Tributes flow for Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll Tina Turner


  1. Tina Turner – the singer who became a superstar with hits like The Best and What’s Love Got to Do With It – has died in Switzerland aged 83 after a long illness
  2. Dubbed the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll, she was famed for her raunchy and energetic stage performances and husky, powerful vocals
  3. Roger Davies, her manager of 30 years, called the US singer a “force of nature”
  4. Fellow soul star Diana Ross said she was “shocked” and “saddened” by the news, while Gloria Gaynor called Turner an “iconic legend” who “paved the way for so many women in rock music”
  5. Sir Mick Jagger has paid tribute to his “wonderful friend”, and Sir Elton John labelled the late performer “a total legend on record and on stage”
  6. Turner rose to fame alongside husband Ike in the 1960s with songs including Proud Mary and River Deep, Mountain High
  7. She divorced the abusive Ike in 1978, and went on to find even greater success as a solo artist in the 1980s
  8. Her career spanned half a century and produced R&B, soul, rock and pop hits. She retired in 2009.
A photo of Turner adorned with flowers on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in Los Angeles – Reuters

… Which we’re drawing to a close shortly. We’ve been taking in the reaction to the death in Switzerland of Tina Turner. The multiple Grammy Award-winning star was 83.

From the Obamas to OprahBeyonce to Brian Wilson, numerous big names have been celebrating the life of the late soul star. Many quoted one of her top hits back to her, saying she was “simply the best”. 

As well as saluting her musical achievements, others paid tribute to her escape from an abusive relationship. As Mariah Carey put it, she was a “survivor and an inspiration to women everywhere”.

You can find our full writeup of the tributes here. As for where else to head next, why not check out Tina Turner’s life in pictures, or dive into her top 10 songs and the stories behind them?

Or revisit her 2018 BBC interview in which she recalled her experiences of domestic abuse.

This page was the work of Nathan Williams, Alys Davies, Malu Cursino, Helen Bushby, Ian Youngs, Aoife Walsh, Jasmine Andersson, Frances Mao, Derek Cai, Patrick Jackson and me.

Biden and showbiz stars offer tributes

Before wrapping up this live page, let’s pull together a few more of the tributes we’ve seen.

  • US President Joe Biden said Turner had “changed American music forever”, having grown up as a farmer’s daughter in Tennessee
  • Hip-hop pioneer Grandmaster Flash hailed Turner’s “ultimate strength” in overcoming personal difficulties to become a “superstar”
  • Turner was labelled an “absolutely brilliant performer” by fellow singer Bette Midler
  • English singer Paloma Faith described Turner as “one of my greatest influences and inspirations”
  • Oscar-winning actress Halle Berry saluted the late star’s “conversation, her spirit, her depth of character, her grace and most of all her ability to be ordinary and a LEGEND at the [same] time!”
  • Sex and the City star Sarah Jessica Parker joined others in quoting Turner’s own lyrics, saying she was “simply the best”
  • And another actress, Rosario Dawson, commented: “Legends never die”

Tina Turner’s Nutbush an iconic Australian phenomenon

Tiffanie Turnbull

BBC News, Sydney

Turner’s rousing hits were beloved the world over. And in Australia, Nutbush City Limits has become baked into the culture.

It’s one song guaranteed to get Australians moving – and everyone knows the steps to the dance.

A staple at weddings, discos and even school playgrounds, when the opening bars of the song play, Australians literally line up on the dancefloor.

For decades, Australians have been learning the steps to the associated line dance as kids – often at school – and we proudly hold world record for the biggest Nutbush, set by 4084 people in Queensland last year.

Participants at the Nutbush dance world record attempt – Getty image

Why is Australia obsessed? No one really knows.

One theory is that the dance was as part of some schools’ physical education curriculum, but one performance history expert told the Sydney Morning Herald it simply spread “not by word of mouth, but word of foot”.

Tina musical star pays tribute in London

Tina Turner speaks on stage in Germany 2019 – alongside Kristina Love, the musical star portraying her

As we mentioned in our earlier post, a musical based on the life and music of Tina Turner is currently playing in London. Its star paid tribute on stage after the news of her death broke during Wednesday’s performance.

Kristina Love recalled meeting the real Tina when she first played the role in 2018. “She did everything to make me feel comfortable with the mammoth task ahead in playing her,” she recalled.

“And she told me on that day, ‘Kristina, don’t imitate me, because there will only be one me and there will only be one you. Find yourself within my story.’

“I think that’s why we’re all here tonight, from all different racial backgrounds, from all different nationalities,” Love told the audience. “We’ve come here tonight because one woman boldly lived her life, from cotton fields to international stardom.


“You all have found yourselves in her story, in her music, and we’re all here today. So tonight, we’re going to party because we know there’s a huge party is heaven right now.”

Why Tina Turner was living in Switzerland

In 1985, she met her partner Erwich Bach, a Germany-based music executive and started dating a year later.

The pair since 1994 had been living in a lake house called Chateau Algonquin in Zurich.

Turner then gave up her US citizenship in 2013 and became a citizen of Switzerland – and it was where she would remain until her death.

Her public relations agency said at that time that Turner felt a connection to the country and valued the privacy that Switzerland provided her. 

She had faced a number of health problems in recent years, including a stroke, intestinal cancer and total kidney failure that required an organ transplant, People Magazine reported.

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