Top 10 Cher Songs

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Cher first hit the pop singles chart in 1965. She was successful in the 1960s both as a solo artist and one half of the duo Sonny and Cher with her former husband Sonny Bono. In the 1970s she emerged as one of the top female pop solo artists. Late in the decade, her commercial fortunes faded, but she came back multiple times to earn more pop hits.

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"The Way Of Love" (1972)

Cher The Way Of Love
Courtesy MCA

"The Way Of Love" was first written in French as "J'ai le mal de toi." The singer Frederica performed the song in 1960 in an effort to represent France at the Eurovision Song Contest. However, she lost in the national elimination contest. The song was first recorded in English as "The Way Of Love" in 1965 by British singer Kathy Kirby. The new lyrics were provided by Al Stillman. It failed to become a hit in the UK, but it reached #88 on the pop chart in the US.

Cher recorded the dramatic ballad with producer Snuff Garrett for the Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves album. It became the second top 10 pop hit from the album and peaked at #2 on the adult contemporary chart. The specific subject matter of "The Way Of Love" remains in dispute. Some see it as the story of a lesbian breakup or a goodbye to a gay man that the woman loves. Still, others see it as a female victim of a breakup giving advice to another woman.

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"Take Me Home" (1979)

Cher Take Me Home
Courtesy Casablanca

For the most part, Cher's first foray into disco was not highly successful. However, she did create one classic disco hit. "Take Me Home" was co-written and produced by Bob Esty and released on legendary disco label Casablanca. It became Cher's first top 10 pop hit in five years and peaked at #2 on the disco chart. However, her attempts at follow up disco hits with "Wasn't It Good" and "Hell on Wheels" failed to reach the pop top 40. Later in her career, beginning with the success of "Believe," Cher topped the dance club chart eight times.

Cher initially was reluctant to record a disco record, because she did not see it as "serious" music. However, Casablanca Records head Neil Bogart convinced her to try working with Bob Esty. "Take Me Home" reached the top 40 across both the adult contemporary and R&B charts.

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"Dark Lady" (1974)

Cher Dark Lady
Courtesy MCA

Cher's hit "Dark Lady" is a murder ballad that tells the story of an illicit relationship between the protagonist's husband and a fortune teller. They are both killed in the end. The song was written by Johnny Durrill of the instrumental guitar band the Ventures. He claims that producer Snuff Garrett encouraged him to make sure both of the song's main characters die in the end.

"Dark Lady" became Cher's third #1 pop hit in the US and her last until "Believe" in 1998. The song reached #3 on the adult contemporary chart. Two music videos exist for "Dark Lady." One is Cher's live performance from The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour and the other is a cartoon interpretation of the story in the song.

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"Just Like Jesse James" (1990)

This is one of a long line of songs recorded by Cher that reference the American West in different ways. This time it is outlaw Jesse James used as a simile for a rough relationship.

The song was co-written by pop hitmakers Desmond Child and Diane Warren. The song was a #8 pop hit and #9 adult contemporary hit for Cher. It was one of 3 top 10 pop hits from Cher's top 10 charting album Heart of Stone. Cher has told audiences in her concert performances that she doesn't particularly like the song "Just Like Jesse James" in part because it's too similar to country music, but she continues to perform it because it is a fan favorite.

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"Half-Breed" (1973)

Cher Half-Breed
Courtesy MCA

Cher's "Half-Breed" followed in the footsteps of "Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves" by telling the story of a woman disenfranchised due to her ethnic background. However, the song generated controversy and questions about authenticity. The back cover of the Half-Breed album features Cher in a Bob Mackie created glamour Indian costume. The song reached #1 on the pop singles chart, #3 adult contemporary, and it was certified gold for sales. Cher refused to perform the song live for nearly 25 years.

Despite Cher's claim that it is all false, many have believed that she is at least part Cherokee in ancestry since the release of the song "Half-Breed." However, there is no evidence in genealogical work that Cher has any known Cherokee ancestors. 

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"I Found Someone" (1987)

Cher I Found Someone
Courtesy Geffen

Co-written by Michael Bolton, "I Found Someone" was first recorded by Laura Branigan in 1986. It was only a minor hit for her peaking at #90 on the Billboard Hot 100. However, the next year Cher re-recorded it, with production from Michael Bolton, and took the song all the way to the top 10. "I Found Someone" was Cher's first top 10 hit in eight years. It stormed the charts while she was at the peak of her movie career. "I Found Someone" was the first hit from Cher's self-titled comeback album. She retreated from her music career after the 1982 album I Paralyze failed to chart. The album Cher also included the hit "We All Sleep Alone" and laid the groundwork for the massive success of Heart of Stone a year later.

The accompanying music video for "I Found Someone" features Cher's then boyfriend Rob Camilletti. They were the subject of many tabloid stories due to the fact he was seventeen years younger than Cher.

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"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" (1966)

Cher Bang Bang
Courtesy Liberty

"Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" is the song that made Cher a major solo pop star. The song was Cher's first solo top 10 hit and her first million seller. It was written by her former husband and partner in Sonny and Cher, Sonny Bono.

The drama inherent in the story of the song set a tone for many of Cher's biggest pop hits through the rest of the 1960s and into the 1970s. The record peaked at #2 on the US pop singles chart. Cher re-recorded "Bang Bang (My Baby Shot Me Down)" for her self-titled 1987 album. Nancy Sinatra recorded a memorable cover of the song, and David Guetta reworked it in his 2014 #1 dance hit "Shot Me Down" with vocals from Skylar Grey.

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"Gypsys, Tramps, and Thieves" (1971)

Cher Gypsys Tramps and Thieves
Courtesy MCA

It had been four years since Cher had reached the pop top 10 when the single "Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves" was released. The story song became her very first #1 pop hit single and the first of many major comebacks for Cher. It was released just a month after Sonny and Cher launched their successful TV show The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour.

The song was produced by Snuff Garrett, a frequent collaborator in the early 1970s. He is also known for producing Vicki Lawrence's #1 hit "The Night the Lights Went Out In Georgia." The instrumental backing was provided by members of the legendary group of session musicians known as The Wrecking Crew. "Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves" climbed to #6 on the adult contemporary chart and received a gold certification for sales.

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"If I Could Turn Back Time" (1989)

Cher If I Could Turn Back Time
Courtesy Geffen

Written by Diane Warren and released in 1989, "If I Could Turn Back Time" peaked at #3 on the pop singles chart becoming Cher's biggest pop hit in 15 years. The music video filmed on the battleship USS Missouri is one of Cher's most notable. Due to her revealing outfit, MTV refused to play the clip before 9 p.m. Her son, twelve-year-old Elijah Blue Allman, appears in the music video as a band member playing guitar. Cher initially disliked "If I Could Turn Back Time" and songwriter Diane Warren says she pleaded with the singer to perform it. "If I Could Turn Back Time" went to #1 on the adult contemporary chart, Cher's first solo single to do so.

"If I Could Turn Back Time" was the second single released from the Heart Of Stone album. It followed the top 10 success of "After All," a duet with Chicago's Peter Cetera. The album peaked at #10 making it the first top 10 hit album of Cher's career. It has sold more than three million copies.

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"Believe" (1998)

Cher Believe
Courtesy Warner Bros.

Following a commercial resurgence in the late 1980s, Cher's chart success faded throughout the 1990s. However, she connected with British producer Mark Taylor for this lead single from her 23rd studio album of the same name. "Believe" is the first major pop hit to make use of Auto-tune sound effects. The result was the biggest worldwide pop hit of Cher's career. The song ultimately sold 11 million copies worldwide and won a Grammy Award for Best Dance Recording. It was also nominated for Record of the Year.

When "Believe" hit #1 on the pop chart in the US, Cher, at age 52, became the oldest solo woman to achieve the feat. She also became the solo artist with the longest gap between #1 hits, 25 years between "Dark Lady" and "Believe." As Cher's first #1 dance hit, "Believe" kicked off a phenomenal streak of major dance hit singles. By 2013, Cher had eight #1 dance singles to her credit.

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