So, on to the last of my 10 classic singers. It has to be Cyndi Lauper. Like most people I first heard her in 1984 when Girls Just Wanna Have Fun roared up the charts. What an energising song it is. The album She’s So Unusual was packed with great songs – it’s still one of my favourite albums. Before she hit the big time, Cyndi as with Blue Angel – a sort of country, rock-billy band. I chose one of their songs in my 5 songs below.
So after her first album she carried on with True Colours which included the song of the same name, since recorded by zillions of other artists, as have many of her songs. And on and on from there.
Later on Cyndi Lauper branched out and recorded At Last an album of cover versions, and she has since go on to release Memphis Blues. I heard her sing on her 2011 concert in Perth on the supporting that album. I was no disappointed – I was in awe, thought she was fabulous and generally excellent. I was on a high for a while afterwards. She played the blues songs and some of her earlier hits. I really enjoyed her a-Capella version of Sally’s Pigeons. I even wrote a poem about that concert which you can find on this blog – it’s called When She Sings.
I won’t go into too much detail, because it’s all written in many places on the internet.
I could happily have picked 20 songs, it was hard to choose five. And I couldn’t – so, I chose 6 songs for Cyndi– I do like her voice a lot. She deserves an extra song!
Sally’s Pigeons – I didn’t hear this until recently, well a few years ago, but what a song, a story about childhood. I love the simplicity of the introduction – it shows how good Cyndi’s voice is. There is a lot of emotion and feeling in this, a hark back to childhood. A really beautiful song. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KxwDnypJw3Y
All Through the Night – I first heard this on Radio one when they were reviewing new singles. I thought, ‘this is a hit.’ Not in the UK it wasn’t – at least not a major one. I was gobsmacked, but itdid better elsewhere. It is one of my favourite Cyndi Lauper songs. I just love it, and it was a treat when I heard her sing it live too. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WiR_X4nCSeI http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HJvTgfNWzD4
Time After Time – this is a great song. I never get tired of listening to it. There is a gentleness to it that crossed the airwaves. Like All Through the Night, this is off She’s So Unusual and another reason that album is so good. This song inspired my poem When She Sings http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VdQY7BusJNU
I’m Gonna Be Strong – from her time with Blue Angel, Cyndi Lauper made this Gene Pitney song her own, thanks to her stellar voice. A great song, but Cyndi sings it, it just cuts right through you. I’ve chosen a video of her singing with Blue Angel – it gives me goosebumps every time. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkYJCj73w24
It’s Hard To Be Me – A bit of a change of pace. I can‘t remember the movie that I first heard this song in. I’m sure it was during a movie. It’s upbeat, satirical, and made me laugh, as well as just lovin’ that voice of hers. A bit of punk influence in this. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iU2_P9XkYJE
At Last – The bonus 6th song! A cover version, but a great song. Cyndi Lauper shows that she can sing other styles. So laid back, so cool, so Cyndi… http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZhRTUbv5J_Q
So that’s it for now, although I have a couple of others in mind that I might do later on. But for now I’m going to 10 Classic Albums, starting next year.