While it is true that covers of pop classics are a matter of debate, when it comes to Cher, anything is possible. The Pop Diva announced the release of her latest single, a Spanish version of the ABBA classic Chiquitita, to raise funds to help UNICEF.
After a 57-year career, this will be her first Spanish-language song. –
As announced by Warner Records last weekend, her version of Chiquitita will be released with a video that will be broadcast on UNICEF’s COVID-19 Virtual Special next Saturday at 8:00 p.m. on www.unicefwontstop.org and www.youtube.com/unicefusa.
“It was difficult to sing something in Spanish that you have sung in English because I’m a perfectionist,” she said in an interview with Billboard. “Singing in another language, trying to make it emotional and getting the words right… they have letters that make a completely different sound than I’m used to or than is done in English.”
Honoring ABBA’s original commitment to the organization –who has donated the song funds since 1979– Cher has decided to lend a hand at a critical time for the entire world. “UNICEF called and I told them I would donate my proceeds from the song like ABBA did with their Spanish version,” she recalled. “I shot my part of the video at home and they later sent me the final cut with children from around the world in it. It’s such a beautiful, optimistic experience. It’s great when you can see anything positive now because all of the turmoil we are in.”
The singer has also created her own organization in collaboration with Dr. Irwin Redlener, director of Columbia University’s Pandemic Response and Resource Center and co-founder of the Children’s Health Fund, to distribute up to $1 million to “chronically neglected and forgotten people.”
“There are rural areas where people of color and Latinos and Native Americans were getting no services,” explains the singer of the now called CherCares Pandemic Resource and Response Initiative (CCPRRI). “It’s not a lot of money — $1 million goes in the blink of an eyelash! — So now I’m trying to get my friends to make it a lot more so we can do something that will really meet people’s needs. A friend once told me, ‘When people walk in your path, then you know what you have to do.'”
Dr. Redlener commented: “Cher did her research and I was so moved by her laser-like focus on exploring options that could bring immediate aid to underserved communities that have been struggling with poverty and other adversities long before COVID-19 appeared,” BroadwayWorld reported.
Cher added: “When I see the devastating numbers of minorities affected with COVID-19, I know we all have a responsibility to help wherever and however we can. With Dr. Redlener’s knowledge and guidance, I hope I can make a difference.”
Story compiled from Broadway World and Billboard.