Tina Turner shaped over half a century of rock history. Anna Mae Bullock, born on 26 November 1939 in Brownsville, Tennessee (USA), raised in Nutbush and became a world star and legend as Tina Turner. From 1958 she performed alongside her husband Ike Turner and in 1984, she launched an outstanding comeback as a solo artist, until she went on tour for the last time in 2008, which was the grand live finale of an extraordinary career.
Izear Luster Ike Turner was born in Clarksdale on November 05, 1931 and Anna Mae Bullock eight years later on November 26, 1939 in Nutbush, Tennessee. Ike was first a DJ at the local radio staion WROX and a member of the rhythm ensemble called The Tophatters. In the 40’s, he formed together with his friends Raymond Hill, Eugene Fox and Clayton Love the Kings of Rhythm. In the 1950’s, he became a session musician, contributing his piano play to some B.B. King tracks. 1951: His first single Rocket 88 was released under the name „Jackie Brenston and His Delta Cats“ in April. 1956: The Kings of Rhythm settled in East St. Louis as one of the most highly rated group on the club circuit. 1957: After Anna Mae relocated to her mother Zelma Bullock to St. Louis, she and her sister Aillene were regulars at R&B clubs.
One evening at Club Manhattan, she takes to the stage during an intermission. Impressed by her voice, Ike invited her to join the band, giving her the stage name Little Ann. 1958: Anna Mae contributed background vocals on the single Boxtop and gave birth to band member Raymond Hill's son Craig. 1960: Their first record as Ike and Tina Turner comes about by accident when the singer booked for the recording session does not show up and Tina steps in. A Fool In Love is the duo's first crossover hit in the R&B and Pop charts. Ike's band became the Ike & Tina Turner Revue and three female backing singers, the first incarnation of The Ikettes are incorporated to support Tina. 1961: After minor success with singles from their debut album The Soul of Ike & Tina, they reached for the first time the top 20 with It's Gonna Work Out Fine.
At the same time, the Ike Turner written song I’m Blue (The Gong-Gong Song) was the first and very successful solo single from The Ikettes. The Ike and Tina Turner Revue was one of the most popular acts on the R&B tour circuit, which resulted in some live albums and many singles on a vast number of labels like Warner, Kent and Modern as well as on Ike’s own record label Sonja. 1966: Producer Phil Spector offered Ike $20,000 to put Tina under a production contract. The payment was also part of a condition that Ike took no part in the sessions. Tina recorded her vocal on River Deep, Mountain High after Spector has already spent over $22,000 creating the "wall of sound" backing track. Released on Spector’s Philles label, the single was only a minor success in America, but a major hit in England. European fans started their long love affair with Tina.
The Turners went on an UK tour as the opening act for The Rolling Stones, playing a major London date at the Royal Albert Hall and appeared at the TV-Show Ready, Steady, Go! 1969: After jumping from label to label, the duo signs a two-LP deal with Blue Thumb Records for the longplayers The Hunter and Outta Season (including Ike & Tina’s live signature song I’ve Been Loving You Too Long). The duo once again supports The Rolling Stones on their American tour in November. 1970: In December, they released their biggest selling LP to date in America with Workin’ Together. It features the R&B style cover of Creedence Clearwater Revival’s Proud Mary, their first top five and million-selling single, which brought them a Grammy Award. The live album What You Hear Is What You Get reached gold and sold over half a million copies in the US.
The success of the Ike and Tina Turner Revue gave Ike the finances to built his own recording studio Bolic Sound. 1971: The first result from the recording sessions was the album Nuff Said. Ike started also a new creative and artistic season and released some solo records. Ike & Tina were invited to participate in the Soul to Soul concert festival for Ghanas 14th Independence Day on March 6, 1971 in Accra with other stars like Wilson Picket and Santana. 1972: Tina had a short cameo in the documentary movie Cocksucker Blues from The Rolling Stones with the Stones in the dressing room at their North American tour. 1973: The double LP The World of Ike & Tina features live recordings from many European countries and the album Nutbush City Limits includes with Tina's stomping composition of the title track the duos next worldwide hit.
1974: Sweet Rhode Island Red was the last studio album from Ike & Tina before they separated and Tina recorded at Bolic Sound her very first solo album with Tina Turns The Country On, which was nominated for a Grammy Award. She began also filming the role of the Acid Queen in The Who’s film Tommy and performed together with Ann Margret in England. 1975: Tina’s second solo album Acid Queen contains rock tracks on the a-side and Ike Turner compositions on the b-side. It features the last Ike & Tina chart hit with the single Baby, Get It On and Tina’s very first solo single with Whole Lotta Love. The European single Delilah’s Power was the last Ike & Tina single before their separation.
1976: Because of Ike Turner's excessive drug abuse and strengthened by her new found Buddhist faith, Tina walked out on Ike on July 2. She had four children to support and after depending for a time on food stamps, she was guest on TV-Shows like Donny & Marie and Hollywood Squares. Ike struggled to find success as a solo artist and replaced Tina with Holly Maxwell. 1977: Tina made an agreement with Mike Stewart from United Artists to go back on the road with a Las Vegas style Tina Turner Show. For promotion, the single Under My Thumb was released in Australia, taken from the Acid Queen album, while Ike released leftovers from previous recording sessions on the album Delilah’s Power. 1978: The first solo album after leaving Ike was Rough, which features almost rock songs. But both, the album and the four singles were not successful.
To pay her debts, Tina was constantly on the road with her Wild Lady Of Rock concerts in hotels and small clubs. 1979: Tina's second solo album Love Explosion is much more disco influenced than it’s predecessor, but because the album as well as the singles also failed on the charts, she lost her recording contract in America. 1980: At the TV-Show Hollywood Nights, Tina met Olivia Newton-John’s manager Roger Davies, a young Australian trying to make it in the American music business. After he watched a concert at the San Francisco Fairmont Hotel, he agreed to work as her manager, recruited a new band (including Kenny Moore on piano) and made changes in her song material and style. 1981: Tina started her new Nice 'N' Rough concert tour and supported The Rolling Stones once again at the Brendan Byrne Arena in East Rutherford in November.
In December '81, she was a guest vocalist at Rod Stewart's Los Angeles Forum concert, after she already performed with him at Saturday Night Live two month before. 1982: Roger has a call from Virgin Records in England that Tina should participate on the B.E.F. album Music of Quality & Distinction with an updated version of the Temptations’ song Ball of Confusion. With it’s electronic backdrop, it's not the kind of rock Tina wanted to record, but the finished track brought her renewed notice as an active vocalist. 1983: After a very successful series of dates at The Ritz club in New York, Tina signed a new recording deal and recorded her first single in England. The Marsh and Ware produced version of Al Green's Let's Stay Together was a massive hit in Europe and reached #1 on the American dance chart.
1984: With this success on her back, Tina started a one-month UK-Tour in February and released her second European single Help. After finishing the tour, she recorded her first Capitol album Private Dancer in only two weeks in London, together with the writers / producers Terry Britten, Graham Lyle, Mark Knopfler and John Carter. Tina was also invited to record a duet together with David Bowie on the track Tonight. To promote her upcoming album, she went on tour with Lionel Richie in America and the song What’s Love Got To Do With It was released as the first single. At the end of the tour, it topped the American charts for 3 weeks. The album was one of the best selling record that year and sold over 20 million copies. George Miller invited Tina to appear in the third Mad Max movie together with Mel Gibson, her first real leading role after her cameo in Tommy.
1985: Tina took part in the recording of USA for Africa's We Are The World and started her sell out Private Dancer Tour in February. In June, the movie Mad Max was released, together with the soundtrack album and the first single We Don’t Need Another Hero - her first #1 in Germany and a worldwide hit. In July, Tina appeared on the Live Aid bill in Philadelphia, where she duetted raunchily with Mick Jagger. In November, the duet It’s Only Love, taken from Bryan Adam's album Reckless was released as a single. The song was nominated for a Grammy Award in the category „Best Rock Vocals Performance“. 1986: Tina participated in the Prince's Trust charity concert in London alongside Eric Clapton and Paul McCartney - her only live performance that year.
Tina’s best-selling autobiography I, Tina was published in July and in September '86, she released her long awaited follow-up album Break Every Rule. The first single Typical Male reached #2 in America and was an international hit, while the album was top 5 in most countries worldwide, earning multi-platinum for million-plus sales. 1987: In March, Tina started her Break Every Rule Tour in Munich, Germany and broke box office records in 13 countries. 1988: On the South American leg, she played in front of 182,000 people in the Maracana Arena in Rio de Janeiro, the largest audience ever assembled for a single performer. The tour came to a close in Osaka, Japan after 230 dates in 25 countries, playing to 4 million fans. Tina took a well-earned year off, but released her first solo live album Live In Europe with the lead single Addicted To Love.
1989: After her break, the first single The Best from the album Foreign Affair stormed into the charts in September. The new album features Tina's first credits as a producer and arranger, was #1 in England and reached multi-platinum status in 14 different countries. Memphis-based songwriter Tony Joe White wrote 4 of the albums tracks. In November, Tina celebrated her 50th birthday with a lavish party, attended by a host of stars at London's Reform Club. 1990: The Foreign Affair Tour started on April 27 in Antwerp. The successful tour delighted fans across Europe, culminating on November 4 in Rotterdam. It's the biggest European tour ever, surpassing even those by colleagues including The Rolling Stones and Elton John, with 125 shows (65 stadiums and 60 arenas) in front of 3,5 million people. 150,000 tickets for England's Woburn Abbey were sold in record time.
At the end of 1990, the duet It Takes Two with Rod Stewart was released, which was also used for a Pepsi commercial. 1991: While Tina took a break, her first greatest hits compilation Simply The Best was released in September. It was #1 in 12 territories and is her most successful album in England to date, stayed in the charts for over two years there. While Ike remained in prison, Ike & Tina Turner were inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, which Phil Spector accepted on their behalf. 1992: Tina recorded a new version of her hit single The Best together with Jimmy Barnes. Released as a single in Australia and Zew Zealand, it was also used for an advertising campaign for the New South Wales Rugby League.
1993: The Touchstone movie What’s Love Got To Do With It, based on Tina’s autobiography I, Tina came to cinemas. I Don’t Wanna Fight was the theme of the movie and first single from the soundtrack album and Tina’s next top 10 hit in America. The album features re-recorded songs from Ike & Tina and three new tracks. In June, Tina launched her highly anticipated Whats Love? Tour in Reno, her first North American tour in six years with some additional dates in Europe, Australia, New Zealand and Japan. 1994: Capitol Records released the 3 CD box set The Collected Recordings, featuring some rarities and unreleased tracks. 1995: The producers of the up-coming James Bond movie offered Tina to record the title song Goldeneye. Written by Bono and The Edge and released in November, it was a massive success in Europe.
1996: Virgin released with Wildest Dreams Tina’s first studio album in seven years, with the lead singles Whatever You Want in Europe and Missing You in America. In April, the two-year Wildest Dreams Tour started in Singapore with 250 shows worldwide. At three dates in Paris, Bruce Willis was a special guest and performed the encore song Unfinished Sympathy together with Tina. After Ike Turner was released from prison, he recorded his first solo album with the title My Bluescountry, featuring his all-time favourite songs from his shows, recordings, films and albums. 1997: EMI Records celebrated it’s first centenary and released the Private Dancer (Centenary Edition) with seven bonus tracks. The Wildest Dreams Tour came to an end with five sold-out concerts at New York's Radio City Music Hall on July 27.
1998: The only release this year was the duet Cose Della Vita with Italian singer Eros Ramazzotti. Taken from his album Eros, it was a big hit in Europe. Eros invited Tina to perform with him live on stage at some concerts at his Eros & Friends European Tour in summer, released on the Eros Live album. 1999: In April, Tina opened the VH-1 special Divas Live at New York's Beacon Theatre, where she also perfomed together with Elton John and Cher. October was a very emotional month: First, she was honored with a lifetime MOBO Award in England, presented by Lionel Richie. Shortly after this event, Tina’s mother Zelma Bullock died at the age of 81.
The first single When The Heartache Is Over from her upcoming album Twenty Four Seven reached the top 10 in England and was the next European hit. 2000: In January, Tina performed at the Super Bowl pre-game show at the Georgia Dome in Atlanta and in March, she embarked on her Twenty Four Seven Tour in Minneapolis, the most successful tour of her career. Guinness World Records announced that Tina sold more concert tickets than any other solo concert performer in music history. At the last show in Anaheim on December 6, Tina said goodbye and took a four year break from the music business. 2001: Ike reformed the Kings of Rhythm, taking them on an US tour with his new wife Jeanette as the lead singer. After the tour, he recorded his Grammy nominated album Here & Now.
2004: In October, the first single Open Arms from the upcoming greatest hits package was a moderate hit in Europe. The double CD album All The Best is Tina's highest charting album in America, where it reached #2 in it’s first week. In December, she received a „Lifetime Achievement Award“ from the Kennedy Center Honors in Washington. During the show, Queen Latifah performed What's Love Got To Do With It, Melissa Etheridge River Deep, Mountain High, Al Green Let's Stay Together and Beyonce Knowles Proud Mary. 2006: The duet Teach Me Again with Italian singer Elisa (taken from the movie All the Invisible Children) reached #1 in Italy. It's the very last physical single from Tina Turner. On October 8, Ike Turner married Audrey Madison.
2007: On February 11, Ike Turner won his first solo Grammy Award in the category „Best Traditional Blues Album“ for Risin' With The Blues. Only a few month later on December 12, he died at the age of 76 in his home in San Marcos, California. 2008: At the request of Beyonce Knowles, Tina performed at the 50th Annual Grammy Awards live on stage. In May, at a special Oprah Winfrey show in Las Vegas, she announced that she will go back on tour once more. The 50th Anniversary Tour opened in Kansas City at the Sprint Center in October. It was a massive success, with sold-out shows and many additional dates. 2009: The tour comes to an end on May 05 in Sheffield, England. The new double disc set TINA Live features Tina’s appearance at the Gelredome in the Netherlands, with the complete concert on DVD and selected tracks on compact disc.
Tina participated in the Beyond singing project, together with Regula Curti and Dechen Shak Dagsay. The album, released in June 2009, combines Buddhist chants and Christian choral music along with spiritual messages by Tina. Because of it’s success, it was re-issued as an expanded edition at the end of the year with additional chants from Tina. 2010: Ruby Alline Selico, Tina’s older sister, passed away in September. 2011: The second Beyond album Children Beyond contains prayers from the six greatest religions, performed by Tina, Regula, Dechen and 30 children. 2013: At the age of 73, Tina is the oldest cover girl on the Vogue magazine and looks stunning. On July 21, she gets married with her long-time partner Erwin Bach in Zurich, shortly after she received the Swiss citizenship.
2014: Just in time for Valentine's Day, the new compilation Love Songs hits the charts in England. In June, the third Beyond album Love Within features Tina’s wonderful interpretation of the gospel song „Amazing Grace“ and her self-penned track „I’m A Motherless Child,“ which was already recorded by Ike & Tina Turner for the album Outta Season in 1969. 2015: Because of it’s 30th Anniversary, Parlophone Records released Tina’s comeback album Private Dancer as a two disc Anniversary Edition. 2016: In January, Tina honored at a rare public appearance the Dutch producer Joop van den Ende in The Netherlands, who is also responsible for the production of her stage musical. On January 10, Tina’s duet partner and friend David Bowie died in New York City.
In December 2016, Tina was in London for a workshop with the cast of TINA - The Tina Turner Musical. 2017: At the launch party on October 17, she announced that Adrienne Warren will be playing the main part in the musical. The fourth and last Beyond album Awakening Beyond features once again a spiritual message spoken by Tina. 2018: On April 17, Tina and her husband Erwin were special guests at the musical premiere in London, together with many other celebrities like Rod Stewart. On July 03, Tina’s eldest son Craig Turner died at the age of 59 in his home in Studio City, California. At the launch party on October 23 at the Mojo Club in Hamburg, Tina presented Kristina Love, who plays her in the German version of the musical.
My Love Story, the second biography after her first best seller with I, Tina from 1986 came out in October and in November 2018, the classic track What’s Love Got To Do With It was released as a digital download in a brand new Symphonic Version, taken from the album 80’s Symphonic. On November 26, Tina celebrated her 80’s birthday with the release of the deluxe edition of the picture book That’s My Life, including 19 personal letters, 9 illustrations and 6 bonus items. 2019: On November 07, Tina was in New York at the opening of her musical in the Lunt-Fontanne Theatre on Broadway. After the show, she was together with the entire cast on stage and thanked everybody for the performance. 2020: The Dutch version of the musical premiered on February 09 at the Beatrix Theater in Utrecht with Nyassa Alberta playing the main part.
In July 2020, the Norwegian DJ Kygo released a remix of What’s Love Got To Do With It, which topped the download charts in America. In October, the long awaited fan edition of That’s My Life was released to bookstores and in November, the new book Happiness tells us Tina’s longstanding faith in Buddhism. 2021: Tina’s longtime assistant and friend Rhonda Graam passed away on January 13, as well as Ike & Tina’s former manager Gerhard Augustin on March 17. The new documentary TINA premiered on HBO on March 27, which feature a new interview with Tina Turner and an array of archival material from the past 60 years, including never-before-seen footage, audiotapes and personal photos. In July, the Foreign Affair (Deluxe Edition) was released on vinyl, CD and DVD.
On October 30, 2021, Tina was inducted as a solo artist into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame from Angela Basset at a ceremony in Cleveland, for which Tina sent a video message with her acceptance speech. Christina Aguilera, Mickey Guyton and H.E.R. with Keith Urban paid tribute to Tina with live performances of the songs River Deep, Mountain High, What’s Love Got To Do With It and It’s Only Love. Tina is the third artist to be a double inductee, after she was first inducted with Ike Turner in 1991. On December 05, her longtime musician and friend John Miles passed away at the age of 72 in his hometown of Newcastle: "Thank You For The Years, John!“ 2022: In September, TINA - The Tina Turner Musical started with a multi-year North American Tour and on November 25, one day before Tina’s 83th birthday, Parlophone Records released the Break Every Rule (Deluxe Edition) on 3 CD’s and 2 DVD’s.
On December 09, 2022, Ronnie Turner, Tina’s only son with Ike Turner died at his San Fernando Valley home. 2023: TINA The Musical opened March 16 in Stuttgart, Germany and in May in Sydney, Australia. On May 04, the exhibition Uma Viagem Para O Futuro (A Journey Into The Future) opened at the Museum of Image and Sound in Sao Paulo, Brazil. It features over 120 large-sized photographs, films and videos, music in different rooms, artistic installations, costumes and other objects as a testament to Tina's enduring influence. Tina Turner spoke for the last time to the media on April 08 in a Q&A for The Guardian before she passed away on May 24 at her home in Switzerland, aged 83, following a long illness. LOVE Tina…Anna Mae…Turner…Bullock. On September 28, the single Something Beautiful was released to promote the upcoming new album Queen Of Rock ’N’ Roll, a compilation of 55 songs with all of Tina’s solo singles, out on November 24.