Scandal ("White Hats Off" - 2012)
    House ("Small Sacrifices" - 2010)
    Medium ("But For The Grace Of God" - 2008)
    The Wire ("Soft Eyes" - 2006)
    The Sopranos ("Employee Of The Month" - 2001)
    The Adventures Of Pete & Pete ("Day Of The Dot" - 1993)
  • In a 2020 interview with Okplayer, drummer Jimmy "Diamond" Williams, who first joined the band on their 1974 album Skin Tight, explained how a typical Ohio Players tune came together: "There were basically three people. It was Sugarfoot, [keyboardist] Billy Beck, and myself. We wrote, arranged, and then orchestrated. Most of the stuff was Billy Beck. Now, other people had ideas. [Saxophonist] Satch was great with coming up with titles and certain things that we would write around musically. Marshall, of course, played bass guitar, and he was instrumental when we would develop certain grooves, patterns, and stuff like that because the bass and the drums is where the groove really comes from in Black music. At that time, funk music came from the bottom. That's where you feel what's going on and how to shake what you're going to shake and move what you're going to move. Otherwise, all the candy, all the dressing, all the horns, the harmonies, background parts, second guitar parts, third guitar parts, and string parts, Billy, Sugarfoot, and myself would arrange all that stuff on the album."

Comments: 25

  • Jason from AntarticaThe scream story made this song much more memorable. I was so young when it came out but it horrified me then. I hear it now and I still get a chill of horror when I think that's the sound of a girl getting murdered. Listen to it, the scream is blood-curdling haha. Song itself is not bad.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn November 9th 1975, "Love Rollercoaster" by The Ohio Players entered Billboard's Hot Top 100 chart at position #51; and 11 weeks later on January 25th, 1976 it peaked at #1 {for 1 week} and spent 16 weeks on the Top 100...
    Between 1971 and 1977 the Dayton, Ohio quintet had fourteen Top 100 records; two made the Top 10 and both reached #1, the group's other #1 record was "Fire", which reached the top spot for 1 week on February 2nd, 1975...
    Their next biggest hit was “Funky Worm”; it peaked at #15 in 1973.
  • Leslie from Windsor, CtThe lead singer and writer of this song "Love Rollercoaster" is Leroy "Sugarfoot" Bonner. Not Leroy "Sugar" Bonner, regardless whether the scream was real or not. I don't believe it was. I'm a real fan of the Ohio Players and bought the "Honey" album that song was included on.
  • Rick from Alamo, TxHello! recording studios are sound proof. no scream from outside the studio could penetrate through the walls. Duh!
  • Paul from Washington Dc, DcI remember hearing that crazy "scream' story in junior high and I immediately wrote it off as sheer unadulterated crap. Fun party song, all the same. I bought the 45.
  • James from Yucaipa, CaThis was a great #1 hit in 1975 off a great album.NO murder ever occured during the recording of this song.Its just a myth.Love Rollercoaster is featured in the movie Final Destination 3,Its played during the topless tanning scene.Check it out & Happy New Year! 1/1/09.
  • Cody from Roxboro, Ncyea when i first heard the scream i thought it was a horse too.and this song was on grand theft auto:san andreas
  • Kevin from Reading , PaAs a young teen, I loved going into music stores and ooking through the album covers of Ohio Players albums. They always had sexy, naked women on the covers. This was a cheap thrill for a 13-year old boy in suburbia in the 70s, let me tell you.
  • Lenea from Detroit, Mii believe that there was really a woman killed during the recording. i wonder: is there a cleaning lady upstairs that got killed and fell over a banister, a cleaning lady that was next door and got murdered by an intruder, one of the band members killing his girlfriend, the guitar or the keyboard giving off high notes, OR THE PLAYBOY BUNNY BEING KILLED IN THE STUDIO AS THEY WAS REACORDING BECAUSE SHE WAS BURNED BADLY BY THE HONEY THEY GAVE HER? i believe that the bunny was killed during the recording. if u really look at all the clues in stories, u can tell someone is lying, someone is really being killed.
  • Joe from Chicago, IlTheir song Fire is better than this one.
  • Mercedies from Soldotna, AkI had honestly never noticed the scream before. That is really cool. I love myths and this one is fantastic. It was also very cool to use a song with an urban myth tied to death in a movie that stars basically death itself, (Final Destination 3). I love the music though. The beat is awesome to listen to after a busy day.
  • Amara from Victorville, CaBecause of that rumor about the scream coming from the nude model being stabbed, this song gives me the creeps. But course it was from the band's keyboard player, the model from the cover is still alive.
  • Ross from No Comment, PaThis is nothing but an urban legend. First off, the Ohio Players were a very sucsesful band so they would not have been recording in an apartment. This scream is used to fill the effect of a rollercoaster screm. I will admite it is strange that this type of scream is used for a rollercoaster scream, but it is only a sound effect. Check this video out for the most famous urban legend behind this song.
  • Mjn Seifer from Not Listed For Personal Reason, EnglandActually, the identy of the "Murdered" girl changes depending on who tells the rumor;

    Sometimes it's the girl on the cover, but other times it's an ex of one of the band members (Again which one of the members changes each time), sometimes it's the studio's cleaner, other times it's just a radom woman.
  • Candace from Osceola, ArI was 13 when this song was released, at that time the rumor was that the cleaning woman was on a floor above the recording room and when she was stabbed she fell out the window, past the window of the recording room. That is why the screams peaks and fades out...fading as she goes past the window and stopping when she hits the concrete. They didn't sound proof the windows because they were too high up, they only sound proofed the walls to keep out sounds of neighbors.
  • Karl from New York, NyIf you really listen to the song where the supposed scream was its to genric to a chick screaming.If you listen closely it trails off.If she got stabbed she would of screamed a short loud scream and would end quickly.But bessides that this song kicks ass
  • Todd from Melbourne, AustraliaI heard the scream, it was about 2:32 into the song. I read about this myth on the internet and I wanted to listen to the song for the scream, my dad had a copy of the album so I put on and listend very carefully and there it was a girl screaming.
  • Nathan from Defiance, OhSounds more like a horse to me.
  • Jessica from Sacramento , CaI heard the song was recorded at their studio in their apartment. It is very strange how run run hide is in the song. I heard that part and i did not see it in the lyrics to the song. I heard that there was an argument that was edited out between the manager and the model but the scream was left in cause it added an effect of a rollercoaster.
  • Matt from Flagstaff, AzThe song was recorded in their studio. The woman got stabbed to death while they were recording. If you listen to the lyrics you can hear "run, run, hide" and if you check the the lyrics to this song "run, run, hide" was never supposed to be in the song. So one of the members was telling the woman outside the sound booth to run and hide after the manager started strangling her.
  • Hailey from Broken Arrow, OkOkay at about 2 minutes and 35 second you can here this horrible faint scream. But I do believe it is a woman screaming. People may have not stopped the concert because they thought it was nothing. It could have been anything. But I believe it is a scream of horror, scare and of death.
  • Stephen T. from Alta Loma, CaThe scream does sound a little out of place. It's at the 2:32 mark "Yeah...How...Ahhhhhh!!!!". It doesn't seem like it's a guy doing that scream. It seems too high picth, but I may be wrong.
  • Scott from Chicago, Ilthe horn arrangements are like Kool and the gang on acid on this
  • Alysia from Willsboro, Nyif you listen closely at about 2 min and 33 sec you can hear a girl getting shot bc it was a live recording at a concert
  • Nora from Richfield, MnWho can forget the wonderful cover and music video by Red Hot Chili Peppers for the Beavis and Butthead movie.
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