Tina Turner was born as Anna Mae Bullock in in Haywood County, Tennessee on November 26, 1939. She has had an incredible music career, including her work with Ike Turner and Phil Spector in the 1960s as well as her great solo work in the 1980s, including the album Private Dancer (1984).
In 1989, Turner released the album Foreign Affair, which did not do as well as Private Dancer, which had hits like “What’s Love Got to Do With It?” But Foreign Affair was a solid album and did include a song that became one of her signature hits, “The Best.” That song was written by Mike Chapman and Holly Knight and had previously been recorded by Bonnie Tyler.
Turner also did some great duets beyond her work with Ike, including a hit recording of “It’s Only Love” with Bryan Adams. Below she performs “Tonight” with David Bowie in 1985. The song was written by Bowie and Iggy Pop. This live version appeared on the live album Tina Live in Europe (1988).
On the Big Screen
Turner also appeared on the big screen, such as acting in the 1985 movie Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. She also appeared as the Acid Queen in The Who’s Tommy (1975).
In addition to acting on the big screen, she has been portrayed in a movie. Her abusive relationship with Ike Turner was portrayed in What’s Love Got to Do with It in 1993.
Turner followed those movies with some more music releases and performances. But she announced her semi-retirement in 2000 and formally retired from the stage in 2009.
Today, Turner lives in Switzerland with her husband, and she became a Swiss citizen in 2013. Unfortunately, we do not get to hear from her much nowadays. She of course deserves her privacy and happiness after the life she gave to us through her music.
But she did return to the stage in 2015 around her birthday to perform “The Best,” and she showed us that at 76 years of age she still was the best.
Absence as Solo Artist from Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
There is one thing that Turner deserves from us. While she was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame as the duo of Ike and Tina Turner, she has not yet been inducted as an individual artist, even though she has been eligible since 1998. She more than deserves it based on the quality of her solo work (not even addressing the way women have been treated in rock). So, hopefully the Hall will correct the injustice while she can still attend the induction.
And that brings me to my favorite Turner solo track, “Better Be Good To Me,” which is from Private Dancer and one of the best songs of the 1980s.
What is your favorite Tina Turner song? Leave your two cents in the comments.
(Some related Chimesfreedom posts.)