Friday, July 29, 2016

"Girls Just Want to Have Fun" by Cyndi Lauper

Top 10 Alert!
Platinum Record Alert!
Rated 10 Alert!
Song#:  1733
Date:  12/17/1983
Debut:  80
Peak:  2
Weeks:  25
Genre:  Synthpop, New Wave

Pop Bits:  Lauper had a bit of a rough road getting to this point. She co-founded the band Blue Angel and their demo got them signed to Polydor. They recorded a self-titled debut in 1980 that got good critical notices, but it went unnoticed by record buyers and disappeared quickly. They fired their manager, who turned around and sued them and that left Lauper bankrupt. The band then split and Lauper was on her own. She returned to being a server and singing in clubs just trying to make a living and perhaps catch a break. She finally got one when a guy who saw her sing in a local bar wanted to become her manager. He got her signed up Portrait Records (Epic) and a debut album was soon in the works. She's So Unusual was the finished product and this song was selected as the album's first single. It would turn out to be a major hit reaching #2 for two weeks. A video for the song quickly became an MTV favorite and it seemed that overnight Lauper was a star. It also didn't hurt that she had a quirky personality and a unique fashion style and endeared her to a lot of folks. The album would be a big success as well reaching #4 and eventually selling six million copies. The Grammys came a-knockin' and Lauper answered with a win for Best New Artist. This song would get her two additional nods for Record of the Year and Best Pop Vocal Performance, Female. The LP would be nominated for Album of the Year.

ReduxReview:  Everything about this song was spot-on. The tune, the production, Lauper's voice, her style, her personality, the video - just everything came together in this moment to create a true 80s classic. Not only was the song hard to resist, but Lauper was too. I was completely attracted to her big voice that still sounded girly and I loved her kooky persona. I ran out and got the album as soon as I could. The album is a near-classic. The first six track are perfection - brilliant 80s new wave/pop. The last three actual songs just aren't up to the same standard so the LP peters out near the end. It's still a terrific album and Lauper quickly became one of my faves.


Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) I mentioned this in a previous post, the original demo version done by the song's writer Robert Hazard was a more rocked-up new wave tune. The lyrics were from a male perspective so when the song got to Lauper, she decided to change the lyrics in order to make it an empowering song from a woman's point of view. Hazard's original version is up on YouTube for viewing.  2) The video for this song won Lauper the Best Female Video at the very first MTV Music Video Awards. It also featured wrestling star "Captain" Lou Albano playing Lauper's father. The wrestling connection came courtesy of Lauper's boyfriend/manager Dave Wolff, who was a wrestling fan. Lauper would stay connected with pro wrestling for quite a while making appearances at events and even having Hulk Hogan show up as her "bodyguard" sometimes.



  1. Lauper could not have had a better song to introduce her to mainstream audiences. It was the perfect combination (including the fantastic video), and (I feel) is truly responsible for making her the big star that she was.

    1. I couldn't agree more. I certainly fell in love with her right away!