“It wasn’t a good life”, says Tina Turner, revisiting her own past, in the documentary “Tina”, released in 2021. The singer, who died this Wednesday (24) at 83, was referring, in large part, to the age of 16 when she was married to guitarist Ike Turner.
She met him at a concert, and they soon fell in love. They were married in a short time and formed a musical duo in the soul scene that was successful in the 1960s and 1970s.
But behind the spotlight, the couple’s routine was filled with fights and violence. Dependent on alcohol and drugs, Ike constantly cheated and attacked the singer. Several times, Tina got a black eye and lips injured by the attacks. Wigs and makeup were used to hide the marks.
In the biography “Tina Turner: My Love Story”, released in 2018, Tina said that her relationship was doomed to failure the day her then-husband realized that she would be his source of money. “He needed to control me, economically and psychologically, so that I could never leave him,” she wrote.
After 16 years, the artist abandoned her husband, but in court she proposed to give up all her assets to be able to use the surname that enshrined her.
In the song “What’s Love Got to Do With It?” (“What does love have to do with it?”), She seemed to make clear in some excerpts the domestic violence she suffered. “I’ve been thinking about taking a new turn / But I have to say / I’ve been thinking about protecting myself / This feeling scares me / Oh, what’s love got to do with it?”
Ike died after an overdose of cocaine in 2007. In 2013, the singer married German music executive Erwin Bach, then 57 years old, but they had been together for almost 30 years. In the biography “Tina Turner: My Love Story”, she revealed that Bach even donated a kidney to her after being affected by a kidney disease.