Money Changes Everything

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"Money Changes Everything"
Single by The Brains
B-side "Quick with Your Lip"
Released 1978 (1978)
Label Gray Matter
Writer(s) Tom Gray
"Money Changes Everything"
Single by The Brains
from the album The Brains
B-side "Girl in a Magazine"
Released 1980 (1980)
Label Mercury
76065
Writer(s) Tom Gray
Producer(s) Steve Lillywhite
"Money Changes Everything"
Single by Cyndi Lauper
from the album She's So Unusual
Released July 20, 1984
Format Vinyl (7")
Vinyl (12")
CSS
Recorded June 1983
at The Record Plant
(New York City, New York)
Genre Pop rock, new wave
Length 5:02
Label Epic
Writer(s) Tom Gray
Producer(s) Rick Chertoff
Cyndi Lauper singles chronology
"All Through the Night"
(1984)
"Money Changes Everything"
(1984)
"I'll Kiss You"
(1984)

"Money Changes Everything" is a song written by Tom Gray, frontman of The Brains, and was the band's only underground hit. It was recorded by Cyndi Lauper for her debut album, She's So Unusual and was released as a single in 1984, peaking at #27 on the Billboard Hot 100. The song is about how money interferes with interpersonal relationships.

The Brains recordings[edit]

The original single was released in 1978 by the Brains as a 45 RPM single on Gray Matter Records. The B-side of the single was a song called "Quick with Your Lip". The initial underground success of the song led to The Brains being signed by Mercury Records. They rerecorded the song under the guidance of producer Steve Lillywhite for their 1980 debut album, The Brains. Critic Greil Marcus, listing it at #10 of his Real-Life Rock Top Ten 1979, said, "Singer Tom Gray told his story in a strangled voice, as if he were trying to explain, but instead he laid a curse. This damned single ranks higher than I've placed it, but if it were anywhere else I couldn't end with it, and there's no other way the decade could end."[1] Marcus would later write of the song, "It was hard, it hurt, and Cyndi Lauper's version makes the original sound compromised. She makes you wonder if Brains composer and singer Tom Gray even knew what he was talking about."[2]

Gray, with his band Delta Moon, also recorded a version of the song for their album Clear Blue Flame.

Cyndi Lauper version[edit]

Cyndi Lauper's recording of "Money Changes Everything" was released as the fifth single from her album She's So Unusual. It has been released in over 27 variations across the world, the most common being a two track 7" vinyl single (with varying covers). There was also a less common 12" vinyl single version. Lauper's cover features an appearance by Rob Hyman of the band The Hooters, playing his "hooter" (a Hohner Melodica) on the song's solo.

Lauper recorded an acoustic version, with guest artist Adam Lazzara (from the band Taking Back Sunday), for her 2005 album The Body Acoustic. "Money Changes Everything" became She's So Unusual's first release to fail to achieve top ten status on the Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number 27.

Cyndi Lauper performed the song at the semi-final of The Voice's season 2 with Beverly McClellan.

Chart performance[edit]

Lauper's version charted in the Top 100 in seven countries, including:

Chart (1984) Peak
position
U.S. Billboard Hot 100 27
U.S. Billboard Mainstream Rock Tracks 37
U.S. Cash Box Top 100 Singles 31
Australian ARIA Singles Chart 19
Canadian Singles Chart 30
Chilean Singles Chart 10
Colombian Singles Chart 3
German Singles Chart 54
New Zealand RIANZ Singles Chart 14

12" LP single[edit]

  1. "Money Changes Everything" (12" version) – 5:02 (Tom Gray)
  2. "He's So Unusual" – 0:45 (Abner Silver; Al Lewis; Al Sherman)
  3. "Yeah Yeah" – 3:17 (H Huss; Mikael Rickfors)
  4. "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" (Extra Fun) – 5:05 (Robert Hazard)

Official versions[edit]

  1. Edit version – 3:59
  2. Live version – 4:35
  3. Short live version – 4:13
  4. That Live Version – 6:04
  5. This Live Version – 5:48

References[edit]

  1. ^ Marcus, Greil, "Fear in the Marketplace: Real-Life Rock Top Ten 1979", New West, January 11, 1980
  2. ^ Marcus, Greil, "Free Speech, #1", Artforum, May 1984.

External links[edit]