#WomanCrushWednesday: Cyndi Lauper
You probably know Cyndi Lauper as the girl who just wants to have fun, and that time after time, you will find her. Well, if you've been keeping your eyes and ears peeled, you'll know that this '80s pop darling is showing off another side to her long career — one that's a little bit country.
This week, she'll be releasing Detour, an album of country music covers encompassing hits from the '30s to the '60s. She's already delved into jazz and blues in her earlier records At Last and Memphis Blues — and with Detour, she'll once again prove that at the age of 62, she can still surprise us. Citing Patsy Cline and Loretta Lynn as two of the country music talents prevalent in the airwaves of her childhood spent growing up in a Sicilian family in Queens, Lauper's album will see her collaborate with artistes such as Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Vince Gill, Alison Krauss and Jewel.
2016 is clearly Lauper's year. She recently picked up a star on the Hollywood walk of fame and had gotten rave reviews for her songwriting in the musical, Kinky Boots — the London production is a double-Olivier award winner, while the US production won six Tonys. Notably, she continues to be a champion for LGBT rights. In fact, she's the co-founder of the True Colors Fund, which aims to prevent LGBT youth homelessness. In true Lauper fashion, her efforts are in your face for the greater good: Among their campaigns is Give a Damn, which was employed in 2010 to encourage heterosexuals to get more involved in LGBT rights. According to Lauper, up to 40 percent of homeless youth identify as LGBT. The True Colors Residence in New York City she set up aids as a safe, non-judgmental environment for LGBT homeless youths who seek a temporary shelter.
It's a pressing issue in America, where residents don't stand united in LGBT rights. In North Carolina, where a law had recently passed mandating students in state schools use the bathroom that corresponds with the gender on their birth certificate, artistes such as Bruce Springsteen and Ringo Starr have both cancelled their appearances in protest. Lauper's still performing on 4 June, but proceeds from the show will be contributed to the state's LGBT rights group, Equality North Carolina. In addition to that, she's also insisted on a transgender bathroom at the venue.
Contrary to popular belief, (grown-up) girls like Lauper don't just want to have fun — they want to stand up for what they believe in as well.
Sample Cyndi Lauper's Detour on iTunes. For last week's #WomanCrushWednesday, click here.