|Single by Cher|
|from the album Half-Breed|
|Released||July 23, 1973|
|Writer(s)||Al Capps; Mary Dean|
|Cher singles chronology|
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Song information and story
It was the first international release from Cher's album Half-Breed. It was meant to be sold to the American market. It tells the story of a young woman who is half white and half Cherokee and describes the troubles faced by the main character. The song offers a scenario in which whites often called her "Indian squaw" and Native Americans never accepted her as one of their own, telling her that she was "white by law".
In 1973, "Half-Breed" topped the United States Billboard Hot 100 for two weeks, becoming Cher's second #1 solo hit and second Gold single with the sales of over 1 000 000 copies. It was a #1 hit in Canada, a Top 10 in Sweden, and a Top 20 in Norway.
Critical reception and composition
Peter Fawthrop wrote that this song has a jingling rhythm and that it is one of the more lighthearted songs on the album. Rolling Stone recommended it and described Cher's vocals as frantic and the production as supremely commercial.
Cher performed the song on the following concert tours:
- Do You Believe? Tour (performed as part of the Hits Medley)
- The Farewell Tour (2002–2005) (performed as part of the Hits Medley)
- Cher at the Colosseum
- Dressed to Kill Tour (2014)
The video for "Half-Breed" is a recorded performance of the song on The Sonny & Cher Comedy Hour in 1973. Cher is on a horse while singing in front of a white screen. Props symbolizing Native America were used—wood carvings, fire, and costumes.
In 2002, a special remix medley was created by Dan-O-Rama for a video montage that was used in Cher's Living Proof: The Farewell Tour. The medley contains the videos of "All I Really Want to Do", "Gypsys, Tramps & Thieves", "Half-Breed", and "Dark Lady".
|Australian Singles Chart||4|
|Canadian Singles Chart||1|
|German Singles Chart||29|
|New Zealand Singles Chart||1|
|Norwegian Singles Chart||12|
|Swedish Singles Chart||6|
|U.S. Billboard Hot 100||1|
|U.S. Billboard Hot Adult Contemporary Tracks||3|
|United States (RIAA)||Gold||1,000,000^|
^shipments figures based on certification alone
- The song appeared in the 2005 film Lords of Dogtown.
- Swedish singers Björn Skifs & Blåblus made one of the first covers in 1973. It was featured on their album Pinewood Rally.
- German singer Joy Fleming recorded a German-language version "Halbblut" as a single in 1973. It peaked in the West German charts at no. 38 in February 1974.
- Orchestra leader Ray Conniff recorded it with his singers in November 1973. It remained unissued until 2009 when it appeared on Ray Conniff: The Singles Collection, Volume 3.
- In 1990 it was covered by Shania Twain but it was not released until 2001 on her album The Complete Limelight Sessions.
- It was covered by alternative rock band House of Large Sizes.
- Electronica artist Peaches covered it for youth radio station Triple J's "Like a Version" segment.
- RuPaul covered "Half-Breed" on The RuPaul Show.
- Shania Clemmons, sang this song during a talent show on The New Normal (TV series) 2012
- "Item Display – RPM – Library and Archives Canada". Collectionscanada.gc.ca. Retrieved 2012-01-06.
- Review by P. Fawthrop of Allmusic Retrieved 14 October 2013
- Review by Paul Gambaccini of Rolling Stone Retrieved October 14 2013
- "American single certifications – Cher – Dark Lady". Recording Industry Association of America. If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
"We're an American Band" by Grand Funk
|US Billboard Hot 100 number one single
October 6, 1973 (two weeks)
"Angie" by The Rolling Stones
"Delta Dawn" by Helen Reddy
|Canadian RPM 100 number-one single
October 6, 1973 (one week)
"Angie" by The Rolling Stones