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Cyndi Lauper, ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’ vs. Paula Abdul, ‘Straight Up’ – Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era [Round 1]

Cyndi Lauper Paula Abdul
Chris Walter, WireImage / Michael Ochs, Getty Images

UPDATE: Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’ won in Round 1! Vote for ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’ in Round 2 of the competition here.

Welcome to March Music Madness! Here at PopCrush, we’ve selected 32 of the most iconic pop songs released from the ’80s to today (divided into brackets by decade) — and now it’s your job to vote and decide which song will be named the Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era. May the best song win!

We’re trying to find out what you think is the Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era. This round of March Music Madness brings us two ’80s ladies at opposite ends of the spectrum in terms of music and style: Cyndi Lauper and Paula Abdul. Both made big splashes with their debut albums, and both peaked with signature hits off of those albums — but that’s where the similarities end.

Lauper’s playful and poppy ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’ not only became her career-defining track, it became a mantra for females of all ages, for the ages. Off of her first album, ‘She’s So Unusual,’ the song peaked at No. 2 in 1984. It’s impossible to hear the tune without also visualizing its quirky and rambunctious video, displaying Lauper’s boho-chic style in full, dazzling Technicolor.

By contrast, the music video for Abdul’s R&B dance track ‘Straight Up’ was shot in stark black and white. The song, off of debut album ‘Forever Your Girl,’ hit No. 1 in 1988, and its percussive beat was the perfect soundtrack for Paula’s award-winning choreography. This is how the future ‘American Idol’ judge first tap-danced her way into her fans’ hearts.

Straight up, now tell us: Which song deserves the title of Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era — Cyndi Lauper’s ‘Girls Just Want to Have Fun’ or Paula Abdul’s ‘Straight Up’? Let us know in the poll below! You can vote once an hour until the polls close at 12PM ET on March 11. The winning song will move on to the next round of the competition.

Next: 'Step by Step' vs. 'I Want It That Way' - Vote!

Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era 80s

Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era 90s

Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era 2000s

Greatest Pop Song of the Modern Era 2010s

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