More Than Politics

Hillary

The tragedy Sunday morning at Orlando’s gay nightclub Pulse has prompted some sad Cher tweets. And there are three somewhat sobering aspects of this monstrosity: the attach was (1) on a gay nightclub, (2) with mostly Hispanic victims, (3) who were killed with an assault riffle. These three facts should underscore the importance of this year's election and the real moral backsliding occurring in major parts of our communities.

This week radio host Norman Goldman invoked the sobering poem "First They Came" by Pastor Martin Niemöller. Read it and think about it. 

Cher brought her support behind Hillary Clinton before the recent California primary at a concert event. Read the stories:

We’re beyond fighting over idealism in this election.

I'm also wrapping up a David Foster Wallace Infinite Jest reading group and his amazing commencement address in 2005 was passed around the group yesterday. It's all about how to get to the place where it's not all about you. Highly suggested reading.

Cheratgreek2016 Hillary2


Cher Stuff: Houses, Fortunes and Kitchens

Moonstruck-kitchen
Remember Cher’s house circa late 80s, the Barbara Walters interview years?

It’s up for sale again but the previous owners (post Eddie Murphy) have made so many changes to it, buying adjacent properties, etc.), that it’s hardly recognizable anymore. You can watch the video and try to imagine Chaz and Elijah tossing the football to no avail.

News also surfaced that Cher is suing some prior financial managers. See these stories:

A month ago I also came across this article about the great movie kitchens of all time. For some God-forsaken reason, it did not include Moonstruck.

And also, apropos of nothing, here is a catalog of Cher's Harry Langdon photos.

My favorite session is the promo shots of the 1978 TV Special Cher...Special.

Langdon

 


Cher and Muhammad Ali

Cher-aliYou'd have to be in a news blackout not to have heard that entertainer/boxer Muhammad Ali just passed away.

Ali was a guest on the later Sonny & Cher Show and after his death last week this reel of his poetry, including the Cher vs. Ali boxing match, was distributed around Facebook. It's from  the January 14, 1977 episode.

Billboard.com published a retrospective of Ali that included Cher.

Cher's tweets:

Didn’t know Muhammad was dead At T.Hearns/Sugar Ray Fight in Vegas he explained boxing 2me.I Yelled,He Said Ooo-Wee Cher u got a mouth on u.  (from 4 June 2016, 1:22 a.m.)

Ran out of room,got caught up in memories.it was so much fun to be in ring with him.Son was like a kid. (from 4 June 2016, 1:38 a.m.)

Muhammad-Ali-and-Cher-billboard-1548

 


Sonny Bono Genius Search

OvSome friends of ours sent Mr. Cher Scholar some clips of Sonny as Deacon Dark on The Love Boat, completely unawares that I was in the process of searching for Sonny's Aaron Spelling episodes and also forgetting that I was Cher Scholar in the flesh. We asked our friend how he came upon the clips and he said he watched an interview with Terry Reid who mentioned Sonny as a genius. So I dutifully went online to search "Sonny Bono genius" and did not find the interview...but have you seen these?

Open Vault does a four part, almost hour long, interview with Sonny from 1993 about his music history. He talks about the first use of "Pinz-a" in the song "Needles and Pins" (which Cher thankfully dropped in her version). He talks about Sonny & Cher in The Blossoms, their part of the 60s revolution in style (specifically their clothes), his real feelings about Rolling Stone magazine (and maybe a hint into Cher's true feelings about them), his work for Phil Spector, (often described as a go-fer but he also was a record promoter for Spector and was working a student of production). Most interestingly he talks about he conceived of the song "I Got You Babe" as a mashup of the Spector Wall of Sound, Dylan-style folk and bubblebum pop. He also places the origins of Rock and Role solely in the black church.

Mr. Cher Scholar believes there's a natural antipathy between Rolling Stone and Sonny & Cher, not just because the magazine treated them as unhip (which they did in their 1973 long, harsh, but beautifully written, expose) but for the reason they treated them that way, because Rolling Stone has always been trying so hard to sell to the drug scene. That was their entire identity.

Anyway, then I found this! The 1969 promotion record for the movie Chastity.  Is Sonny smoking helium for this?

Chastity: "it had to be said," Sonny says. Who knew? Okay, so this interview isn't as flattering as the one above, especially in terms of how Sonny maintains that homosexuality and "free sex" creates psychic scars (one of his movie's themes) but I do believe/hope Sonny would have evolved on issues of feminism and gay rights as many fiscal conservatives have. That said, this is a juicy piece of Sonny & Cher history.


Today is the Celebration of Cher at 70 (With Over 40 Tributes)!

Pool2 PoolThere’s lots of love spilling over on the web-o-shere. It’s literally a virtual Internet Party! Just look at all the hip (and some unusual) sites and magazines celebrating Cherness today!

This is a saying I learned from the McCray family: Cher, I’m glad you were born! You are 70 years of fabulousness today! I feel like the ball on Times Square should drop or something.

Here’s the massive list of love (and one snipe) as of 2 p.m. MST. I’ve broken it down into scholarship categories. Fun with essays, accolades and photo reels!

Straight-out Birthday Wishes

Cher prepares to celebrate her 70th birthday (Reuters)

Happy Birthday from Money Magazine

Singer Cher turns 70, fans pay tribute (Townhall.com) 

Love for Defying Age

Cher just turned HOW old? (Mercury News)

Cher Can’t Turn Back Time: She Turns 70 Today (WBT—Conservative Talk Radio) -- Remember, these are the folks who said Cher is some has-been no one remembers!

Maybe she can turn back time: Cher at 70 (Deutsche Welle)  - SNAP!

Cher Turns 70, Still Knows How to Turn Back Time (Inquisitr)

Can you tell if these celebs are older or younger than Cher (Metro UK)

Turning 70, Cher still a 'hot artist' after 50 years (Inforum)

Love for the Music

10 Reasons Why Cher's “Believe” Is the Biggest Club Record Ever (Thump)

Cher's Official Top 20 biggest selling downloads revealed (Official Charts.com)

Mashable Cher in the studio (Mashable)

Love for the Television

Happy 70th birthday Cher! Relive the time she played every single part in this West Side Story medley (Digital Spy)

Cher turns 70 Today – watch her take a massive tumble in this rare vintage clip (Daily Star UK)

Love for the Film

Happy birthday Cher! Celebrate with her 5 greatest film roles (Arizona Central) - good to see Jimmy Dean love in there but you know how I feel about Mermaids!

Love for the Style

See the Evolution of Cher’s Style (Time)

All Hail Cher, Queen of the Red Carpet Rebels (Vogue)

Can You ‘Believe’ How Many Hairstyles Cher Has Had Over The Years? (Huffington Post)

Cher’s Show-Stopping Style Redefines What It Means To Be 70 (Huffington Post)

Cher's Most Outrageous Outfits (Huffington Post)

Cher at 70: seven iconic style moments (The Guardian UK)

23 of the singer's most outrageous fashion over the years (BT)

The many looks of Cher (CNN)

Cher’s Changing Looks (Wonderwall)

Cher Turns 70! Celebrate By Revisiting The Pop Icon’s Most Glamorous Looks (Idolator)

Cher Hair! Celebrating the Singer’s 16 Best Hair Moments (Vogue)

Love for the Sass

24 Times Cher Was Sassiness Personified (Elle UK) 

10 Times Cher Nailed Twitter (Newsweek)

Her 5 Most Shocking Moments (Express UK)

Cher’s Most Outrageous Tweets of the Past Year (Hollywood Reporter)

Happy 70th Birthday, Cher! 23 Times The Dark Lady Wasn’t At A Loss For Words (Logo)

Love for the Whole Thing

A Look Back (ABC)

You Haven't Seen the Last of Me: The Phenomenon of Cher (Biography.com)

Legendary singer’s best moments (OK! UK)

70 Things we love about Cher (Gay Star News)  -- 70 things! That's impressive!

A look back at her outstanding singing and acting career (DW.com)

Inside the glamorous life of Cher (Marie Claire)

10 amazing facts about the pop superstar (Digital Spy)

The living legend’s most iconic moments (Attitude UK)

Celebrate Cher's 70th birthday with five memorable moments (Lancaster Online)

Cher then and now (WTAE-Pittsburgh)

Cher’s Career in numbers (International Business Times)

CNN’s Cher Fast Facts (CNN)

Fast-Forward Through 5 Decades of Cher (Yahoo! News) 


RIP Stars Re-Release

Chertweet
So the Cher tweet says it all. Cher did not, in fact, know WTF about the Stars re-release, despite some articulate licensing bravado from Binge! Music.

Cher tweeted on Saturday. My full refund floated back across the bank-o-sphere on Sunday lacking any customer service reason. That felt weird and cagey. By Sunday, Binge! Music's website was also down, along with their Facebook and Twitter pages. 

I would like to imagine Cher's henchmen making clandestine phone calls with threats of concrete shoes. It helps ease the pain of not having a legitimized, sanctioned, and scholarly-considered re-packaging of a historically important Cher album working itself through the CD-presses as we speak.

On a Cher Scholarship note: I've never heretofore seen such fan excitement to a piece of Cher news. I think this is yet again another piece of evidence that suggests Stars is Cher's most beloved album. And that this is the life of the Cher fan. Highs. Lows. Longings. Old-age dispairings.


Cher Toon and Milken Conference

DestinySomeone on the Yahoo! Cher group posted this Blank on Blank cartoon today from an interview Cher gave in 1999. It's very cute, creative and actually a great, candid interview.

Most interestingly she says, "Gay men understand not being part of the whole" and that's why they relate to her. I think this idea of mass popularity or fitting in as being "the whole" is very interesting conceptually. 

Anyway, what I love about this cartoon is that it reminds me of the 2010 Serge Gainsbourg movie, Gainsbourg: A Heroic Life which I love and was based on a graphic novel by its director, Joann Sfar. This is the kind of creative movie biography I hope Cher gets someday, artful, surreal and letting the animation provide some emotional punch.

MilkenCher spoke at the Milken Institute Global Conference last week. Of course her hobo hat stole the show and not what she had to say.

Well, that's not entirely true. Billboard Magazine did focus on some of her anti-government comments and other comments around the Flint water crisis in Michigan.

I guess there were some issues at the conference around  the lack of respect for female business founders. If you have LinkedIn, you can read this Pulse story about some prominent female business founders who were treated with less than full respect.

From the story: “Nearly 90% of venture capitalists are male. If Wilkis Wilson’s statement is true, and a vast majority of VCs refuse to see the market potential of markets focused on diverse audiences, female founders targeting female customers are doomed.”


RIP Ret Turner

Cher-retCostume designer Ret Turner has died. He started working with Cher back on the Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour.

See his obituary in The New York Times.

Turner often worked alongside Bob Mackie. I was never sure who did what. I always thought maybe Mackie did the big pieces and Turner did the rest. Does anybody know?

Here are some of the Comedy Hour pieces that were memorable to me. Send me pics of yours favorites.

(click the pics below to enlarge)

 Raggedyann Kingandi Sonny

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Football Haloween

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Updated-Big News: Stars on CD Has Arrived

Cher-starsBig news gone bad: this story has been updated.

Big news, huge news! Did you think you would live to see the day that Stars would be released on CD? Thank you Binge! Music. Get your pre-orders in!

From the blog post by The Second Disc: “Licensing information on the label’s website indicates the involvement of both Warner Bros. Records and Cher’s Isis Productions, which should quell speculation elsewhere about the legitimacy of this release."

Cool beans!

What excites me is the scholarship that might happen in the liner notes.

Need a reminder about why Stars is so awesome? Check out The Soul of Cher: Stars Reviewed.


Cher Museums, Musicals, Endorsements, Coachella, The Milken Institute, Toons and Ads

NyorkerSo…my trip to LA was good. I went to two conferences, the Los Angeles Time Book Festival at USC and a Google Analytics workshop for CNM. But I got sick the first day with the stomach flu and that was pretty much my week. Then everything-and-his-Uncle fell apart when I got home. Oh, and I got sick again with a nasty head flu. C’est La Vie.

Cher has been a tweetin' and a hollarin' in the meantime. Here’s a recap:

 

 

Election Tweets

The celebrity endorsement of the week (Washington Post)
Funny that the Washington Post should call this the celebrity endorsement of the week, considering it’s actually a celebrity re-endorsement after a deep, dark night of questioning of the Bernie soul.

By the way, it makes me crazy that people send hate tweets to each other. As one woman put it to Norman Goldman a few weeks ago, “Sending angry tweets isn’t political activism.” So it was enlightening to come across this great Guardian article on hate comments.

Cher keeps the heat on Trump

Cab-n-cakeCher tweeted the above New Yorker cartoon this month and this Cabernet and Cake sign.

Movies

This is an absolutely a great piece (don’t miss the trailer at the bottom) on Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean and celebrity obsession.

Cher Scholarship Abroad

There's a new Cher museum in Salem, Massachusetts. Coolia sent this to me. Sounds like a good time for a road-trip Cher quest!

I also found this video footage of another Cher museum! Someone should develop a Cher museum app for these things!

Cher tweeted about being scheduled to speak at the Milken Conference:

Proud,my frnd Karen(Flint mayor)is coming 2stay.We'll speak at Milken confrence 2 tell story of FLINT,to 3500 MAJOR LEADERS,IN ALL FIELDS

I used to work for Mike Milken. In fact I worked at his Prostate Cancer Foundation, (upstairs from the Milken Institute), when Cher performed for his PCF fundraiser during her Farewell Tour, in between those many faux-final shows. Here's detail about the event. I hope some think-tank braniac attends this and tells us how it goes.

A Coachella breakfast at Sonny & Cher's former estate:

http://wwd.com/eye/parties/rebecca-minkoff-smashbox-lunch-coachella-2016-lunch-sonny-and-cher-10412504/

http://wwd.com/fashion-news/fashion-features/gallery/rebecca-minkoff-and-smashbox-host-coachella-2016-lunch-at-sonny-and-chers-former-estate-10412618/

Outfits

Bob Mackie talks Cher and Carol Burnett

Biography Musical News

The Cher musical is continuing to make news like it just might grow up to be something someday.