Album Watch: Cyndi Lauper's Love Letter To The Memphis Blues
Monday, November 28, 2011
She's So Unusual, Cyndi's 1984 debut, is her magnum opus (and one of my favorite albums ever---it's truly a work of pop art), but there are number of not-so-famous Lauper LP's that are just as ear worthy. I have yet to listen to Memphis Blues, Lauper's homage to the Blues and the city where the sound is in abundance, but what gravitated me to the album's accompaniment, To Memphis With Love is because hearing Blues live is somewhat better than soaking in an studio album. Something about the genre's gut growling grit translates better in a live format. Lauper toured on the strength of Memphis Blues in relation to the live music disc, there is a DVD of her performance which features guest spots with Allen Toussaint and John Lange.
While live albums usually get a bad rap, I personally enjoy them and To Memphis With Love is a real treat. Still my interest rested on the Blues version of her signature hits, such as "She Bop", "Change Of Heart" and "Girls Just Wanna Have Fun" as I love a good old remake, especially when an artist can take a signature hit and morph into something else. "Girls" is a bit more ska than Blues on Memphis, but hey, she's re-crafted her signature song a gabillion times so I forgive it. Yet on "She Bop" and "Change Of Heart" from Unusual and 1986's True Colors respectively, she reinvents them with a lot of bravado and the results are...well, you have to click play below to hear. Just a fun time to be had by all.
She Bop (Live)
Change Of Heart (Live)