Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Cyndi Lauper 'Girls Just Want To Have Fun'

Chart Peak: 2


I remember this song going around the playground at the time, but back then I think I felt slightly confused by it because I wasn't a girl (I'm still not in fact) and for that reason this didn't seem to have very much to do with me. And whilst it's a song that I've heard not infrequently since, I don't think I've ever really given it much thought.

What catches the attention now is the effervescent energy of the track. It's not actually as fast as I thought it was, but it makes the most of a relatively subtle arrangement, with the Farfisa organ in the right channel playing a relentless pattern that creates a sort of nervous force and balances the repeated guitar figure on the left. In the middle, Lauper herself has a lot of room to play and play is what she does: a lot of the words are garbled and stretched but it all gives the impression that she's having a lot of fun herself and this is what makes it work. It's fluff to be sure, but wholly committed fluff - unlike a lot of self-consciously upbeat pop music it doesn't sound as if somebody's gone out of their way to sound upbeat or talk down to the audience. You can almost believe that they ran into the studio and made it up on the spot. They don't half milk that chorus though, which is what begins to put me off. If there's one broad criticism I can make of pop in this decade, it's that even unpretentious pop tracks seem to be a lot longer than they really need to be for no apparent reason.

Also appearing on: Now 3, 29
Available on: She's So Unusual

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