What did Madonna have that Cyndi Lauper didn't?

Darn those steam-powered computers!

So you’re making an argument from ignorance (or at least extremely outdated information). As I said above, Cyndi Lauper doesn’t run around in brightly-colored rags, gypsy jewelry and shocking red hair shaved into a checkerboard anymore. Calling her a novelty act because her first exposure to the masses was quirky (which, in 1983, was pretty much the new normal) is definitely not working with the full story.

If she didn’t want to be a successful pop star then why did she perform bubblegum pop songs with a kitschy look and hair cut?

I think you underestimate “She’s So Unusual”.

Besides which, that was ONE ALBUM. She’s done a lot since then, which you apparently know nothing about, and are somehow without the technology to actually check into. In other words, you are arguing from ignorance. Your best bet is to stop digging, but from previous experience when you get off on a tear about one of your deeply-held but completely wrong notions you won’t attempt to inform yourself about the things you’re arguing against.

I’m certainly not short-changing Madonna as a stage performer. I think she puts in WORK!

Jayjay, that goes to your point…Cyndi wasn’t as ambitious as Madonna (who actually named one of her tours ‘Blond Ambition’)…she wasn’t motivated by fame on that scale, I guess, or she would have worked harder for it. And that’s fine. Not everyone ends up a mega-icon.

Me too. I could have been bigger than Springsteen if I’d wanted to. I just chose not to. :rolleyes:

Do you throw darts at a bulletin board to pick a subject to be immovably contrary on every morning or are you sincerely this incapable of considering that maybe your ancient computer is keeping you from checking out videos that might at least nudge you to be reasonable about it?

I’m letting Dio’s intransigence on this get to me when I know I shouldn’t. I don’t disagree with most of the people in this thread to any great degree, but that kind of deliberate ignorance and unwillingness to even consider that he’s wrong about Cyndi being some kind of hack who got pushed into the spotlight and then sank back into…what? Singing on a street corner for change? is maddening.

Diogenes, maybe you are right. I don’t know how much talent you have, but if you are very talented, and you chose not to give your life over to a rock career, then maybe you* chose *not to be as big as Springsteen.

Lots of major stars gave their lives over to it. They dumped everything and lived and breathed their craft. They made enourmous sacrifices and the put in WORK. Someone like Beyonce, who I find incredibly beautiful but not necesarily the best singer in the world ( I will never forgive her for butchering At Last) has really busted her ass for her fame. There are surely more talented women out there, but none as driven as Beyonce. Don’t underestimate a spoonful of talent with a gallon of blood, sweat and tears.

I’m not even that old - Billie Holiday, Peggy Lee.

Go back farther, and you have an entire world of Ziegfield girls and their like - Olive Thomas, Evelyn Nesbitt - some of whom sang.

Farther than than and you have the courtesans.

Entertainment and sex were not united by Madonna. She just marketed it better with a better set of tools at her disposal (including MTV) than anyone had before.

Oh, Josephine Baker.

I’ll take your word for it that she’s better than her 80’s videos would suggest, but I think it’s absurd to suggest that she didn’t want to be just as big as Madonna. All performers want major popular success, no matter what they say.

I tried and worked and gave my life over to it, I just wasn’t good enough as a performer. I was a good songwriter, but I plateaued as a guitarist and singer. If you’d asked me then, I would have said I didn’t care about popular success and that I would never “sell out.” Most of the other musicians I knew would have said the same thing. We were all lying, though. We all desperately wanted to be famous and would have sold out in a heartbeat if anyone was buying.

The way to success, I (a former professional non-pop musician) think, is to really believe your thing will be the next big thing. Those are 2 separate concepts that have to come together to motivate an artist to do their best at the music and the business. True talent that truly cares about popularity, and will work for it, is that rare.

This is completely untrue.

Most people don’t know what they want. They only think they want fame. When they get it, they can’t handle it. Look at Kurt Cobain. He had problems that were not magically cured by fame and probably made a lot worse by it. So did Cyndi Lauper, just not the kind that makes you kill yourself. Cyndi Lauper has said she felt very uncomfortable with the success of SSU and actively fled the spotlight, yet she’s actually quite enduringly successful as a musician. Not anything compared to Madonna, but most people not only could not acheive her level of fame, they wouldn’t want it if they got it.

What did Madonna have that Cyndi Lauper didn’t?

Pointy tit cups.


If a thousand costume changes, lip-syncing to a studio-enhanced vocal track and being the least talented dancer on stage add up to some kind of amazing talent, you might have been a 12 year old girl in the 80’s.

This proves Cyndi can turn off that darn accent. Great song

Her Accent ruins (IMHO) this fantastic Dusty Springfield song

Shame that she insists on singing with that accent. She sounds so much better in that other song.

My $0.02, having lived through it.

Lauper was a musician and performer. She did songs she liked and worked with musicians she admired.

Madonna’s only concern was getting rich and famous and staying that way. She promoted herself vigorously and glommed onto whatever style was in at the time. It became so bad that about the time of Vogue it became a joke that whatever style Madonna was working at a given time meant that it had just peaked and would be irrelevant by next week. She didn’t a whit about music or artistic content and still doesn’t. If yodeling became the next big thing, she’d put out a yodel album and lip synch it in concert.

Lauper, while having faded in fame, remains a respected artist in pop and jazz vocal circles. She’s also gotten much more positive reviews for her small acting performances than Madonna could have dreamed of.