Revisiting Cher’s Song For The Lonely

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If I told you that this would be the only Cher post, I would be lying to you, in fact, I am mentally preparing my article for Cher’s haunting rendition of Miley Cyrus‘ “I Hope You Find It” (more on that on a future date). On this day in 2002, Cher released “Song For The Lonely” as the lead single from her twenty-fourth (!!) album.

The Song

I’ve seen a strong man cry
I know the reason why we all forgive, we all forget
And just keep believing

A ‘Believe’ reference, why yes, I’ll take it thank-you!

“Song For The Lonely” was released as the lead single from the album Living Proof in the United States. (Fun Fact – The song was titled “(This Is) A Song For The Lonely” on the physical album!) Cher said following the September 11th attacks on the United States she viewed the song differently than when it was recorded in the summer of 2001, In fact, the liner of the notes includes a message “Dedicated to the courageous people of New York especially the firefighters, the police, Mayor Giuliani, Governor Pataki and my friend Liz” (Oh if only we knew then what we knew now).

The song was written by Mark Taylor, Paul Barry, and Steve Torch (Barry and Torch were responsible for writing ‘Believe’ for those wondering). The album version of the track runs for 4:01 and the radio edit at 3:21.

The Charts

Did ‘Song for The Lonely’ sell as well as ‘Believe’? Well, the answer is no, in fact, it peaked at a miserable #89 on the Billboard Hot 100, how disrespectful. The song did however peak at #1 on the US Dance Club Songs and US Dance/Electronic Singles Sales, but thankfully, Cher isn’t a numbers girl.

Its hard to say why Cher decided to affiliate the song with the 9/11 terror attacks, especially so soon after it occurred, we were still in a period of mourning, and while I’m sure Cher meant well, I don’t think the timing was right, likely resulting in the lackluster chart position.

While the song did well on the dance charts, it failed to chart internationally, where it was released as the second single from her album. (The Music’s No Good Without You was released as the lead in the United Kingdom in November of 2001).

The Future

Following the release of ‘Living Proof’ Cher has retired three times (if my count is correct). Since this time she has released two additional studio albums with 2013’s “Closer To The Truth” and 2018’s “Dancing Queen” (which at the time of release was Cher’s highest debut sales week for an album in the United States). Earlier this month Cher announced she will be heading to England to record *TWO* new albums and hopefully end the year with a new tour!

The Conclusion

The “Living Proof” era certainly did not live up to the ‘Believe’ era by any means. The album does include some hidden gems such as the lead single ‘Song For The Lonely’ and ‘Different Kind of Love Song‘ (which was released as the third US single, as a double A-Side with, ‘The Music’s No Good Without You’). I’m unsure if Cher ever plans to actually retire, but I certainly hope that we haven’t seen the last of her (reference).

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