Cher is one of those lasting superstars who has often been caricatured for her outgoing diva personality, her (lack of) dress and her, um, procedures. But a career spanning five decades has proven that behind all the sensationalism is a woman with an incredible amount of talent. How else can you explain a pop star whose heyday was supposedly back in the 1970s, staging not one, but two comebacks (one in the 80’s and one in the 90’s)? And how else do you explain that the biggest hit of her career came when she was 52 years old?
This is the story of “Believe”, Cher’s smash dance-pop single, and the title track of her 1998 release. Cher had by all accounts achieved icon status long before she made this record, so it was expected to sell on her name recognition alone. But no one could have predicted that the auto-tune heavy, techno driven “Believe” would go on to sell 11 million copies and hit Number One on almost every pop chart on the planet. At a time when other music icons her age were thinking about retiring, or would have considered themselves fortunate to sell a few hundred thousand copies of their latest recording, this one song set Cher’s career at an all-time high.
Another major irony for Cher: for the magnitude of her superstar status, she has only staged seven tours throughout her musical career. Thanks in part to the success of “Believe”, her last tour was by far the longest. “Living Proof: The Farewell Tour” began with 59 dates in 2002, and due to popular demand was ultimately extended to 326 shows over a 2-year period.
Incidentally, now at age 67, Cher is not done yet. A new album produced by Timbaland is currently scheduled for release in September 2013.