Tina Turner Discusses Ike Owning Her Name and Her Legacy in Oprah Interview
What's in a name? For Anna Mae Bullock, it was everything. We know Bullock better as Tina Turner, the rock legend who was rechristened by her then-husband and abuser Ike Turner in 1959.
In an interview airing Sunday night at 9/8 CT on Oprah's Next Chapter on OWN, Turner reveals, "Ike's problem was that he was a musician that always wanted to be a star; and was a star, locally, but never internationally...so he then changed the name to Ike and changed my name to Tina because if I ran away, Tina was his name. It was patented as you call it."
"So he could own you," Oprah interjects.
"So he could own me," Turner continues. "He was smart. He wasn't an educated smart man, but has a common sense."
Turner made that reveal during an exclusive interview with Oprah in the South of France, just weeks after her July 14 private wedding to her longtime partner, 57-year-old German record executive Erwin Bach. In her chat with Oprah, Turner admits that she was antsy to finally tie the knot to Bach after more than 25 years together. "I have to tell you, because I started to plan it January, and I had really gotten tired, I was tired of thinking about it. I was tired of waiting for the day. I wanted to get in the car and go to Italy before it's time," Turner says.
The third-time bride was also concerned that she'd miss some of the action on her wedding day. "And then I said to Erwin, 'You know what, darling, I'm gonna miss all of — I won't see it. So then he started to think for me, so he said, 'You know what, if we get a place in the house where you can sit and peek and look, watch people coming in... So I stood in the window and I had it open just enough and you could see my face reacting to certain people. Some I was laughing. And some was awesome. Those ladies' dresses were beautiful."
During the interview, Oprah also asked the 73-year-old "What's Love Got to Do With It" singer about her legacy. Turner responds, "Endurance," adding, "You know, let's find a word for it if endurance isn't. I endured hardship all the way. It was stay on course. Stay focused. Never smoking. Never drinking. Never doing drugs. My legacy is that I stayed on course...from the beginning to the end, because I believed in something inside of me."
"That told me that it can get better or you can make something better and that I wanted better," Turner adds. "So my legacy is a person that strived for wanting it better and got it."