Five Reasons Tina Turner Should Be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame

Tina Turner in 1983
Photo Credit
David Corio/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

With the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame's Class of 2021 nominees being voted on (by fans and official members) as we speak, now is as important a time as any to remind folks of what each potential inductee brings to the table, culturally speaking. Tina Turner's story may be well-known to many - her decades of hits have been hard to ignore - but in case you want to be convinced before you cast your fan vote (which you can do daily!), we're breaking it down five ways why the Queen of Rock and Roll deserves a rightful place in the hallowed Hall.

Read More: Devo, Chaka Khan, Tina Turner Lead Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Class of 2021 Nominees

Her solo success deserves recognition. Turner is already a member of the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, inducted in 1991 alongside her ex-husband Ike. While those early years procured immortal hits like "River Deep - Mountain High" and "Proud Mary," it was also a period of intense trials for Tina, suffered brutal abuse by Ike and financial hardships when she left the relationship. Her comeback in the '80s was more than a music business success story - it was a strong woman triumphing over forces of oppression, and recognizing her solo achievements underlines the importance of that work.

Her genre bending was groundbreaking. If you look at the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame as the keeper of a spirit instead of a genre (Miles Davis barely played a note of "rock and roll" but is deservedly inducted for his challenging of genre and performance), you'll know Tina more than deserves a spot in the Hall. As genre boundaries break down further today, nominally R&B artists like Beyoncé or Janelle Monae are clearly borrowing a page from Turner's anything-goes playbook.

She was born to perform. Nobody ever walked away from a Tina Turner concert or album thinking she gave any less than 100 percent. Her ability to leave it all on the stage without ever losing a wig or a short-hemmed dress, pounding great both '60s tunes and modern day interpretations of '80s contemporaries like ZZ Top or David Bowie into her own image - that's as powerful as anyone who wrote their own songs or played every instrument.

Read More: February 1985: Tina Turner's Not-So-'Private' Grammy Victory

An induction will connect the dots of her story. Tina's incredible agency over her story has led to great works of art: the biopic What's Love Got to Do with It, the Broadway musical Tina: The Tina Turner Musical - and in March 2021, a new feature-length documentary. Induction into the Hall would crucially remind audiences there's a real person behind those tales.

Read More: Tina Turner Documentary Premieres in March

Representation matters. In a time where racism and sexism refuses to let go no matter how many of us stand up and condemn it, putting a Black woman icon like Tina Turner into the Hall's class of 2021 - the first that could possibly induct solely women, and featuring nine nominees of color (out of 16 artists) - would be a bold, deserved statement to a world that still has some work to do!

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