First Hit #1: October 6, 1973
Cher’s Half-Breed is a song about being caught between two people and never being able to fit and be accepted. So, it only makes sense that the song itself is caught somewhere between two different musical styles. The drums try to have a traditional First Nations vibe, which is in an uncomfortable marriage with the overt disco overtones of the track. It’s a bit awkward, but it also fits really well with the lyrical content. It’s caught between them, and the difficulty bridging that gap between the highly disparate styles mirrors the difficulty that the singer faced growing up between cultures. It’s not the smoothest sound but it’s so thematically appropriate that it putting the song together in any other way wouldn’t make very much sense.
That said, I’m surprised that a song that sounds like this garnered enough popular acceptance to ascend to the pinnacle of the charts. I’m happy it did though.