Review #184: She’s So Unusual, Cyndi Lauper

Karla Clifton
2 min readOct 11, 2021

#184: She’s So Unusual, Cyndi Lauper

Hypothesis: Cyndi Lauper has more in common with Eddie Van Halen than any guitar hero.

Evidence #1: Style. They were both committed to looking like circus performers. Examples: This album cover, with Cyndi’s groundbreaking undercut-with-prom-dress combo. Eddie’s iconic stripey red and white Frankenstrat.

Evidence #2: Secretly responsible for other stuff you love. Examples: Did you know that Cyndi Lauper wrote the music and lyrics for Kinky Boots, the Broadway show? Did you know that Eddie Van Halen plays the guitar solo on Michael Jackson’s “Beat It”?

Evidence #3: Energy! You know how Eddie smiled when he played the guitar? That’s the same energy that Cyndi Lauper has. She’s like if Madonna let herself have a tiny bit more fun.

Conclusion: Give Cyndi Lauper some damn respect!


“Money Changes Everything” — Oh the synths, oh her Alanis-style-singing, oh I’m in love. This is a cover of the short-lived Eighties band The Brains’ song, which I kind of like in it’s own right. No offense Cyndi.

“Girls Just Want to Have Fun”JUST WANNA! THEY JUST WANNA!

“When You Were Mine” — Cover of a really excellent Prince song! That’s a KILLER note she hits in the middle.

“Time After Time” — Her choruses are so singable: If you’re lost you can look and you will find me/Time after time/If you fall, I will catch you, I’ll be waiting/Time after time. Send help, I only think about Cyndi Lauper songs now.

“Witness” — Love the songs where she’s channeling Madonna!

“He’s So Unusual” — This is a short interpretation of the Helen Kane song of the same name. (Who, fun fact, was the inspiration for Betty Boop!)

“Yeah Yeah” — A Yoko wail!


“She Bop” — I kept changing my mind about this one. I love the spirit of it — It’s the “WAP” of the Eighties! But the lyrics made me laugh: She bop, he bop, we bop/I bop, you bop, they bop/Be bop, be bop, a lu bop.

“I’ll Kiss You” — I should be clear: I don’t dislike either of these songs, I just think they’re insane. Tweedle-dee and tweedlee-dum/I’ll kiss you/Kiss you/Kiss you/Kiss you. Half of this album sounds like a Halloween-themed album to me. But fine, it’s insanely fun.


The RS blurb for this album calls Cyndi Lauper “garish” and “kooky.” Cyndi Lauper is gracious, so I’ll get mad at them on her behalf. Cyndi Lauper is just as good as Eddie Van Halen and I will die on this hill.

Review #183: Brown Sugar, D’Angelo

Review #185: Beggar’s Banquet, The Rolling Stones