Take Me Home (Cher song)

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"Take Me Home"
A woman dressed in a Viking warrior resemblant outfit, a winged bikini bottom, wings and a gold scabbard attached to her hip.
Japanese pressing with the Cher image used internationally; also used for the 1979 album of the same name.
Single by Cher
from the album Take Me Home
B-side
  • "Wasn't It Good"
  • "My Song (Far Too Gone)
Released March 1979 (1979-03)
Format 12-inch single
Recorded 1979
Genre Disco
Length 6:45
Label Casablanca
Writer(s)
  • Bob Esty
  • Michele Aller
Producer(s) Esty
Cher singles chronology
  • "Take Me Home"
  • (1979)

"Take Me Home" is a song recorded by American singer and actress Cher, for her fifteenth studio album of the same name (1979). It was developed after the commercial failure of her previous albums, as she was recommended to record disco music. As a result, the song takes on that genre, with lyrics that see Cher asking her lover to take her home, wanting to have sexual intercourse. It was pressed as a 12-inch singles by Casablanca Records in March 1979, thus serving as the album's lead single.

Upon its release, "Take Me Home" received mostly positive reviews from contemporary music critics, who singled it out from its parent album and favored its sound and melody. Commercially, the single fared well in the United States charts, reaching number 8 on the US Billboard Hot 100, and entering three of its component charts. In Oceania, it entered the singles chart of New Zealand at number 49. To promote it, Cher has performed it at some of her concert tours.

In 2001, English recording artist Sophie Ellis-Bextor covered the song for her debut studio album Read My Lips of that year. It served as her debut solo single after being signed by Polydor Records. Her version contains new lyrics and a new, disco-tinged instrumental. Critics received it moderately positively, and the track enjoyed commercial success. However, Cher's management did not approve of the song's lyricism.

Background and composition[edit]


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After releasing the studio albums Stars (1975), I'd Rather Believe in You (1976), Cherished and Two the Hard Way (1977), which became commercial failures, Cher went to the headquarters of Casablanca Records, in order to start recording for a new full-length record. She was hoping to record rock and roll-tinged music, though she was quickly advised by Neil Bogart to delve into disco music before recording with a genre that, according to him, she was not very good at. She was reluctant to take his advice, as she regarded disco as a "superficial" genre and did not believe it was "serious music". However, she took his advice, and started working with Bob Esty, who arranged and produced records for Donna Summer and Barbra Streisand. Esty was skeptical of Cher's decision to record disco music, although he changed his mind after he began recording with her. The first song he played her was a demo of "Take Me Home", which Cher said she liked.[1]

Running at a length of seven minutes and thirty seconds (7:30), "Take Me Home" is styled in the genre of disco.[2] Its lyrics see Cher asking her partner to "take her home", which is an indirect way of expressing her desire to have sexual intercourse.[1] For the book The Persistence of Sentiment: Display and Feeling in Popular Music of the 1970s, Mitchell Morris commented on the song: "Ostensibly a plea to be chosen, the song relies on the musical force of the arrangement combined with Cher's vocal presence to turn this plea into an irresistible demand, the auditory equivalent of the showgirl's direct gaze."[3]

Release and reception[edit]

"Take Me Home" was released in the United States as a 12-inch single at a 33 ⅓ RPM by Casablanca Records, containing the original version of "Take Me Home" and B-side "Wasn't It Good". Therefore, it served as the album's lead single.[4] Promotional versions were also sent to radio stations in the United States with a different coloring on the vinyl, although with the same exact track listing.[5] In Germany and France, the vinyl was pressed by Philips and branded as a "Super Single" and substituted "Wasn't It Good" with "My Song (Far Too Gone)".[6][7] Some international pressings' vinyl sleeves had the same image as that of its parent album printed, featuring Cher dressed in a "gilded Viking warrior get-up", a winged bikini bottom, wings and a gold scabbard attached to her hip.[1] UGO Networks' K. Thor Jensen considered the sleeve to be her "bad taste highwater mark", and named her outfit "Flash Gordon-esque".[8] In the United Kingdom, when "Wasn't It Good" was issued as a vinyl single, "Take Me Home" served as its B-side.[9]

The staff of Billboard magazine picked it as a recommended disco single and wrote: "[The song] is an upbeat, cleanly produced sound with a light, easy melody. It's sure to catch the ears of the disco set."[10] A reviewer for AllMusic singled out the track from its parent album, feeling it was one of its "track picks".[11] Having spent in total 19 weeks on the US Billboard Hot 100, "Take Me Home" peaked at number eight, thus making it Cher's first top 10 single since 1974's "Dark Lady".[12] It also entered its component charts of Adult Contemporary, Hot Dance Club Play (now the Hot Dance Club Songs) and Hot Soul Singles (now Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs) charts, respectively, at numbers 19, two and 21.[13][14] It was certified Gold in the United States by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on May 3, 1979.[15] Billboard ran an article on Cher's biggest hits on the Hot 100, where "Take Me Home" was listed as the eleventh.[16] It only entered one more chart, in New Zealand, where it reached number 49 and stayed for two weeks before leaving the chart.[17]

Live performances[edit]

Cher performed the song on her Take Me Home Tour wearing a shiny silver wig along with a matching silver sequin dress. She performed the song for the first time in thirty years on her concerts from her Do You Believe? Tour, which ran from 1999 to 2000, wearing an almost identical silver sequined outfit she wore during the Take Me Home tour.[18] During her Living Proof: The Farewell Tour (2002–05), she performed it in a similar fashion, changing the wig and shirt-and-pants set's color to a sparkly red. At her residence in Las Vegas at Caesars Palace, in the show Cher at the Colosseum, Cher performed the song in a similar costume in turquoise color.[19]

Charts and certifications[edit]

Sophie Ellis-Bextor cover[edit]

"Take Me Home"
Single by Sophie Ellis-Bextor
from the album Read My Lips
B-side "Sparkle"
Format
  • CD single
  • Digital download
Genre Dance-pop, nu-disco, house
Length 4:06
Label Polydor Records
Writer(s)
  • Esty
  • Aller
  • Sophie Ellis-Bextor
Producer(s) Damian LeGassick
Sophie Ellis-Bextor singles chronology
  • "Take Me Home"
  • (2001)

"Take Me Home" (also known as "Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me)") was covered by English recording artist Sophie Ellis-Bextor for her debut studio album Read My Lips (2001). It contains rewritten lyrics by her while production and a number of tasks were handled by British musician Damian LeGassick. It was released by Polydor Records as a digital download and a CD single on August 13, 2001 alongside a remix, B-side "Sparkle". It was her first solo single, after previously being in a band and lending her vocals to "Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)".

Upon its release, "Take Me Home" received lightly positive reviews from contemporary music critics. Most reviewers viewed it as a standout from its parent album, while others were ambivalent towards Ellis-Bextor's vocals and production. Cher's management, however, did not receive it well. An accompanying music video, directed by Sophie Muller, was included in the CD single release and features Ellis-Bextor in a variety of outfits and high-couture clothes. The song was also performed live at Ellis-Bextor's first headlining tour, the Read My Lips Tour.

Background[edit]

Ellis-Bextor first ventured into the music business as the frontwoman for indie rock band theaudience. A moderately successful band, they released an album with Mercury Records and eLLeFFe, which spawned various singles, including "I Know Enough (I Don't Get Enough)", which reached number twenty-five on the UK Singles Chart.[22] After finishing up the promotion for their debut album, they recorded a demo tape for a potential second album, however, Mercury dropped them. Shortly after, they split.[23] Following the disbandment of the group, Ellis-Bextor recorded vocals for DJ Spiller's single "Groovejet (If This Ain't Love)", which ultimately became a commercial success, peaking at number one on the UK Singles Chart.[24]

Production and composition[edit]

Yoad Nevo pictured programmed the bass guitar.

The track was produced by British musician Damian LeGassick, who also mixed and engineered the song. He additionally played the keyboards and the guitar while programming them. The bass guitar was played by Guy Pratt and programmed by Yoad Nevo. Jake Davis served as an engineer for mix; he also helmed the additional programming and sound design. The sound was remixed and additionally produced by Jeremy Wheatley at the Townhouse studios, while Ellis-Bextor's vocals were produced and recorded by Bacon & Quarmby at the Strongroom studios.[25]

Being a cover of Cher's song, the song retains writing credits for Bob Esty and Michael Aller, while Ellis-Bextor presented new lyrics.[25] While both versions address sexual intercourse, the publication noted that in the original version, Cher "sings romantically about 'makin' love'" while Ellis-Bextor sings "more aggressive" lyrics such as "only fair I get my way".[26] Even before Ellis-Bextor had released the cover, Cher's management deemed the rewritten lyrics overly sexual. To NME, Ellis-Bextor stated:

I was told by my publishers that Cher heard my version and she doesn't like my new lyrics. She thinks it's too overtly sexual. But the original writers were happy for me to do that—Cher didn't actually write it so she didn't get approval about what happened to the song. Now apparently she's heard what I've done and she doesn't like it.[26]


Release and reception[edit]

"Take Me Home" was released by Polydor Records in the United Kingdom on August 13, 2001 and in the United States as an import. It was released as a legal digital download and an enhanced maxi CD single; both featured the Ellis-Bextor cover, B-side "Sparkle" and a Jewels & Stone remix, while the latter contained the song's music video for the song.[27][28] The single was also pressed as an edition dubbed the "Mixes & Remixes" EP, released only in France.[29] A 12-inch single was also pressed in the United Kingdom, with remixes.[30] Two AllMusic writers reviewed the song. Upon its release as a single, Dean Carlson gave it a negative rating of one and a half star out of five, commenting: "[...] Ellis Bextor is well aware of what's required for beating the likes of Victoria Beckham and Emma Bunton at their own game—simply take Cher's "Take Me Home" and add one disco beat circa ABBA's 'Fernando', being mindful to avoid its cocaine harmonies and the air of free love [...], techno-fy it with random fiddly bits, sing with the breathless detachment of someone getting a massage from a lumberjack, and chuck in some remixes just so everybody knows that you're not utterly out of step."[31] After its parent album's release, Kelvin Hayes denoted it as one of the album's strongest tracks, as did Toby Manning from Q.[32][33] For Yahoo! Music, Gary Crossing wrote that the album "start[ed] well with the song", while describing it as Spiller-esque.[34] Betty Clarke of The Guardian regarded "Take Me Home" as a "pleasant enough song", though she called the production and Ellis-Bextor's vocals "more tired than sexy".[35]

On the UK Singles Chart, the song was a commercial success, peaking at number two on the UK Singles Chart.[36] While extensively analyzing the song, Justin Myers from the Official Charts Company observed that although the song had reached the runner-up position on the UK Singles Chart, it was largely overshadowed by "Murder on the Dancefloor".[37] In Netherlands and Germany, the song peaked at number 79, respectively on the Dutch Top 40 and Media Control Charts—staying on each chart for respectively 12 and 5 weeks.[38] The song also reached top 20 on the Recorded Music NZ singles chart of New Zealand, where it stayed for 14 weeks before leaving the chart.[38]

Promotion[edit]

To promote the song, Sophie Muller filmed a music video for "Take Me Home" which was released on the song's CD single. The video was also included in her video album Watch My Lips (2002).' It opens with Ellis-Bextor, dressed in a black one-strap dress, in front of a yellow-toned painting of a woman with red lips. Throughout the music video, Ellis-Bextor is seen in a variety of dresses and outfits—she appears standing in front of a green mural with a flowery large tablecloth, while dressing a see-through shirt, which reveals her black bra; other scene shows her with a dark green gown; other shows her with a flower and leaves pattern and holding a in front of a projected image which shows the Eiffel Tower from far. She also appears dressed in a green trench coat in another scene. Usually, costume and location scenes are accompanied by a change of gradient color, which are projected onto Ellis-Bextor. By the middle of the video, she walks across a street, surrounded by formally-dressed men, who dance around her and lift her. After the song's middle 8 plays, the lights of the street turn on and various French event posters are shown. The video concludes as they all enter a disco club. She also performed the track at the Read My Lips Tour (2002–03), serving as its encore. Ellis-Bextor would shortly introduce the song, with green eye makeup and red lipstick, dressed in a cream-colored dress and pink heels. As the backing track started playing, she would start singing and clapping her hands as the public imitated her, and the audience was showered with confettis.[39]

Track listing[edit]

"Take Me Home" — Digital download[27]
No. Title Writer(s) Producer(s) Length
1. "Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me)"  
  • Bob Esty
  • Michele Aller
  • Sophie Ellis-Bextor
Damian LeGassick 4:07
2. "Sparkle"  
  • Andy Boyd
  • Ross Newell
  • Ellis-Bextor
Marco Rakascan 4:31
3. "Take Me Home (A Girl Like Me)" (Jewels & Stones Mix)   Jeremy Wheatley 5:34
Total length:
14:41

Charts and certifications[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Bego, Mark (2004). Cher: If You Believe. Rowman & Littlefield. pp. 125; 127. 
  2. ^ Brackett, Nathan; David Hoard, Christian (2004). The New Rolling Stone Album Guide. Simon and Schuster. p. 159. 
  3. ^ Morris, Mitchell (2013). The Persistence of Sentiment: Display and Feeling in Popular Music of the 1970s. The Regents of the University of California. p. 169. 
  4. ^ "Take Me Home" (United States official 12-inch single). Cher. 1979. 
  5. ^ "Take Me Home" (United States promotional 12-inch single). Cher. 1979. 
  6. ^ "Take Me Home" (German vinyl). Cher. Philips. 1979. 
  7. ^ "Take Me Home" (France 12-inch single). Cher. 1979. 
  8. ^ Thor Jensen, K. (September 3, 2008). "Weirdest & Worst Album Covers". UGO Networks. IGN Entertainment. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  9. ^ "Wasn't It Good" (United Kingdom 12-inch single). Cher. 1979. 
  10. ^ "Billboard's Top Single Picks". Billboard (Prometheus Global Media) (8120): 62. February 10, 1979. 
  11. ^ "Cher – Take Me Home". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  12. ^ a b "Cher Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Hot 100 for Cher. Retrieved March 2, 2014.
  13. ^ a b "Cher Album & Song Chart History" Billboard Adult Contemporary for Cher. Retrieved March 2, 2014.
  14. ^ a b c "Cher – Take Me Home – Awards". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  15. ^ a b "American single certifications – Cher – Take Me Home". Recording Industry Association of America.  If necessary, click Advanced, then click Format, then select Single, then click SEARCH
  16. ^ Caulfield, Keith (May 20, 2013). "Cher's Biggest Billboard Hits". Billboard. Prometheus Global Media. Retrieved March 2, 2014. 
  17. ^ a b "Charts.org.nz – Cher – Take Me Home". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved March 2, 2014.
  18. ^ Mallet, David (1999). Live in Concert (VHS video). Warner Bros. Records. 
  19. ^ Mallet, David (2003). The Farewell Tour (VHS video). Warner Bros. Records. 
  20. ^ "Take Me Home in Canadian Top Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  21. ^ "Take Me Home in Canadian Top Singles Chart". Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved 13 June 2013. 
  22. ^ "Theaudience (Singles)". Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 28, 2014. 
  23. ^ Strong, Martin C. (2000). The Great Rock Discography (5th ed.). Edinburgh: Mojo Books. p. 980. ISBN 1-84195-017-3. 
  24. ^ "Spiller". Official Charts Company. Retrieved February 28, 2014. 
  25. ^ a b Read My Lips (Media notes). Sophie Ellis-Bextor. Polydor Records. 2001. 
  26. ^ a b "Cher and Sophie's Domestic!". NME. IPC Media. August 8, 2001. Retrieved March 1, 2014. 
  27. ^ a b "Take Me Home – Sophie Ellis-Bextor". iTunes Store. Apple. August 13, 2001. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  28. ^ a b "Take Me Home". Amazon.com. August 13, 2001. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  29. ^ a b Take Me Home (Mixes & Remixes) (French Maxi CD single) (Media notes). Polydor Records. 2001. 
  30. ^ a b "Take Me Home" (12-inch single from the United Kingdom) (Media notes). Sophie Ellis-Bextor. Polydor Records. 2001. 
  31. ^ Carlson, Dean. "Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Take Me Home [US CD]". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  32. ^ Hayes, Kelvin. "Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Read My Lips". AllMusic. Rovi Corporation. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  33. ^ Manning, Toby. "Review: Sophie Ellis Bextor - Read My Lips". Q (Q181, September 2001): 109. 
  34. ^ Crossing, Gary (September 3, 2001). "Sophie Ellis-Bextor - 'Read My Lips'". Yahoo! Music. Yahoo!. Archived from the original on January 6, 2006. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  35. ^ Clarke, Betty (August 31, 2001). "Chill of the ice maiden". The Guardian. Guardian Media Group. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  36. ^ a b "Sophie Ellis-Bextor (Singles)". Official Charts Company. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  37. ^ Myers, Justin (October 26, 2013). "Official Charts Company Pop Gem #29: Sophie Ellis Bextor – Take Me Home". Official Charts Company. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  38. ^ a b c d e "Sophie Ellis-Bextor - Take Me Home (Song)". Australiancharts.com. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  39. ^ Bextor, Robin; Hanning, Simon. Watch My Lips (DVD video). Universal Music. 
  40. ^ "Irish Music Charts Archive – Top 50 Singles, Week Ending 6 September 2001". GfK Chart-Track. Retrieved March 3, 2014. 
  41. ^ "British single certifications – Sophie Ellis-Bextor – Take Me Home". British Phonographic Industry.  Enter Take Me Home in the field Search. Select Title in the field Search by. Select single in the field By Format. Click Go

External links[edit]