Thursday, December 13, 2007

Ike Turner 1931-2007

Ike Turner has passed away. Hopefully, this means a long-overdue reasessment of the man as something other than The Wife Beater. This is always an awkward position--I don't want to sound like I'm defending Ike's actions. Obviously, he was a son of a bitch, at least during the years he was with Tina. But you know, James Brown beat his wife. Miles Davis beat his wife. Chuck Berry...what was it, put cameras in the lady's room or something? None of this stuff is at the top of their resume. (Or, as Amanda Marcotte puts it, "Compare and contrast the ratios of lauding talent to bemoaning violent misogyny in his obituaries to the recent ones of Norman Mailer.")

At any rate, Ike Turner is absolutely a key figure in the rock world of the 50's, 60's and 70's. Whether or not you subscribe to the theory that his 1951 recording "Rocket 88" was the first rock n roll record, you have to admit that it's a fucking great song, and there's plenty more of 'em in Ike's catalog. Ike & Tina were one of the greatest rock bands on earth back in their day.



I should also mention that Bobbie's mama just passed away. Tomorrow morning, we'll be flying out to Georgia for the services.

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