Who is the Songwriter Behind “Girls Just Want to Have Fun?”

It’s an anthem. It’s a classic. It’s “Girls Just Want To Have Fun,” which has been made famous by Cyndi Lauper.

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But who wrote this classic song and how did it make its way into the pop culture ether?

The Song’s Origins

While Cyndi Lauper made the track into an all-time classic, it wasn’t written by her originally. In fact, the song wasn’t first recorded by her either.

“Girls Just Want To Have Fun” was actually written and recorded and first performed by the American artist Robert Hazard, who released the song as a single as far back as 1979. Lauper made it notorious, however, covering the track in 1983.

Lauper’s release of the song was the first big single in her career and it arrived on her debut studio LP, She’s So Unusual, which also dropped in 1983. Thanks to Lauper’s ear-catching voice and sharp singing style, the song has since become an anthem for women and feminists and everyone who wants to celebrate them. It will remain part of American popular culture for decades to come, to be sure.


Since Lauper’s rendition, the song has been covered a myriad of times by many artists. Her first breakthrough, “Girls Just Want to Have Fun” peaked at No. 2 on the U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart. Later, it garnered Lauper Grammy Award nominations for Record o the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance

Robert Hazard

Hazard recorded the first demo of the song in 1979. Today, that version has two-million views on YouTube, alone. So, fear not Hazard fans, it has not been lost to history. But on her version, Lauper did change some of the lyrics, as suggested to do so by her producer.

Hazard was born on August 21, 1948, in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. The son of an opera singer, he grew up in Springfield Township, Pennsylvania. Along with “Girls Just Want To Have Fun,” Hazard is known for writing songs like “Escalator of Life,” which he performed with his band, Robert Hazard and the Heroes. They were popular in the Philly club scene in the 1980s. He released his first LP album, Wing of Fire, in January 1984.

Legendary MTV personality and rock journalist Kurt Loder wrote for Rolling Stone in 1981, Hazard “started out as a Dylan-era folkie, then spent eight years singing country & western. ‘I just love country music’, he explains, which of course explains nothing, least of all the two years he subsequently spent with a reggae band… or his current electro-pop approach, which owes little to any of the above.”

Hazard died just before his 60th birthday at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston on August 5, 2008, following surgery for pancreatic cancer.

Final Thoughts

While the song had a giant life in the 1980s and 1990s, it will only continue to earn fame and fortune as time progresses.

Sings Lauper, proud and assured and with plenty of verve in the song’s second verse:

The phone rings, in the middle of the night
My father yells, “What you gonna do with your life?”
Oh daddy dear, you know you’re still number one
But girls, they wanna have fun
Oh girls just wanna have

That’s all they really want
Some fun
When the workin’ day is done
Oh girls, they wanna have fun
Oh girls just wanna have fun (girls, they want)
(Wanna have fun, girls)
(Wanna have)


Photo: Rebecca Miller / Shore Fire Media

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