Tina Turner is one of the greatest rock and roll singers to ever step in front of a microphone. She’s been dubbed “The Queen of Rock n Roll” and is a member of that genre’s hall of fame. Rolling Stone magazine placed her at #63 on their greatest artists of all-time list and #17 on their rundown of greatest singers. She’s won eight Grammy awards and sold more than 100 million records during her legendary career that started in 1958. Turner has her own star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and a stretch of Tennessee highway is named in her honor. In 2005, Turner was recognized by the Kennedy Center Honors, one of the highest accolades an artist can receive in the United States.
Turner has moved a bunch of records but album sales and chart positions really aren’t her thing (her records generally place higher on U.K. charts then they do in the U.S.). What separates Turner from mere mortals is her ability to perform. Saying Turner is an energetic and dynamic performer is an understatement. She’s one of the greatest entertainers to ever grace the stage in any genre in any era. Over the years, Turner has performed with the biggest names in popular music including Mick Jagger, Rod Stewart, David Bowie, Sting, Barry White, and Bryan Adams.
Turner began her career singing for Ike Turner and his band. Throughout the 1960s, Turner toured incessantly. She was so good on the stage that she could pack houses without a hit record to promote. The pinnacle of this era of Turner’s career came in 1971 when she and Ike released a cover of “Proud Mary.”
Turner’s relationship with Ike was magical on stage but abusive off of it. In the mid-1970s, Ike’s substance abuse problems hampered his music ability. He also frequently abused Turner. In July of 1976, after a fight in Dallas, Tina left Ike. She filed for divorce later that month and it was finally made official on March 29, 1978. To keep her name stage name (she was born “Anna Mae Bullock”), Turner agreed to take on the severe financial burden caused by her divorce as well as a sizable tax lien.
Turner made a huge comeback in 1984 with the release of the album Private Dancer. The opus contains the popular songs "What's Love Got to Do with It," "Private Dancer,” and "Better Be Good to Me.” Her historic comeback was furthered by a well-received role in the 1985 film Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome. In 1986, Turner released her autobiography, I, Tina. The tell-all book was turned into a film (What’s Love Got to Do With It) in 1993.