Tom Sinclair
June 18, 1993 AT 04:00 AM EDT

Hat Full of Stars

Current Status
In Season
Cyndi Lauper

We gave it a B

Poor Cyndi Lauper. For the past decade she has been trapped in pop star purgatory, unable to recapture the success of her 1984 debut, She’s So Unusual, the blockbuster that yielded a fistful of hits and made her a household name. Two spotty albums and an abortive film career later, her predicament doesn’t seem so unusual; the girl just wants a comeback. Hat Full of Stars, Lauper’s fourth album, indicates she may get her wish. Collaborating with an assortment of song doctors (including old cohorts Eric Bazilian and Rob Hyman of the Hooters), she comes up with 12 tunes that run the gamut from light pop and hard R&B to bleak ballads and ersatz Motown. There’s even some hip-hop. In fact, Hat holds something for nearly everyone (except the grunge brigade; she’s not that desperate), a tactic that would reek of a marketing plan from almost any singer other than Lauper, ever the vocal and stylistic gymnast. It’s impressive to hear her trademark little-girl-lost warble metamorphose into a dance-floor diva’s husky shout at the drop of a beat. Longtime Lauper fans probably won’t be disappointed by Hat Full of Stars, but how many converts it will win her is a question as wide open as her vocal range. B

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