Cher

35 albums, 89 tracks

Born in May 20, 1946

Dance-Pop

Narratives

"Cher"

May 31, 2019

Different Types of Songs Populate Cher’s It’s A Man’s World

tonyfabelous
Written by @tonyfabelous from Fabelousity  / 6 mins read
#Cher#ClassicPop#DancePop#Pop#PopSoftRock#rock#SynthPop

Cher’s It’s A Man’s World is an underappreciated gem of an album which contains a host of remakes from some of Cher’s very distinguished contemporaries (Don Henley, Frankie Valli, Tina Turner) and some new songs that Cher interpreted. Interestingly, there are no Dianne Warren collaborations this time. I think, at this point of her career, she wanted to broaden her wings and try other songwriters – although the Cher-Dianne Warren collaboration has given her her biggest career hits. In this album, she decided to go across the Atlantic and work with three notable British composers – Stephen Lipson (he produced Annie Lennox’s Diva), Trevor Horn (produced the Grammy Record of the Year “Kiss From A Rose” for Seal), and Christopher Neill - giving her album a bit of class and sheen that I haven’t heard in her three previous albums which were also rock-flavoured. I think the American way of producing shows a more masculine, rock-edged type of rock song production, while the British way of doing it includes the use of the synthesizer and instruments which give it a Euro-rock sound – thus giving Cher’s voice a more ethereal quality. Although the title of the album sounds loaded with symbolic messages, especially that it comes from a woman who has always struggled to keep her identity from being overshadowed by the men in her life, and from being led around by men, who controlled much of show business, disappointingly, there is no overwhelming feminist or anti-male aggression theme running through the album. It would’ve been great if there was at least one “Sisters Are Doin’ It For Themselves”- type of song there – maybe a Tina Turner or an Annie Lennox collaboration on a similarly-themed song. That would’ve been the album’s centerpiece. Anyhow, this album has a good mix of different types of songs – love songs, homage songs, optimistic songs, jaded songs – songs that Cher decided and picked to sing – so there’s a group of remakes and then some songs that I’ve heard for the first time. Cher has an easily identifiable contralto voice so anything that she sings assumes her character and obviously all the songs she sang here, she loved to sing, as her imprint can be heard very clearly in each of them.

Four Personal Favorites of Mine are Also Standout Tracks in This Album – And Cher Co-Wrote Two of Them

Cher, the songwriter, is not a moniker she is well-known for, so it is a surprise to see Cher’s name labeled as songwriter in this album – and one of those songs, “One By One” is, in my opinion, the strongest track in this collection. It is an underrated song and something which Cher should sing regularly in her concerts. It has a beautiful message of spreading love – “We're gonna love one another 'til morning comes / Sweet salvation for what we've done / Give up resisting one by one / One by one”. There are three other tracks in this album which I like very much and they come towards the end of the album. First among them is “What About the Moonlight” which is a song about encouragement, for people who have given up on life and are just drifting from day to day. Cher sings “Nobody said it would be easy / To take a fall and stand / Just wrap your arms tight around me / And we'll stumble together / Until we learn to dance”. For a survivor like Cher whose showbiz career and personal life have had peaks and valleys, this is a fitting song for her to sing. Then there is the beautiful “The Same Mistake”, a song which talks about one realizing one’s mistakes in life and resolving to be the better person next time around. Here, Cher sings – “Did you wonder how we got to this place? / And as I watched my world go walking out the door / I see I won the peace but I have lost the war / And I know, I know that love is give / And sometimes take / Next time I won't make the same mistake.” Coming from Cher, the song achieves a degree of credibility. Another song that Cher co-wrote with Paddy McAloon of the British group Prefab Sprout is intriguingly titled “The Gunman”. You can recall that Cher has had these types of songs from her Heart of Stone album, the classic “Just Like Jesse James” is a good example. Don’t be fooled by the title though because it’s not about anything violent, it’s about being unable to escape from the clutches of falling in love – “You can run, you can hide, / You can even saddle up and ride / But love won't be denied / You can wear a disguise / But it isn't fooled by alibis”. And Cher has made sure you won’t miss this track!

An Abundance of Great Cover Tracks Given the Venerable Cher Contralto Treatment

It is always a delightful activity to find out how Cher covers a song mainly because of her contralto voice. That deep voice of hers can either do wonders to a song or make it fall flat. I guess through years of experimentation and trying out different songs and arrangements, she has already developed that instinct to find out which songs work for her voice well, and which songs do not suit it. There are four great remakes in this album, starting with the lead-off single “Walking in Memphis”, a hit by Marc Cohn. Among the four remakes though, this is the one I dislike the most. I just don’t find it striking. My favorite among the four though, is Cher’s version of the Tina Turner song “Paradise is Here”. While Tina had the rockier version, Cher gave a more Eurocentric rock-synth version which I like more than the dance-y-fied US version which even had an R&B twinge to it. I puked on the latter version. Whoever arranged it that way should be shot! (Just kidding.) Cher also does a magnificent version of Don Henley’s “Not Enough Love in the World”. They could’ve marketed this song more than the Marc Cohn remake but I guess it’s just a matter of taste. “For this girl, there’s just not enough love in the world” – Cher sings emphatically in that song. Finally, the 60s chick doing a 90s Euro-version of the Frankie Valli classic - “The Sun Ain’t Gonna Shine Anymore” is just perfect to end the album. It’s the second to the last song of this album, which is for me, its best place – since it gives you a wonderful memory of the album.

May 17, 2019

Gimme! Gimme! Gimme!

spoiledsplendid
Written by @spoiledsplendid / 6 mins read

When you think back on Cher’s musical career, she will likely be best remembered for her campy dance-fueled hits. Her songs often tell a story. The melodies are infectious. Decade after decade, Cher has reinvented herself to keep her sound fresh and relevant. My favourite fact about her is that she is the only artist to have a number one single in six consecutive decades. So who better to cover the classic songs of ABBA than Cher - someone who had her own disco hits back in the day. Someone, who like ABBA, helped define the music of a generation. In this case, we have a legend covering the songbook of a legendary band.
After watching ‘Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again’ starring Cher, I was pleasantly surprised how great Cher sounded singing ‘Fernando.’ Cher has a unique voice - and therefore, when she covers another well known song, it could either be sensational or tragic. In the case of ABBA, it works. Apparently Cher felt it worked so well, that she went back into the studio and recorded a fair section of the ABBA catalogue for her most recent album. While filming the movie, she recalled how happy the music made her, and she decided then and there to record the record right after she was finished filming. It’s true - there is something intrinsically uplifting to the music of ABBA which is why they became an international phenomenon.
‘Dancing Queen’ has been a commercial success for Cher - selling more units in a single week than any other album she has released. I think the familiarity of the songs and the upbeat nature of the music helped sales. ABBA has the Midas-touch - not only by selling over 300 million albums, but by producing wildly successful musicals and movies based on their music. The world has a love for ABBA and it’s no surprise that Cher’s album did so well. It fills a void in current pop culture - where we have seen a recent shift towards expletive-laced R&B, politically fuelled songwriters and more melancholy angsty pop.
One of the challenges with a cover album is making the songs your own. Cher has an incomparable sound. In more recent years, her signature use of autotune has transformed her distinct style. ‘Dancing Queen’ has a very healthy dose of auto-tune and digitization while still keeping a recognizable feel. Although I feel like there is too much synthesizer used throughout the entire album, at least it keeps with the 70/80s feel of the original.
The only disappointment for me is that I expected Cher to do more with the individual songs. To me it sounds like a remastered version of the Broadway ‘Mamma Mia’ soundtrack. I would have loved to hear ‘One of Us’ be recorded as a duet - or maybe with only piano accompaniment. Why not do a mashup of ‘Dancing Queen’ and ‘Believe’ or ‘Waterloo’ and ‘Take Me Home.’ Where is an awesome club remix of ‘The Winner Take it All?’ I think some of the orchestrations border on sounding tired - when covering songs that are 40+ years old, is hard to avoid. While I know it’s meant to have a dance feel, I think it could have benefited from a less digital sound. I love ABBA’s cannon of work, but between the originals, the Broadway show (which I adore) and the movies, the songs can get a bit stale. It would have been nice to see Cher breath some new life into them.
At the age of 72, it’s impressive that Cher can still turn out a quality album like this. She even has plans to release another ABBA cover album within the next couple years due to the tremendous success of this one. Her Here We Go Again world tour has continued to pack arenas around the globe - while still maintaining her residency in Las Vegas. Several years ago, ABBA themselves made a press release that they were going to go on tour with the use of holograms. To date, that plan has yet to actually materialize - which is crushing to a fan such as myself. If I look back at all the artists that I wish I had seen live (and haven’t), my list is pretty short: Elvis, Frank Sinatra and ABBA. Elvis was gone before I was born, Frank passed when I was a teenager and ABBA’s last public performance was when I was a toddler. I have my fingers crossed that they reunite for a farewell tour but it’s pretty doubtful. So in the meantime, we have Cher to help us relive the music and the memories.

Diva & the Disco

Easily my favourite ABBA song ever. It’s the emotional climax in the Broadway musical and it’s usually the cue for the waterworks. Cher delivers on this song with her powerful bravado. The slower parts where she sings in an almost spoken verse is a nice pause to the building of the song. Compared to Meryl Streep in the first Mamma Mia movie, Cher wins both vocally and emotionally. One of the highlights on the album for sure.

Dancing Qween

This cover is going to give life to all the drag queens out there for years to come. The song stays pretty true to the original but Cher’s vocals ring clear through the entire song. This version seems slightly faster and upbeat than ABBA’s original which just adds to the dance factor. It’s pretty difficult to not smile and sing along to this. And that is the point - a catchy lil diddy that is meant to make us move our hips. Ooo Ooo Ooo. Lets go find some sequinned bell-bottoms and go dancing.

Softer side to Disco

This song slows down the album down for a touching torch song. As mentioned before, I would have loved a less synth feel to this. Imagine if Cher had recorded this with a full orchestra…an army of strings accompanying her raw vocals. It could have taken it to a new level. I like this song though because of it’s tender feeling. Cher doesn’t have to hide behind the autotune. Her voice is her gift and she just goes for all the big notes - delivering a really memorable performance. I can’t wait to hear her perform this live when I see the tour.

Dancing Queen Improves ABBA In The Only Conceivable Way – By Adding Cher To The Mix

Would you ever stare at the beautiful masterpiece Italian visionary Michelangelo painted on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel & say to yourself “meh, interesting but it could really use some improvement around the edges”? Do you spend your days excavating entire mountainsides in the Swiss Alps under the misguided belief your puny human hands could ever reshape them into something as breathtaking as the natural splendor the Earth created over hundreds upon thousands of millennia? The simple answer to these questions, of course, is a hard & well-defined ‘no,’ as modern culture has instilled a deep reverence within human beings for things of true beauty, the collective consciousness of all living creatures agreeing that there are certain things you just can’t touch, their sacred properties as valuable as life itself – Naturally, then, if I were to ask you if any of the myriad hits Swedish Disco legends ABBA have released in their career needed any sort of improvements, you’d likely tell me to shut my mouth & take a seat, as their compositions are pure perfection & require nothing more than a working pair of ears to appreciate; Then again, if you’re someone as prolific as Pop diva Cher, the mere addition of your voice to any musical arrangement is proof enough that miracles truly do exist, as evidenced by her fantastic cover-album of ABBA’s works aptly named Dancing Queen – Yes, Our Lady Of The Immaculate Dancefloor has returned once again to achieve the impossible, determined to halt the progress of modern hatred by utilizing her powerful vocal prowess & larger-than-life persona to bring back some of the world’s most impressive jams with a sleek new coat of paint, taking care to stay true to the source material wherever possible whilst injecting that tantalizing dance energy only she has the moxie to wield, showing that age is nothing but a number when you’re absolutely brimming with latent musical ability. I went into this record thinking it was just going to be another run-of-the-mill cash-grab like the lifeless cover albums you typically get from acts like Mariah Carey & Josh Groban, but the minor changes in tone & narrative rearrangement she provides really do change this experience into something unique enough for even the most die-hard ABBA fan to enjoy, unable to be scrutinized in the same way as her inferior contemporaries – Let’s break down some of its finer moments, shall we?

Written by camjameson from Extraneous Routes / Mar 06, 2019

Cher Ruled The World’s Dance Clubs In A Track That Made All Of Us Believe

There was a time when radio played a big role in introducing new songs to listeners as we, the audience, didn’t have the worldwide-web at that time. Arguably, the Internet has really democratized how musicians and artist can release their music. During my youth, in a way, radio programmers dictated to the listeners what they wanted us to listen to. Also, competition was not as intense as it is today, where there are so many distractions around the listener, that musicians and artists only have a short window of opportunity to attract the listener’s attention. Anyway, in the late 90s, Cher had already been off the radio radar for a long time, and it had been a decade since she had hits like “If I Could Turn Back Time” or “Just Like Jesse James” - and local radio in the Philippines would most likely not play her. Unless of course, she debuted in the popular radio program during my time, the American Top 40 – and at around this time, Rick Dees was already the DJ. That programme aired every 2-6PM Sunday afternoons and I would always be glued to my favorite radio station at those times. One particular Sunday, around December 1998, Rick Dees introduced Cher’s new single at that time, “Believe” which debuted at #40, so it was the first song played in the countdown. It was a magical listening moment – three minutes of pure bliss and joy, astounded at how Cher sounded and how futuristic the song sounded, in a sea of mostly urban and R&B flavored hits of the late 90s. The only other time I felt that way listening to a song for the first time was 10 years earlier when Madonna’s “Like A Prayer” also debuted at #40 in the same radio countdown. Well, everybody knows now about the Auto-tune and how that helped Cher sound so modern in the song. I guess they had to do that because of Cher’s long history in music (she started way back in the 60s) so they made sure that the 60s and 70s and 80s Cher did not sound like how she sounded in the song “Believe”! The rest is history and the song is now one of the most memorable dance songs ever produced and it finally won for Cher a Grammy award for Best Dance Recording.

Written by tonyfabelous from Fabelousity / May 10, 2019

Love Hurts Completes The Rock Trilogy Of Albums Cher Made In The Early 90’s

When Cher released her album Love Hurts in 1991, and showcased her version of the song with the same title – it was already a huge rock classic here in the Philippines. The popular version here was from the Scottish hard rock band Nazareth – and their rendering of “Love Hurts” struck a chord among the youth of my generation. The song was constantly performed by local rock bands in bars all over the country and it was a heavy favorite in the karaoke bars. There just was no escaping from it. I was just a kid then, around ten years old and I remember that every time I rode the bus – to or from the town that I lived to the city, this song would always be played in the buses – so I’d always associate this song with riding buses – and how the bus drivers and the conductors loved it so much. That connection has made it much easier for me to ease into this album. I don’t know the full scale of the chronology of Cher’s extensive album discography but for me – her Cher, Heart of Stone and Love Hurts albums form a kind of a trilogy of great rock music from this music legend – a period which starts around 1986 until 1992, roughly more than a decade. And through that period – I was with Cher throughout that ride, buying all three CDs and enjoying her music. That was the period that I discovered her genius as a performer. She was virtually unstoppable during this stage of her music career, delivering rock hit after rock hit, nine top 40 songs all in all - encompassing all those three albums. It was only much later on that I learned of her earlier success as a singer in the 60s and 70s, and her earlier #1 songs - when she recounted her early years in showbiz when she did her hugely successful reunion tours. I realized then that she was special, a real big legend in both the film and music industry, having a career that spans an astounding six decades and counting.

Written by tonyfabelous from Fabelousity / Apr 26, 2019

Official Music Videos

"Cher"

DiscoGraphy

"Cher"

Live Videos

"Cher"

Featuring Remixes

"Cher"

Cover Videos

"Cher"

Audio

"Cher"

Articles

"Cher"

Biography

"Cher"

Born

    1946-05-20

Active

    1963–present

Label

  • Atco
  • Casablanca
  • Columbia
  • Geffen
  • Imperial
  • Kapp
  • MCA
  • Reprise
  • United Artists
  • Warner

About

Cher (born Cherilyn Sarkisian; May 20, 1946) is an American singer and actress. Commonly referred to by the media as the Goddess of Pop, she has been described as embodying female autonomy in a male-dominated industry. She is known for her distinctive contralto singing voice and for having worked in numerous areas of entertainment, as well as adopting a variety of styles and appearances during her six-decade-long career.
Continue reading at Wikipedia...

You May Also Like

Feedback this page?