Tina Turner is one of the best soul singers of all time. She is a powerful, electric performer who wows fans through expressing deep emotion in her songs and her magnetic sex appeal. Beginning as a singing duo in the ’60s with her then-husband Ike Turner, to divulging intimate struggles with abuse, to making it on her own, she also has one of the most compelling comeback stories in music.
Though they were successful as a musical duo, Tina and Ike’s marriage was volatile. They were officially divorced in 1978, and with the Ike and Tina Turner Revue and marriage behind her, Turner’s solo career began. In 1983, it really got going when she recorded the cover of Al Green’s “Let’s Stay Together” which went to No. 6 in the U.K.
A year later her popularity exploded with her much-anticipated album Private Dancer, which went to No. 3, receiving critical and fan praise. Singles were led by the anthem “What’s Love Got to Do With It,” a No. 1 hit that earned Grammys for Best Female Pop Vocal Performance, Song of the Year, and Record of the Year.
At this point Turner cemented her solo reputation, becoming even more known for her energetic performances and raspy singing voice, plus her signature look of punk-style hair and short skirts that showed off her famous long legs.
In ’85, she starred in the post-apocalyptic Mad Max sequel, Mad Max Beyond Thunderdome with Mel Gibson. For the movie, she recorded the No. 2 pop track “We Don’t Need Another Hero” and the No. 15 “One of the Living,” which won Best Female Rock Performance at the Grammys.
Turner published her autobiography, I, Tina, in ’86, detailing the abuse during her marriage and a suicide attempt in 1968. In ’86 she also released Break Every Rule with the fun single “Typical Male,” which went to No. 2, plus “Two People” and “What You Get is What You See.”
She continued putting on incredible live shows, touring constantly. Always popular in Europe, particularly England, she released Tina Live in Europe in 1988. Though it did not excel on the charts it won the Grammy for Female Rock Vocal Performance.
Foreign Affair came out a year later, featuring the No. 15 single “The Best” with sax solo by Edgar Winter. It was very successful in the U.S. and outsold Private Dancer in the U.K. In 1990 she and Rod Stewart remade the Marvin Gaye-Tammi Terrell duet “It Takes Two,” which went to No. 5 in the U.K. and a year later her greatest hits, Simply the Best, went to No. 1 in the U.K.