In the beginning
Cher first hit it big in '65 as half of the folk rock couple Sonny & Cher, whose single "I Got You Babe" was a #1 hit. Like, a huge big time massive international #1 hit. In 1966, Cher launched a concurrent solo career with the release of her million-selling solo debut, "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)." By 1967, Time magazine had dubbed Sonny and Cher rock's "It" couple (remember, at the time, rock was culture's "It" genre so we think they were loosely the Bey and Jay-Z of their day). By the end of 1967, they had sold 40 million records.
Pivoting to video
Here is where our Bey and Jay metaphor comes to a screeching halt because no one can imagine them starring in their own comedy variety show, unlike Sonny and Cher, who starred in "The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour" starting in 1971. It ran until 1979 with a weird hiatus and renaming happening during the couple's divorce but more on that later. For now, know that the TV show was a showcase for Cher's formidable personal style; she became known for her trendsetting ensembles.
Through the early '70s, "The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour" was a hit show and Cher enjoyed chart success with solo hits like "Gypsies, Tramps & Thieves", "Half-Breed", and "Dark Lady".
Back to that split
Sonny and Cher divorced in 1975 — their show was cancelled in May 1974 -- but the divorced pair then reunited professionally to reboot their show in 1976 as 'The Sonny & Cher Show.' It ran until 1979, when Cher released her hit disco album, 'Take Me Home,' featuring THIS bananas album cover, which we so hope demonstrates how Cher lounges at home. In 1980, Cher began a two-year concert residency in Las Vegas. So basically, 38 years ago Cher was already a legend. And she didn't stop legending there.
Cher made her Broadway debut in Ed Graczyk's 1976 play 'Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean,' about members of a Texas-based James Dean fan club who reunite 20 years after the famous actor's death. In 1982, Cher starred in the play's popular indie drama film adaptation, pictured.
Cher earned loads of critics' praise and popular acclaim for her roles in the movies 'Silkwood' (in 1983), 'Mask' (1985), and 'Moonstruck' (1987), for which she won the Best Actress Oscar. In the late '80s, she released a trio of hit rock albums: 'Cher' (in 1987), 'Heart of Stone' (1989), and 'Love Hurts' (1991).
Almost 20 years after her Vegas residency and 30 years into a career of unbelievable achievements, Cher's biggest hit was still ahead of her: "Believe" was the first track to use autotune, in fact autotune was initially called the 'Cher effect.' This single from her 22nd album became one of the bestselling songs of all time, with sales of over 11 million copies.
What happens in Vegas goes back to Vegas
After a mega-successful three-year farewell tour that wrapped up in 2005, Cher began a three-year residency at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas in 2008.
Back to the studio
In 2013, Cher released her first album in 12 years and it was also her most successful album on the charts, ever. 'Closer to the Truth' debuted in the #3 slot.
Here We Go Again
Get excited because Cher is headed back to the silver screen! She'll star in the romantic musical comedy, 'Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again.' And yes it IS the sequel to 2008's 'Mamma Mia!' so, again, as initially advised, get excited!