Singer, actress and icon Cher has released her first new album in 12 years, and like a fine wine (albeit tinged with silicone), the woman just seems to get better with age.
How did it feel getting back in the studio?
It's scary, but I'm always like a chicken when I go to the studio because... I don't know why. I don't think it's my best place but sometimes it is. Like in the Believe album, I felt great and was confident and I had such a good time. And on this one too, I had a great time. I worked with some people I'd never worked with before... I just got great songs.
Talk about the first track Woman's World – a lyrically empowering track.
Anthemic. I don't think we thought it was going to be this... it really did sing itself. It didn't even take an hour. It was about a four, five-take thing... Turn Back Time was like that. I walked in the studio and I actually didn't want to do it. Diane Warren just said "I'll pay for it." And she's so cheap, I thought, "Boy, if she believes in it that much, I'm doing it". So, I just walked in and I did it in two seconds and she said, "See? I told you so."
What are your thoughts on the recent Supreme Court decision [to strike down the Defence of Marriage Act]?
I actually am surprised that they ever had to turn over something that was this stupid. I'm always shocked by people who want to keep people from being who they are, and want to decide what's right, and want to decide who can do what and who can't do what. So, of course, I was overjoyed, but I just don't understand why they had to turn over something so crazy: an individual human right that should be a right of people. We're supposed to have equality and yet it's only for some people.
You performed on The Voice USA and X Factor in the UK. What's it like to get back on stage? Do you just love that?
No. The Voice was so scary, I cannot tell you. Because I haven't made a record in 11 years, and, so, to go straight out on The Voice was really scary, because in three minutes, you're going to be the greatest invention of yourself, re-invention of yourself, or you should get to the home immediately.
But how did it go, at the end of the day?
I think it was good. I didn't watch it, but I think people seem to like it. I will just tell you what my mother said. She said, "Honey, you owned the stage. You just walked out really cool and it was great!"
Is there a musical coming out based on your life on Broadway?
They had written one and they're holding it right now. They have this idea – which I think is really cool – they're going to have three Chers: the young one, the middle one and the one now. They talk to each other and they'll sing together and it will just show how I evolve. They're still writing it.
You've done an album in every sort of musical format. What does Cher listen to?
I love Adele. I love P!nk – that's kind of a given. I like the new Daft Punk. I also listen to Merle [Haggard], and Willy [Nelson] and Taylor Swift, and Tony Bennett... I miss Amy Winehouse. I also love musicals – old musicals from the Forties. I've done a lot of different kinds of music because there's a song in every genre that I like.
You've definitely inspired many powerful female performers throughout your career. Do you ever look at them and think, "Hey, imitation is a greatest form of flattery?"
I believe we are all gathering things from the universe. You might not think that you've done it; I did it. I must have gathered things from Marlene Dietrich, like her gold outfit. It was harder for me because, I couldn't find myself anywhere in what was going on when I was young growing up. I wasn't Doris Day, I was so different.
But I think now, some of us have gone before, have allowed the girls now to be totally free and everything is open. I used to get in trouble for a lot of things that I did. I was the first woman to be able to show her navel on television.
It's nothing, but every time you break a barrier, you allow someone else to go through it.