The Truth About Tina Turner’s Turbulent Marriage To Ike Turner

Tina Turner, who is also known as the “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” has been at the forefront of the music industry since the late 1950s when she began her career in Ike Turner’s Kings of Rhythm band (via Smooth Radio). While fans enjoyed the music of the husband and wife duo, many didn’t know for years that there was abuse going on behind closed doors. Ike and Tina Turner were married for 16 years, and the “Proud Mary” singer left him in 1976, with a divorce finalized in 1978. Together, the couple had two sons, Ronald Renelle Turner and Craig Raymond Turner.

The BBC reported that Tina was only 22 when she fell in love with Ike. She’s since revealed the number of horrible things her ex-husband had done to her. The famed singer shocked fans when she shared, via the Daily Mail, that Ike forced her to attend a live sex show the night of their wedding, saying the “experience was so disturbing … I suppressed it, scratched it out.”

The dark side of Ike and Tina Turner's marriage

W Magazine recounted that one altercation between the singing duo was due to Ike becoming enraged that she wouldn’t change her name. Tina recalled the confrontation, explaining she just didn’t feel like changing her name, saying, “First, he was verbally abusive. Then, he picked up a wooden shoe stretcher. Ike knew what he was doing. If you play guitar, you never use your fists in a fight. He used the shoe stretcher to strike me in the head — always the head.”

There were plenty of red flags that were ignored, especially when Ike refused the idea of a big wedding and instead drove to Tijuana, Mexico, to try and find a justice of the peace (per Madamenoire). The “Better Be Good to Me” singer told the Daily Mail that “People can’t imagine the kind of man he was.” But instead of running away, she put on a happy face on their return to Los Angeles. In her memoir – I, Tina – she revealed that he began abusing her from their wedding day and never stopped, but Tina Turner always knew she was meant to survive (via EW).

Tina Turner found love again

Ike Turner even admitted to slapping Tina in his own autobiography, Takin’ Back My Name (per Air Ship Daily). Ike claimed he never wanted to marry Tina and that she tricked him while he was drunk. To make fans more irate, he said he only stayed in the marriage because she became pregnant. While he admitted to being way into drinking, drugs, and women — a rock ‘n roller’s kryptonite — he also failed to take any blame, often placing it all upon Tina’s shoulders.

Tina finally found her voice and was able to have her own Independence Day on July 27, 1976, when she filed for divorce on the grounds of irreconcilable differences. The couple battled for two years, but their divorce became official on March 29, 1978 (per iHeart Radio). Thankfully, Tina Turner found love again with husband Erwin Bach, a music executive (per People). The 81-year-old now lives happily in Zurich, which for her is simply the best ending to her story.

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