The Vogue interview: “I need to re-invent myself”

Copyright Vogue Germany - vogue.de

Copyright Vogue Germany – vogue.de

The April issue of The Vogue, with Tina Turner on the cover, hit the newsstands today in Germany. The photo shoot, with photos by Claudia Knoepfel and Stefan Indlekofer, shows Tina looking more vibrant and elegant than ever. In the interview, Tina looks back at her past success, but also to the future.

The photo spread inside the magazine finds Tina dressed in new and vintage Armani, posing inside her Swiss mansion in front of memorabilia of her past album successes. However, she is not the person for nostalgia, claiming she is “happier now, than she ever was”.

“My live circumstances are absolutely perfect, the condition of my soul is spiritually and mentally good. My physical condition is also very good, which is not really a surprise, since I never took drugs or smoked cigarettes. Thus, I’m physically healthy, and I’m happy!”

Copyright Vogue Germany - vogue.de

Copyright Vogue Germany – vogue.de

Tina doesn’t miss her stage life, her stage persona of Tina Turner is completely different from her private self. She says that she won’t return to stage unless she finds a new way of presenting herself.

“I completed my last tour at the age of 69. I really saw it as my farewell tour. What I did on that tour was on the edge of what I physically was able to, and wanted to, do. And these short outfits, they are not how I see myself anymore at this time. So, I won’t do that anymore, I have ended it.”

However, Tina is not completely in retirement.

“I’m waiting for the inspiration for a different kind of work, because I know that many people wish that I will do something again, and I understand now the importance of my stage performances for them. Still, that type of stage work is over. Before I re-invent myself, I don’t want to go back to something I already did, and thereby decrease its importance, but it was good as it was!”

For the moment however, there are no concrete plans for the future.

What is coming however, is the third of the Beyond albums. This time, a young Indian woman, Sawani Shende-Sathaye is also involved. The album should be released this year. A real Tina Turner album, on which she will sing, is not in the making. She says she is waiting for the right material: modern, but still something that is rooted in her own musical tradition. Asked what she likes in modern music:

“I really like the voice of Rihanna, and I like Adele. I also like Beyonce’s style.”

Copyright Vogue Germany - vogue.de

Copyright Vogue Germany – vogue.de

In her private life, she enjoys not having to work anymore, and doesn’t miss performing. Her day-to-day occupation now consists of learning German, which she started when she wanted to apply for Swiss citizenship.

“I started learning German after living here for four years. But I only head real classes for one year. Now, since half a year, I’m taking German lessons again, but Hochdeutsch – Swiss-German was even more complicated. I can present myself, say how old I am, where I come from, when I came to Switzerland for the first time; all of that I can say in German. So right now I can say: ‘Beruflich heiße ich Tina Turner. Aber mein richtiger Name ist Anna Mae Bullock’ (Professionally I’m called Tina Turner, but my real name is Anna Mae Bullock). I didn’t get much further yet (laughs)! Right now however I’m really studying the grammar of the language, so really from scratch.”

However, she hasn’t forgotten the USA yet. She heard about the moving of her old school building in Nutbush – Flagg Grove School.

“The school once belonged to my great-grandfather Benjamin Flagg. Now, I’m involved in the project and will be even more so, since I found out that it is really connected to my background, to my family. I’m very proud that I’m the one in my family, who can conserve this history.”

Later: “Did you see the picture on the internet? It was only one room, and in that room the education of three different classes took place. We would always go by foot, there was no bus. I walked there with my sister, on the way we met up with school friends. Actually, it was a very nice time. I wasn’t a good student, but teachers and fellow pupils liked me.”

When asked if she is still in contact with family in the area, she answers:

“I was there for the last time when the last of my close relatives was still alive. I took care of the property after she died. What’s left now of my family there are only distant relatives. I’m not really in direct contact with anybody there.”

Tina Turner - Vogue Germany - April 2013 - 04

All images are taken by Claudia Knoepfel and Stefan Indlekofer. Copyright by Vogue Germany.

The full article and many more photos can be found in the April issue of the German Vogue. It is in stores now in Germany, and around the world at your international news agent. For more information visit Vogue.de.

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67 Comments

Filed under Her Story, In The Press

67 responses to “The Vogue interview: “I need to re-invent myself”

  1. Drew Mullins

    I have to say I am on Cloud No. 9 right now. These last couple of months have been great for Tina news. She really hasn’t done anything mainstream since the last tour, 4 years ago. This Vogue cover is the biggest thing she has done since then. And it couldn’t be more thrilling.

    My opinion of the photos are extremely positive. I know full well that these have been photoshopped, but they look incredible. The photo of her sitting down, in the jumpsuit, brings to mind the Private Dancer days. I can’t quite put my finger on it, but it does.

    It’s always hard to know what she is thinking. I hold nothing she says about her future career too seriously. I mean, here is a woman who has “retired” after every tour since the 80’s. I’m not sure if she will tour again but I can say reinvention is definitely not one of her strong suits. She is a legend who wouldn’t have to do one more thing. Her status as one of the greatest women in the history of music is already cemented.

    But, if she does decide (or get inspiration) to do something, I truly hope it is a new studio album. Something organic and raw. Something that will gain the respect of the recording industry.

    I have the strongest feeling 2013 will be the year we see something new. And I base that all on two things: The Rolling Stones are going on tour and David Bowie has just released his first album in 10 years. We know how her peers, just by doing what they do, can convince her to get back into the game.

    Thanks Tina Turner Blog for everything. I can’t wait to see what the future holds.

    • lasse

      Exactly my thoughts. I think the return of Bowie and the press this cover shoot is getting will get Roger Davies pushing her to ‘do something’. I just hope its not another tour. I am glad to read she sees that as a closed chapter. I am excited about the new Beyond cd but would love to see a new studio album, and not a commercial one like 24/7. It’s a shame she puts out such effort in these photo shoots and the best thing about her, her incredible voice, isn’t used anymore. she still has the voice. ‘unity’ on Children Beyonf’ proves her amazing vocal range.

      • Drew Mullins

        I sooooo agree with you. As much as I would love to see her live I think her “big production” tour days are over. If she did decide to do a few dates I’d love to see an acoustic set. Similar to Wildest Dreams or Macy’s. But full length. Sit on a stool and have an incredible jam session for 2 hours.

        ‘Unity’ is stunning, and really shows her power. Translate that to a new Tina Turner album and we have gold. And platinum.

    • Hey Drew,

      Yeah the returns of Bowie and the Stones also rang a bell here. I am sure this Vogue edition with Tina covering it will be a huge success in sales terms and that it will put Tina Turner back into the light one way or another!
      Thanks for your comment!

    • cheryll

      I do hope she does do one more tour. I got scammed on the internet 4 years ago for her last tour and didn’t get refunded until after the tour so therefore could not afford to buy other tickets :( and subsequently missed her concert. Yes I was totally gutted at the time as she is my idol. I wish you all the best Tina and congratulations to you and Erwin. x

  2. Drew Mullins

    It’s funny, as I was writing my last post I kept on thinking that Tina should do an album with the same production values as Adele’s 21. A throwback to a different time.

    I’m glad Tina likes Adele, because this is the direction she should head in, production wise.

    • Donald C

      I was thinking she should do an album with Adele who has also stated that she wants to do something different for her third album.
      I am pretty confident she is planning something. For someone who enjoys being out of the spotlight when she is not working the cover shoot and the upcomming BET award suggests there is some project in the works.

      • “Duet albums” are quite trendy this days… so this could be an idea and it doesn’t involved touring but just some tv appearances and maybe a one night only concert. she could record songs with the new generation. Would be great if it was with new material of course and not Tina re-recording her hit songs in duets.
        Oh well it’s always nice to speculate, but only Tina knows what’s coming ;)

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  4. Kath from Australia

    Thank you Ben and Sjef for translating and sharing this article around the world. As always, Tina Rocks and so do you!

  5. mark, usa

    Tina looks stylish, youthful and happy. I love all of the pictures. I just commented yesterday to someone on face bood that she will not tour again. She has been waiting for this day to come for a long time. It’s here Tina, enjoy every minute of it, you worked hard for it. I have followed you for years and you are one of the best, simply the best to put it blunt. Continue to take care of yourself, it shows you do. Thanks guys again for translating the info for Tina’s fans, you guys are the best.

    • Thanks Mark and indeed the result is a real success, Tina Turner proves once again that she still has it and that she is healthy! Can’t wait to see how it will develop but i (Ben) am pretty sure it will lead to something!

  6. Gjermund

    I always get hung up on small details and have one question: In the photo (not presented here) in the Vogue magazine where Tina is in the room with all her gold and platina albums, you can see a bicycle. That brings me to a question I had many years ago: During the 1987/88 break every rule tour, I read in the newspapers that time that Tina always cycled 20 km before her concerts. She never confirmed that, she only said that she get all the exersices she needed through her performences. But there was a bicycle on the music video “Break every rule” and I now can see one in her fame-room, anyone who have heard about Tina riding a bicycle? just wondering…:)

  7. polandfan

    we need to collect 1 million will be a new album on fb …. We want Tina Turner for Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award

  8. Faye

    I had the same thoughts about Tina possibly touring again after the return of David Bowie. Tina has had many farewell tours and still surprises us with another tour. We never know what Tina is going to do next. I hope Tina finds her inspiration soon and makes a new album and tours again. Tina is and always will be simply the best. Airbrushed or not, I love the photos of Tina in Vogue. Tina has always looked younger and doesn’t need airbrushing. Photos I’ve taken from her last tour are not airbrushed and she looks great on those too ;)

  9. that first pic is giving me foreign Affair.

  10. milkyaqua

    Lovely article and Tina has earned the right to do whatever she wants. If she records something again that isn’t “Beyond” I’d love it provided it wasn’t the same old stuff that Davies has had her do.

    As for the pictures, that first b&w should have been the cover but she looks great all-around. I’d love to see the outtakes.

    Thanks Ben and Sjef.

  11. Carlos Carmelino

    I was so happy with the interview! Mainly to stop rumors that she is sick… She is very healthy, youthful and happy. Thank God.
    I think that Tina should do an album, but I loved to see her in a movie… action movie or dramatic.
    Let’s wait to see…
    Thanks Ben and Sjef.

    • Yes! I (Ben) was also really tired by those health rumors, she looks perfectly fine and i believe here when she says she is in a great shape!
      And Tina Turner in a (good) movie would be much appreciated!
      Thanks for your comment Carlos!

  12. Raymond

    Tina — we know you don’t want to do a big stage production tour again. That’s fine with us. We don’t go to see the production, we go to see you. We go to hear you sing, to experience the timelessness of your voice, the strength and emotional resonance of your delivery, the connection you make with every person in the audience. Please don’t deprive the world of your voice Tina!! That being said, you deserve everything you’ve earned, and I hope — that if you choose to — you’ll bless us one more time with your music. Thanks for the translation and all the photos from Vogue Ben and Sjef!!

    • Hi Raymond, you are right, people should realize that her last tour was really the last one until she finds a new way to perform or record. This is Tina Turner she has never disappointed us, let’s hope this Vogue event will give her back the will to do something new!
      Thanks for visiting and for your comment Raymond!

  13. Stephan

    Great to see Tina again. I also think that there is something coming. I think she is exactly at that point, I always thought she will do another album without a tour. Though I loved her farewell tour in 2009 (went there 4 times) we all recognized that it was the last tour of that style she would do. I think she waited the 8 years after the 24/7-Tour until the moment she could still do it physically and she confirmed it in the interview.

    In my opinion now a new part of her career starts, She will do albums and need not to tour with the new music, that gives her the freedom to reinvent herself, because in the past the music of a new studio album must always work on stage.

    I like her commend on modern R&B in the style of Beyonce and Rihanna, let’s cross our fingers she would do a modern and classic album. She needs at least still a few really great, classic abums to fullfill her career. I mean, though I liked the “24/7″-album, it should not be the album she ends her career with. Hopefully Roger gets it, too that she could do sth in a different modern style (no more “Open Arms”, “I am ready” …) .

    I think perhaps 2014 will be the right year to come back. She turns 75, Private Dancer is then 30 years ago …

    • Reading Tina saying that what she did on that tour was on the edge of what she physically was able to, and wanted to do felt a bit strange but still even if she doesn’t tour anymore and is only into recordings, i am sure she won’t resist one or two concerts ^^
      And yes of course they have to find a total different direction from Open Arms…Would be a Crime und tralala!
      Thanks for your comment Stephan!

      • lasse

        i was not surprised at the remark that the last tour was borderline of what she physically can do. Look at the end of “be tender with me baby” on the dvd and you can see this woman gave everything she got and is exhausted. That is the difference with many other artists.
        That is the main reason i really hope she does not tour again. I am always surprised that fans keep asking for more touring. Why do the same thing over and over again? I really wish she would re-invent herself, but the pics contradict this. The image portrayed is again big hair, red lips, typical Tina Turner poses, etc…
        Even though she looks amazing and I always loved the image she portrayed, I just wish we would see a new Tina Turner album, which focusses on her amazing singing, not try to re-capture her 80’s style and image.
        I agree though, the “Foreign Affair” period was THE BEST!

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  15. Ralph Craig

    I used to talk to Deane Ogden, one of the pre-production sound engineers on Tina’s last tour. He said that Tina and Roger had been planning to add another leg to the tour following Europe, but the last illness she had gotten on the tour squashed those ideas. Thus, it doesn’t surprise me to hear her say the tour was the edge of what she could physically do. We can all agree that while the tour was great, she moved slower and didn’t dance the same way. As far as I know, no 73 year old Female or Male performer in history has ever done what she did onstage at 70. Everyone talks about Mick Jagger and those guys still going as they get old, but Mick Jagger has never danced the way Tina does. He runs across the stage and gyrates and that’s great, but Tina is the only one who has ever stood onstage at 70 in high heels and kept up with 4 backing dancers.

    All that being said, the point stands that it was clearly the edge of what she could still do. And it is over. People need to drop the hope and begging for one more concert or tour. It is over. Tina is not over, but that part of her career is. We should make the change with her, not sit around whining about the “get old days”.

    • lasse

      well said! We should have a facebook campaign telling her we don’t want her to tour again :)

    • Kath from Australia

      Hear, hear Ralph. Well said.

      • mark, usa

        Ralph, I said this in one of my replies. Tina has shown us all these years that she is a true and natural talent. That part of her carreer is done and I really have enjoyed it. I would love to see her act now, I believe she would be great in a good murder mystery, spy thriller even some bond stuff.

      • milkyaqua

        Agree. Even before the last tour, I was prepared for her not to tour again. I thought she was entitled to not do that again after 24/7. She’s said that recording was something she would do even after the touring was over. I’d love to hear some new music from her that she wants to do. Not something that’s chasing the commercial buck. I don’t need to hear her “redo” her old material like some other veteran artists have done or a duets album like Sinatra or Tony Bennett. No, I want her to do something that’s going to make her excited to be in the studio.

        I also thinks it’s a shame she never really got to act in the type of roles she wanted. And yes, I’ve often thought she would have been great in some mystery or spy thriller or some real sci-fi.

        I hope that after this next Beyond project we might be fortunate enough to get some new work from Tina but that’s up to her.

  16. Reblogged this on Alyce Packer and commented:
    What age got to do with it??? I want to look this good in my 70s…

  17. Pol

    Je dormirais bien dans ce garage pour faire les plus beaux rêves. “In your wildest dreams” Je suis heureux qu’une femme de son âge puisse exprimer ce qu’elle ressent après tout ce qu’elle vécut. Quelque soit l’âge on peut se réinventer à tout moment. Mes petits loups Ben & Sjef “All the best” pour votre site.

    • Je pense que je prefererais organiser une grosse fête dans son garage ( et je repartirais avec un ou deux disques d’or sous le bras )!
      Et l’interview de Vogue est vraiment très touchante et les photos sont géniales!
      Merci pour ton com’ Pol!

  18. Edmund

    Lasse Tina will probably reinvent herself but you can’t expect the red lipstick, big hair and high heels to go away, that’s a standard trademark! That’s how we know Tina Turner, certain things don’t change and shouldn’t change. Reinvention would be mainly the type of music she does in the future or the type of shows(if ever) and yes there’s still a lot of people who want Tina to tour, myself included and there’s nothing wrong with that(although I seriously doubt she’ll do it again)

  19. lasse

    Don’t know if u notice, but these days there are two types of comments, one saying how great she looks and the others insinuating plastic surgery, photoshop, etc.
    If she’s not careful, she will become a caricature of her 80’s image. I believe she’s smart enough to not let this happen. Yes, there are still alot of people who want her to tour. Quite a selfish thought in my opinion…

  20. TinaFan

    Tina’s reinvention will be about her and not about her fans, but will be a gift to her fans. I see her teaming up with Oprah Winfrey and her new network OWN and doing something ala Super Soul Sundays and giving us a different way to look at spirituality and faith. I think it is in the works for Tina to start touring, not for music, but for self-help and empowerment for the masses. It’s going to be a tour about positive energy and spiritual growth. We love Tina because of the good natured fun energy she exudes. I’d pay to see her speak about living with beautiful thoughts.

  21. Pingback: Tina Turner On The Cover Of Vogue Germany April 2013 | Mydresslet

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  24. Reblogged this on The Real Malika and commented:
    Tina Turner inspiration that at any age you can REINVENT yourself. Work it Tina!

  25. Just to put age into perspective…my late Grandfather LOVED Tina!!! And look, she is still doing it and doing it well. I reblogged your post on my inspirational blog because SHE IS AN INSPIRATION. She is proof that you can reinvent yourself at any age.

  26. BRENDA J. BOATNER

    I WOULD LIKE A COPY OF THE VOGUE MAGAZINE WITH TINA TURNER ON IT. I LIVE IN CHICAGO, PLEASE TELL ME HOW I CAN GET MY COLLECTORS EDITION OF THIS LOVELY LADY?!?

  27. Anthony

    I’ve been of the mind, since she finished her last tour, the she should do a Jazz album: One that incorporates all of the different facets of the style…Blue Note…Swing…Pop…rock…experimental…Chill…Smooth, etc. I would love it if a team of writers — from Herbie Hancock to Chris Botti to Britten/Lyle to Bowie to Prince to Bacharach to Quincey Jones wrote and produced the material for her. Tina’s already flirted w/ Jazz over the years (hello, “Private Dancer”, anyone?…”Why Must We Wait Until Tonight?”, anyone…”Confidential”, anyone?)…hearing her glamorous rendition of “Edith and the Kingpin” blew my mind! It felt like the sequel to “Private Dancer”…and that was 25 years later! Her voice and diction sounded so good and flexible, I couldn’t believe what I was hearing! That one tune should be included in the sequence of the album as a bonus track.

    The album should simply be called, JAZZ.

    I’d also like for Tina to finally realize her dream of starring in a “space” and “adventure” movies:

    If it’s at all possible, I’d love for her to have a part in the upcoming Star Wars trilogy…I keep thinking she could be Lando Calrissian’s wife…maybe she could be the Chief Archivist?Librarian of Coruscant…also she needs to shoot a gun and pilot a ship (I’ve seen interviews from the 1980s where she’s stated that she wanted to be up in space fighting some alien w/ her own ship). That would be such a coup for her.

    Also, I’ve read that there is Pre-production planned for a future CONAN movie w/ Arnold Schwarzenegger (as King Conan in his older age). I’d love for Tina to play some sort of Shaman or dignitary or warrior Queen in Howard’s landscape.

    Honestly, I’d love to see her on the big screen again. The Acid Queen, Aunty Entity, and The Mayor of Los Angeles is not enough. I want more.

    All that sounds like enough to do in ones early-to-mid 70s, right?

  28. Anthony

    Oh! How could I forget; On the movie front, she should finally finish the 2005 Merchant/Ivory film, GODDESS. Along w/ all of the other stuff I mentioned. Pretty full docket, don’t ya think? (lol)

  29. Pingback: POPSESSIVE.com « Tina Turner’s Full Photo Spread and Interview highlights for VOGUE Germany

  30. VivianT

    OMG! I read every line to-date on this blog! I too, have always been a Tina fan, big-time. I heard on FB about her in Vogue for April, set out in my town, Atlanta, GA USA, to find it to no avail; then to find out it was published in Germany. So, a quick call to my nephew in Germany, and WALA, got it. Now to actually read the article, Google found you’s guys. LOL.

    I agree it’s a stretch (and selfish) to want to see her on tour again, and I agree she should take it easy, but, I like the idea of Jazz for her. She would be perfect in small nightclubs and such. And wherever in the world she performs again, I would so be there. Give me a little advance notice, and boom, I’m there. As we all know and agree, Tina is ‘Simply the Best’, hands down!

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  34. jb

    Never mind the surgery and photoshopping, she was an incredible performer! Age happens and her situation sounds uncannily like the rest of us, once you reach a certain age, and can’t do what you used to, what the heck do you do? We all have to figure it out, wealthy and celebrity or not.

  35. So Tina wants to “reinvent” herself. I’m not sure what she means by that word, but it seems to me that the first thing she could do is to inventory her artistic assets and liabilities, and seek to remove any remaining blockages to any parts of her so far only partially manifested talent.

    Modesty prevents me from saying which follower of this blog might be best equipped to help her with that inventory and removal of blockages. ;-)

    Brian Stewart
    Performer’s Coach and Troubleshooter

  36. I have always loved Anna Mae Bullock aka Tina Turner. She has been a inspiration in my life. Like Tina, I to went through hell only to come out on top. im not music artist or actor I’m just a regular person. I have never seen Tina in concert. When I was battling cancer in 98 I would put her cd in and play it over and over. Simply The Best I wore that song out. My son was really upset that I had cancer and he would not talk with me about it, but told his dad my hubby mom plays Tina Turner’s cd and when she gets to Simply The Best she starts crying. He told his dad ” Mom Is Simply The Best!” That made me fight this awful disease more than ever. One day in the car he asked me mom why do cry every time you hear Simply The Best. I told him Tina’ s story about how she survived and left an abusive husband with no money and her babies, he was simply in awe. He finally told me Mom I don’t want you to die cause you’re Simply The Best. I smiled and told him I was r to fight hard and live. I have been cancer free 14 yrs now.If Tina ever comes out of retirement she is definitely on my bucket list. if nog I’ll be just as happy. with a new cd or movie. I wish The Queen Of Rock nothing but the best! I hope I look this good in my 70ds. Lol Rock on Ms. Turner however you see fit! I have the utmost respect for you and all the women you have helped.

  37. Bobby

    My idol! Love Tina Turner forever! And cross fingers we’ll see more of her in 2013!

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  39. Pedro

    Tina Turner is so inspirationnal! Miss her <3

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  42. Pingback: 5 times Tina Turner made headlines in 2013 | The Tina Turner Blog

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