Goodbye to Georgia Holt
December 13, 2022
I still haven't sorted out my websites due to a few setback this winter. So I haven't been able to blog about Cher's new perfumes or her new boyfriend (Quel scandale!); but the loss of Cher's mother, Georgia Holt, at 96 could not go without a moment of tribute.
Cher's mother lived a very interesting life, starting out as a country singer with Georgia's father at age 6 and at age 10 playing with Bob Wills & His Texas Playboys. (Wills actually has a mural in my family seat of Roy, New Mexico...Harding County has gone a bit mural crazy the last 20 years).
Georgia Holt then came to Los Angeles to try to break into acting and she got by with modeling jobs. Although she never "made it big" she seemed to know many movers and shakers. She was friends with many people (or at least their wives) who would go on to play a big role in Cher's career, including Ahmet Ertegun at Atlantic Records who she spoke to about Cher before Sonny & Cher signed with Atco Records and also Robert Altman's wife who she notified about Cher's attempts to break into acting which led to Robert Altman's "discovery" of Cher as an actress in the early 1980s. Georgia did score some small roles in the 1950s and 60s, but her best role was probably that of Cher's elegant mother, a role which had its ups and downs (she wasn't at all on board with the Sonny thing at first) but a performance which seemed to end with love, grit and style.
How many mother's of celebrities have their own Wikipedia page? Or have their obits in The Guardian, People Magazine and Rolling Stone?
Here are some pictures of Georgia with Cher's father, John Sarkisian, and Georgia with the closest thing she ever did of a book about Cher, Star Mothers, which she organized in conjunction with other celebrity moms of the 1980s,
Anyway, ever since Cher has been tweeting about the precarious health of her mother this year I've had this poem rambling around in my head for Georgia and her girls...
Three peas in a pod were living in the grass
at the edge of the yard where the street flows by.
Three peas sitting in a pod like a green canoe
with a swanky soft-top the peas could open and close.
These peas could pose in their pod or unwind
or hole up in the rain or wind or sunshine.
Three peas brushing their hair, painting
their nails, singing with their pea mouths.
Three peas in a pod sitting in the grass
as the whole world floated by.
Fast cars came by with handsome men,
other cars brought even more interesting men,
and girls of every kind strutting down the street
in sequined suits. There were mustached ring leaders
and twirling disco balls, long parades with harlequins
on stilts, jugglers in spotlights and water in the gutter
that glittered for three peas who sat by the curb
where the world seems to come to you.
Three peas in a pod would dance and sing
and dress-up and gossip. And then
one day the oldest pea left the pod
and two peas were left alone
and there was too much space and so they floated
and spun in slow motion until the time passed
and they could settle back in the pod
near where the world flowed by on the street.
And fast cars drove by with handsome men,
girls of every kind and the grass sparkled with dew.
There are two peas in a pod now in the grass by the curb
where the world seems to come to you.
When I created this blog back in 2008, I jokingly created a tag for all non-Cher posts called "peripherals" (for news about family members, co-workers), but this is like The Peripheral, literally the origin peripheral and a person who had a very interesting life in her own right.
What always struck me about Georgia was her effortless regality. This is my favorite late-era photo of her because it represents the way she held herself. That swell of hair! This was taken the day Cher placed her handprints in Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
As the t-shirt above says, "Bitch, please. I made Cher."