Cyndi Lauper…Michael Bolton…Count Me In

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There is something special about to happen…something wonderful…something I cannot wait to see.

Cyndi Lauper (pictured above right) is coming to prime time television…and it ain’t on some stupid VH1 special.

FOX TV is presenting “Duets” this fall (listed under Alternative programming). The show will pair…ahem…singers with…ahem…celebrities to prove the celebs can carry a tune. The contest series will debut with a two-hour episode 8 p.m. EDT Aug. 29 and will follow American Idol‘s elimination style, with judges (one of whom will be David Foster) and viewers deciding the fate of the celebrities.

Although the celebrity participants have yet to be announced, the initial line-up of singers is as follows…Chaka Khan (above center), Clint Black, Michael Bolton (above left), Smokey Robinson, Dionne Warwick, Brian McKnight, Macy Gray, Patti LaBelle, Kenny Loggins, Richard Marx (above right), Randy Travis, Aaron Neville…and…Cyndi “Friggin'” Lauper.For those of you not duly excited about Lauper’s part in “Duets”…or for those of you who are wondering why I am so excited…I’ll have to back up to 1985 to explain.

In 1985, I was one of those people…those special few…who believed Cyndi Lauper would be bigger than Madonna. I mean…yeah, sure…now I’m glad I didn’t bet my lunch money on it…but way back then you couldn’t have convinced me otherwise.

I was in ninth grade and begged my mother to let me shave the side of my head and dye my hair orange…begged her.

She wouldn’t let me.

But what she did let me do is dress up like Lauper and perform in the Nichols Junior High School Air Band Contest (pictured top left and below).

It kicked ass…I kicked ass…my mom kicked ass.

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Not only did Mom help me put together a totally bitchin’ outfit and dye my hair orange with poster paint (which washed out pretty easily)…she used her artistic skills to make a huge neon pink cardboard telephone receiver (for me to use during the part of the song that goes “The phone rings in the middle of the night”)…and to paint the side of a refrigerator box with a trio of background singers. These singers were “performed” by my childhood best friend…Christi Magrath…who held the huge neon painting on stage and “bopped” the singers to the music.

It was performance magic.

We came in second place…beating out acts that mimicked George Micheal and Culture Club. The winners performed “Pretty Young Thing” by Michael Jackson.

The above image immortalized Christi and me forever in the 1984-1985 Nichols’ annual (people still asked me about the performance at my 10-year high school class reunion). If you click on the that image of Shelley Lauper and her back-up singers…it will enlarge and you should be able to see Christi’s toes under the cardboard chanteuses.

Dr. Christi Magrath is now a molecular biology professor at Troy University in Alabama…I lie not. I’ve always been friends with smarties…and the beauty of it is how I always manage to get such intellectuals to do some really dumbass shit…SCORE!

Christi…if you ever read this…know that I still love ya, Zod!

Now more than 20 years later…I still get giddy over Cyndi Lauper…and having her on network television will be awesome.

“Duets” promises to be as much fun as ABC’s “Dancing with the Stars,” a show I loved. Nothing was better than watching Drew Lachey and Cheryl Burke dance.

So seeing my favorite B-list singers step out of the 80s and pair up with a bunch of tone-deaf B-list celebs to sing duets will be true television brilliance. (Not like that lame Skating with Celebrities crap…that was just stupid.)

But “Duets”…it even sounds poetic and deep…or maybe I’m just focused on what songs Lauper will sing. I could care less who her celebrity is. I want to know if we’re gonna hear songs of today squashed and stomped into painful duet formats that wouldn’t be suitable even for a live gig by some teenage garage band at a skating rink birthday party…much less actual radio play.

How awesome it will be if we hear renditions of K.T. Tunstall’s “Black Horse and the Cherry Tree” or James Blunt’s “You’re Beautiful” sung by Lauper and…say…Kirk Cameron.

They just need to be careful to stay away from the cliche stuff…like “Islands in the Stream” or “Endless Love“…anything by Kenny “Sworn Enemy” Rogers or Lionel Richie would be a mistake.

Seriously.

This show will have too much class for that kind of crap.

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13 Responses to “Cyndi Lauper…Michael Bolton…Count Me In”

  1. suzi-q Says:

    Hot diggidy dog, what a great memory:) The best part was watching Shelley Lauper (both then and now:) Shell, you forgot to mention that the cut-outs became part of your decor in your signature color room (pepto-bismol pink), (or as dad would call it pink-bismuth pink). Too cool for school! Loved the visit to a joyful occasion and folks this WAS THE WINNING ENTRY!!!

  2. Anonymous Says:

    OK, anyone who can even IMAGINE a duet between Cyndi Lauper and Kirk Cameron deserves her own spot on network tv. Move over, Mary Hart!
    The better half sends you some sugar, Sugar!
    xox
    HR Puff

  3. nolagirl Says:

    Oooh, this looks GOOD Shelley! The David Foster part is a little …. meh. But the rest sounds like reality TV gold.

    Oh, and my morning was made seeing Shelley Lauper in action. I bet a certain gray-haired dude would think that was *very* cool. Long-legged blondes? Please. It’s all about the Lauper. 😉

  4. bamaborntxbred Says:

    Just when I think you couldn’t get any cooler….Shelley Lauper. Cyndi’s long-lost little sis!

    I’m DYING to see this show. It’s either going to be the most awesome thing since Drew & Cheryl toe up da flo, or it’s gonna be a trainwreck. Either way, I’m there!

    One caveat: I’m gonna be so sad to see all those folks I used to idolize looking soooo old and crusty. (Calm down, I’ve seen Cyndi lately and she looks great…)

  5. nolagirl Says:

    Shelley, do you have an outfit like this?
    http://www.perezhilton.com/topics/caption_me/caption_me_shitting_glitter_20060725.php

  6. TALK! Says:

    I’m wearing it right now, NOLA. 😉

  7. Anonymous Says:

    To this day, I have trouble differentiating between Cyndi and Shelley. Such was the accuracy of the performance to my then 4 year old brain.

    SUPPLIES!

  8. coopdiggitydawg Says:

    hey shell i love it! kirk cama-roon is christian so thats pretty cool. It also be cool if hasselhoff strutted his stuff!

  9. TALK! Says:

    Okay…this post brought two of my brothers out from under their rocks to comment…I’m a very happy girl right now.

    Oh, and coopdiggitydawg…I will now only refer to Mike Seaver as Kirk Cama-roon. Thank you very much for that. 😉

    Love…Sista Sledge

  10. nolagirl Says:

    I *thought* those were your brothers making an appearance. Very sneaky, those boys …

    You should be glad about the Shelley Lauper reference. *My* brothers used to call me Ronald McDonald. NOT cool. I still want to kick them for it.

  11. double d Says:

    Speaking of out from under a rock…wassup!?!

    Duets…hmmm….how about mixin’ up some idols in the mix?

    Taylor and Michael McDonald or Van Morrison or Joe Cocker or Jimmy Buffet or….I could go on….

    Chris and the LIVE dude
    Elliott and Al Jarreau
    Kellie and Dolly Parton
    Mandisa and Aretha
    Paris and Beyonce
    Bucky and Willie Nelson
    Lisa and Lil’ Kim
    Ace and Lance Bass (LOL)

    and, finally….

    Kat and Paris Hilton

    Hope all is well…dd

  12. Quossum Says:

    Very cool! It might be a fun show. What’s next, though…Dog Training with Celebrities? Evening Strolls with Famous People? Curling with the Stars?

    While I do have stage experience, it’s in acting, not singing. One year we did The Diary of Anne Frank. There’s a part where the family sings “The Hanukkah Song.” The first time we did this, after learning the tune, our director just sat there, frozen. At last, he haltingly ventured, “Well, now I know why you guys didn’t try out for the musical…”

    (BTW, I was Mrs. VanDaan, which meant I got to kiss the handsome dude who played Mr. Frank. Rroarw!)

    –Q

  13. TALK! Says:

    Hey DD…great combo choices! 😉

    and Q…I think they should do a show called Evening Strolls with Famous People…I’d watch.

    HA!

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