Album Title
Artist Icon All I Really Want to Do (1965)
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First Released

Calendar Icon 1965


Genre Icon Pop


Mood Icon Gritty


Style Icon Rock/Pop


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Speed Icon Medium

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Record Label Release

Speed Icon Liberty Records

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Album Description
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All I Really Want to Do is the debut solo album by American singer and actress Cher and was released on October 16, 1965 by Imperial Records. The album was produced for Cher by her husband and singing partner, Sonny Bono, with contributions from arranger Harold Battiste. The album is by-and-large a collection of cover versions but does contain three songs written by Bono. Upon its release, the album was well received by critics and garnered positive reviews. The album was Cher's first and most successful album of the 1960s, both in the UK and the U.S.

At the same time that the duo Sonny & Cher were debuting on Atco Records, Sonny Bono arranged a solo deal for Cher on the Imperial label. After the success of Sonny & Cher's "I Got You Babe" single, Bono decided to promote his wife as a solo act, producing her first full-length album himself. The album was Cher's first solo project since the release of her two unsuccessful 1964 singles, "Ringo, I Love You" and "Dream Baby", released under the pseudonyms Bonnie Jo Mason and Cherylin respectively. All I Really Want to Do, like the debut album by Sonny & Cher, Look at Us, contains many covers. The album includes recordings of contemporary, uptempo rock songs, but it also has a somewhat folky slant to it, in order to differentiate it from the musical style of Sonny & Cher's records.

On the album, Cher covered three songs written and performed by Bob Dylan, "All I Really Want to Do", "Blowin' In the Wind" and "Don't Think Twice, It's All Right". The album contains the Bono-penned "Needles and Pins", which was a hit for the British band, The Searchers, in 1963. The album also included Ray Davies' "I Go to Sleep", which was later a hit in the UK for The Pretenders, and Cher's version of the traditional song, "See See Rider", arranged by Sonny Bono, Charles Greene and Robert Stone. Other covers on the album are "She Thinks I Still Care", "The Bells of Rhymney" and "Come and Stay With Me". During the album recording sessions, Cher recorded a song written by Bono, titled "I'm Gonna Love You", which did not appear on the album but was issued as the B-side of the "All I Really Want to Do" single. The song was later included on the 1967 Sonny & Cher soundtrack album, Good Times.

All I Really Want to Do has received positive reviews from music critics, with Tim Sendra, of the Allmusic website, giving the album four stars. Sendra also noted that the album features Sonny Bono "using his Spector-derived production skills to create rich, chiming backgrounds for Cher to sing over", and described the record as "one of the stronger folk-pop records of the era." Sendra went on to note that "Cher isn't the most subtle singer, but she sounds young and full of life on these tracks, like she really believes in what she is singing (a feeling you don't always get on her more lightweight material)."

In 1992, All I Really Want to Do and Cher's follow-up solo album, The Sonny Side of Chér, were reissued on one CD by EMI Records. Later, in 1995, EMI released a collection titled The Originals, which included All I Really Want to Do, The Sonny Side of Chér and Cher's third solo album, Cher. The album was again reissued on one CD with The Sonny Side of Chér by BGO Records in 2005 in the UK only. The original twelve track All I Really Want to Do album has never been issued on Compact Disc on its own.
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