Tina Turner's Dramatic Escape and Triumphant Return

By Jack Ripley | December 6, 2023

Tina Turner Was Born Anna Mae Lubbock, 1939

The legendary Tina Turner, renowned for her explosive voice and electrifying stage presence, did not always bask in the spotlight's warm glow. In the heart of her story lies a harrowing struggle - one where she faced the daunting challenge of an abusive relationship and a fight for personal and professional freedom.

Our gallery takes you through the various stages of her journey, presenting a poignant exploration of her life off-stage. We begin with Tina's early years with Ike Turner, a chapter marked by both professional growth and personal turmoil. Tina's story serves as a testament to the indomitable spirit of a woman who refused to be defined by her circumstances. She was a beacon of resilience, strength, and unstoppable talent: Miss Tina Turner! 

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Tina Turner was born as Anna Mae Bullock on November 26, 1939, in the small town of Nutbush, Tennessee. When she was still a young girl, both of her parents, Zelma and Floyd Bullock, left town, leaving Tina and her sisters to be raised by their grandmother in Brownsville, Tennessee. Sadly, her grandmother died when Tina was 16, and so Tina ended up reuniting with her mother despite their strained relationship. They lived together in St. Louis, Missouri, which was where Tina's music career was launched. 

Ike and Tina Turner Married, 1962

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(Getty Images)

In 1962, Ike and Tina got married, but the wedding - and marriage - were far from fairytale-esque. Twenty-two year-old Tina felt too afraid to turn Ike down, and so he hurried her across the border to Tijuana for a fast marriage - and right after, to a sex show.

People can't imagine the kind of man he was - a man who takes his brand new wife to a live, pornographic sex show right after their marriage ceremony...the experience was so disturbing... I suppressed it, scratched it out and created a different scenario, a fantasy of romantic elopement. I was miserable the whole time, on the verge of tears, but there was no escape.