CSPC: Cher Popularity Analysis

Cher recogerá el Premio Honorífico a su Trayectoria en la gala de los Premios 40 Principales

We are used to being reminded how Britney Spears was still a child when Madonna was already topping the charts. In August 1965, when the Queen of Pop was going to turn 7 years old, Cher was leading the US Hot 100 ahead of Satisfaction by the Rolling Stones and until being topped by the BeatlesYesterday. I Got You Babe, her duet with former husband Sonny Bono was the third 

longest #1 of the year precisely behind those two monstrous hits.

Since that early breakthrough, Cher faced an extensive run of flops and successes. She was never the biggest pop star on Earth a la Madonna or Celine Dion, but she undoubtedly accumulated record sales all along a never ending road. Impressively, she managed various stunning come backs, most notably the 1998 smash Believe. With 6 studio albums with Sonny, 25 solo LPs, various Soundtracks, countless compilations and tons of singles, her catalog is much deeper than just Believe though. How many records has the godmother of all divas sold? How is her catalog performing nowadays? How does she stand in comparison to the other household female singers names?

As usual, I’ll be using the Commensurate Sales to Popularity Concept in order to relevantly gauge her results. This concept will not only bring you sales information for all Cher‘s albums, physical and download singles, as well as audio and video streaming, but it will also determine their true popularity. If you are not yet familiar with the CSPC method, the next page explains it with a short video. I fully recommend watching the video before getting into the sales figures. Of course, if you are a regular visitor feel free to skip the video and get into the figures.

Let’s go!

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The tages “Barbra Streisand” Where? Mistakes?

And “All main awards” without Tony…

Will you do Barbra’s Sales next, she is the real mother of Divas


Kinda disappointing, for such a long career.
Great analysis though.


Her sales are not impressive at all. Her studio albums alltogether sold like 35 million which is as much as Rihanna did. One released tons of albums during the peak of album sales, the other one debuted in the digital era. I am sure that Kylie Minogue sold less than Rihanna as well (and her fans call Janet Jackson local lol).
You should do Avril Lavigne next, she is an easy case to study. I wanna see if she moved more albums than Xtina (not equivalent units, but pure sales).

Djosci Coelho

Until the late 1980s, Cher was almost never entirely focused on her music career as Rihanna does now. She starred in three hugely successful TV shows during the 1970s. Her star appeal back then lied in her TV persona; in fact, she was seen more as a TV star who also did recordings than a music artist. She spent most of the next decade developing her film career, and it wasn’t until 1987 with her self-titled comeback album that she came to have control over her own recordings. That explains why most of her sales come from her last 7… Read more »


Diana Ross (if you include her supremes work) should have a higher total than her i think.


Laughing @. the ignorance. Cher debuted in 1965 when album sales were EXTREMELY low and barely starting. Do you even know how the market worked back then? Also, Rihanna debuted in 2005, a year in which 2.3 billion albums sold were sold worldwide (more than in 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, and 1988). The album market was far better during 2005-2013 than during 1965-1985. Rihanna had the advantage of her record sales being inflated by 2005-2015 digital sales like Katy Perry, Lady Gaga, Bruno Mars, etc did. But I don’t see anyone complaining about that. Global album sales peaked between 1994-2004.… Read more »


Lol at these excuses. More albums were sold in 2005 than during those years because of CATALOG SALES. The highest selling album of that year (Coldplay – X&Y) did ~12 million while the top selling albums from the of 80s were doing 20 million easily (Madonna, Michael, Whitney and many others did). Just accept the fact that Cher was never a good album seller and that 95% of her albums are flops. Look at Barbra, she released as many albums as her but still sold over 100 million. And as I said, Rihanna selling ~35 million albums in the digital… Read more »


Again, you’re forgetting that Cher debuted in 1965. Why do you keep bringing up the 1980s? Cher only released 3 albums during the entire 1980s decade, and it wasn’t until the end of the decade that she had control over her recordings. Similar to how Janet Jackson’s first two albums bombed and her stans like to pretend they never happened. The album market was bloody AWFUL during the 1960s and 1970s, and most of Cher’s albums were released during that period (16). Anyone who actually knows about charts will tell you this. The album market was definitely a lot healthier… Read more »


The Beatles, The Rolling Stones and Barbra Streisand were selling millions in the 60s; Diana Ross, The Bee Gees, The Jackson 5 and Donna Summer were doing great in the 70s; Olivia Newton John, Whitney Houston, Madonna and MJ were dominating the 80s; Mariah Carey, Janet Jackson, Celine Dion and even Madonna with “low sales” were selling multiple 10 million records ww…. What is Cher’s excuse? Just accept the fact that she is a very poor album selling, except a couple of exceptions (Believe seems to be the exception to every rule). Even in the 90s where everybody was selling… Read more »


Great, and this was probably difficult to launch into this. This shows that selling records wasn’t necessary to be a “Superstar” as we called them in the seventies. Even during the early eighties, when she didn’t have a record deal, she was one. She even managed to make those downturn and erratic sales a part of her persona. During the whole seventies, Cher was unseen in Europe or Asia, since she was locked in California for her tv series. When I first heard of her was in the early 80’s and her Lps were all “Imports”. Movies made her visible… Read more »


MJD, i hope that when you redo the Celine Dion chart analysis, you give a page per album including the ones released that you have called early material albums


fantastic work. i did expect a low number for her – i mean low for someone of her stature. i can only imagine what aretha franklin’s numbers would be, or diana ross (without the supremes). same for dolly parton and other 50s-60s-70s big named divas who were promoted as having sold 100 million albums…of all the females the one i am most interested in is streisand as she is the only one of the females who could be quite close to whitney in her total.


Hello MJD, congratulations on the great work and for the amazing and meticulous article about Cher.
You and your staff are great,each article is superb, detailed, is the site that I visit more frequently.
From recent messages I understand that Usher’s article is in the advanced stage, then I think that after that will be the High School Musical soundtrack.
After these programmed articles do you already have in mind which singer or group to analyze ?

Djosci Coelho

WOW! Marvelous work. I’m impressed. Cher has never been a big contender in the pop music market. Her star appeal has always lied on her personality rather than her artistry. That explains why she has always been requested by big record labels (Warner, Geffen, Casablanca), even with a incredibly huge string of flops beside her name. They knew she could make it big with the right material directed by the right producer. The power and strength of Cher’s legacy can not be estimated based on a single area of her career. Everytime her album sales would slow down or the… Read more »


“Cher is an almost omnipotent personality who can play the role of a singer very well, but in no way can she be defined by such term. There are many, MANY singers whose music legacies are bigger than Cher’s, but Cher’s overall legacy is just one of a kind.” quote
Well said.


Thank you very much, MJD. Cher’s status in american pop culture doesn’t have to be discussed in spite of her rather low total sales. One should not forget she ran highly-rated TV shows in the late 60’s to mid-70’s (The Sonny & Cher show, The Cher show). She played in popular movies in the 80’s and 90’s, won an Academy Award for best actress and in 2013 reached the top of the Dance/Club chart at 67 years old ! MJD mentioned her success on the video format. That’s no surprise. Her tours are always among the highest-grossing of the year… Read more »


These are abismal numbers for somebody who gets called “the goddess of pop” by her delusional fans. Don’t even mention the Academy Award, since that has nothing to do with music. It’s very clear that, with a few exceptions (Heart of Stone and Believe and a few hits here and there) Cher’s discography is non eventful to say the least


Who calls her “Goddes of Pop” are they the ugliest LITTLE MONSTERS.