"Sometimes I think, 'It's such a pain in my ass,'" Cher tells PEOPLE of her career

By Jeff Nelson
September 28, 2018 09:15 AM
Machado Cicala

Throughout her iconic career, the entertainer has won an Emmy, a Grammy and an Oscar … and the beat goes on.

“Sometimes I think, ‘It’s such a pain in my ass,'” Cher, 72, says of being, well, Cher. “But then I remember, ‘You’re so lucky to be able to do what you’re doing.'”

Indeed, the pop legend isn’t slowing down yet.

Hot off her appearance in the summer smash Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again, Cher will release Dancing Queen an ABBA covers collection and her first album in five years — on Friday. And The Cher Show, a jukebox musical based on her life, opens on Broadway Dec. 3.

RELATED: Cher’s Going to Broadway! the Icon Confirms Biographical Musical Coming in 2018

The star is grateful for her enduring career.

“I remember hearing every couple of years, ‘Cher’s on her way out, this is it for her career,’ and then going, ‘This is it for my career.’ I’ve had a strange career of real ups and downs,” she says. But, “It’s all I ever wanted to do, from the time I was 4 years old. Sometimes I think, ‘You better stop, this is too much.’ But that’s momentary.”

That’s not to say it’s always easy.

“It can get exhausting being Cher, especially when you’re older and you’re still doing the same things,” she says. “But I still have a great time. To have the stamina, and also to have the audience. … You forget that people just do regular jobs that they don’t get applause for.”

For more on Cher, pick up the new issue of PEOPLE, on newsstands everywhere Friday

Ari Michelson

Cher, of course, still elicits applause today, as she hits the road for her international Here We Go Again Tour. And while she knows she’ll retire one day, she’s not done performing yet.

“I just don’t know when it’s gonna be,” she says. “You can’t do it forever. There’s a finite amount of time. That’s the thing that makes life scary and makes things possible — you just don’t know what’s gonna happen.”