TINA: Rock-n-Roll, Powerful, & Beloved Icon

“Three things cannot be long hidden: the sun, the moon, and the truth.” – Buddha

The HBO Max documentary of Anna Mae Bullock, also known as Tina Turner, premiered on the streaming service March 27, 2021. We get a full look into the incomparable woman that is TINA.

Despite the 16+ years of a tumultuous era with Ike Turner. She found the power within herself through Buddhism and began to create her own identity.

Without giving too much away from the film, Tina reveals an enormous life of abuse and neglect since childhood. She admits, “I didn’t live a good life. The good didn’t outweigh the bad.” A painful sentiment to make in the wake of inspiring so many others with her art and history. Nonetheless, it’s her truth.

It never came to mind whether Tina saw the film, “What’s Love Got To Do With It?” She produced it, based on her autobiography, I, Tina. Why wouldn’t she have seen it? A reporter asked this exact question at the film’s press conference. Tina responded, “why would I want to see and relive those abusive moments?”

She challenged the lack of empathy and human dignity from the media and the world. It showed there was no recognition or respect of a Black woman’s trauma; And it still shows to this day.

After moving past Ike and everything that came with him, the world did not. The media continuously brought up her ex-husband in every conversation. Yet, Tina responded with grace and well-wishes. A very generous woman. The documentary shows one clip where she becomes visibly flushed from a journalist’s question. He asks her about the man that sexually and physically degraded her for over 16 years. In that moment, she still found the strength to answer him.

It became clear why older women, including my mother, tremendously admire Tina Turner. In times of the 1960s and 70s, it was taboo and frowned upon for women to divorce from men. Particularly in Tina’s case, Ike walked away with all of her money, assets, and royalties. Yet she did it anyways. The only thing she kept was her name, which he labeled her without notice upon the band’s inception.

Tina took her name and created a brand of her own, as a solo act, autobiographical book and film, albums, and tours. She became to truly represent an independent woman. Independent from a man, style-genre, and ageism. Tina found solo success in her 40s and 50s! She defied all social and industry standards, and that’s why women love her.

This documentary inadvertently presented a clear parallel of Beyoncé’s on-stage performances to Tina Turner. The loose-curled afro with blonde hair and dark roots. The glittery-sequenced short dresses, and high-power choreography. Even the powerful alto and vibrato pitch of voice. The comparisons were endless.

Beyoncé is the daughter of Tina Knowles, but definitely Tina Turner, too.

In an archived interview from the late 80s, Tina goes on to question, “How did I survive so long without love?” In that same recording, she revealed she never had a true love affair. It would only be a few more years until she finally met the love of her life, Erwin Bach. He was her driver and Tina made the first move. They’ve been together for over 27 years now and it took that time for them to get married.

This documentary serves as a public goodbye from the legendary rock-n-roll singer. She currently resides in Zurich, Switzerland with her husband Erwin and finally gets the happily-ever-after she so longly deserves.

TINA shows viewers a great example of how to recognize your power and take it.

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