Cher Closes Out the Thanksgiving Day Parade With a Festive Performance
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Cher brought down the house when she gave the final performance of the 2023 Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade.

The pop icon, 77, sang “DJ Play a Christmas Song” during the Thursday, November 23, telecast on NBC. She appeared toward the end of the event before Santa arrived in his sleigh to usher in the beginning of the Christmas season, dressed in a white button-down and black pants. Cher stood on a round platform and was surrounded by dozens of dancers wearing all silver.

Cher landed the gig after announcing in September that she would be dropping her first holiday album titled Christmas the following month. “It’s not your mother’s Christmas album,” she teased on Good Morning Britain at the time.

Despite her usual hesitancy to collaborate with other artists on her projects, Cher invited Stevie Wonder, Michael Bublé, Cyndi Lauper, Tyga and Darlene Love to be a part of the album. “I’ve never had duets. I’ve never had people on any of my records. This was a last-minute thing,” she noted. “But they’re special: all of them.”

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For Cher, the holiday record was new territory that she never thought she would explore. “I had no intention of doing a Christmas album,” she told Billboard in October. “But [Warner Records] said, ‘Why don’t you do a Christmas album, Cher?’ and I said, ‘If I can do my version, I’ll do it,’ and they were very pleasant.”

One of Cher’s stipulations was to exclude some favorite Christmas tunes that have been covered again and again. “Everybody’s gotten ‘Santa Claus Is Coming to Town’ and ‘Jingle Bells’ and all that,” she explained. “I just said to them, ‘There will be Christmas songs and they’ll be appropriate, but I want to do what I feel.’”

While Cher confessed that she is often critical of her own work, even she was thrilled with the way the project — which is her first studio album with original material in 10 years — turned out. “They’re not ‘Christmas Christmas’ songs, OK, they’re just great songs,” she said. “And I never say that because I almost never like what I do. But, I mean, people love it and I’m happy. I’m so particular, but I love the songs and everyone who hears them loves them.”

In addition to her Christmas record, Cher released a deluxe edition of her 1998 album, Believe, on November 3 to celebrate its 25th anniversary. The new version includes the same songs plus 13 remastered remixes. The original album sold more than 11 million copies worldwide, with the title track becoming a timeless hit.