According to Cher's twitter account more dates have been added to the Dressed to Kill Tour
Plus a pic from the tourbook just because
I Got You Babe
Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves
Take Me Home
I Found Someone
If I Could Turn Back Time
You Haven't Seen The Last Of Me
Other (specify in a comment)
According to Cher's twitter account more dates have been added to the Dressed to Kill Tour
Plus a pic from the tourbook just because
Cher, Wu-Tang Clan Collaborate for Two Songs on Secret Album
'The Wu - Once Upon a Time in Shaolin' features unlikely vocals from iconic singer
By Jason Newman
May 7, 2014 8:55 AM ET
Cher has contributed vocals to two songs on Wu-Tang Clan's upcoming "secret album" The Wu - Once Upon a Time in Shaolin.
A representative for Cher declined to make the singer available for comment, but confirmed the collaboration to Rolling Stone. "She recorded her parts separately, so I don't believe there was direct interaction," said the rep.
In a video posted by Forbes on Tuesday, writer Zack O'Malley Greenberg traveled to Marrakesh, Morocco to "become the first civilian" to hear the album, of which the group is only pressing one copy and selling to the highest bidder. Tarik "Cilvaringz" Azzougarh, the album's producer, played one song on-camera featuring Ghostface Killah rhyming over pounding drums, dusty organ and a repeated female wail. At the end of the track, Cher improbably sings, "Wu-Tang, baby. They rock the world."
Cher's appearance had been hiding in plain sight since at least March, when the album's website noted that it "includes special guest appearances by Bonnie Jo Mason." In 1964, Cher released "Ringo, I Love You," her first solo single without Sonny Bono and a tribute to Ringo Starr, under the pseudonym of the same name.
The opening monologue from the show in New York ... and very funny
New dates for the new tour have been added
Red demo including a new verse ... I like it better than the album version
I saw Cher on her "Dressed to Kill Tour" last Saturday with opening act, Cyndi Lauper. What a great show! I saw them both on Cher's Farewell Tour in 2002. Cher gives one of the best concert performances that I have seen. I saw both concerts in Ft Lauderdale, FL.
Cher Claims Top Spot on Hot Tours with $15.5M in Revenue
By Bob Allen, Nashville | May 29, 2014 5:01 PM EDT
Cher performs onstage during her 'Dressed To Kill' tour opener at US Airways Center on March 22, 2014 in Phoenix, Arizona
Cher takes her Dressed to Kill tour to No. 1 on the weekly ranking of Hot Tours with more than $15.5 million in revenue reported from the legendary entertainer’s ongoing North American trek. Sold out performances from April 23 through May 17 are included in this tally that adds another 177,239 sold tickets to the tour’s overall attendance total which now tops 340,000. Since launching in March, gross sales from the tour’s 27 shows have surpassed the $30 million mark.
Pop star Cyndi Lauper joined the show as the opening act beginning with the performance at First Niagara Center in Buffalo, N.Y., the first date in this week’s report. Among the 14 arenas in this tally, the top gross and attendance counts are claimed by two different venues. The Izod Center in the New Jersey/New York metropolitan area drew the largest crowd with 14,893 fans present on May 10, but Philadelphia’s Wells Fargo Center produced the top gross of $1,570,731, $17K more than Izod. The highest sales total since the tour began belongs to Toronto’s Air Canada Centre with $1.7 million in revenue from an April 7 performance.
The Dressed to Kill tour will continue its first North American leg through July 11, closing with a concert at San Diego’s Valley View Casino Center. After that performance Cher will be off the road for two months, but a second jaunt through the U.S. and Canada will kick off on Sept. 11 in Albany, N.Y. The second leg will stop in 11 U.S. cities during September and October and wrap with a return engagement to Toronto on Oct. 4 and 5. Veteran rockers Pat Benatar and Neil Giraldo will return to provide support for the fall leg, just as they did for the tour’s first 13 concerts.
Hugh Durrant's client: the one and only Cher.
His predecessor: the beloved Bob Mackie.
His assignment: Design 14 costumes for the pop superstar to wear for her lavish comeback tour — whose name, "Dressed to Kill," promises killer costumes.
And his time frame: only six weeks.
"It was a big task, I must say," costume designer Durrant, 67, said in a phone interview from London with the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, ahead of the Dressed to Kill tour's stop Friday at the BMO Harris Bradley Center. "Coming up with 14 ideas for Cher is not the easiest thing to do. She has done everything.... I don't think I had a day off, and I was very, very tired by the time we opened."
It was a gig that was a lifetime in the making. Bitten by the theater bug when he was a child (actor Alan Rickman was a classmate), Durrant realized he was a terrible actor, but he was good at drawing and at 13 aspired to be a costume designer.
After 25 years of professional work, largely for theater productions, he met Cher's choreographer in 1994 while working on the West End musical "Copacabana."
"For (Cher's) Farewell tour (from 2002 to 2005), I was asked to do the dancers' costumes," Durrant said. "At one point when I was doing a fitting, I told Cher, 'When I first started in this business, I did plays by Shakespeare, Ibsen, (George Bernard) Shaw.' She said, 'Were all those costumes covered in beads, too?'"
Aside from one outfit, Cher's costumes weren't Durrant's work, but Mackie's, practically her sole designer since 1972. Mackie's flamboyant and often shimmering ensembles — most famously exemplified by the ornate black headdress and showgirl-inspired two-piece Cher wore at the 1986 Oscars — were nearly as responsible for her superstar status as the music itself. And they continue to inspire: London's the Independent just published an article about Cher's influence on new runway fashions, and Miley Cyrus wears vintage Mackie pieces on her current Bangerz tour.
"Bob is a great showman, and Cher is a great showman," Durrant said. "And neither of them are afraid of going out on a limb, but both of them are superb craftsmen in their own way."
So when Mackie dropped out of "Dressed to Kill" at the last minute ("My professional and business commitments were just too great," he told US Weekly), Cher was so distraught, she took to Twitter to tell fans she was "crying" and that her "heart was broken." Then the gig went to Durrant, who had already been designing the dancers' outfits.
"My first thought was panic," Durrant confessed. "Bob has been dressing that body for 40 years. He knows that body very well.... We were all starting from scratch, really, which is a bit frightening."
Beyond filling Mackie's massive shoes on a limited timetable, Durrant was expected to top him.
"I remember meeting Cher and her manager and asking, 'Why 14 (outfits)? The Farewell tour only had 11,'" Durrant recalled. "Cher said, 'You think I'm going to have less?'"
Between Cher and her backup dancers, the show has a whopping 150 costumes, with minimal duplicates.
"I think I probably did 500 drawings," Durrant said. "Just for her opening outfit, I did 10 or 11 different headdresses.... I thought there weren't enough beaders in Los Angeles to do this show. We were really up to the last minute. It was frightening."
At least Durrant had four assistants, "which is more than I've ever had on anything," he said. "And he had plenty of direct and honest input from Cher herself.
"It's her taste that you're working to all the time. Everything that is on that stage has been passed by her personally," Durrant said. "She has a very left-field way of looking at things, which is great fun. She stretches you. She doesn't hold back. She's always looking for how to make it more interesting and more extraordinary."
Despite incredible challenges, Durrant felt he ended up with some extraordinary pieces. Cher's outfit for the encore was the most difficult to make.
"I had this idea of making a very complicated cut," Durrant said. "It's meant to look like a long skirt that drapes in front, and frankly, what I drew fabric doesn't want to do," Durrant said. "We tried various fabrics, and the only fabric that worked was a double silk crepe. It's very heavy and it looks nice when you drape it, but it's an unusual fabric to use for a show like that.... It did cause the cutter nightmares."
While Durrant said he's proud of everything he did, his variation on Mackie's American Indian-inspired outfit for "Half-Breed" stands out.
"Bob's design had every color under the sun, but (for 'Dressed to Kill') the whole scene is meant to be a 1920s circus sideshow,... and Cher wanted it all to look faded," Durrant said. "So I used washed-out pinks and washed-out greens, these very passive colors. Really, it's a bit of a shock when you see that costume in those colors. But I think it's rather successful."
As are all of Durrant's designs, many critics have said.
"The reviews have all been lovely, and they've all mentioned the costumes, so presumably I haven't been a complete disaster," he said.
Some sketches of Hugh Durrant's designs:
New Dates for Dressed 2 Kill Tour
I'm so tempted. But I don't want to have shitty seats.
Full Dressed to Kill concert:
What I Know Now
Cher Gets the Last Word
Reveling in a hit album and a sold-out tour, the superstar opens up about her staying power, her private world and why she avoids mirrors
by Alanna Nash, AARP The Magazine, August 5, 2014
Late at night, she gets social, holed up in the bedroom of her eye-popping Moorish-castle-meets-Venetian-palazzo high on a bluff in Malibu. Stretched out on a bed that once belonged to the wife of Rudolph Valentino, Cher turns to Twitter to share what's on her mind. Nothing seems off-limits. (An example: "How did you celebrate Madonna's birthday?" someone asks. Cher's answer: "I got a colonic.")
Late at night, she also chats by phone with reporters. "I'm eating while talking to you," she says in that famous throaty contralto that long ago made her the Goddess of Pop. A giggle. "Peanut butter. Crunchy, of course!"
Cher's unabashedly frank attitude endears her to millions of fans. She's as witty as she is physical — and always, always sexy. An intriguing blend of Armenian-American and Cherokee, she's also extremely adept at staying in the game. Her reign as an undisputed diva is among the longest in show business. Now 68, she was just 19 when she hit the national stage with then-husband Sonny Bono. She has won a best-actress Oscar, an Emmy, three Golden Globes and a Grammy. And she has scored a No. 1 record in each of the past six decades. Her 26th studio album, Closer to the Truth, released last fall, was her first in more than 11 years and entered the Billboard 200 chart at No. 3, making it her highest-charting album ever. As she rightfully boasts, "I'm so the phoenix."
Though she swore that her 2002 Living Proof: The Farewell Tour would be her last, she's back with her Dressed to Kill Tour, with headdresses as tall as buildings and elaborate costumes that cast her as a Greek gladiator, a gypsy queen and a Byzantine divine being. She attributes her success to her perfectionism. "I'm not a confident person," she says, "and I'm really not a Cher fan. But I want to make sure I'll do a great job, so I go balls to the wall and try to do every single thing I can."
Says Stanley Tucci, a costar of her 2010 film Burlesque, "The most remarkable thing about Cher is that she constantly reinvents herself but maintains a strong sense of identity."
She's been her own person almost since her birth as Cherilyn Sarkisian, in El Centro, Calif., the daughter of a truck driver with a drug habit and a struggling actress-model-singer. Cher's parents divorced before she was a toddler, and her mother, Georgia Holt, briefly placed her child in an orphanage. Holt remarried several times and produced another daughter, Georganne; stepfathers were rarely in the picture, and Cher routinely flirted with trouble. "When I was a kid, my friend and I ran away and hopped a train," she says. "I was always this strange child who wanted more adventure than was allowed. I think I learned a lot from my mother," Cher adds. "She really didn't take s--- from anybody."
Yet the two often butted heads. Holt was fine with Cher's dating Warren Beatty at age 16, but hit the ceiling when her daughter dropped out of high school and moved in with Bono, a married songwriter and record promoter 11 years her senior. Says Cher, "She kept going, 'Why are you going to throw your life away on him? You have so much potential, and you're so special.' "
Sonny & Cher
But Bono saw Cher's talent and focused her "scattered energy," she says. They married in 1964. The duo's infectious pop hits cut across all strata, and they captured 30 million weekly viewers with The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. But the marriage came unwound in 1972, largely, according to Cher, because she grew up, literally: "He didn't like me older, and I mean, like, 25." He cheated on her, and when they dissolved their business partnership, he sued her. Still, she forgave him, she says, "because we had a relationship that defied all kinds of things."
When Bono died in a skiing accident in 1998, it was their daughter, Chastity, who informed Cher, out of the country, via telephone. "I have never heard my mom as devastated by anything," says Chaz, 45, as he is now known. "Their core bond and that first-love thing just kicked in for her."
Even today, Cher sometimes feels Sonny around her: "I have this fabulous chandelier in my sitting room, and it goes off and on all the time for no reason. I always think it's him messing with me, because that is what he would do."
Cher, the Mother
Chastity had come out to her parents as a lesbian before Sonny's death, and Cher did not take it well at first — though she has long been revered as an icon in the gay community. She eventually found acceptance, even after Chastity underwent gender-reassignment surgery, a process finalized in 2010. Cher remembers, however, the sadness she felt one day when she phoned Chaz. "He'd forgotten to erase his old outgoing message," she says. "I thought, 'I'm never going to hear my daughter's voice [in person] again.' " Today, Cher advises parents with children wrestling with sexual identity to "have faith and hold on. It's scary because you don't know how you're going to feel."
She refuses to comment on her relationship with Elijah Blue, 38, her musician son from her marriage to rocker Gregg Allman in the '70s, but the two are reportedly estranged. Yet, Cher notes, she and Allman have stayed in touch. In fact, she says she has remained friends with almost all her old beaux. She now dates occasionally but keeps it quiet because "being Mr. Cher" is hard on a man's ego. In answer to why she often dates younger men, she says, "Older men rarely liked me. If it wasn't for younger men, I would never have a date."
Pushing Past Insecurities
She concedes that she isn't always easy to be around. "Depression just gallops through our family," she says. Eating right and exercise give her stamina, but, she adds, "Every once in a while I think, 'Jesus, you're so old! How did this happen?' I haven't looked in the mirror in years. The only time I was happy with the way I looked was when I was, like, 40 to 45."
Yet she pushes past her insecurities because she is still full of creative ideas. There's a play about her in development, in which she just might take a turn as herself. "I'm also writing this thing that starts with my grandmother's life," she says, "and ends with my mother getting off the table, because she was going to get an abortion with me." Her voice leaps with excitement. "It should be a film!
"Diane Warren wrote 'You Haven't Seen the Last of Me' for Burlesque," Cher continues, "and that's the closest to who I am. I don't intend to step aside. This is the first generation that's said, 'We're not going to roll over and play dead because we're a certain age.' It's like saying to the Rolling Stones, 'OK, you've had your time in the sun. Now go put on some plaid shorts and play golf.' " A beat. And then hysterical laughter.
The old joke has it that when a nuclear holocaust destroys the world, the only things to endure will be cockroaches and Cher. She's stopped asking herself why she's such a survivor, but she knows she is. And we do, too.
Rewinding The Charts: In 1965, Sonny & Cher 'Got' To No. 1
By Keith Caulfield | August 14, 2014 2:05 PM EDT
Sonny and Cher in London at the HIlton Hotel on August 3, 1965.
Douglas Miller/Keystone/Getty Images
The couple's signature ode to devotional love topped the Hot 100 on Aug. 14, 1965
Sonny & Cher's "I Got You Babe" may have been their debut hit on the Billboard Hot 100, but it wasn't the first time they were heard on smash singles.
Sonny Bono was working for producer Phil Spector in the early 1960s, and, after meeting Cher in 1962, the pair sang background for Spector on the Ronettes' 1963 hit "Be My Baby" and the Righteous Brothers' 1964 chart-topper "You've Lost That Lovin' Feelin'."
The couple soon signed with Atco Records and released "I Got You Babe," written and produced by Bono, in 1965. The tune topped the Hot 100 on Aug. 14, 1965 – 49 years ago today – and spent three total weeks at No. 1. It was the first of 18 hits for the duo, who, according to Bono's memoir "And the Beat Goes On," didn't marry until 1969.
The pair's onstage banter turned the twosome into variety TV show stars in 1971 with CBS TV's The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour. The same year, Cher notched her first solo No. 1 with "Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves."
By 1977, however, the couple – which had divorced in 1975 – was off the air and went its separate ways. Bono became the mayor of Palm Springs, Calif., from 1988 to 1992 and was elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1994, where he served until his death in 1998 following a skiing accident.
Cher sailed on to a spectacular solo career, earning six straight decades of No. 1 singles on Billboard's charts. (She's also collected an Academy Award, Emmy Award and a Grammy Award.) She celebrated her highest-charting solo album ever on the Billboard 200 with Closer to the Truth, which debuted and peaked at No. 3 last October.
Though Bono is gone, some of that old Sonny & Cher magic can still be seen on stage every night during Cher's current tour: she sings a virtual duet with him on "I Got You Babe."
Saw her back in April with my mom. Pat Benatar opened for her and she was electric. I get to see both of them again with my best friend next month since he missed out on the April date. Can't wait.
Pick a song from the poll or specify which one you like in a comment.
"Save Up All Your Tears" is one of my favs, as well as the 1987 version of "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)".
I think Cher is brilliant, though I am not her biggest fan. Her album "It's A Man's World" is by far my favorite, it is so underrated by many though I feel is amazing. From that album is almost impossible to pick just one song, so I give you my favorite three songs, One by One, Angels Running and the super amazing The Gunman. Every once in a while I have to play The Gunman because is such a beautifully crafted song, her flawless singing and the equally flawless orchestration by Anne Dudley, go get it!
Song for the Lonely... love it. reminds me of a special someone.
Being the huge fan maybe borderline fanatic that I am it's impossible to choose a single favorite but besides the obvious hits I'll say "Love On a Rooftop", "Still", and "Heart of Stone" off the top of my head
Has to be One By One followed by Take Me Home and Believe.
I gotta give it to Cher... she's awesome. I miss seeing her on the big screen because she just has a presence.
Watched Witches of Eastwick and Moonstruck the other day. Where are you Cher? come back to the big screen!
Anyway, the songs that have stuck with me over the years are I Got You Babe, If I Could Turn Back Time, Its in His Kiss, Believe, The Power, Runaway, and Song for The Lonely.
A lot of great selections. As Spooky said, it would be great to see Cher on screen again. Loved her in Mask, Moonstruck and Witches of Eastwick.
She's made too few films considering how talented she is and unfortunately she started at an age when roles for actresses are very limited. I think she would have been perfect as Maleficent though Angelina was fabulous. It would be nice to see her do more serious films as opposed to Burlesque and Stuck On You. A dark thriller maybe or a real character role something juicy she could sink her teeth into. I wish she'd get cast in a franchise like Lord of the Rings or something along those lines.
If i could turn back time
Last edited by NakedDorian; September 14th, 2014 at 08:34 PM.
Absolutely! She'd be amazing I think. She's got this ethereal quality to her and a dark Gothic visual would be so eerie, but beautiful at the same time. There are many photoshoots that she's done that show exactly what I mean. I'm not sure why Tim Burton has never cast her in any thing.
I think something like this as an actual film would be incredible!
A Cowboys Work Is Never Done...and I Saw A Man Who Danced With His Wife
Halfbreed and Believe
We only see two things in people, what we want to see and what they want to show us. - Dexter Morgan
Cher cancels 8 concerts at relaunch of D2K Tour
Brian Mansfield, USA TODAY 11:59 a.m. EST November 7, 2014
Cher has canceled a scheduled concert in Lubbock, Texas, Sunday, as well as seven other upcoming shows, as she continues to recover from a viral infection that sidelined her earlier this year.
Sunday's show was intended to be the relaunch of the 68-year-old singer's D2K Tour, which she has said will be her last.
According to the Lubbock Avalanche-Journel, the affected shows include upcoming Texas dates in Lubbock, Austin and Corpus Christi, as well as Bossier City, La. (Nov. 15); Pensacola, Fla. (Nov. 17); Charleston, S.C. (Nov. 19); Richmond, Va. (Nov. 21) and Auburn Hills, Mich. (Nov. 23).
Cher already has had to cancel several shows this year due to a viral infection. Closer Weekly recently reported that the singer has been wearing a heart monitor as part of her recovery.
The D2K Tour is now scheduled to start again Dec. 2 in Allentown, Pa.
We all sleep alone is my fave....my show got cancelled too here in Cincinnati....going to hopefully see her again in January on the new date with pat benatar opening the gig. Get better babe
Last edited by vacancy3; November 8th, 2014 at 08:44 AM.
Cher cancels entire tour
Cher has announced the cancellation of all remaining dates on her Dressed To Kill (D2K) concert tour.
Beginning in March, the multi-award-winning superstar completed 49 sold out concerts to rave reviews before taking a scheduled break in July.
Shortly before returning to the road in September, she was felled by an infection that affected her kidney function.
While her progress has been consistent, Cher’s doctors have advised her to take more time to ensure a complete and total recovery.
“I am totally devastated,’’ Cher said. “Nothing like that has ever happened to me. I cannot apologize enough to all the fans who bought tickets. I’m so proud of this ****** It is my best ever. I sincerely hope that we can come back again next year and finish what we started.’’
Ticket holders may obtain a refund at point of purchase. The cancelled dates are as follows:
November 9, 2014 Lubbock, TX United Supermarkets Arena
November 11, 2014 Austin, TX Frank Erwin Center
November 13, 2014 Corpus Christi, TX American Bank Center
November 15, 2014 Bossier City, LA CenturyLink Center
November 17, 2014 Pensacola, FL Pensacola Bay Center
November 19, 2014 Charleston, SC North Charleston Coliseum
November 23, 2014 Auburn Hills, MI Palace of Auburn Hills
December 2, 2014 Allentown, PA PPL Center
December 4, 2014 Albany, NY Times Union Center
December 6, 2014 Washington D.C. Verizon Center
December 8, 2014 Uniondale, NY Nassau Coliseum
December 10, 2014 New York, NY Madison Square Garden
December 12, 2014 Newark, NJ Prudential Center
December 13, 2014 Hartford, CT XL Center
December 15, 2014 New York, NY Madison Square Garden
January 5, 2015 Manchester, NH Verizon Wireless Arena
January 7, 2015 Boston, MA TD Garden
January 9, 2015 State College, PA Bryce Jordan Center
January 11, 2015 Grand Rapids, MI Van Andel Arena
January 13, 2015 Toronto, ON Air Canada Centre
January 15, 2015 Ft Wayne, IN Allen County War Memorial Coliseum
January 17, 2015 Green Bay, WI Resch Center
January 19, 2015 Moline, IL iWireless Center
January 21, 2015 Chicago, IL United Center
January 23, 2015 Cincinnati, OH US Bank Arena
January 25, 2015 Sioux Falls, SD Denny Sanford Premier Center
January 27, 2015 Omaha, NE CenturyLink Center
January 29, 2015 Wichita, KS INTRUST Bank Arena
February 4, 2015 Fargo, ND Fargodome
Wow... I hope she gets better. I'd hate to lose Cher. :0
You and me both!
I found someone
According to IMDB Cher may be in a new film due out next year
Cher Stars in Marc Jacobs' Fall 2015 Ad Campaign
Strong enough—to be Marc Jacobs' new muse!
Following in the footsteps of Victoria Beckham, Karlie Kloss, and yes, Marc Jacobs himself, Cher posed for the American fashion house's Fall 2015 ad campaign looking every bit the fierce mama we know she is!
The award-winning singer and actress, who just turned 69 on May 20, modeled for Marc Jacobs wearing a semi-sheer, pleated, black dress, topped off by an embellished jacket and finished with gloves. Her iconic raven-hued mane? Teased big and bold, and her plump pout and hooded eyes are on full display.
Perhaps the reveal should come as little surprise, as Cher attended this year's Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala on the arm of the beloved designer. At the event, the "Believe" songstress worked a Marc Jacobs metallic, fish scale-embellished, three-quarter-sleeve dress, while the dapper gent chose a classic tuxedo and bow tie.
CHER LANDS COVER OF 'LOVE' MAGAZINE
Is Cher having the best summer ever? First, she surprised everyone by attending the Met Gala as Marc Jacobs's date. Then she was the first iconic celebrity revealed as part of his fall 2015 ad campaign. And on Tuesday, Love magazine revealed its next cover featuring the singer — or at least, the back of her head.
Cher's back as metaphor for Cher coming back. I see what you did there.
Given Marc Jacobs's collaborative, often synergistic relationship with Love Editor in Chief Katie Grand (Miley Cyrus covered the magazine the same season she starred in a MJ campaign, for instance), we can't say we're too surprised.
It's unclear if there will be an additional cover with more recognizable Cher features; though we expect her editorial inside — with contributions by Jacobs, David Sims and Joe McKenna, with an interview by Derek Blasberg — to be quite impressive.
I consider myself a fan but this campaign is not well executed. She looks so off in those pics and the clothes aren't very flattering on her.
They should have taken a cue from Versace SS 2015.
Last edited by EvilTwinTwo; July 14th, 2015 at 06:11 AM.
Cher on the cover of Love magazine: Queen of chiffon and sequins is the ultimate fashion icon
Celebrities copy her, the designer Marc Jacobs is inspired by her – and next week, she'll be on the cover of the achingly hip 'Love' magazine. Fashion editor Alexander Fury salutes the camp, timeless style of Cherilyn Sarkisian
We've always seen plenty of Cher through fashion. Only now it is figuratively, not literally. In the past, we've seen Cher through sheer panels of Bob Mackie chiffon and fishnet; through nude illusion that was, frequently, no illusion; through the body-stocking she wore in the video for her 1989 single "If I Could Turn Back Time", the one that resembled two strategic strips of duct tape and a pair of tights hoicked up too high.
And now? Well, in the past three months, we've seen Cher at the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Gala, in Marc Jacobs, with Marc Jacobs. And we actually saw her in Jacobs again, when she fronted his autumn/winter 2015 advertising campaign.
Granted, Cher is just one of a litany of Jacobs' stars, including the director Sofia Coppola, the actress Winona Ryder and Willow "Daughter of Will" Smith. But she attracted all the attention. The latest example of the fashion industry's current embracing of Cher to its bosom is her place on the cover of the autumn/winter issue of Love magazine, a biannual bible of cool whose editor-in-chief, Katie Grand, is accepted as high fashion's premier harbinger of hip. (Full disclosure: I edited Love, under Grand, for a year. It was as cool then as it is now – down to her, definitely not me.)
"We've tried for her before," says Grand – meaning Cher – but apparently, in the past schedules conflicted and the star couldn't make it. However, this time around, "Cher happened within about three days. It was one of the easiest things I've ever commissioned."
For example, although neither the stylist Joe McKenna (who works with designers from Azzedine Alaïa to Victoria Beckham) nor the author and journalist Derek Blasberg (who interviewed her) were due to be in New York around the time of the shoot, they both instantly agreed and rearranged.
Show girl: Cher in one of her trademark feather headpieces, on the 'Sonny and Cher Comedy Hour' in 1973 (Getty)
"Everyone I spoke with was obsessed with her," says Grand, by way of explaining why she put Cher on her cover. But Grand didn't count herself among them, to be honest – at least not at the beginning. "You know, when someone around you is obsessed, it begins to rub off," she says, laughing. "Marc is, and so many people I know… and we'd already looked at her as inspiration for a number of collections."
Grand is referring to the designer Marc Jacobs, with whom she works as a stylist – at Louis Vuitton until 2013, and ongoing at his eponymous label. She recalls how she and the then head-of-studio Peter Copping (now creative director of Oscar de la Renta) once hid Jacobs' copy of Cher's The Greatest Hits at Vuitton, after incessant late-night looping of the tracks. "Then the cleaner found it… so it was obvious that someone had hidden it…"
It's strange to read names like these going quite so gaga over Cher. "Working with her was a dream come true," gushes Marc Jacobs to me, from Paris. "She's been an inspiration to me since age nine, when I started watching her weekly on The Sonny and Cher Show."
That's a long-standing fixation – and Cher's influence can be traced back through Jacobs' fashion designs: not just the obvious, like the beaded peekaboo gowns and feather head-dresses of his final Vuitton collection for autumn/winter 2014 (a fairly direct facsimile of Cher's spotlight-stealing 1986 Oscars outfit); but also subtler stuff. Jacobs' signature low-riding kick-hem trousers of the Nineties, for instance. They had a Seventies flair, those flares, and remind you that Cher was the first woman to expose her navel on network TV.
"If you want to talk about firsts and belly buttons, you can look at Claudette Colbert or Cleopatra," says Cher in the interview accompanying her Love cover, shot by David Sims. "The generation that came before mine were people I could not relate to at all. Doris Day? Sandra Dee? I had no idea where they were coming from and I thought they all dressed terribly. I was appalled at all that crap: cookie-cutter suits and little pillbox hats."
Maybe that's the source of Cher's appeal right now: we ourselves are coming out of a period of relative fashion conservatism, itself a reaction to the crass excesses of the early Noughties. A little glitz, a bit of glamour, a sliver (or several) of naked flesh are no longer looked on as bad taste. But is Cher's style looked on as bad taste? Probably – even when it's being lauded. (In 1999, for instance, the Council of Fashion Designers of America recognised Cher for her influence in fashion.) "I think she's been a fashion victim and I think she's learned a lot from that," says the then-CFDA president Stan Herman. "That almost gave her her sense of style." But I don't think Cher is a fashion victim. She's always known exactly what she wanted to achieve. She's never worn something to be fashionable, regardless of whether is suited her or not – indeed, she's been happier to be out of fashion. Example? Bob Mackie, the fashion designer most associated with her look, and with whom she is most associated. She still sports his clothes today.
Who was wearing sheer-spangled banners – screaming, "Look at me!" – back in the Eighties? Who, indeed, was wearing Mackie on the red carpet? No one, bar Cher. She was lambasted for it back then. But now, they're the looks that are lauded. And if they're not lauded, they're at least remembered. Everyone knows what Cher wore to present the Best Supporting Actor Oscar in 1986 – but who remembers what the winner wore? Or even who he was? Does that sound like a victim, or a victor?
Anyway. Bad taste leads us, inevitably, to the notion of camp. We can really have some fun here. Because Cher is camp, undoubtedly. She's practically its personification. And while the ultimate camp statement – it's good because it's awful – doesn't apply to her, it is germane to much of what she has worn. Susan Sontag said that camp "is a woman walking around in a dress made of three million feathers". Cher probably has a dozen of those, and has done that a hundred times. Diana Vreeland, American Vogue's arch editor-in-chief during the 1960s, hit the nail on the head when she declared: "A little bad taste is like a nice splash of paprika. We all need a splash of bad taste… No taste is what I'm against."
(Incidentally, Vreeland first met Cher at a party for Jackie Kennedy in the 1960s. She had her photographed by Richard Avedon for her magazine; Vreeland was also the inspiration for Marc Jacobs' autumn/winter 2015 collection. You fill in the blanks.)
Camp taste, Sontag said, has a peculiar affinity and overlap with homosexual taste. There's an entire, and exhaustive, Wikpedia page devoted to Cher as a gay icon; there was also an entire episode of the American LGBTQ-ish sitcom Will & Grace devoted to a Cher doll. "You'll always have those women that designers… of a certain sexual orientation… are obsessed with," Katie Grand says, in a measured fashion. But I remember, in February 2013, when Cher made surprise appearances at a number of the autumn/winter Paris fashion-week shows – Balmain, Gareth Pugh, Rick Owens – and caused a veritable furore at each. The reason? Let's be frank: Cher does appeal to gay men, and their percentage in the fashion ranks is especially high.
Still, it isn't just gay male fashion professionals who are fixated on Cher. This year, we saw her not once on the Met gala's red carpet, but multiple times, in a slew of homages (fashion's favourite synonym for rip-offs) to the outfit Cher wore to the first Met gala in 1974. Beyoncé's transparent Givenchy gown with globules of embroidery crusting her pubis and nipples; Jennifer Lopez's barely-there Versace number licked with smears of scarlet beading; the blanket-coverage of a barely covered Kim Kardashian in designer Peter Dundas' first creation for Roberto Cavalli. They all graduated from the Cher school of never sharing the stage, with anyone, or anything. Her own Jacobs number, although both sequined and low-cut, seemed demure in comparison to her contemporaries and her own past.
Kardashian was the only one to openly acknowledge the influence of Cher – possibly after multiple call-outs on social media – in a press release rushed out by Cavalli. Nevertheless, the red carpet has been pulling Chers, and Cher-alikes, for years: Halle Berry's transparent torso-ed Elie Saab back in 2002, anyone?
"I had actually worn that dress before," comments Cher, herself. She isn't talking about Ms Berry, nor her Met-dress doppelgängers, but the original, a Bob Mackie (who else?) back in 1974. "I had done a shoot for Vogue that was about fashion from the 1920s to the 1970s, and that was the dress he created to represent the 1970s. When we were getting ready [for the ball, Mackie] said, 'Well you've never worn that dress out, do that one.' So I did. It was easy." The most surprising part of that quote, for many, is the idea of Cher in Vogue. In fact, being on the front of a fashion magazine is nothing new for her – she was cover-star of that title five times between 1972 and 1975. Why? Because "her dream is to be in high fashion," commented Vreeland. (She said so on record, and on paper, in one of the famous memoranda she issued during her Vogue tenure, since collected into a number of books and hence slip-streamed into popular folklore.) But she followed it up with "and she looks beautiful in it".
Fashion's infatuation with Cher – born Cherilyn Sarkisian in May 1946 – isn't one-way. "She has an obsession with fashion," says Grand – and when I press her on that, she reasons, simply: "Imagine how long the fittings for those Bob Mackie costumes took!" You get her point. Plus, you don't accidentally end up in – or on – magazines like Love, nor Vogue.
Effort is one of the things that is most appealing about Cher. She's of a different age – not literally (although she did tell Love if she could change anything, "I'd like to be 44… 40 to about 44 were really the best"). Cher dresses for an event – and you get the feeling she probably dresses for everything. There is, I suspect, never an off moment. She has, she confesses, "about a hundred and something" wigs . The only image of Cher that Cher is willing to share is absolute perfection. Camp has nothing to do with nature – nothing from nature is camp. There's nothing natural about Cher. That's a compliment. Albeit, a camp one.
So Cher's an effort. But she's worth it. Because she's a potent antidote to the anodyne celebrities that people today's fashion events. Perhaps that's why others – Kardashian, Knowles – are aping her style, with varying degrees of success. They're trying to share the spotlight, to have Cher's success. "It's good for the girls who are getting paid," comments Grand warily, of the homogeny of the red carpet, Hollywood and otherwise. But: "It's not very inspiring."
"When I started out there were no people to soften your edges," Cher shares. "There were no stylists, there wasn't a make-up person or a hair person. There was just Sonny and Cher. We didn't have people like that until much later, when I had already been famous for a gazillion years." A gazillion years, a gazillion gowns, a hundred gazillion rhinestones and feathers. Cher's style was already cemented in the public consciousness by then.
That's also one of the roots of Cher's appeal: an everlasting quality. Think of someone like Kardashian, whose supposed 15 minutes of fame have frequently had time called on them. Wouldn't she, by contrast, want to evoke the aesthetic essence of the only artist to have a Number One single on a Billboard chart in each of those past six decades? I know Kardashian doesn't sing – yet. But Cher still represents a seemingly immortal, omnipotent, uni-monikered level of fame.
So Cher should be pleased: the fact that she, and those nudie Mackie dresses, are a constant inspiration mean she's kind of ageless, and certainly eternal. The American comedian Jimmy James once cracked a joke that still does the rounds, saying that all that will be left after a nuclear holocaust will be cockroaches – and Cher. But I wonder if he was thinking about fashion when he said that?
Read the full interview with Cher in 'Love 14, The Talents', autumn/winter 2015, on sale on Monday 27 July