So where do you start when you’re talking about The Queen of Rock n Roll? Born Anna Mae Bullock, she grew up in Nutbush, Tennessee and started singing from an early age in the choir at her Baptist church. She moved to St. Louis at the age of sixteen, and her life changed forever when she met Ike Turner. After impressing him with her talent, she joined his group and after entering in a relationship with him, he decided to change her name to Tina Turner. Keep in mind that this was before they got married. Foreshadowing things to come, Ike trademarked the name ‘Tina Turner’ in case she ever decided to leave him.
The partnership was a huge success, but in private Ike was abusive and controlling. We discuss that aspect of their relationship on this episode. At one point, things were so desperate for her that Tina had to borrow money from one of her backup dancers. In 1976, she finally summoned the strength to leave him, and with 36 cents and a Mobil gas card to her name she never looked back, despite setbacks with a divorce that took over two years to finalize.
They say that success is the ultimate form of revenge, and Tina Turner experienced that in spades. In the eighties her solo career hit new heights with the release of the iconic album ‘Private Dancer’. Everything that pop culture said about women needing to be younger to achieve success was turned on its head, because she was 45 years old at the time. It would not be the last time that Tina defied expectations. She’s even in the Guinness Book of World Records!
We’ll let you listen to the episode to hear the rest of what we have to say about this amazing woman. Here at The Stueytunes Show we are both big fans, and it seemed only fitting that after her recent 81st birthday we should pay tribute to The Queen of Rock and Roll. Enjoy the show!