Today’s song is one of my all-time favorites. I remember hearing “If I Could Turn Back Time” back when I was an angsty pre-teen, and would wish that I, too, could turn back the clock when I had an argument not only with my boyfriend, but also my mother, sister, or best friend. The song was meaningful, for sure; but her voice—man, that voice! It was one of the strongest female sounds I’d ever heard. Having been a pretty big Madonna fan, I was already developing an ear for powerful female vocals, and was sort of collecting them—from Joni Mitchell to Carly Simon, Janis Joplin to Reba McEntire. Cher, however, proved to be one of the top people on my list.
When the song starts, you can almost envision her surrounded by something ethereal; the music itself almost sounds like stardust, as corny as that sounds.
And though the lyrics don’t always match up (“My world was shattered, I was torn apart/ Like someone took a knife and drove it deep in my heart”) they were perfect for the twelve-year-old I was. Who am I kidding? I still play this song regularly today. And when that chorus starts in—with the harder drum beat and Cher’s louder vocals, sometimes ending in a crescendo—you can’t help but dance. It’s one of those songs that you just feel in your chest.
Then I remember the USO video she did—who could ever forget that outrageous outfit with those fishnets and not much else? Today we wouldn’t blink seeing such things, as we’ve seen even less worn by stars from Brittany Spears to Rose McGowan. But when Cher was outrageous, it didn’t feel like “Look at me!” It felt more like, “This is in your face, who I am. Take it or leave it!” Cher was, and continues to be, badass.
To hear the amazing song and see its trademark video, be sure to click here.