Cher's Angry Tweets, The Seventies: Glamour, Ratings & Concerts

Cherspecial2The New Year brings new apologies for the lag in blog postings. I've been on the new job for just about a month. No, I'm not teaching at my local community college. I'm continuing my day-job of web content specializin'. And I've been a bit more swamped with family reunion duties that I predicted. My novel-writing and blogging schedule has slipped all to hell!

But...I'm working in a communications department full of really interesting and creative people, our studio department has an animator and an award-winning director, our web team has two visual artists, two photographers, a competitive dancer and a soap maker. Similar to my experiences at ICANN, I've arrived just in time for a sweet web re-branding launch. It's been fun so far.

But anyway, time to move on to...

Cher's Angry Tweets

Cher made some tweets about Hitler and the cloud last month that hit many news outlets. My guess is the tweets were meant to be a joke but I didn't read into them too closely. These people made the attempts to sort it out:

  • PosterMediaite
    "It may not matter in 5 yrs, but Hitler Tweets are forever."
  • Tech Times
    "Our best guess is that Cher was expressing frustration with Apple's iCloud service. Or maybe she was commenting on the recent scandal involving nude photos of celebrities leaking from iCloud thanks to hackers."

Twitchy.com covers Cher's tweets about U.S. Congress. Cher Scholar's old friend Doug Wemple, who wrote a wonderful heart-felt story in Cher Zine 1 about coming out and his long, frustrating journey to try to see Cher in concert, gets caught up in the tweet sweep too.

Which all reminds me of the trailer I saw last weekend for a movie coming to my local independent movie house, She’s Beautiful When She’s Angry. This movie reminds me so much of the situation surrounding Cher's tweets. The trailer chronicles the expression of anger from feminists in second and third wave actions and protests and how uncomfortable this made (and continues to make) some folks. People who disagree with Cher's politics consistently try to characterize her as a nut. It's not a new tactic as this film shows. Looking forward to seeing it.

Giddy Gossip

Lot's of gossipy stuff in the news:

Studio-margauxSeventies Glamour

Just finished the affordably-priced coffee-table book Seventies Glamour by David Willis. It covers all the icons of 70s style, including Margaux Hemmingway, who's photo at Studio 54 (not in the book) has forever fascinated me. She seems so "over it" and strangely comfortable in her pose.

SeventiesglamourThe zeitgeist of the 70s with its "tarnished luster" and the "complex broken mirror ball glamour" is covered. Cher is listed as one of "the beautiful people," a new version of the 1960s "jet set." She's listed in an uberclass alongside Liza Minnelli, Halston, Truman Capote, Divine, Hugh Hefner, Calvin Klein, Liz Taylor and Jackie O. Not too shabby. Although Cher is not cited as an influence or contributor to it, glitter and glam rock are discussed. Cher has one page dedicated to her with a picture of her Stars album cover of 1975 and the joyous color poster for Cher...Special in 1978. I found some groovy out-takes of that session online (above and below).

Cherspecial3 Cherspecial1  

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seventies Ratings

When I was working on my eBook about Writing in the Age of Narcissism, I came across an article by Lev Grossman called "The Beast with a Billion Eyes," Time Magazine, 2012. He said "for every minute that passes in real time, 60 hours of video are uploaded to YouTube." And this was in 2012! He talks about how YouTube, like cable TV before it, has challenged network ratings, chronicling the tumbling numbers, decade to decade, from the 80s The Cosby Show to the 90s Seinfeld show to 2008's American Idol. He says, "Obviously No. 1 isn't what it used to be."

I often don't know what these ratings numbers mean. Are they talking about audience share, Nielsen rank or actual audience views. When people talk about ratings, they never use the same measurements.

For instance, allegedly, Carol Burnett averaged $30 million people a week in her heyday. But in 2004, Nick and Jessica Simpson won their slot with 11.4 million. But it's complicated by the fact that fewer people were watching TVs in the 1970s. There were fewer devices at least. I decided I need to make a list of Nielsen rankings for Cher's TV shows that covers all three dimensions: total audience, audience percentage share and Nielsen rank. So far I've only found this source that lists each year's top 30 shows: http://www.classictvhits.com/tvratings/

The Sonny & Cher Comdy Hour 1971: http://www.classictvhits.com/tvratings/1971.htm

Rank #27, viewers: 12,544,200

The Sonny & Cher Comdy Hour 1973: http://www.classictvhits.com/tvratings/1973.htm

Rank #8, Viewers 15,424,600

In 1972 and 1974, they weren't in the top 30. Cher's solo show also didn't crack the top 30 in total. Nor did The Sonny & Cher Show of 1976-7.

TakemehometourA Topless 1979 Show?

When speaking to my cousin and Aunt a few weeks ago, they divulged to me that they saw Cher in Las Vegas during the 1979 "Take Me Home" tour. My aunt said she'll never forget it (in a negative sense) because the show featured scandalous topless dancers.

I started to say, "But I saw the show on TV and it didn't have...." and then I thought, well, of course it wouldn't.

Can anyone help me out there? Did Cher's 1979 Vegas show feature topless dancers?

  

 

 

 


Cher Homes, Calendars, Tour Stuff , Screen Sirens, Oscar Winning Chart Toppers

CalHappy New Year! I started my new job this week at Central New Mexico Community College. So far so good. Everyone is smart, interesting and involved in cool extra-curricular projects.

Over my two week break between jobs I started to go through my back log of emails. I found plenty of Cher links to keep us busy until Cher is back to selling us stuff.

It's the new year and you may be in need of some fan-made Cher Calendars. Here are some places to get some:

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Cher-DESKTOP-CALENDAR-2015-NEW-Dressed-to-Kill-D2K-Tour-Closer-to-the-Truth-/261688900218?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3ceddfba7a

http://www.ebay.com/itm/Cher-CALENDAR-2015-NEW-Dressed-to-Kill-D2K-Tour-Closer-to-the-Truth-Magazine-/251663378456?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a984e6818

Links

My friend Julie sent me this link, a vacation rental in Palm Springs billing itself as Sonny & Cher's love nest. Does anyone recognize this house? 

Lovenest2 Lovenest  

 

 

 

  

 

The Cher Look Book - a 101 picture slide show of Cher in New York Magazine.

A short little interview in the Times Union.

Cher doesn't just like running with a younger crowd — she likes outrunning them: a long interview in The Wisconsin Gazette

Video

Cher's Caesar's Palace monologue.

Factoids

DrewcherCher scholar Jefrey noted that in the March 23rd 2012 issue of Entertainment Weekly, (I know! I can't believe that was sitting in my email still), Drew Barrymore co-hosted Turner Classic Movies with Robert Osborne for a special called "The Essentials." They played classics movies like Gilda and Diabolique. Barrymore was asked who her favorite screen sirens of all time were.

She chose Julie Christie, Faye Dunaway, Jane Fonda, Annette Bening and Cher. Wow. Awesome company there. Barrymore said about Cher, "She's strong and comedic and
incredibly brave, but shows vulnerability. I think she's the epitome of rock & roll." (Can Barrymore talk some sense into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?) She cited Silkwood, Moonstruck, Mask, and The JloWitches of Eastwick as some of her favorite Cher performances.

My friend Christopher also notified me that in December of last year Jennifer Lawrence became the highest-charting Oscar-winning actress on the Hot 100 since Cher took "Believe" to #1 in 1999. Lawrence hit at #12 with a song from the latest Hunger Games movie, "The Hanging Tree."

  


Cher Christmas

SantaTwo Cher scholars have asked me why there was no Cher Christmas tree post this year. Well, the tree stayed in the box out in the garage. There was no Christmas tree this year. No Christmas lights or Christmas cards.

A lot of things conspired at the end of the year to make this so:

- I didn't add a new outfit for the tree this year. That usually inspires me to put up the tree.

- I was bummed out about what a sucky year 2014 was, health wise for everybody.

-  ICANN laid me off right before Christmas and hired people in India to do our jobs. In the turmoil of cleaning up ICANN tasks and preparing to start my new job at Central New Mexico College, I was swamped and pooped.

- Mailing Xmas gifts took all my energy this year so there was little left for holiday cheer. Our house was depressingly dark this year compared to our neighbors but I didn’t have the energy to do anything about it and Mr. Cher Scholar is not the festive type. Although he did try to get me interested in Christmas with his sudden, new-found interest in Christmas yard inflatables. Now if there was a Cher Christmas inflatable...

- I’m in the thick of three new writing projects: my New Mexico novel (post scene-layout, starting the first draft), my Buddhist-cowboy poems (finished the final draft, preparing to submit), and a new eBook (finished final draft; getting ready to publish in early 2015), and a long list of end of the year to-dos regarding my writing and websites. I also reformatted my first poetry book (get it on Amazon or Smashwords at a new price of $2.99).

Cher Christmas

C580_Cher_Ugly_Holiday_SweatshirtNew_grandeLuckily Cher was more festive than me and launched a whole line of Christmas products. I bought the ugly-sweater sweatshirt (and wore it on Christmas to visit my three Aunts) and the White Hat Girls Tee.

 

CloserMy friend Julie wrote to tell me Cher was on the cover of a new magazine called Closer and she saw it at Target. I was a day late and missed it. Here's the article about Cher's cancelled tour.

   


Don’t Cry For Me Cherilina

ProgramAn ironic image for Cher's D2K tour: trapped by a virus.

Last week was a very sad week for me. Indulge me, but I’m thinking to make a list will be a cathartic process.

1. As of Sunday when I stopped in Albertson's to sit at one of those blood pressure machines, I've had to accept that this, my 45th year, I’ve developed high blood pressure. Three out of 5 recent tests over the last 6 months have been too high. Heart issues have felled everyone on my father's side of the family. So this is not happy news.

2. The Bill Cosby story is wearing me down. Not only have 16 women accused him of various sexual crimes, but he’s latest TV appearances (The Colbert Report appearance before the story even broke) and interviews have been eerily self-important and left an unsatisfactory taste in my mouth. It reminds me of the Woody Allen incest saga. I grew up on their work and my esteem has been felled by their tabloid scandals which are both hard to prove or disprove (at this point). But that really doesn’t matter because no outcome escapes a tragedy. In Woody Allen’s case, either he did commit incest with his daughter or Mia Farrow is crazy and has contaminated her daughter’s life. Both scenarios are awful. Likewise, Bill Cosby is a rapist or 16 women are conspiring to ruin his career. Problem is, they have little to gain after the statute of limitations. And if you think it’s impossible to keep such crimes a secret for 40 years within an entertainment organization, let me remind you of Penn State and Jerry Sandusky. There’s no pretty truth here. Just yuckiness. And it reminds me that as a society we place a heartbreaking amount of misspent worship on celebrities (no offence to Cher). From what I've seen, baring a few exceptions, Hollywood does not attract balanced, heroical personalities and heroes don't grow from the seeds of maladaptive narcissists. In any case, as Mr. Cher Scholar says, this story pretty much bankrupts Fat Albert, The Cosby Show, the jello commercials, I Spy, all the standup routines....

3. I found out Thursday my friend has brain cancer. She's been having seizures.This is the fifth calamity to befall her in so many years.

4. That same night the Chiefs lost to the Raiders. This was more depressing to Mr. Cher Scholar than it was to me but it did rub off.

5. Hours later I was online via email helping to talk down another friend from an emotional life-crisis.

6. I started the next day looking at my emails and was assaulted by a Facebook status message made by one of my poetry colleagues. The post, not directed at me, was a rotten spew of hatred regarding last week's political events. It was dumbfoundingly angry, hardly reality-based, and left me disturbed for the rest of the day.

7. The Ferguson story has also depressed me. The grand jury just came out tonight: no indictment on the police officer who fatally shot a black teenager. I grew up in St. Louis where Ferguson is a suburb. I can say many positive things about growing up in St. Louis. I can also say that I know first hand St. Louis has more than its share of racists. I know because many of them used to confide in me their racists thoughts. They did so from high school through my many post-college jobs. I do have friends in St. Louis who are not racists, God bless 'em. But let’s just say I knew more racists there than honest, God-loving people.  Stories appeared last week about guns selling out, the governor declaring a state of emergency and bringing in the National Gard. The KKK is asserting itself with great irony and evil. Interestingly, my St. Louis friends used to chide me about living in Los Angeles, with all its gun violence and rioting. There were zero riots or highway shootings the 8 years I lived in Los Angeles. And as it turns out you don’t have to leave St. Louis for those things. I’m so disappointed that city hasn’t evolved in the last 20 years since I left.

8. My depression and anger over these political events led my cousin, who is a psychologist, to diagnose me Friday night as having "Work from Home Syndrome" - a condition that allows you to stew in your own anger until you become irritable all the time. He suggested I stop listening to the news for a while until my brain resets.

9. Cher has cancelled the remaining dates of her tour. And although she says she hopes she can “finish what she started” and resume the tour next year, this does prove the tour has been sadly ill-fated. It’s also a somewhat drastic and alarming gesture that makes you worry about Cher's health. Upsetting for Cher, her fans, and even Pat Benetar fans. It also means we are coming to the close of an era: invincible Cher.

I was working on a new Cher Scholar site page when I found out, an addendum concert page that lists all her concert dates and available online reviews of each show as I find them. It’s a work in progress but if you want to read old reviews, here they are.

   


Cher Postpones More Concerts, Memoir Notes, Q&A

KidConcert Delays

I almost made a renegade trip to Lubbock, Texas, last weekend to see Cher's concert there. But then I found out it has been cancelled anyway, along with a slew of other November dates due to Cher's recent viral illness.

This has been the most dates postponed on a Cher concert tour that I can think of, a fact that is alarming some fans. Then Daily Mail broke a story about Cher having to wear a heart-monitor and it all sounds pretty scary so I asked Mr. Cher Scholar (who rates claims for Veterans Affairs and has a head full of medical knowledge) to tell me how alarmed we all should be and he said there's a danger of virus infections spreading to the heart. Cher-camp says it's all a normal part of recovery.

I first read about the postponed tour from an Allentown paper that called her tour "ill-fated." Besides the delay to the second leg, what the hell is so ill-fated about it?

Memoirs

But it all gets you thinking about mortality. So does the fact that Angelica Houston's two-volumes of memoirs are now out. Yes, Angelica Houston has unveiled her saga already.

I came across two blurbs about celebrity biographies that seem pertinent to Cher's possible look-back at her life. Young actress Lena Dunham of the HBO show Girls has a memoir already called Not That Kind of Girl. Referencing it in The Atlantic, James Parker says:

"So there's the id, the ego, the superego, and then there's the part of the psyche that writes the memoir. The latter function, in most humans, is inadequately developed until late middle age, which is why memoirs by young people are usually terrible. It's a syndrome, rather embarrassing: premature autobiography."

In an Entertainment Weekly interview, Angelica Huston also weighs in on memoir. Keith Staskiewicz says,

Many celebrity memoris are like bags of potato chips--mostly air and a little bit of salty stuff--but Huston wanted to avoid the anodyne politesse or, worse, self-delusion that can make for boring reading. "It doesn't necessarily have to be a confessional, but it does require a certain amount of looking inward," she says. "If you're gonna write a memoir, you have to talk about yourself. You have to talk about your feelings and you have to talk about who you are. Otherwise don't do it; it's a waste of paper. The trees could have lived."  

NPR on Believe

BelieveOn the bright side, last week I did find something I've been looking for for years. When the song "Believe" started to hit in the United States, I was living and working in Yonkers, New York. I'd hear the song on the radio when I drove home. It was both exciting and unusual to hear Cher's song with the other hits of the day, like Madonna's "Ray of Light," Whitney Houton's "It's Not Right, But It's Okay;" at least those hits were by somewhat older women, too. But then you had Monica, Britney Spears, and TLC. (See a review of 1999 number one hits). One day I was driving home and NPR was talking about the Cher/Believe phenomenon! Like in that breathy-really-serious-NPR way. I missed half of the conversation and for years I've been waiting for it to show up online in NPR archives. Here it is. It's worth a listen.

Halloween Q & A

Cher did a fan Q&A on Facebook on Halloween. There were almost 5,000 comments made and so many pages of questions I couldn't read them all. Cher answered maybe the first 30 of them. Highlights include the following:

Mary Pat Blockel O'Donnell: Hi beautiful Cher:-) Happy Halloween! Love u tons&what is your favorite memory of Chaz&Elijah as babies/and or little children at Halloween?or even teenagers?

Cher: My favorite - I have a couple of favorites. My first was Chaz's first Halloween and I sewed a cat suit, a little kitten suit and painted whiskers and it was so hard making the tail. And the other was when we all went out and Elijah wasn't old enough to walk and we had him in a devil costume and Chaz was the Fonz and we walked around the neighborhood. It was really fun. Halloween is for kids and it's fun when you have kids.

Kaylee Rudnik: Do you think there is any place that you can go without being recognized anymore???

Cher: Hell, and I'm not so sure about that. I'm pretty positive I will be recognized.

John Nicholas Ward: What is the secret behind ur eternal youth??

Cher: Makeup and childishness

Amanda Darby: If you could change one thing forever what would you choose and why?

Cher: I would change how people get along. I would make people get along.

Dean Menc: What is the best thing about being Cher?

Cher: I don't know. You don't have to wait in line.

Goran Srdija: Why u love Gaga and what's ur favourite Gaga's song? Xoxo

Cher:I appreciate her whimsy. And re-creativity.

Doug Wemple: Didn't David Bowie crash one of your house parties? Did hilarity ensue?

Cher: I don't think so. Andy Warhol did, crashed Chaz's birthday party with Keith Haring and hilarity ensued. I loved him, he was so much fun.

Leonardo Esteban Lizama Órdenes: Did you ever met Frank Sinatra? And if so, What was your fist impression?

Cher: I did meet him. I actually saw him on stage. I was following him into Caesars. I thought "HMM, he's old but he can really sing. It's amazing." He was cool.

Mike Scott Uetrecht: How has Rolling Stone never put you on their cover? Not even a review for CTTT. Disrespectful.

Cher: Well, you know, obviously I'm not their cup of tea. Never thought I was cool enough, certainly missed the boat on that.

Christopher Fox Tyler: Whats the fastest way for a man to win your heart/affection?

Cher: Oh - I guess being funny and cute doesn't hurt

Sara Oldani: Hi Cher have you ever thought of doing a concert in Italy? What's your favourite song inyour discography (either original or cover, whatever ) LOVE from Italy!!!!!!

Cher: I guess Song for the Lonely, if I had to be buried with something that would be it

Chad Eric: Happy Halloween Cher! What was your favorite memory of Halloween as a child & adult?

Cher: My favorite memory when I was a kid was when I was 9 and it was the first time I wore makeup. I was totally decked. My mom dressed me in this peasant skirt and she tied the belt so it didn't fall off, and she put on lipstick and curled my hair. That was the BEGINNING of the BEGINNING. I didn't want it to be over, I wanted to go to school the next day in my Halloween costume.

Bob Radmore: What is it like to be famous?

Cher: It's hard for me to say it. I've been famous since I was 18, so I don't know what it's like not to be.

Brooke Bryant: What is your biggest pet peeve?

Cher: iPhones

Nick LeBlanc: Hi Cher, what is your favorite city/place that you've been at in the world whether on tour or vacation?

Cher: Bora Bora

Guillermo Issac Trevino: Do you have a favorite Stevie Nicks song?

Cher: Landslide

Mark Carder: Hey @Cher What is your favorite HORROR FILM

Cher: I'm such a gigantic chicken. I was watching Hell House last night and I was afraid to look at it. I don't do well with horror films they make me terrified. One of my closest friends made a blockbuster movie and it was the Exorcist.

(It was mildly exciting to think Mr. Cher Scholar and I were watching The Legend of Hell House on TCM at the same time Cher was. I even decided to use some of the character names for a novel I'm working on. Mr. Cher Scholar and I also watched The Excorcist again -- Cher is referencing director William Friedkin there who, as we know, also directed Good Times -- and Mr. Cher Scholar and I decided we were kind of burned out on the gory parts -- although the special effects still hold up -- but we really got into the quieter, character development of the movie this year. In fact, I don't think the movie would be quite as frightening without the quiet, ominous soundtrack.)

Annette Eland: Do you meditate?

Cher: Yes

Raymond Donahue: Is it true that you & Sonny were neighbors with Farrah Fawcett ?

Cher: I don't think so

Michele McLey: A couple of question's first what to you like to do when your not touring? And will you do a tour DVD? Oh and please say you are doing another movie, soon!

Cher: Be grubby and go to the movies. Swimming and hang out with my friends. Just nothing, the same thing everyone else likes to do. It's hard to be grubby nowadays though, it's hard to be yourself.

Jennifer Fontana: Hi Cher! What is your favorite moment from your legendary career?

Cher: Ppppssshhhh. I guess winning the Oscar was pretty hard to beat.

Jason Andrew: Dear Cher, Once you are canonized as a saint, what will you be the patron of?

Cher: Lost causes

Sam Durbin:  If you could be any item in a walmart, what would you be and why?

Cher: I would be in Target

Sam Durbin: What CD is in your car right now?

Cher: MY CD. Because I'm singing tracks to the show, I rehearse. The CD that is in my car is boring.

Christopher Eklund: What is your favorite memory of filming Burlesque?

Cher: HMm. The song, Welcome to Burlesque. I was kind of nervous. No, it's not really my favorite. One scene I had with Stanley, and the makeup scene with Christina. I don't have any favorite ones. Maybe You Haven't Seen the Last of Me.

Lorenzo Morrison: Hi Cher. No Lady Gaga. No Madonna. I would like to know what do you you think about Annie Lennox! Is there a song by her you particularly appreciate?

Cher: She's a genius. Everyday we play "Take me to the River" and do our ab exercises to it.

Amanda Jean Bedwell: Is there anything you haven't done yet but you would love to do next

Cher: A million things I want to do. So many things. I can't believe I got this OLD and there are still so many things I want to do.

Dawn Decker: Will you ever do a meet n greet? The only thing on my bucket list is to meet you!!!

Cher: Oh gosh. Elvis, James Dean. There weren't many women icons when I was young with my mom watching old movies - there was Katherine Hepburn. But I identified more with Elvis and James Dean and I identified more with that. The women were more cute and I couldn't identify with them at all

Caricatures

HirshFinally, when we were talking about caricatures a few weeks ago, I forgot about a very famous Cher caricature done by Al Hirschfeld in 1974! 

Okay, I think the height thing is a little exaggerated there.


Radio Interview, New Mix, Clips

AlbummysteryOld Video

Cher scholar Tyler sent me this clip, the Hell & Keller Pride remix of "The Beat Goes On." Thank God somebody out there is remixing something besides "Believe." I liked the video editing job, too.

I also found the original promo video sampled in the above remix, Sonny & Cher at a record store performing "The Beat Goes On." The clip opens on the record bin at left.

What record is this? Something about "Vol. 2." Is this a compilation album I've never seen before? Does anyone out there have this record?

This is now a good time to say I've always hated that boring ATCO logo.

Comrades in Retirement

In Entertainment Weekly for October 31 there's an article called "Retired? Not So Fast" Listed are people who made big claims about retirement but came back. The list includes Garth Brooks, Ozzy Osbourne, Jay-Z and Barbara Streisand.

In the same issue, Nancy Sinatra’s version of "Bang Bang" is also listed as part of a killer playlist for Halloween.

Costumes Through the Years

As I lamented earlier, I missed the People Magazine detailing all of Cher's concert outfits. I broke down and found a copy from eBay. What's ironic about the article is Bob Mackie does brief commentary on the evolution of some of his common designs. Problem is, he didn't design the new outfits in review. The D2K Egyptian opening-fit is compared to the one Mackie designed in Cher and Other Fantasies (1979). The full-fringe disco outfit from the Farewell show (red version) and the Cher at Caesars Believe-fit are compared. This comparison is very odd. First of all, this outfit and song are not even in D2K (yet) and they could have used either the Cher at Caesars fringe-fit (blue) or the older, original version back from the Take Me Home tour in 1979 (silver).

Red Blue Clear 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The current gypsy outfit is compared to the Farewell Indian sari instead of maybe to the original one from The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. The newer hole-fit (Mackie calls it "The Swiss Cheese") could also have been compared to her 1979 Take Me Home concert tour version instead of her 1980s video version. The Half Breed photo uses the version Sonny & Cher toured with instead of the iconic TV show version from 1973. Kind of wonky choices here.

Obsessing about these things…it’s what Cher scholars do.

Radio Interview

LimpetCher News linked to a new radio interview for Cher. In the interview Cher says she loves the movie The Incredible Mr. Limpet. I would love this movie, too, because I love Don Knotts except for the fact that I have a very bad association with it due to Mr. Cher Scholar and a disastrous birthday night with him that included this movie back in 2006.

Anyway, Cher laughs a lot in the interview and talks about the Broadway play based on her life.

Mrlimpet

  


(Possible) VCR Alert: Cher on Jimmy Kimmel Live Oct 30

VcrSome Cher sites, like Cher World and cher.yuku are saying that Cher will be on Jimmy Kimmel Live this Thursday night (October 30). They're also saying that she'll close down Hollywood Boulevard for a special outdoor concert.

This is the day before the big Halloween closures on October 31 around Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood. And the thing is, she's not appearing on Jimmy Kimmels guest list for this week. We’ll set the DVR and see what happens.

It's amusing that I still say "VCR alert" even though VCRs are so ancient that young kids don’t even know what the term means. I have heard myself saying such idiotic things as "It's like a cassette player for TV."

Back when I was a teen and MTV was in full-power mode, my VCR was God. I used to turn on the MTV channel every morning while I was curling my hair, putting on makeup and assembling my Molly Ringwald/Stevie Nicks-inspired outfits.

The first VCR I had, (and I only ever had two), was billed as being so modern, it didn’t have a cord attaching its remote control to its main machine. It was cordless, people! That was innovation when I was a teen.

But I didn’t trust my cordless remote. It sometimes misfired. The batteries died.

Whenever a John Waite or, later, Cher video came on (John Waite’s rare videos like "Tears" always came on in the morning), I would literally listen for the first few chords of a song and then literally dive across the room for the record button on the VCR, which would make this long, painful tinny inhale sound, as if a little tiny crane were moving the record heads from a whole other part of the machine to the tape. I’d always miss a few seconds of each video before the thing actually started recording. I cursed this technological limitation to my fan indulgences. The fact that most videos are now on youtube, all those early missing seconds especially, kinds of kills me a little inside. It’s what represents my own particular tragedy of misspent youth. On many levels.

That Cher would one day make an appearance on MTV (and not be relegated to VH1 like my man Barry Manilow) was not something I ever thought conceivable. As much as I don’t enjoy the Geffen era as much as the previous and following eras, Cher on MTV was a real turning point in Cher fan existence. You could go out into the teen world with a bit more cultural power. Cher was rockin it...on M…T…V. Everyone could suck it.

And while I was waiting for all versions of John Waite’s "Change" video to come on in the mornings  (1, 2), I was now also getting alternate versions of "We All Sleep Alone" (1, 2). I couldn’t wait to get back home and play them over and over and analyze the differences.

Setting a VCR ahead of time took skill and thought. Say if you had a social life and felt risky enough to record an appearance while you were out with your friends. I missed a whole Barry Manilow special this way once. I also missed Cher on Phil Donahue and wasn't able to see if for over a decade. You could screw up while setting the time. The tape could get chewed up. Life was so precarious then. Sure, satellites fail now. But the show will turn up someday, somewhere online or on a bootleg.

It’s not quite living on the edge anymore.

NewcherIn other news, USA Today marks Cher's show one of the five live shows to see this year, a list that includes Stevie Wonder and Bob Dylan. Not too shabby.

 

 


Not Busier Than Cher, But…

...I'm Chergym2out of my mind busy. I had to put that comma in my blog title because without it, the title read like Cher's ass was busier than me. Probably true but still a distracting message. 

Over the last few weeks, my brother and sister-in-law came to town and we tried to show them the great state of New Mexico in a week. I've got another guest coming next weekend. And if you know me, you know I only clean the house when people are coming over. So this summer, I've been cleaning a lot! Yesterday, I spent the day covering the front of our house with Halloween decorations. I've also been trying to keep up with the latest in haunted houses in my city. I've been very distracted from the Cher Universe working on my projects, including final drafts of my Goodnight-Loving Trail poems, and notes for a new novel. I've also been preparing an essay to make into an eBook. It's called "Writing in the Age of Narcissism." On top of that, I've recently been drafted by my Dad's side of the family, the Burquenos (which is local for "people from Albuquerque"), to help organize a family reunion next year to celebrate my Aunts 90th birthday. In all this, blogging gets short shrift.

WandaOh, and we've been busy watching Quick Draw Season 2 which had a lot more stunts, was a lot funnier and had some surprise guests. But the most recent surprise has been the great fan art people have been sending in to the facebook fan page of John Lehr, including this hilarious send up of western statue-art collecting commercial sent in by a fan. The piece is called Vernon Shank Statue Commercial. It's very funny even if you haven't been watching the show.

The strong women characters on the show have been awesome this year, including the hilarious, lusty, toothless Wanda pictured above.

But there's LOTS  of Cher stuff to get to:

GingerFirst, I came accross this image right in the October 10th issue of Entertainment Weekly depicting an Edith Head outfit for Ginger Rogers. You can clearly see a direct line from Edith Head to Ray Aghayan to Bob Mackie and Cher.

Secondly, breaking news!! Cher gets some respect in Entertainment Weekly. More than seeing Cher's new Bob Mackie costumes in the second leg of her current tour, THIS is what required that I get some oxygen stat! My October 24th copy came Friday night and I'm perusing through the issue (which you can do in like 15 minutes), and I see a short news item on the nominees for this year's Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees. No, Cher didn't make it. Not expecting that.

The first section describes this year's biggest surprises. I scanned that part and thought, "wouldn't it be an alternate universe if this article called the HOFers out for snubbing Cher?"

AND THEY DO!!! I couldn't believe it. Entertainment Weekly has not been 100% Cher-loving over many years of record reviews. But, clear as day, the middle section is called "BIGGEST SNUBS" and Cher's hole-fit picture is representin' with this paragraph underneath:

"For the second year of eligibility in a row, De La Soul's game-change style was over-looked. The Hall also missed an opportunity to acknowledge Cher--whose impact and longevity far exceed those of many of the men enshrined in Cleveland [my flabbergasted italics]--on the 50th anniversary of her first album. And if Joan Jett, nominated again this year, doesn't make the final cut this time, voters have black hearts indeed."

I ran into the living room and gave a lecture on Cher Snubs throughout the history of time to Poor Beleaguered Mr. Cher Scholar. I want to rip that page out and send it to my brother in Cleveland and ask that he and his wife organize a protest in front of the museum pronto, something he would never in a zillion years do.

Speaking of zillion, Cher is pissed at Zillow. See stories on GeekWire; Twitchy tracking Cher's tweet discussions; and an article on Bloomberg about Chinese buyers getting access to Zillow's U.S. properties.

"Chinese buyers spent more than $11 billion on U.S. real estate last year, with an average $425,000 purchase, Zillow said."

Zillow is saying this is only good for U.S. sellers. I'm not sure. but Cher is probably saying this is bad for U.S. buyers.

SandchouseThis is the satellite picture of the Owlwood house on Zillow.

Zillow has labeled this page: "Sonny Bono and Cher's Former Home - Zillow"

 

 

Here are the stories I missed in October:

According to Cher News a new version of the Norman Seeff photograph was for sale for a while (but it's sold-out now): http://cher.shop.bravadousa.com/page/SignedLithograph. What's interesting is how the store calls the photo "THE iconic 70s image of Cher."

So Cher's been sick lately as we all know. I hope it wasn't the ice bucket challenge that gave Cher the ice bucket illness. And although one of the U.S. tabloid rags had a picture of Cher on the cover last week insisting she was, in fact, dying (not the first or last time we'll see that melodramatic headline while waiting to purchase our Scooby Snacks), Cher says herself that she's on mend. Cher News tracks her tweets: she was actually in the hospital for a week; doctors say she's built to last; she's been to the gym recently; and she was humbled by the whole experience. I just hope she got some good classic movie watching in while being laid up.

http://chernews.blogspot.com/2014/10/ill-cher-im-getting-better.html 

http://chernews.blogspot.com/2014/10/photos-recovering-fitness-icon-cher-at.html
(Pics of Cher at the gym taken by Paulette, see top photo)

New dates were announced for D2K, partly makeup dates for the shows cancelled: http://tour.cher.com/

Cher News reported that Cher's concert-fits were profiled in the Fall 2014 issue of People Magazine. Is People Magazine now a quarterly? Bummed I missed that.

BbI finally listened to the Lady Gaga version of "Bang Bang" and I do like that it's not simply a re-working of the Nancy Sinatra version, which all the latest re-makings have been. Granted, the Sinatra version is pretty great and I never do get tired of hearing more incarnations of it, I also appreciate something different now and then. Gaga's version seemed more sincere and less ironic. Which is refreshing. I still don't like that red jumpsuit or the somewhat unnatural demeanor of her performance but what can you do?

By the way, this is one of my least favorite Cher single covers. Yes, chainmail tops were cool, but the acid-washed jean-jacket and jeans, the teenybopper hair flip and the wide-eyed expression all smell too much like 80s-teen-spirit, and worse--popular-girl 80s-teen-spirit. And what's with the unbuttoned button-fly jeans? Did Cher eat too many doughnuts before the shoot? Or is the boob-view, jeans-undone look a come-hither call to Anthony Michael Hall?

    


Concert Cher News

SlashCher News has been tracking the release of Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean. Good news: the Blue-ray is available for pre-order.

The second leg of Cher shows were to start on September, 11 but Cher has had to push back 10 dates pushing this legs shows into December.

Slash reported to The Huffington Post about attending a Cher concert and needing to go outside to smoke eventually gave him pneumonia. So he quit smoking.

Cher is also being sued by her former choreographer Kevin Wilson. Read stories on:

The last link is the testimony of Jamal Story, one of Cher's dancers. He was the dancer featured in last week's story in Fortune Magazine: "How to Survive on the Road with Cher. He makes great reference to the chaos in the Ferguson suburb of St. Louis (my hometown).He says:

I am disheartened to know that racism is part of the charge leveled in a lawsuit at my boss...But even if there is some shred of merit here, the lack of consideration for the three brown band members (of which there are only seven) still in Cher's camp befuddles me.

In fact, one of the most interesting experiences I’ve had dealing with the color quota represented on stage happened on Cher’s stage in Vegas years ago. A brunette out for her wedding was replaced by the cousin of another black dancer on the gig. Adding two of the plaintiffs (who were also there) brought the count of bona fide chocolate up to four, and then there were the two of us too light to figure in. Among the other six dancers were a Latino and a Tongan, both with enough pigment to type them out of a Mayflower Voyage film. We didn’t know whether to take a picture (because who would believe it) or accuse our boss of Blaxploitation. Because of course there were also the two black backup singers, the keyboardist and the drummer…

This doesn’t happen with a racist performer.                                                                             

In fact, since my first gig with Cher twelve years ago, I have missed only 2 of her 568 full stage shows. Never in any of them have I experienced any form of racial or sexist prejudice.

It’s not her style.  I was there every time she strutted around stage in a Native American feathered headdress singing about her Cherokee heritage.  Early in a career older than all of her dancers, she was notorious for entering the back door of venues and restaurants that would not allow her colored staff through their front. She argued with her fans via Twitter that the Tea Party supports racist policies.  She funds the Peace Village School in Kenya for black orphans.  Chand

You know, there was a budget for my hair. When I ran out of Mixed Chicks conditioner on the road,  or couldn’t find a barber for a manicured fro, Cher reimbursed receipts for cornrows. It did not bother her any when I walked on stage wearing them, black pants and a white tank—a look that might have gotten me shot by police in Ferguson—to stand in her spotlight and present her a stool.  This is the conversation we should be having instead, how my "Burlesque" costume with this hairstyle is life-threatening around those who would see a dangerous, uber-sexualized Negro thug.

During a delay in the tech rehearsal for the number “Dressed to Kill,” she sat waiting on the chandelier and smiled at me.

“I’m getting a weave,” I told her.

“Really??!!” she said, ecstatic.

     


New D2K Dates On Sale Friday

CollageNew concert dates have been posted for sale Friday morning.

There is one show coming close to me in Lubbock, Texas. I seriously considered buying tickets for this one. I really want to see the new Cherfits. I should also visit Lubbock, where my recently-departed aunt used to live. My other aunts, (her sisters), tell me there a windmill museum there I should see.

Cherfits, windmills: it's pretty tempting but Lubbock is five hours away and by November 9th I will either be out of a job or starting a new job making less money. Plus the concert is Sunday night. It's all too extravagant for these transition-y times. Boo hoo!

I'm still holding out hope for a show in AlbuquerKAY, which is bigger than Lubbock, by the way!

But at least Lubbock is excited about it.