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Sun, 11.26.1939

Tina Turner, Singer born

Tina Turner

*Tina Turner was born on this date in 1939.  She was a Black singer, songwriter, and actress.

Tina Turner was born Anna Mae Bullock in Brownsville, Tennessee, Zelma Priscilla (née Currie) and Floyd Richard Bullock. The family lived in the nearby rural unincorporated community of Nutbush, Tennessee. Her father worked as an overseer of the sharecroppers at Poindexter Farm on Highway 180; she later recalled picking cotton with her family at an early age.

She had two older sisters, Evelyn Juanita Currie and Ruby Alline Bullock. She is also the first cousin, once removed, of Eugene Bridges. The three sisters were separated as young children when their parents relocated to Knoxville, Tennessee, to work at a defense facility during World War II. Bullock went to stay with her strict, religious paternal grandparents, Alex and Roxanna Bullock, who were deacons and deaconesses at the Woodlawn Missionary Baptist Church. After the war, the sisters reunited with their parents and moved with them to Knoxville. Two years later, the family returned to Nutbush to live in the Flagg Grove community, where Bullock attended Flagg Grove Elementary School from first through eighth grade.

Bullock sang in the church choir at Nutbush's Spring Hill Baptist Church as a young girl. When she was 11, her mother, Zelma, ran off to St. Louis after her abusive relationship with Floyd. Two years after her mother left the family, her father married another woman and moved to Detroit in 1952. Bullock and her sisters lived with their maternal grandmother, Georgeanna Currie, in Brownsville, Tennessee. In her autobiography, she felt her mother didn't love her, and she "wasn't wanted," and her mother planned to leave her father when pregnant with her. "She was a very young woman who didn't want another kid," Turner wrote.

Bullock worked as a domestic worker for the Henderson family as a teenager. While at the Henderson house, her half-sister Evelyn died in a car crash alongside Margaret and Vela Evans. Bullock, a self-professed tomboy, joined the cheerleading squad and the female basketball team at Carver High School in Brownsville and "socialized every chance she got." When Bullock was 16, her grandmother died, so she lived with her mother in St. Louis. She graduated from Sumner High School in 1958. After graduation, Bullock worked as a nurse's aide at Barnes-Jewish Hospital.

She began her career with Ike Turner's Kings of Rhythm in 1957. Under the name Little Ann, she appeared on her first record, "Boxtop," in 1958. In 1960, she was introduced as Tina Turner with the hit duet single "A Fool in Love." With their popularity growing, Ike and Tina were married in Tijuana, Mexico, in 1962. Two years later, their son, Ronnie, was born. They had four sons, one from an earlier relationship of Tina's and two from an earlier relationship with Ike.  Turner rose to prominence as the lead singer of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue before launching a successful career as a solo performer.

The duo Ike & Tina Turner became "one of the most formidable live acts in history." They released hits such as "It's Gonna Work Out Fine," "River Deep – Mountain High," "Proud Mary," and "Nutbush City Limits" before disbanding in 1976. Her 1984 multi-platinum album Private Dancer contained the hit song "What's Love Got to Do with It," which won the Grammy Award for Record of the Year and became her first and only No.1 on the Billboard Hot 100.

At age 44, she was the oldest female solo artist to top the Hot 100. Her chart success continued with "Better Be Good to Me," "Private Dancer," "We Don't Need Another Hero (Thunderdome)," "Typical Male," "The Best," "I Don't Wanna Fight," and "GoldenEye." Turner also acted in the films Tommy (1975), Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985), and Last Action Hero (1993). In 1993, What's Love Got to Do with It was released. Widely referred to as the "Queen of Rock' n' Roll," she is regarded as one of the greatest music artists of the 20th century. In 2009, Turner retired after completing her Tina! The 50th Anniversary Tour is one of the highest-grossing tours of all time.

In 2018, she became the subject of the jukebox musical Tina. Having sold over 100 million records worldwide, Turner is one of the best-selling recording artists ever. She has received 12 Grammy Awards, including eight competitive awards, three Hall of Fame awards, and a Lifetime Achievement Award. She is the first black artist and female to be on the cover of Rolling StoneRolling Stone ranked her among the 100 Greatest Artists of All Time and the 100 Greatest Singers.

She stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the St. Louis Walk of Fame. She is a two-time inductee into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, with Ike Turner in 1991 and a solo artist in 2021. Turner is also a 2005 recipient of the Kennedy Center Honors and Women of the Year award. In 2005, Turner received the Kennedy Center Honors. Several artists paid tribute to her that night, including Melissa Etheridge (performing "River Deep – Mountain High"), Queen Latifah (performing "What's Love Got to Do with It"), Beyoncé (performing "Proud Mary"), and Al Green (performing "Let's Stay Together").

In 2013, Turner applied for Swiss citizenship; she undertook a mandatory citizenship test that included advanced German knowledge and Swiss history. On April 22, 2013, she became a citizen of Switzerland. Turner signed the paperwork to give up her American citizenship at the U.S. embassy in Bern on October 24, 2013. In 2013, three weeks after her wedding to Erwin Bach, she suffered a stroke and learned to walk again. In 2016, she was diagnosed with intestinal cancer. Turner opted for homeopathic remedies to treat her high blood pressure, resulting in kidney damage and eventual kidney failure. Her chances of receiving a kidney were low, and she started dialysis.

In July 2018, her oldest son, Craig Raymond Turner, committed suicide at 59.  She had kidney transplant surgery on April 7, 2017. In 2021, Turner was inducted by Angela Bassett into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as a solo artist. Keith Urban and H.E.R. performed "It's Only Love," Mickey Guyton performed "What's Love Got to Do with It," and Christina Aguilera performed "River Deep – Mountain High."

Tina Turner, a legendary singer, died after a long illness at her home near Zurich in Switzerland on May 24, 2023, at 83.

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