Cher is 73. Let that sink in for a moment. Not only does she look half her age, but the pop legend still sounds the same as she did when she first appeared on stage almost 30 years ago as part of the duo, Sonny and Cher. Last night at the Chase Center in San Francisco, the goddess of pop took us all on a musical journey through time that touched on most of her accomplishments in both music and film, leaving us feeling blessed to have partaken in the experience by the close of the show.
After an incredible performance by the legendary Nile Rodgers alongside Chic (Oh how I wish I could have lived during those Studio 54 days) Cher’s set began with a short photo and video montage of her decades-spanning career. The darling brunette with the unique voice and close to 20 films under her belt then proceeded to drop down from the sky like the divine creature that she is, sporting a bright blue neon hairdo and purple glittery gown.
The set opened with “Woman’s World,” amidst a theatrical background fit for Cleopatra. Complete with muscular dancers dressed as Trojans and sexy Egyptian deities. It bled into “Strong Enough,” which reminded us all why she still carries the crown of queen of pop.
Different this time around was Cher’s attention to disco. She released an album of ABBA covers last year, which landed her a number one album, so the decision only made sense. Songs like “Waterloo,” “SOS,” and “Fernando” sounded incredible and a natural fit for her vibrato-tinged voice.
Aside from the nod to disco, Cher included some of her newer original material, as well as a small taste of Sonny & Cher songs including the highlight of the evening for me, “I Got You, Babe.” Against a virtual backdrop of Sonny projected on a giant LED screen, the lovebirds exchanged verses the same way I imagine they might have back in the day. It was a touching moment and one that surely squeezed a teardrop or two out of some devoted fans.
The show closed with “Believe” and “If I Could Turn Back Time.” Sporting the classic black seethrough spandex outfit she wore in that famous scene aboard the battleship USS Missouri, she looked phenomenal. In the end, we’ll never know how she’s become ageless, but one thing’s for certain when you’re Cher, there really is no need to turn back time.
Photos by Louis Raphael