Brian Rasic/Getty Images
Brian Rasic/Getty Images
Tina Turner, a soul and rock powerhouse known for her octave-crushing voice and mesmerizing stage moves, has died at the age of 83.
She died on Wednesday after a long illness at her home in Switzerland, according to her publicist. In her 2018 memoirTina Turner: My Love Story, Turner described a series of health issues she's been dealing with since 2013, including a stroke, colon cancer and kidney failure. Her second husband, Erwin Bach, donated a kidney to her in 2017, saving her life.
We remember Tina Turner
We remember Tina Turner
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During her six-decade recording career, Turner rose to prominence both as a solo artist and as a duo with her first husband, Ike Turner. With the latter, he was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame and became a staple on the US pop and R&B charts in the 1960s and 1970s. The duo's energetic soul and rock was shaped by Tina's diverse vocal influences. He grew up listening to country music but had many idols: 50s R&B singers LaVern Baker and Faye Adams. Gospel great Mahalia Jackson and rock pioneer Sister Rosetta Tharpe. Blues legend B.B. King; and soul greats Ray Charles and Sam Cooke. As a result, he had a supple and flexible voice and could unleash a blistering rock loop or drop down to sing smoky blues or velvety R&B numbers. One of Ike & Tina's best-known songs, "River Deep, Mountain High" was even an instrumental gospel triumph produced by Phil Spector.
An agile vocal performer, Turner also made other people's iconic songs her own — adding a tone of longing and desperation to the Beatles' already pleading "Come Together" and adding a more country edge to the Rolling Stones' "honky tonk" for women. "Her signature song, a fiery transformation of Creedence Clearwater Revival's laid-back 'Proud Mary,' became a prime example of her sensual, taut soul and racy rock 'n' roll scream. The latter song earned Turner her first Grammy Award for best R&B performance by a duo or group with vocals, has won eight Grammys in total - including three consecutive years for Best Female Rock Vocal Performance in the '80s.
In addition to her vocal prowess, Turner had an impressive stage presence that was often described as "electrifying." That description always felt like an understatement: On the mic, Turner vibrated with energy like a boiling pot and possessed a natural athleticism that translated into flexible yet powerful dancing on stage. "Someone called Tina 'the female Mick Jagger'"Rolling rockThis is Ben Fong TorresHe wrotein 1971. "Indeed, one should call Mick, to be more precise, 'the male Tina Turner.'" (This is no mere critical exaggeration: IbidRolling rock(Turner herself hinted that Jagger studied her moves very closely when she and Ike were on tour with the Rolling Stones in 1969.) Of course, when the two teamed up for abarn burning coverWhen the Jacksons performed "State of Shock" at Live Aid in 1985, the mix was tumultuous.
"I am so saddened by the passing of my wonderful friend Tina Turner," Jagger said in a statement on Instagram. “She was truly an extremely talented artist and singer. She was inspiring, warm, funny and generous. She helped me so much growing up and I will never forget her."
Born Anna Mae Bullock on November 26, 1939, Turner grew up in rural Nutbush, Tennessee, but also spent time in Knoxville as her parents moved there for work. Growing up, she had a distant relationship with both her father, who left the family when she was 13, and her mother. But the performances were self-evident and became a comfort to her. InTina Turner: My Love Story, describes music-filled shopping trips—when she was four or five years old and was paid by salesmen to sing radio hits she had memorized—and the joy of driving her cousins, her half-sister Evelyn and sister Aline, role appearances on stage. She later honed her performance skills by singing at picnics with a locally famous trombonist named Mr. Bootsy Whitelaw.
Turner moved to St. Louis at the age of 16 to live with Alline and her mother and began going to the famous Club Manhattan on East St. Louis, where he first saw Ike Turner & The Kings of Rhythm. She finally joined the band in 1957 after B.B. improvised her performance. King's "You Know I Love You" impressed the band leader. The troupe was eventually renamed the Ike and Tina Turner Revue, emphasizing their prominent role.
By all accounts, Ike was overly harsh on Tina, both personally and professionally. "Looking back, I realize that my relationship with Ike was doomed the day he found out I was going to be his meal ticket, his financier," Turner wrote.my love story. She then described how she played as a last-minute stand-in for "A Fool In Love" — which became the duo's first hit and reached No. 2 on the R&B chart in 1960 — and how she was so impressive that a record boss urged Ike to make Tina the focus of the group. "What went through Ike's mind when he heard this advice?" he continued. "He had to find a way to protect his interests and that's where the problems started."
Over the years, Turner has been open about certain aspects of their time together, though she has said so New York Timesin 2019 who never revealed anything: “I think I'm embarrassed. I feel like I've said enough." But Ike was mentally controlling—for example, he renamed her "Tina Turner" and then trademarked the name, both without her consent—and he was physically abusive. She was almost barren when she left him in 1976 while the couple was on tour in Dallas. "I came out with nothing and had to make it on my own for my family and everybody, so I went back to work for myself," she said during a 2017 show.Die Jonathan Ross Show.
Turner had released two solo albums in 1974 while still playing with IkeTina lights up the country! —a stripped-down LP featuring their renditions of songs by Bob Dylan, Dolly Parton and Kris Kristofferson - and 1975's rock-oriented cover albumacid queen.Her first forays into entertainment after the split focused on mainstream fare - gamingHollywood Placesand Cher's TV variety shows - and live cabaret-style concerts, as well as two albums that didn't make the charts. He also recorded a slick electro-pop version of the Temptations' "Ball of Confusion."Music of Quality and Distinction, Volume One, an album recorded by Heaven 17 members Martyn Ware and Ian Craig Marsh under the name B.E.F. has been published.
1984 was to be a pivotal year for Turner. She duetted with David Bowie on his reggae-influenced theme songTonightLP and finally achieved great success thanks to the blockbusterPrivate dancer. As with "Ball of Confusion," the album drew on the decade's most refined, innovative production values—in fact, two songs were co-produced by Ware—while emphasizing Turner's powerful voice and eclectic influences.
The album's tracklist included the title track, written by Mark Knopfler, as well as covers of tunes by David Bowie ("1984"), The Beatles ("Help!") and Ann Peebles ("I Can't Stand the Rain" "). .Private dancerAlso released was her first and only solo #1 hit, the vulnerable and luxurious "What's Love Got to Do With It." The single, which also won Grammy Awards for Record of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, featured a cathartic, soulful vocal performance that launched her demanding second act and cemented her reputation as a survivor, of a label and of an aesthetic. . acceptable.
Turner's commercial renaissance continued throughout the decade. He played a supporting role in the 1985 filmMad Max: Beyond Thunderdome, which spawned the dramatic power ballad "We Don't Need Another Hero (Thunderdome)" and the Grammy-winning "One of the Living," and scored further hits with the Bryan Adams duet "It's Only Love," airy seduction. Typically Male' and the empowerment anthem 'The Best'. With her spiky wig and edgy miniskirts that showed off her iconic legs, Turner also became one of MTV's first idols:carried outat the inaugural MTV Video Music Awards in 1984, and the following year she won Best Female Video for "What's Love Got To Do With It."
Turner remained a commercial force in the '90s, thanks in large part to the 1993 biopic.What does love have to do with it?. Based on her 1986 autobiography,me, TinaThe film starred Laurence Fishburne as Ike and Angela Bassett as Tina. Both actors were nominated for an Academy Award, while Bassett won a Golden Globe for Best Performance by an Actor in a Motion Picture - Comedy or Musical. Turner himself also received a career boost when the soundtrack song "I Don't Wanna Fight" became a global hit and reached the top 10 in the US. In 1995 he received another famous accolade when he sang the seductively elegant James Bond theme song "GoldenEye" for the title film.
Turner, who moved to Switzerland in 1995, began reducing her workload in the late '90s and early 2000s, retiring in 2009 after a 50-year anniversary tour. However, she was still an active steward of her own legacy. In fact, he also worked closely on its developmentTina: Das Tina-Turner-Musical, which premiered on Broadway in the fall of 2019. And at the 2008 Grammy Awards, he played u. aamazing versionfrom "Proud Mary" featuring Beyoncé. In hindsight, it's easy to interpret that moment as Turner passing the torch to a younger musician. However, the performance once again confirmed that she was in full control of her rich musical heritage.