Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper (born June 22, 1953), better known as Cyndi Lauper, is a singer whose melodic voice and wild costumes have come to epitomize the 1980s, the decade in which she first came to fame.
Cyndi Lauper was born in Queens, New York. She began her career in a band named Blue Angel, and in 1983 started dating her manager David Wolff with whom she released She's So Unusual, a worldwide hit which made Lauper a household name. A mixture of teen-friendly pop-rock and edgier, almost punky sounds, the album's biggest hit, "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun", quickly established itself as a female anthem.
The album also included "She Bop", a paean to female masturbation, and the romantic ballad "Time After Time", an instant "standard" which has since been covered by over 70 artists (most notably Miles Davis). Lauper was popular with teenagers, in part because of her quirky image which took the popular late 1970s punk look and marketed it to a mainstream audience. At this stage of her career, she was often compared to Madonna.
In 1986 - after recording the song "The Goonies 'R' Good Enough" for the 1985 film The Goonies, which starred Corey Feldman - Lauper released her second album, True Colors. Revealing a more mature sound and sensibility, it reached number 4 on the US album charts. The title song went on to become her second Platinum number 1 hit.
In 1988 she appeared as the female lead in the quirky comedy Vibes, which was poorly received by critics and a commercial flop. Her soundtrack contribution, "Hole In My Heart (All the Way to China)", also flopped.
Lauper's third album, 1989's A Night to Remember, though critically well-received, was not as commercially successful as its predecessors, spawning just one hit, "I Drove All Night", which was originally penned for Roy Orbison. Orbison's version was not released until 1992, three years after Lauper's version and four years after Orbison's death.
In 1990 she joined many other guests for Roger Waters' massive performance of The Wall in Berlin.
Lauper took a break from singing at this point, but didn't disappear from show business, and in 1993 she played Michael J. Fox's secretary in My Life With Mikey. She released the critically acclaimed album Hat Full of Stars in the same year, but once again sales were poor. With a smooth new R&B sound and production by Junior Vasquez, she tackled such topics as spousal abuse and abortion.
In 1995 Lauper won an Emmy award for "Outstanding Guest Actress in a Comedy Series" for her portrayal of wealthy contessa Marianne Lugasso in Mad About You. She also released 12 Deadly Cyns... and Then Some, a greatest hits compilation that included two new tracks, one of which was a remix of her first big hit, newly christened "Hey Now (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun)". The album was released under a number of different titles, packaging and track listings around the world.
Her 1997 album Sisters of Avalon brought her back into the limelight. With subject matter even more adult than before, it was quickly embraced by the gay community for its disco and club stylings. The topicality of the album also contributed to its "pink" appeal: the song "Ballad of Cleo and Joe" addressed the complications of a drag queen's double life, while "You Don't Know" tackled the thorny issue of coming out. The album's singles were remixed to great acclaim, and Lauper began performing as a featured artist at gay pride events around the world.
In 1999 she co-headlined a tour alongside Cher, and contributed a cover version of the disco classic "Disco Inferno" to the soundtrack of the film A Night at the Roxbury. She also garnered critical plaudits for her roles in several independent films including The Opportunists (with Christopher Walken) and Off and Running.
In 2001 Lauper prepared an album, Shine, which saw her returning to her early bubblegum pop sound without losing the "maturity" she had embraced on later records. Just weeks before the album's scheduled release, however, her label, Edel America Records, folded, and, to Lauper's consternation, the tracks were leaked to the public. Although a five song E.P. of the same name was made available through her website and at Tower Records, the full length album concept was scrapped.
She undertook her second co-headlining tour with Cher in 2002.
In 2003, an E.P. of remixes from the unreleased "Shine" album was sold on the Edel America Records website. Additionally Lauper's former label Sony issued a new greatest hits CD entitled The Essential Cyndi Lauper. She has re-signed with Sony/Epic Records, the label that made her a star, and a new album Naked City is in the works. She maintains a devoted fanbase and lives in New York with her husband, actor David Thornton, and their child.
In November 2003 an album of standards was released called At Last. In March of 2004 the full length "Shine" album was finally released, though exclusively in Japan.
Blue Angel - 1980
She's So Unusual = 1983
True Colors - 1986
A Night to Remember = 1989
The Best Remixes - 1989
Hat Full of Stars - 1993
Twelve Deadly Cyns...and Then Some - 1994
Sisters of Avalon - 1996
Merry Christmas...Have a Nice Life - 1998
Cyndi Lauper - The Best - 2000 (Peru Only)
Best of Best Gold - Time After Time - 2000 (UK/France Only)
Cyndi Lauper Greatest Hits - 2000 (Columbia Only)
Media Markt Presents Cyndi Lauper - 2001 (Germany Only)
Siglo XXI Cyndi Lauper Los Exitos Del Siglo - 2001 (Brazil Only)
Grande Sucesses = 2001 (Brazil Only)
Feels Like Christmas - 2001
Cyndi Lauper - V.I.P. - 2002 (Germany Only)
Pop Wave - 2002 (Germany Only)
Shine - 2002 (Unreleased)
The Essential Cyndi Lauper - 2003
At Last - 2003
Shine - 2004 (Japan Only)
Wanna Have Fun - 1998
Shine E.P. - 2002
Shine Remixes - 2003
Soundracks and other albums
What's In a Name? (Henry Gross) - 1981 (Backing Vocals)
The Goonies: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack = 1985
USA For Africa - 1985
Confrontation (Face to Face)) - 1985 (Backing Vocals, billed as "Kindy Lipkey")
The Wrestling Album (Various Artists) - 1985 (Backing Vocals, billed as "Mona Flambe")
Cyndi Lauper & Friends (Compilation with songs by others) - 1985 (Brazil Only)
The Bridge (Billy Joel) - 1986 (Duets on "Code of Silence")
The Wall: Live in Berlin (Roger Waters) - 1990 (On several songs recorded live)
Music Speaks Louder Than Words (Various Artists) - 1990 (Contributes track "Cold")
Tycoon (Various Artists) - 1992 (Contributes 2 tracks)
A Very Special Christmas 2 (Various Artists) - 1992 (Duets with Frank Sinatra)
Put on Your Green Shoes (Various Artists) - 1993 (Performs title track, billed as part of "3 Cats 'n Jammers")
Out of Body (The Hooters) - 1993 (Lead vocals on "Boys Will be Boys")
Largo (Various Artists) - 1998 (Contributes 2 tracks)
A Night at the Roxbury: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack - 1998 (Contributes track)
Southie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Various Artists) - 1999 (Vocals on Wild Colonials track "If By Chance")
Rugrats in Paris - the Movie: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Various Artists) - 200 (Contributes track)
Blowback (Tricky) - 2000 (Vocals on "Five Days")
Sincerely...Mariya Takeuchi Songbook (Various Artists) - 2003 (Vocals on "Winter Lovers")
1985 - The Goonies (Cameo)
1988 - Vibes
1990 - Mother Goose Rock 'n' Rhyme
1991 - Off and Running (AKA Moon Over Miami)
1993 - Life With Mikey
1994 - Mrs. Parker and the Viscious Circle (Cameo)
1999 - The Opportunists