Tina Turner, the American-Swiss singer who rose to fame as the lead vocalist of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue, died on Wednesday. She was 83.
According to her representative, she passed away peacefully at home after a long illness in Kusnacht, Switzerland.
Born in Brownsville, Tennessee, Turner began her career in the late 1950s and made herself known alongside Ike Turner with a number of hit songs including “A Fool in Love”, “Proud Mary”, “It’s Gonna Work Out Fine”, “Nutbush City Limits”, and “River Deep – Mountain High.” The duo eventually parted ways in 1976.
Several years later in 1984, she made a comeback with her album Private Dancer, which included the Grammy Award-winning title “What’s Love Got to Do With It”. It also reached the top of the Billboard Hot 100 chart, which made her the oldest female solo recording artist to achieve such a feat (she was 44 at the time).
A number of successful singles soon followed including “Typical Male”, “Better Be Good to Me”, “GoldenEye”, “Private Dancer”, “The Best”, and “We Don’t Need Another Hero (Thunderdome). In 1988, she also set a Guinness World Record during her Break Every Rule World Tour, for the largest paying audience for a solo singer.
By the 2000s, she had become one of the best-selling recording artists of all time with more than 100 million records sold worldwide. In total, she received three Grammy Hall of Fame Awards, eight Grammy Competitive Awards, and a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. She’s also the first woman and first black artist to be featured on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine.
In addition to her music career, she also acted in a number of films including Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome (1985) and Tommy (1975). In 1993, she also starred in the biographical film What’s Love Got to Do with It, which was adapted from her autobiography.
She later released a second memoir titled My Love Story in 2018, in which she revealed she suffered from several life-threatening conditions. In addition to high blood pressure, she was diagnosed with intestinal cancer, which eventually led to kidney failure. At one point, she considered euthanasia as her chances of receiving a new kidney were low. However, her husband Bach stepped in to donate a kidney to her. She had the transplant surgery in 2017.
Turner is survived by two sons and her husband. Her oldest son, Craig Turner, died of suicide at the age of 59 in 2018. Ronnie Turner, whom she shared with her ex-husband, died at the age of 62 in 2022.