Girls Just Want To Have Fun

Album: She's So Unusual (1983)
Charted: 2 2
Play Video


  • This was Cyndi Lauper's first single as a solo artist. She released an album in 1981 as a member of the group Blue Angel, but "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" made her famous.

    The song was a huge part of '80s culture. It became an anthem for female attitude and set fashion trends as the video showed Lauper wearing bright, outrageous clothes that looked like they came from a thrift store (they often did). It set the stage for artists like Madonna: independent women wearing cheap, yet fashionable clothes with a taste for garish accessories.
  • Lauper co-wrote many of her own songs, but not this one. Like "I Will Survive," it's a girl power song written by a man. A Philadelphia singer/songwriter named Robert Hazard, who had a band called Robert Hazard and the Heroes, wrote it.

    Hazard recorded his demo of the song in 1979. Speaking with Rolling Stone, Lauper said that she had to alter the lyrics from Hazard's original. "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.

    A year before this song hit for Lauper, it was Hazard who was on the charts with his song "Escalator Of Life," which made #58 in the US. Yes, the video is on YouTube.
  • The video, which ran constantly on MTV, features the wrestler Captain Lou Albano as Lauper's father, and also Lauper's real-life mother, who had no acting experience but did just fine. It won the first ever award for Best Female Video at the 1984 MTV Video Music Awards. Albano was also in her next video, "Time After Time."

    Both videos were directed by Edd Griles, who produced the first two MTV Video Music Awards.
  • Lauper didn't want to record this song, but her producer, Rick Chertoff, was convinced it could become her anthem. The challenge for Lauper was figuring out how to sing it. She ended up doing her vocal in the style of the '50s hit "Let the Good Times Roll" by Shirley & Lee, which Shirley Goodman sings in a high-pitched voice.
  • A theme in Lauper's work, evinced in her song "True Colors," is acceptance. Most of the women seen on MTV were the kind of beautiful people rarely seen in the real world, but Lauper made sure that her video was populated with regular folks doing their thing. In the book I Want My MTV, she explained: "I wanted 'Girls Just Want To Have Fun' to be an anthem for women around the world - and I mean all women - and a sustaining message that we are powerful human beings. I made sure that when a woman saw the video, she would see herself represented, whether she was thin or heavy, glamorous or not, and whatever race she was."
  • Key contributors to this track were Eric Bazilian and Rob Hyman of The Hooters, who worked closely with producer Rick Chertoff to craft the album. The three had been in a band together, and when Bazilian and Hyman formed The Hooters, Chertoff ended up at Columbia Records as a staff producer. Columbia had just signed Lauper and assigned her to Chertoff, who called in Bazilian and Hyman to work on it. This was a great combination - Bazilian and Hyman got on very well with Lauper and knew how to handle Chertoff, who could be very exacting. Bazilian and Hyman both played on this song and did the arrangements.
  • Musically, "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" was modeled on another '80s pop classic: "Come On Eileen" by Dexys Midnight Runners. Lauper and her team tried recording it in a few different styles, but nothing was working. One day, they were talking about "Come On Eileen" (a big hit in the summer of 1983 when they were recording the album) and Lauper suggested they try it in that style.

    "I turned down the tempo knob on the drum machine, programmed in the same kick drum pattern as 'Come on Eileen,' clicked on my guitar, and played that guitar riff," Eric Bazilian said in the book Skaboom!. "She started singing, and that was it."
  • Ellie Greenwich sang backup vocals on this song and helped come up with the distinctive counterpoint. Greenwich was a legendary songwriter who worked with Phil Spector on many classic songs of the '60s, including Be My Baby and Leader Of The Pack. Other songs she sang on include "Evil Woman" by Electric Light Orchestra and "Dreamin'" by Blondie.
  • This song has been used in numerous TV shows and commercials. One of the more successful uses was in the 1995 movie Clueless, starring Alicia Silverstone. It was Silverstone's first big role after playing a vixen in some Aerosmith videos, and helped establish her as a legitimate actress.

    Other movie uses:

    To Wong Foo Thanks for Everything, Julie Newmar (1995) Riding in Cars with Boys (2001)
    I Now Pronounce You Chuck & Larry (2007)
    Baby Mama (2008)

    TV series:

    Magnum P.I. ("Say Hello To Your Past" - 2020)
    Supergirl ("Fight Or Flight" - 2015)
    The Office ("Lice" - 2013) - sung by Jenna Fischer and Kate Flannery
    Two And A Half Men ("Mr. Hose Says 'Yes'" - 2012)
    Glee ("I Kissed A Girl" - 2011)
    Bones ("The Wannabe In The Weeds" - 2008)
    Damages ("Tastes Like A Ho-Ho" - 2007)
    Gilmore Girls ("Like Mother, Like Daughter" - 2001)
    The Simpsons ("Lisa's First Word" - 1992)
    Charles In Charge ("Slumber Party" - 1984)
    Miami Vice ("Brother's Keeper" - 1984)

    It also features in the 2004 TV special Friends: The One Before the Last One - Ten Years of Friends.
  • It didn't take long for the title of this song to get its own movie. In 1985, the unknown actresses Sarah Jessica Parker, Helen Hunt and Shannen Doherty starred in the film Girls Just Want To Have Fun, where the song was also used.
  • Weird Al Yankovic wrote a parody of this for his 1985 album Dare To Be Stupid called "Girls Just Want To Have Lunch." He wasn't keen on doing anything that would make fun of women, but his label insisted he do a Cyndi Lauper send-up because this song was so popular.

    Lauper thought Yankovic's parody was funny. She said during a Reddit AMA: "I like Weird Al. I LOVED 'Like a Surgeon.' I thought he was going to make MORE fun of Girls just wanna have lunch. But it wasn't hard. Because everybody thought I was an alien, I spoke funny and I dressed funny... Not hard to make fun of."
  • Based on the success of this song, Lauper became part of "The Rock and Wrestling Connection." She appeared at matches for the World Wrestling Federation and managed the women's champion, Wendi Richter.
  • The song has charted on the Hot 100 on three other occasions following its initial entry in 1983. Cyndi Lauper remade it as "Hey Now (Girls Just Want to Have Fun)," peaking at #87 in 1995. Sixteen years later, the cast of Glee took its version to #59. Finally, in 2015 The Voice contestant Madi Davis reached #98 with her ethereal cover after she performed it on the TV show.
  • When all of the party guests in the video are shown falling out of the bedroom in a pile when the door is opened, it was a tribute to a similar scene from the classic Marx Brothers film A Night at the Opera.
  • In 2004, Carnival Cruise Lines used this in a series of commercials. >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Patrick - Conyers, GA

Comments: 42

  • Sonny Lee Simmons from California It’s really hard to get the truth about Girls just wants have fun creation there are so many versions and so many guys claim credit for the same aspects of the song. What was consistent from the story tellers is Lauper made Hazard rich and famous with her creative differences in the lyrics, arrangement, and instrumental changes. Lauper doesn’t get enough credit recognition for her addition to Girls just want have fun. So long ago but still so famous because of Lauper’s remake of a demo song. Well done.
  • Mrdudikov from AustriaDid she answered the phone the false way on propuse?
  • Marc D from CanadaCaptain Lou also appears in Cyndi's "The Goonies R Good Enough" video.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 17th 1984, Cyndi Lauper performed "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" on the ABC-TV program 'American Bandstand'...
    Seventeen days earlier on March 1st she appeared on NBC's "The Tonight Show", at that time the song was at #4 and on the day of the 'Bandstand' appearance was its last day at #2 {See next post below}...
    On the same 'Bandstand' show she also performed her next release, "Time After Time", and on April 8th, 1984 it entered the Top 100 at #53; eight weeks later on June 3rd, 1984 it peaked at #1 for two weeks...
    Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper will celebrate her 62nd birthday in three months on June 22nd {2015}.
  • Barry from Sauquoit, NyOn March 1st 1984, Cyndi Lauper made her U.S. national television debut, she appeared on the NBC-TV program 'The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson'...
    At the time of her appearance on the 'Tonight Show' her debut record on the Top 100 chart, "Girls Just Want To Have Fun", was at #4 on the chart...
    It had entered the Top 100 on December 1st, 1983 at position #80; and on March 4th, 1984 it peaked at #2 (for 2 weeks) and spent 21 weeks on the Top 100 (and for 8 of those 21 weeks it was on the Top 10)...
    It reached #1 in Canada, Australia, and New Zealand...
    The two weeks that it was at #2, the #1 record was "Jump" by Van Halen...
    Ms. Lauper, born Cynthia Ann Stephanie Lauper, will celebrate her 61st birthday in three months on June 22rd (2014).
  • Esskayess from Dallas, TxA radio station recorded those little 'hoop-hoop!' sounds she makes near the end, strung about 100 of them back-to-back and made a phony commercial for the 'Cyndi Lauper Burglar Alarm.' It was hilarious.
  • Kent from Greensburg, PaThere was a Sesame Street parody of this song called "Kids Just Love to Brush."
  • Camille from Toronto, OhThe simple sentiment says it all "Girls just wanna have fun". They just wanna. Don't need no explanation.
  • Stormie from Lexington, Okeven though i dont know Cyndi Lauper i consider her my friend. me and her have alot in common. i like to sing and she does to. she is a very beautiful woman.
  • Stormie from Lexington, Oki love Cyndi Lauper i think she rocks. she has an amazing voice. i love all her songs. i would like to sing girls just want to have fun with her. if she produced a movie about her life i would be perfect for it. i look like her, dress like her, and act like her. we are exactly alike. she is my rolemodel. i am her #1 fan. Cyndi Lauper rocks!!!
  • Avadavida from Atlanta, GaCyndi Lauper's "Girl's Just Wany to Have Fun" is every New Year's Theme Song 4 me!
  • Karen from Manchester, NhMjn Seifer, Not listed for personal reason, England, that is NOT the video for that least, not here. In this video, it shows Cyndi coming home late (actually, early AM), calling her friends for a party, and them all getting together at her house for the BIG party while her parents (her real mom and Capt. Lou) wring their hands. Eventually "the boy" gets to her and gives her some flowers. During the choruses is when she and 8 girlfriends move their heads side-to-side or sway up-&-down. You gotta love the stuffy looking guy (black suit & hat) "partying down" in his stuffy way! -------------------------

    "i think the song could be alot better it sucks so much why dont you have guys in it" - bryant, vermont - Two things: 1) If it's so bad, why'd you look it up? 2) The song is called "GIRLS Just Wanna Have Fun"...but there ARE guys in the vid.-------------------------

    Final note: Love the vid, although it's horribly dated, and the elastics pierced into Capt. Lou's face freak me out. BTW, he also shows up in "She Bop".
  • Nick from Cairns, AustraliaThis is just my opinion, but I don't think she can sing. The songs alright but her vocals irritate me, sounds like someone's shouting at me, in a melodic song-like way haha. Maybe thats her intention for songs like these.
  • Thelones from Young, AustraliaHey, there's a remix of this on Rayman: Raving Rabbids. It's all high tech, but not as good as the original. It's still good.
  • Lucy from Rhinebeck, NyI played this song during a sleepover at my friend's house. Then we had a pillow fight.
  • Lester from New York City, NyJaco, Greg Laswell does the version heard in the 1st season of 'Damages'.
  • Dominick from New York, NyActually, Captain Lou Albano was not a wrestler at the time of the video. He was a wrestling manager. Basically, he and the Grand Wizard used to manage all the "bad guy" wrestlers in the '70s, who were trying to beat the then-champ, Bruno Sammartino. Albano is a lot of fun.
  • Brian from Medway, OhI loved it when Allen Thicke said on his show " if girls just wanna have fu-un they oughta get a jo-ob"
  • Jaco from Johannesburg, South AfricaCan anyone help with some info: a cover of this song features on the TV series Damages. Its a male singer. Would love to find it. Anybody know about it?
  • Claudia from Brooklyn, NyThe guy who plays the synthesizer on this song is fantastic...the sound that was created laid the ground work for this sound and what makes this song timeless. The musicians that worked on this album were phenomenal, they made this song wahat it was and still is today. Great song!
  • Kevin from San Francisco, CaThis song reminds me of when I was a little girl in boarding school and my girlfriend was nude...yay!
  • Andrew from Birmingham, United StatesI like this one as well. Cyndi Lauper sounds a lot like Blondie in this song. Does she always? "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun!" What do they do for fun? I've always pondered that.
  • Benjy from Bonn, GermanyI love the video!!! It´s just pure fun!!!!
  • Mjn Seifer from Not Listed For Personal Reason, EnglandThe songs alright but the video sux and is boring. For thoese who havent seen it here is what happens:

    A load of girls all sitting on the sofa, Cyndi joins them, Sings the song, Nobody moves at all - Then comes the chorus ("Girls! Wanna have fun! Girls!") When this plays the girls "have fun" by... Moving their heads side to side. Once the chorus is done the girls go back to being still as statues. This whole procss is repeated again and again...Zzzz
  • Bryant from Vermont, Vti think the song could be alot better it sucks so much why dont you have guys in it
  • Pete from Ny, NyJust the happiest, bounciest song. It was played out for years for me until my 5-year-old daughter and her friends latched on to it. The sheer love they have for it, singing and dancing along, proves what a classic it is.
  • Neil from Middlesbrough, United StatesHappy Nation - Girls Just Wanna Have Fun. used a bit of the song but the rest sounded like a run DMC song.
    and to everyone who think's this song is not in the soundtrack to CLUELESS it is "GIRLS JUST WANT TO HAVE FUN"
    By Robert Hazard

    but i think it just the music
  • Jesse from Haddam, CtThis song wasnt #1? Wow. I FREWAKING LOVE THIS SONG!
    and im a boy.
    and staright
    which is scary
  • Howard from St. Louis Park, MnThe video was outstanding. Cyndi Lauper's real-life mother appeared in the video along with Captain Lou Albano. The cartoon bubbles were unforgettable. I enjoyed seeing the video many times on MTV.
  • Rob from Rockhampton , AustraliaThis song was used in Steven Speilbergs movie THe Goonies and features the Film clip on the Television in Sean Aston Home in the beginning of the movie . The first Concert I attended of size was Cindy Lauper in 1985 at The Sydney entertainment Centre , Great Energy!
  • Meagan from Baton Rouge, Lanice song but yes right it does get anoying after a while and lol it goes well with the carnival cruise comercial
  • Michelle from Hyattsville, MdI love this song. I didn't really pay attention to it until I heard the GOGO version and this song is like that.
  • Candice from Vancouver, CanadaI think this song sounds so GREAT and I would dance to it whenever it comes on the radio. The title is very unique, too.
  • Aj from Cleveland, GaI agree with Tom. But this song gets annoying after a while.
  • Ken from Louisville, KyIn concert, after the song became a hit, Cyndi would invite female audience mebers to join in a sort of "conga line" and sing along with the "they just wanna, they just wannnnaaaa...." refrain.
  • Dave from Cardiff, WalesIn September 1994, a remixed version of this song saw it return to to the UK Top 5, under the title "Hey Now! (Girls Just Wanna Have Fun)".
  • Brandon from Seattle, WaWeird Al Yankovic did a spoof of this song called: "Girls Just Want to have Lunch."
  • Krie from Ft. Drum, NyNo, the original song wasn't used in Clueless, but a cover version is. It's in the gym class scene.
  • Jessica from York, PaCaptain Lou Albano is also in her video for "Goonies R Good Enough" from the movie the Goonies. This video is on the dvd. Also, on Vh1's I Love the 80s they said a lot of people actually thought he was Cyndi's real father.
  • Jessica from York, PaI think you're mistaken because I don't recall this being in Clueless, but I know for sure it's not on the soundtrack.
  • Tom from Trowbridge, EnglandI love Cyndi Lauper's voice, especially in this song. In my opinion, she's one of the greatest female singers of all time.
  • Jana from Alexandria, VaAlso to be noted there's a movie named after this song
see more comments

Editor's Picks

Jethro Tull

Jethro TullFact or Fiction

Stage urinals, flute devices, and the real Aqualung in this Fact or Fiction.

Wolfgang Van Halen

Wolfgang Van HalenSongwriter Interviews

Wolfgang Van Halen breaks down the songs on his debut album, Mammoth WVH, and names the definitive Van Halen songs from the Sammy and Dave eras.

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"

Lou Gramm - "Waiting For A Girl Like You"They're Playing My Song

Gramm co-wrote this gorgeous ballad and delivered an inspired vocal, but the song was the beginning of the end of his time with Foreigner.


WeezerFact or Fiction

Did Rivers Cuomo grow up on a commune? Why did they name their albums after colors? See how well you know your Weezer in this Fact or Fiction.

Creedence Clearwater Revival

Creedence Clearwater RevivalFact or Fiction

Is "Have You Ever Seen the Rain" about Vietnam? Was John Fogerty really born on a Bayou? It's the CCR edition of Fact or Fiction.

Janis Ian: Married in London, but not in New York

Janis Ian: Married in London, but not in New YorkSong Writing

Can you be married in one country but not another? Only if you're part of a gay couple. One of the first famous singers to come out as a lesbian, Janis wrote a song about it.