Ike Turner Jr. was a famous American musician, band player, songwriter, and song producer. He was born on 5 November 1931 and died on December 17, 2007. He is considered the God and the inventor of rock and roll music, he achieved various awards during his music career.
He worked in 1950s R&B, and post-jump blues. He was a master in playing various instruments Guitar, Keyboard, Piano, and vocals. Some of his famous labels are Chess, Cobra, Flair, Federal, King, Modern, RPM, Sun, Sue, Sonja, Innis, Pompeii, Liberty, United Artists, Fantasy, and Zoho Roots.
This famous artist was also a drug addict and due to his cocaine addiction, he got into various legal troubles. He was in prison for 15 years which impacted his image in the industry. Turner was also ranked as the best guitarist in the world’s best 100 guitarists.
Ike Turner Jr. Early life
Born on 5 November 1931 in Clarksdale, Mississippi. He belonged to an ethnic group called Creole. His father Izear Luster Turner was Baptist a Protestantism distinguished by baptizing and professing Christian believers whereas his mother was a seamstress. Due to his ethnicity growing up he and his family faced a lot of difficulties, when he talked about his childhood he said ‘Life was hard. His father was beaten up very badly and was left to die by a white furious mob in the assumption of an affair, his father died after a few days and life became more miserable.
His mother was broken and no one can help them. His mother was the only bread earner and things were hard. After a few years, his mother married an alcoholic, and trouble became more serious. He was violent toward him and his older sibling Lee Ethel Knight but the family managed to survive after a few years his mother died.
His early life was a nightmare and until he was alive, he suffered through child traumas until he was an adult. He got into Booker T. Washington Elementary School and when he used to go to school, on his way he was lured by a lady name Miss Boozie and was sexually assaulted by her at the age of six. That six-year aged boy didn’t know, what was happening to him but it fed his mind. He changed his School but the evil continued and at the age of twelve he was assaulted and raped by another lady who used to live near his house. After a few years of suffering, he decided to take his family’s responsibility into his own hands and he quit his education and started working.
His first job was as an elevator operator at a hotel downtown. Little Turner became mature at a very early stage and also started working part-time in other places too. At that point in his life, he was inspired by DJ Early Wright, and inspired by him he became very passionate about music. The world didn’t know that this elevator operator is one day going to operate the whole music industry. Due to his curiosity towards music he often used to see DJ shows in his hotel. DJ John Friskillo, taught him to play DJ and later became his mentor in his music career. Turner became a DJ and gave several hits.
He was 13 at that time when this all happened, his passion for music grew more condensed, and he learned piano and got the chance to associate with Sonny Boy Williamson II. He grew up playing and experimenting with different instruments. He played boggle woggle piano, a piano in a genre of blues music that was popular in 1920. Its cultural origin was from Piney Woods Northeast Texas, the U.S. It’s more of a Rock and Roll vibe. He learned it from Pinetop Perkins. But as he likes experimenting and learning as a musician he started learning guitar, which later became a big part of his career. He was a hard instrumental player with heavier metallic, achieving a strong tone. He used electric guitars.
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Ike Turner’s Personal Life
Apart from the publicity in his music career he also had negative publicity in his personal life due to failed and abusive marriages and drug addiction.
Turner was not at all a drug addict person, but at the age of 31, his life changed completely he was introduced to drugs by two very famous people in the music industry they were Elvis Presley and Redd Foxx. Bad company ruined his whole personal and professional life, he started using different types of alluring substances he used those things to give him more sources of creativity while writing songs or playing piano. After a few years of intense addiction, he was caught red-handed and that took him to court trials but he was released free because of the absence of proof.
He became so addicted to drugs that his whole nasal system was damaged and he began smoking crack cocaine, and just kept taking drugs.
He got caught by the SWAT team who found a hand grenade and seven grams of raw cocaine for this crime he was sentenced to jail but the artist didn’t stop there and in 1981 he got arrested for an attempt to murder charge. In 1985 he got arrested under the charge of selling cocaine. Turner had several incidents further in his life where he was found accused of selling cocaine.
His personal life was a huge controversial drama. He has claimed to have 14 wives in his entire life span. His first was Edna Dean Stewart of Ruleville Mississippi, the relationship broke off in four years.
On 19 September 1950, he married Velma Davis and after two years he got married to Rosa Lee Sane in West Memphis, Arkansas. On September 24, 1952, he got married to Bonnie Turner in Clarksdale she was a member of the Kings of Rhythm team this marriage also didn’t last for a long time and they got divorced. Later he got engaged to his team member’s girlfriend Alice and this also turned into a broken marriage in a few years, then he got into an affair with Mae Wilson and they both got married in Mississippi. Turner’s luck with love and marriage didn’t get that well in his entire life, he got married to Anna Bullock and with that marriage, he became the father of Ronnie Turner. In one of his interviews he said that the only lady he had a passionate love for was Tina Turner, he wrote love letters to her but their marriage didn’t go well because of his activities. Tina Turner and Ike turner had an abusive marriage which got various negative publicity at that time.
Talking about his children he was the father of six, but as per the sources, he had other children too but they were not proven legally as his kids.
He was the father was Ronnie Turner who later became a famous musician and actor, Michael Turner, Ronnie Turner, and his stepdaughters Mia Turner and Twanna Melby Turner.
Ike Turner Career
He was the godfather of the Rock and Roll music industry. A magnificent songwriter and musician. In 1946 he lay the foundation of ‘The Kings of Rhythm’, this was a group of guitarists, drummers, and pianists who together formed and created some of the greatest hits, recording ‘Rocket 88’ was a number-one hit in 1951. It was made at Sam Phillip’s Memphis and was released on the Chess label. He later formed another group of musicians and created Howlin’ Wolf, B.B Kings, and others. In 1951 he began as a talent scout, and he recorded two Howlin’ Wolf tracks for Phillip. He recorded ‘How Many More Years’ and ‘Moanin at Midnight, followed by ‘Little Walter’.
Turner collaborated with Little Junior Parker and formed a band named ‘Matt Guitar Murphy. His first solo recording was ‘You’re My Angel’ and ‘Bad Women, Bad Whisky’. Turner also collaborated with other singers and vocalists and published ‘My heart belongs to you and ‘Looking for My Baby’ in September 1952. Some of his famous albums were Rocks, The Blues, Crown, and A Black Man’s Soul. Blue Roots, Bad Dreams, The Edge, Here and Now, and Risin’ with the Blues. Turner’s best compilations are ‘I’m Tore Up in 1976, Hey Hey, Red Lightin, The Sun Sessions, His Woman, Her Man, The Bad Man, and King Cobra 2004 were his most significant works.
Ike Turner Awards and Nominations
Turner has received various awards in his lifetime, for his role in the music world. He has been awarded Grammy Awards for Best R&B Vocal Performance and won an award for Best Traditional Blues Album followed by six Grammy Awards nominations. He achieved a Grammy Hall of Fame. He got nominated for Independent Music Awards for his work Risin’ with the Blues. He was also given the honor of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He got inducted for two of his albums ‘Rocket 88’ and ‘Ike Turner’ into the Blue Hall of Fame.
He received Blues Music Awards for five consecutive albums of which ‘Here and Now’ won the award. He got inducted into the St. Louis Walk of Fame in the year 2001, and after the following year, he got inducted into the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fames, he won the Memphis Heroes Awards in 2004, Guitar Center’s Rock Walk, Mojo Legend Award in 2007, Clarksdale Walk of Fame in 2010 and inducted into Rhythms of Blues Music Hall of Fames in the year 2015.