Brushes with Cher
Haven't met many stars face-to-face over the years, but of the few I have it's probably Cher who was among the most interesting.
I bring her up again because she debuted--or "dropped", as they say now--a new single on NBC's "The Voice" Tuesday night. There's much buzz afterward about the song itself, "It's A Woman's World" AND about how Cher looked. The second part is a cottage industry.
The Cher I remember was at the height of her powers when we met up with her at Rockefeller Center in New York where Bob Reitman and I were doing live WKTI morning shows for a week. Producer Gino was able to snag her and she gave us quality time--feisty, funny and dying to know what the daily horoscopes said (walking into the studio, it was the first thing she checked out in the day's papers). Gino and I would have another Cher moment in New York, one that was a bit historic and certainly melancholy: we were in the audience the night she sang "I Got You Babe" with ex-husband Sonny on David Letterman's old NBC late night show.
All that's fine, but here's my fondest Cher memory. And, if you're a guy and you're old enough to remember, it may be yours, too.
1973. "The Sonny And Cher Comedy Hour". I don't know what the horse was on in order to remain that docile on live TV that evening, but Cher being on said pony was all the buzz the next day or so.
The song "Half Breed" sold more than a million copies and spent two weeks atop the charts, making it her second #1 hit. Dazzling numbers indeed, but it's the video that left a mark that night, one that lingers today.
She's 67 years old now, a certified diva and can still draw a crowd. She's "A-list" enough to get an invite to "The Voice", one of NBC's few prime time hits, big enough to be granted a huge stage upon which she can "drop" a new song in front of millions and strong enough to handle the recoil from yet another appearance that has people buzzing.
Buzz, after all, is a lot of what Cher's always been about. In 1973, back in the late 80's, and even now.