Chaos Attraction

Cher

2014-07-03, 3:39 p.m.

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I'm taking a long "vacation" weekend because awhile back, my mom got me and her friend Cher tickets for the "Dressed To Kill" "farewell" tour.* Which was on a weekday in San Jose, so I took one day off to get down here and the next day to sleep it off.

* To paraphrase someone that I told about going to this, "How many farewell tours has she had now?" "They're all farewell tours," I said. Okay, so I looked it up and her last official tour before this one was "the farewell tour," though she did do a Vegas stint for a few years in the middle.

Anyway, I'm surprised that any of San Jose was functioning by the time the giant hordes of people showed up. Oh my god, the traffic. Mom had a favorite parking garage a few blocks away that was half the usual price, so we followed the tons of people over there. On the way over, we saw some guy playing the trumpet--with a bunny rabbit sitting under his chair.

Overall concert observations:
* Number of Cher lookalikes seen: 2, one of whom was in a "Turn Back Time" video-ish outfit and taking photos with people.
* I wore a peacock-ish outfit, but after seeing the folks at this show, I wished I'd worn more sequins and glitter. My favorite was the "M" jacket seen here.
* Mom and her friend were genuinely all, "Why are there so many gay people here?" I restrained myself from screaming, "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN IN LIFE TO NOT KNOW THIS?!"
* The dude in front of us paid $500+ for his two tickets. We did not pay $250+ for ours so beats me what happened there.
* The guy behind me saw me knitting and demanded that I make him a cable knit sweater during the concert. I found this amusing. Eventually the guy in front was all, "She paid $500 for that seat, let her enjoy the concert!"

I didn't know who the opening act was--it wasn't printed on the tickets, I hadn't looked it up beforehand and the people I was with had no idea--but it turned out to be Cyndi Fucking Lauper. Boo-yaaaaah. Boy, was she great on the random wacky banter. I was writing down lines as best I could:

* She started performing at 7:40 and apologized for being late, though supposedly she was born right on time.
* She and Cher met through their moms, and their moms met while going on the same talk shows.
* After this tour, she's going on tour with Kinky Boots. She talked about how Harvey Fierstein calls her Christina...and then started calling himself Mommy Dearest.
* Referring to shoes: "Some are meant to be worn lying down."
* There was a reference to a "European punishment tour."
* She mentioned that there were varying reactions by the TSA for her bringing a gorilla suit on tour. Sometimes they cared and sometimes they were more concerned about her hot plate.
* She dedicated one song to Cher, saying "I know you're doing your eyeliner or something."
* During one of the times she was in the audience, she took a guy's phone and told him to be here now and he'd have to look at his phone tomorrow to see what happened--followed by her shutting it off.
* Regarding the current political fun for women and gays this week: "Whenever they do something fucked up, they always look at us." (Then she sang "True Colors.")
* "I say goddess sometimes just to piss people off."

She got a standing ovation by the end. She also brings her own disco ball.


As for Cher herself, I apparently don't need to run down the entire concert for you because it's already been done on Wikipedia. I did take a ton of photos, which you can see all of here. Taking photos during a concert with your zoom is uh, difficult...I seriously drained two sets of batteries taking pictures--and frantically deleting old pictures off my camera to have room for more pictures. But the sets were AMAZING. She emerges on a pillar, she swings through the air, she emerges from a Trojan horse, there's dancing and acrobatics and animated visuals behind her...it was soooooooooooo beautiful. Seriously, go look at the pics for awhile (note: they start with Cyndi), mmkay? Worth it.

She had, by my photo calculations, ten different costume changes, wigs included. She said at one point that she can still fit into the outfit from the "Turn Back Time" video, though she wore a similar, less-Borat-ish one for the actual song performance.

Cyndi started performing at 7:40 and finished within an hour, but it took about 50 minutes (till 9:30) for Cher to go on. Normally I get grumbly about this at concerts once it's clear that everything is set up on stage, and wonder what kind of blow the performers are doing backstage or something. But at a Cher concert, well.... you figure they're busy. Five minutes before she came out, she yelled from behind the curtain that she'd be out as soon as she finished gluing on her last feather.

Now here's the part where I tried to write down her quotes:
* Regarding her entrance for this show, which was on a pillar: "Dental floss keeping me from falling to my fucking death. At age 68. What's your granny doing tonight?"
* She said the last tour was 11 years ago and she was really old then. What can she do to outdo herself, given that she's been on an elephant, flown through the air, etc.?
* She yelled out to the skybox seats exactly what I was thinking: "Why do you sit in skybox seats? You can't see shit! And the party's down here!"
* She claims that no fooling, THIS is her farewell tour, because next time she'll be dead, etc., etc.... but at one point she turned around and had crossed fingers behind her back. So you never know....
* "I can still get back into my Turn Back Time costume. Take that, Katy Perry."
* She's gonna do what she always does, come out in ridiculous costumes and be fabulous.
* Cher's drink of choice on stage is Dr. Pepper, which is the longest relationship she's ever had with a guy. But all she's ever gotten from him was a few six-packs. At one point she mentioned dogging on Dr. Pepper during a show that turned out to have executives from the company at it. They gave her a very small "sad-ass" cooler. Which she displayed and yes, it is small and sad. "They've got a zillion dollars and this is the gift they give an icon." Or a diva. "I used to be a diva, but I graduated."
* She made a little fun of herself for saying, "Follow this, you bitches" on the last tour.
* She referred to "You Haven't Seen The Last Of Me" as "the beast" song that sometimes she does well and sometimes she sucks. Let's see what happens....She did not suck.
* She does a duet with recorded Sonny Bono. Which reminded me once again of my perennial thought, "What did she ever see in HIM?"
* She referred to Cyndi as "a piece of work" and said she'd be missed (presumably once Cyndi goes to do Kinky Boots).

The final number of the show featured her being floated around through the entire arena, over everyone, in slow motion. It was beautiful.

Cher does not do an encore. I guess by then everyone's tired and had enough.

After the show, Mom bought us tour T-shirts for $10 from one of the guys hawking them. No joke, we bought shirts out of a guy's pants. He had some very full cargo pants pockets and I'm pretty sure I saw some in his waistband. We're gonna wash 'em first before wearing them.

This was the best concert I have ever been to. If I came out of it a little deaf and a little hoarse, it was worth it. Folks, if you can ever come up with the means to go to a Cher concert, DO IT. Another guy I talked to said he'd been to three and this was the best ever. It was amazing. The sets, the costumes, the acrobats (Mom referred to it as Cirque de Soleil at one point), and Cher's voice is freaking perfect. The amount of work they put into it is worth the money.


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