Cher released "Believe" on Oct. 19, 1998. At the time she was 52. Amazingly, "Believe" became Cher's signature song. Nominated for a Grammy Award for Record of the Year, "Believe" has sold more than 11 million copies worldwide and charted in 20 countries. It was the bestselling single of both 1998 and 1999. It reached the top of the Billboard Hot 100 on March 13 making Cher the oldest female singer to lodge a number one single. "Believed" helped Cher re-invent herself and freshen her act for a younger audience.
The song also popularized a voice effect called "AutoTune." Producer Mark Taylor used "Believe" to test out his new toy, the Antares AutoTune. He was nervous to play the track to Cher because her voice was so "affected." His anxiety was misplaced because Cher loved it. When the record company asked for the AutoTune to be removed Cher said "over my dead body." And that's why we love Cher.
Cherilyn Sarkisian, better known as Cher, is a singer, actress, director, pitchwoman, author, gay icon, and mother. To put it succinctly, Cher is a living legend. She got her start in the 1960s as part of the folk-rock duo, Sonny & Cher. Their big hit was "I Got You Babe" and they were marred from 1964 to 1975. They had one daughter, Chastity, who later became their son, Chaz. In the 1960s, Sonny & Cher primarily sold records. In the 1970s, they hosted their own television variety show. In 1975, Cher married southern rocker Duane Allman. Their tumultuous marriage ended four years later. It produced one very bad album under the name "Allman and Woman" and one son, Elijah.
In the 1980s, Cher decided to focus on her acting career. In 1982, Cher starred in the Broadway and film versions of Come Back to the Five and Dime, Jimmy Dean, Jimmy Dean. The following year, she earned an Academy Award nomination (and won a Golden Globe) for her role in the controversial film Silkwood. Then in 1988, she won the Best Actress Oscar for her performance in Moonstruck. The next year Cher returned to the charts with what would become one of her most beloved songs, "If I Could Turn Back Time." The video to that song had Cher wearing a very revealing outfit while singing on the deck of the USS Missouri.
After dabbling in other genres of music, making more movies, and becoming an infomercial diva, Cher launched her epic "Living Proof: The Farewell Tour" in 2002. The tour stretched into 2005 and saw Cher performing 326 times in 20 countries. It's still one of the highest grossing concert tours of all-time. Despite the "farewell" part, Cher returned to performing in 2008 for a residency show in Las Vegas. She performed 192 times over three years at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace. Cher was reportedly paid $60 million a year.
In 2013, Cher launched yet another comeback with her album Closer to the Truth. It debuted at number three making it the highest charting solo album of her career as well as her first new release in nearly a dozen years. In early 2014, she kicked off her "Dressed To Kill Tour." The trek began March 22 in Phoenix, Arizona and ended July 11 in San Diego, California. In the middle of her tour, between Cher concerts in Miami and Las Vegas, the "Goddess of Pop" turned 68.