After the poorly-received previous record It's a Man's World, Warner Bros. talked Cher into recording a dance album. Cher began working on Believe in summer 1998 in London, meeting with producers Mark Taylor and Brian Rawling, who had previously worked with Rob Dickins; Additional producers included Todd Terry ("Taxi Taxi") and Junior Vasquez (who had to originally worked on "Dov'è L'Amore" but when he sent back his version from New York, it was rejected by Dickens, who decided instead to give the production of the track to Taylor and Rawling as well); Vasquez's version can be heard in a remix form in the 1999 The Greatest Hits compilation.
worked also with long-time collaborator Diane Warren (who wrote "Takin'
Back My Heart") and covered two songs: "The Power" and "Love Is the
Groove". Furthermore she decided to introduce a remix form of her
1988 single "We All Sleep Alone" from her 1987 Cher album.
The album was influenced by Sonny Bono's death in a skiing accident earlier that year. Believe is dedicated to him.
early sessions Cher recorded a cover version of "Love Is in the Air"
that she previously performed a cappella on the talk show The Magic
Hour in 1997. The song was mixed and produced by Junior Vasquez but
it did not appear in the final cut of the album. Now it is only
available on file sharing networks.
release, the album received mixed responses from international music
critics. Allmusic's Michael Gallucci called Believe Cher's "latest
playground move" and described Cher "merely moves through the beat
factory with one drab vocal range into one endless, and
personality-free, thump session" and "determinedly, if not
wholeheartedly, clinging to the tail end of it". In his review he
gave the album two and a half out of five stars. The major criticism
was the strong use of vocoder which changed Cher's voice.