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Cyndi Lauper is an American singer-songwriter who rose to fame in the 1980s with a string of pop hits such as "Girls Just Want to Have Fun."
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Cyndi Lauper forged her own path with her unique sound and one-of-a-kind look. Her video for “Girls Just Wanna have Fun” became a pop anthem, and made her a staple of the MTV generation.
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Cyndi Lauper burst onto the charts with her debut album, She's So Unusual (1983). With her eclectic clothes, flamboyantly styled hair and contagious pop melodies, Lauper took the music world by surprise, and the record sold almost 5 million copies. Lauper scored a string of hits that included "Time After Time" and "Girls Just Want to Have Fun," and won the 1984 Grammy Award for best new artist. In June 2013, Lauper's musical Kinky Boots won six Tony Awards, including for best musical,
"Everyone—whether straight, gay, lesbian, bisexual or transgender—should be allowed to show their true colors, and be accepted and loved for who they are."
best leading man and best original score.
Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper was born on June 22, 1953, in Brooklyn, New York. Growing up, Lauper felt like an outcast. Her parents divorced when she was 5. Lauper and her two siblings were raised by her mother, who worked as a waitress to support the family. She did not do well in school, and was reportedly kicked out of several parochial schools in her youth. Despite her hard times, she discovered a love of singing at an early age, and was writing her own songs by the age of 12.
After eventually getting a high school equivalency degree, Lauper worked a number of odd jobs before her music career took off. She waitressed, served as an office assistant, and even sang in a Japanese restaurant for a time. During this time, Lauper also played in a number of bands. She had her first taste of success with the band Blue Angel, which landed a record deal. The group made one record together before splitting up.
Going solo, Lauper burst onto the charts with her debut album, She's So Unusual. With her eclectic clothes, flamboyantly styled hair, and contagious pop melodies, Lauper took the music world by surprise. The 1983 recording sold almost 5 million copies and featured her first hit, "Girls Just Want to Have Fun." The song became a female party anthem, and the video for it went into heavy rotation on MTV. Lauper became wildly popular almost overnight, scoring a string of hits that included the ballads "Time After After" and "All Through the Night." She was further rewarded for her work when she won the 1984 Grammy Award for Best New Artist.
Her 1986 follow-up album, True Colors, sold nearly 1 million copies. Sales for her subsequent recordings, however, began to drop off. Exploring new creative avenues, Lauper made her film debut in 1988 starring opposite Jeff Goldblum in Vibes. The movie performed poorly in both the commercial and critical realms. She had much better luck on the small screen with a recurring role on the sitcom Mad About You, which starred Helen Hunt and Paul Reiser. In 1995, Lauper won an Emmy for her work on the series. She later appeared on such shows as That's So Raven and Bones.
Lauper never abandoned music, however. While not a commercial success, Hat Full of Stars (1993) was an artistic achievement for her. The album was widely praised by critics for the songs, which took on difficult topics such as domestic abuse and homophobia. In subsequent albums, Lauper continued to write about social and political issues, and to explore different styles of music.
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Madonna unapologetically celebrated and monetized her sexuality when she began her career in the 1980s. Her bold behavior paved the way for other female performers—including Cyndi Lauper, Britney Spears, and Janet Jackson—giving them the freedom to explore previously taboo roles and take control of their image and career.
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They make music with instruments they were born with - their voices. Gifted vocalists have entertained audiences across musical genres from the tour de force arias of Luciano Pavarotti to the classic crooning of Frank Sinatra and Tony Bennett to the soulful vocals of artists like Aretha Franklin and Mahalia Jackson. With their powerful lyricism, singers like Bob Dylan, Willie Nelson and Bruce Springsteen became poet laureates of American music while artists including Joan Baez and Joe Strummer used their voices to prompt social change while they entertained. Rockers from Elvis Presley to The Beatles to Kurt Cobain helped define their generations through their songs while icons like Michael Jackson, Cher and Whitney Houston shaped pop culture with their larger-than-life voices and personas. See these and more famous singers who have struck a chord in musical history.
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