Cher is, without doubt, a major gay icon but why?
With her popularity on the rise again after the campest appearance on Mamma Mia, Here We Go Again, (I mean could you find a gayer show) we ask why the gays just love Cher.
One commenter simply wrote, “In her day she broke the mold. She’s a strong woman”, which may answer why she’s popular – everyone loves a winner right? But what makes a diva?
Drag Queen Friendly
Darrin Huss, a singer and lyricist, wrote, “I find it fascinating that there seems to be some kind of DNA in Gay Men for Divas” and wrote about how easy Cher is to imitate for drag queens across the globe, he added, “from a drag queen’s point of view Cher is the ultimate clothes horse with many recognizable personality traits that can be imitated”.
Her voice, which is a lower alto also makes it relatively easy for men, who have naturally lower singing voices, to sing along with her tracks.
LGBT folk are always looking for powerful, hopeful, outsider or underdog role models and Cher fits all of those categories Darrin continues, “I assume it still has to do with the initial idea that coming out, and knowing you are different from the majority makes you seek powerful role models, and women who have been considered outsiders that fought their way into the hearts of the mainstream are powerful role models.
“They can dress up, perform, and create their own unique universe when they are successful enough. It’s harder for gay men to find role models in their own gender, who rarely are so daring, and over the top.”
Rolling Stone‘s Jancee Dunn wrote, “Cher is the coolest woman who ever stood in shoes. Why? Because her motto is, ‘I don’t give a shit what you think, I’m going to wear this multicoloured wig.’ There are folks all over America who would, in their heart of hearts, love to date people half their age, get multiple tattoos and wear feathered headdresses.
Another of Cher’s traits is that she seems approachable. Just following her on Twitter gives an insight to a woman who doesn’t think she is better than anyone else, and she’s funny as hell. She’s one of us – despite being more glamorous than any of us could hope for.
Perhaps it’s also the way she treats people as equals, Tim Janes, wrote, “Maybe because she doesn’t make broad statements about them that reinforce ignorant stereotypes”.
Cher has refused to look old, despite being in her 70s – for many gay men, or at least men who are careful or mindful with their appearance, Cher is the perfect role model.
Staying the course
Cher has been a constant figure in the industry for over 50 years. Reinventing herself and not being afraid to move with the times. She ultimately gives her audience what they want, regardless of what general society expected of her. Gay people, and perhaps gay men, in particular, will appreciate that and is something to aspire to- being yourself regardless of what the world expects from you.
Support for the LGBT community
Let’s not forget that in 2014 Cher also turned down the opportunity to perform at the Russian Winter Olympics in Sochi due to the Country’s controversial anti-gay law.
Use the comments below to let us know why you think Cher is a gay icon.