As fans may have already seen, the Tina Turner documentary Tina premiered over the weekend on HBO, and if you were looking for a puff piece on her first time singing What’s Love Got To Do With It, you may want to look elsewhere.
No, what the living legend has given us is something much sadder — and, as she and second husband Erwin Bach reveal, something much more final.
The couple have spent decades living abroad in Zürich, Switzerland, but at one point in the doc they make a trip to the US for the 2019 Broadway premiere of the stage show Tina: The Tina Turner Story. It’s at this time that Tina reveals this is her final curtain call as a performer. As Bach reveals:
“She said, ‘I’m going to America to say goodbye to my American fans and I’ll wrap it up.’ And I think this documentary and the play, this is it — it’s a closure.”
Goodbye? Oh no…
At 81 years old, Tina has certainly earned her retirement. Besides her health issues — she has suffered a stroke, a kidney transplant, and a cancer battle in recent years — she also points out in the doc just how tough her life has been. She laments:
“It wasn’t a good life. The good did not balance the bad. I had an abusive life, there’s no other way to tell the story. It’s a reality. It’s a truth. That’s what you’ve got, so you have to accept it.”
As has been widely reported — and of course dramatized by Angela Bassett and Lawrence Fishburne in the biopic What’s Love Got To Do With It? — Tina suffered years of domestic abuse at the hands of her first husband, producer Ike Turner.
In the new film we learn Tina actually suffers from PTSD to this day from the abuse. Even throughout that pain she was able to accomplish wonders; she won 12 Grammys, she was the first woman AND first Black artist to ever cover Rolling Stone magazine, she set a Guinness World Record for largest paying audience in a 1988 concert — performing for about 180,000 people in the Maracanã Stadium — AND she was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.
But while she had many years of being a star, even an icon, she’s tired now, ready to give it up. She explains:
“Some people say the life that I lived and the performances that I gave, the appreciation, is blasting with the people. And yeah, I should be proud of that. I am. But when do you stop being proud? I mean, when do you, how do you bow out slowly? Just go away?”
This was a hell of a way to say goodbye. With just a huge, unfiltered burst of honesty and realness.
Tina is playing on HBO now. Ch-ch-check out the trailer for yourself (below):
[Image via HBO/YouTube.]