For the past 25 years, Cyndi Lauper’s song “Girls Just Wanna Have Fun” has been an anthem for girls everywhere. Now, by switching up the lyrics and adding a catchy nightclub beat, Baldwin resident Eric Sanicola has created his own version of the 1983 hit – from a man’s perspective – with “Girl I’m Trying,” which flew to the top of the iTunes dance charts on its Dec. 1 release date.
“I knew we needed a gimmick,” Sanicola said, explaining the difficulty of getting a little-known artist signed by a major record label. “A remake is an easy way to do that. So we were brainstorming 80s songs, all male songs, and then I said ‘well, we could do a girl song and flip it lyrically – that might be cool'.
“As we recorded it though,” Sanicola continued, “I started to realize this was more than just a gimmick … it just felt like a hit.”
On “Girl I’m Trying,” Sanicola takes Lauper’s song and modifies the lyrics so that they’re coming from a man’s point of view, as in his line, “when the weekend finally comes, oh girl, I’m trying to have fun,” inspired by Lauper’s “when the working day is done … girls, they want to have fun.”
Sanicola, 28, wrote and produced the song – which reached the 19th spot on the iTunes dance charts – for Ultra Records, which later signed artist J Brazil to sing on the track. The song is currently playing in nightclubs, and according to Sanicola, is scheduled to get radio exposure in late January.
But Sanicola is no stranger to the music industry. He got his first big break after contributing lyrics to a song for artist Jennifer Lopez, and although that song never made the final cut on her album, it was enough to attract attention from big-name producer Ric Wake, who signed Sanicola to his team.
Sanicola said he learned a lot from Wake, including how to appreciate different music genres. Over the next decade of his production career, Sanicola would contribute writing, lyrics and/or production assistance for dozens of artists including Michael Bolton, Yanni, Pink and Marie Digby. He even contributed to and even Walt Disney and Nickelodeon.