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Song Stories

“Girls Just Want to Have Fun”

Cyndi Lauper | 1983

Although Cyndi Lauper's debut single would eventually become a female anthem of the Eighties, she told Rolling Stone she had to alter the lyrics from Robert Hazard's 1979 original, which was sung from a man's perspective. "It was originally about how fortunate he was 'cause he was a guy around these girls that wanted to have 'fun' -- with him -- down there, which we do not speak lest we go blind," she said. The "Girls" video told of her repressed childhood and featured a colorful cast of characters, including pro wrestling manager Lou Albano as her father alongside her real mother.

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Song Stories

“Nightshift”

The Commodores | 1984

The year after soul legends Marvin Gaye and Jackie Wilson died, songwriter Dennis Lambert asked members of the Commodores to give him a tape of ideas. "And the one from Walter Orange has this wonderful bass line," said co-writer Franne Golde. "Plus the lyric, 'Marvin, he was a friend of mine' ... Within 10 minutes, we had decided it should be something like a modern R&B version of 'Rock 'n' Roll Heaven,' and I just said, 'Nightshift.'" This tribute to the recently deceased musicians was the band's only hit without Lionel Richie, who had left for a solo career.

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