Who needs a heart when a heart can be broken? We’re all singing that refrain today, as the world mourns the loss of legend and icon superstar Tina Turner. Born Anna Mae Bullock, Turner died on May 24, 2023, at her home in Switzerland following a long illness. She was 83 years old. Stars and fans flooded social media with heartfelt condolences and tributes to the "Queen of Rock 'n' Roll."
It’s hard to describe how important Turner was to popular music, but some friends like Oprah, Barack Obama, Angela Bassett, Bryan Adams, and more have tried today.
Shortly after her tragic death made headlines, her team took to the singer's Instagram account to confirm the heartbreaking news. "It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Tina Turner. With her music and her boundless passion for life, she enchanted millions of fans around the world and inspired the stars of tomorrow," they wrote alongside a black-and-white photo of Turner. "Today we say goodbye to a dear friend who leaves us all her greatest work: her music. All our heartfelt compassion goes out to her family. Tina, we will miss you dearly."
Supermodel Naomi Campbell also commented on the post with a heartbreaking message. "REST in Peace & Power THE QUEEN, LEGEND, ICON... Cherish my times with you." she wrote.
Also on Instagram, Oscar-nominated actress Angela Bassett, who famously portrayed Tina in the 1993 biopic “What’s Love Got To Do With It,” wrote, "Tina Turner showed others who lived in fear what a beautiful future filled with love, compassion, and freedom should look like. Her final words to me — for me — were 'You never mimicked me. Instead, you reached deep into your soul, found your inner Tina, and showed her to the world."
Oprah Winfrey, who famously donned a Tina wig during the performer’s appearance on her show, paid tribute to their time together on Instagram, writing, "I had the chance to join Tina onstage during her "Wildest Dreams" tour and felt a glimpse of her enchanted world. I was so nervous that my knees were actually knocking together."
Legendary Canadian rocker Bryan Adams, who recorded the chart-topping duet "It's Only Love" with Turner in 1985, tweeted, “ "I'll be forever grateful for the time we spent together on tour, in the studio and as friends,” before adding the iconic lyric to their duet, “It's Only Love...and that's all.”
Former and current POTUS Barack Obama and Joe Biden both took to Twitter to release statements about the “Proud Mary” crooner. "She was powerful. She was unstoppable. And she was unapologetically herself," Obama said, while Biden said Turner was "a once-in-a-generation talent that changed American music forever."
Longtime friend and collaborator Mick Jagger, who had Turner on tour with The Rolling Stones, and they also performed on stage during Live Aid, tweeted, “"I'm so saddened by the passing of my wonderful friend Tina Turner. She was truly an enormously talented performer and singer," Jagger wrote. "She helped me so much when I was young and I will never forget her."
Even Elton John had to give it up to Tina Turner, despite their previous feud being well documented. He called Turner "untouchable" and one of the world's "most exciting and electric performers."
In 2013, the "River Deep, Mountain High" singer suffered a stroke. After waking up one morning unable to talk, the musician was rushed to a nearby hospital. Turner detailed the frightening day in an interview with BBC, saying, "Immediately they took me in and said, 'It's a mild stroke from the back of the head,' and then they took me down in the room, and I didn't believe it."
She was diagnosed with intestinal cancer in 2016. Turner described surviving cancer, including having part of her intestine removed, in her memoir "My Love Story," via Survivor Net, saying, "I know that my medical adventure is far from over." After overcoming intestine cancer, kidney issues plagued Turner. At press time there has been no confirmation on the exact cause of death.