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Thursday 25 July, 2024
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Who Is Erwin Bach? Tina Turner’s Husband

BY Sharmeen Hussain May 25, 2023. 12:00 am UPDATED: May 25, 2023. 12:00 am

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Tina Turner met and married her real love, Erwin Bach.

The “Queen of Rock and Roll” met the former music mogul a decade after fleeing her violent first husband and musical collaborator, Ike Turner, with whom she has four children. (Turner and Ike’s oldest son, Craig, committed suicide in 2018, and their youngest, Ronnie, died in December 2022 of complications from colorectal cancer.)

Turner and Bach were married in 2013 after dating for 27 years. The pair has had many lovely moments and milestones together throughout the course of their decades-long partnership. Turner also credits Bach for teaching her how “to love without giving up who I am.”

“We grant each other freedom and space to be individuals at the same time we are a couple,” the singer wrote in her book, Happiness Becomes You: A Guide to Changing Your Life for Good. “Erwin, who is a force of nature in his own right, has never been the least bit intimidated by my career, my talents, or my fame. He shows me that true love doesn’t require the dimming of my light so that he can shine. On the contrary, we are the light of each other’s lives, and we want to shine as bright as we can, together.”

While the couple has kept their relationship pretty secret throughout the years, they did open up about their love story in the HBO documentary Tina, which premiered in 2021.

Continue reading to find out more about Tina Turner’s husband Erwin Bach and their long-term relationship.

Bach worked for the European record company EMI, which collaborated with artists such as Queen, Paul McCartney, Pink Floyd, and Radiohead. Turner collaborated with EMI to market her songs internationally.

In 2012, the label was divided into separate entities. EMI was one of the major record labels in the music business prior to its demise.

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Turner and Bach met in 1985 at the airport in Düsseldorf, Germany. Bach was sent by EMI to greet the singer as she arrived. In the 2021 HBO documentary Tina, the couple said they had an instant connection from the moment they locked eyes.

“Her manager Roger [Davies] asked me to pick up Tina,” Bach recalled in the documentary.

“So Roger said to me, ‘Tina, you ride with Erwin,’ and I wanted to go, ‘Yay!’ ” Turner added with a laugh. “He was really so good-looking. My heart [was beating fast] and it means that a soul has met, and my hands were shaking.”

The pair began a romantic relationship that same year.

“Falling in love with my husband, Erwin, was another exercise in leaving my comfort zone, of being open to the unexpected gifts that life has to offer,” Turner wrote in Happiness Becomes You: A Guide to Changing Your Life for Good.

“The day I first met Erwin, at an airport in Germany, I should have been too tired from my flight, too preoccupied with thoughts of my concert tour,” she continued. “But I did notice him, and I instantly felt an emotional connection. Even then, I could have ignored what I felt — I could have listened to the ghost voices in my head telling me that I didn’t look good that day, or that I shouldn’t be thinking about romance because it never ends well. Instead, I listened to my heart. I left my comfort zone and made it a priority to get to know Erwin. That simple first meeting led to a long, beautiful relationship — and my one true marriage.”

He is over 16 years younger than Turner

Turner was 30 years old at the time he met Bach. Turner was 47 years old.

The pair has received considerable criticism over the years for their age difference, which Turner briefly covered in her memoir, My Love Story. “Despite how long we had been together, there were still people who believed Erwin married me for my money and fame.” What else would a younger man desire in a relationship with an older woman? “Erwin was always dismissive of rumors,” she wrote.

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After 27 years of dating, the couple married in a civil ceremony in Switzerland. Turner was 73 years old when this happened.

Turner and Bach celebrated their wedding with a grandiose, star-studded bash at their lakeside Switzerland mansion. The 120 guests included Oprah Winfrey, Giorgio Armani, and David Bowie, and the couple’s home was decked with 70,000 red and yellow flowers from Holland. Men were instructed to wear black tie, while ladies were advised to wear white or beige. Attendees took part in a traditional Buddhist water blessing rite, an homage to Turner’s faith, which he had practiced since the 1970s.

After nearly three decades together, the wedding came as a surprise. In 2000, Turner and Bach downplayed wedding chatter and seemed content with their leisurely European lifestyle.

“We are married — we just haven’t walked down the aisle, and until there’s a need to, we probably won’t,” Turner said at the time.

“We don’t need a marriage to be together,” Bach agreed, adding, “Some people need that security thing, but I think if you’re internally happy with your partner, you don’t need symbols.”

During an interview on Oprah’s Next Chapter, Bach revealed that he asked Turner to marry him “twice” when she turned 50.

“I was trying to show Tina my commitment. I think when a woman turns 50 she should have a commitment from her partner,” he explained. “I was committed and I wanted to show this, so I went down on my knee. I never did that before in my life, I was never married before. And I had my ring ready … I had everything ready.”

Winfrey asked, “So she sort of said nothing and strung you along for 23 years?” to which Bach replied, “But that was okay with me, I could read between the lines.”

“Even though he asked me I didn’t think it was real, I didn’t believe him,” Turner added. “But I didn’t want to say ‘No’ because I wanted to continue the relationship.”

Bach also shared that hearing about the abuse Turner endured while married to Ike was “hard for him to hear.”

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