This is just an interlude in the legacy of Tina Turner. On my last post I covered her Ike and Tina Turner Revue years…to an extent. In this brief intermission I’ll hip you to the tunes she did while still on Ike’s short leash. Ike Turner was very business savvy man, he did give Anna Mae the stage name Tina Turner so that if she ever ran off HE would own and keep the name. There are other stories behind that but we’ll go with that one for now. Anyway, Who all thinks Private Dancer was Tina’s first solo album raise your hands I’ll wait. WELL YOU’RE ALL WRONG!!! Tina’s first solo album was Tina Turns The Country On!
It was released back in ’74 while she was still with Ike. Most of the tunes on that album were covers (of course) and it even gave her a Grammy nomination but it never went anywhere. Like…NEVER!
So anyway, skipping over that….attempt….lands us to a milestone in her career. Mainly her solo career because this was the last solo album she had while under Ike’s thumb. SO PAY ATTENTION YALL!!! Now back in ’75 Tina was “allowed” to do a film. During that time Ike was so high on drugs and Tina started chanting more and more so she had a lot more freedom. Not too much but just enough to spread her little wings a bit. The film she was allowed to do was entitled Tommy. Tommy was based on a Rock drama album made by the band called The Who back in ’69…..YALL STILL FOLLOWING?!?!? Alright, this film had just about everybody who was popular at the time. People like Elton John and Ann-Margret and Eric Clapton and Jack Nicholson and of course our Lil’ Anna Mae. Tina played the dramatic and dynamic role of The Acid Queen!!!!I’ll just let the song and scene speak for itself but personally…The Acid Queen is my spirit animal for Year 27. Get all the way into Tina’s first big screen performance yall!
I believe there are three versions of Tina’s cover of The Acid Queen. The one you see in her scene. There’s the Album Version and theres the Soundtrack Version. I also want to give an honorable mention to Patti Labelle for doing a terrific cover and performance of the song. But back to the actual Tina Turner Acid Queen album, as per usual its full of covers. But this time its Rock covers! I told yall around this time Tina was slowly sliding into her Rock groove. Slowly but surely her inner Rock Queen would awaken and this is the beginning. Side A of the album had her Led Zeppelin covers and The Rolling Stones and of course The Who. Side B was all Ike and Tina originals. They even had a little cute Rock/Country duet together with Ike actually singing above his guitar. Ike was always good for blending in the background and focusing on the band while Tina had all the major vocals. Well this time Ike said he wanted a piece of the pie and provided actual vocals…not whispers.
It did…ok, again not really a big seller but it gave Tina a sense of independence and freedom. The hit movie and another solo album, it was time for Tina to put on that white pantsuit and fly away. We wont get into the specifics of the immediate aftermath of the divorce and the turmoil she went through. For all of that you should read her autobiography I, Tina for the ACCURATE details. Well after Acid Queen came Rough in 1978. Again with the typical Tina Turner fashion, it was filled with Rock and Roll covers. There’s even a cover of an Elton John tune The Bitch Is Back!
Once again…little to moderate success but not a top top seller. None the less Tina Turner was making a name for herself being a solo act. Hey, she had bills to pay! SO lets move onto 1979…..Love Explosion.
Now like I said she needed to pay the bills and the rent was always due! This album, I dont understand why, was a complete departure from where she was heading musically. Disco and Funk was the theme of this project. Although it had one little stand out, a cover of the O’Jays classic Backstabbers.
Other than that it was really a sleeper attempt. Hey everyone has one right? During these years Tina had it rough but she prevailed. She made appearances everywhere she could and I mean everywhere! She appeared on The Hollywood Squares, had many performances on The Cher Show, stopped in on The Brady Bunch Hour and even had a spot on the Donnie and Marie Show. She was making her rounds and gathering her strength for what was to come and we all know what came next……