Sunday, 28 May 2023

Prince William on Tina Turner song that unlocks core memory with Diana and Harry

Singer Tina Turner dies aged 83

And Prince William may well be among those taking a moment to remember the Queen of Rock n Roll as one of her hit songs holds a special place in his heart.

Tina, who rose to fame as the lead singer of the Ike & Tina Turner Revue in the Sixties, died on May 24 at her home in Switzerland following a long illness.

The heir to the throne revealed that from a young age, one of her ballads has stuck with him as it evokes memories of a “real family moment” he shared with Prince Harry and his late mother.

In fact, it is a song he still enjoys listening to today — albeit “secretly” — as Princess Diana would quell his nerves by playing the singer-songwriter’s hit on the way to school.

Speaking on Apple’s Time to Walk podcast in 2021, the Prince of Wales revealed that Tina’s cover of Bonnie Tyler’s The Best holds a special place in his heart.

On the way to Eton College, Berkshire, where William was a boarder from 1995 to 2000, the young Prince would begin to feel “anxious”.

But Diana would try and help calm her sons’ nerves by playing songs during the half-hour journey and to this day, The Best is a song that “massively” sticks out to him.

He said: “When I was younger, Harry and I, we were at boarding school. And my mother used to play all sorts of songs to kind of while away the anxiety of going back to school.

“And one of the songs I massively remember and has stuck with me all this time, and I still, to this day, quite enjoy secretly, is Tina Turner’s ‘The Best’ because sitting in the backseat, singing away, it felt like a real family moment.”

Not only would Diana be singing her heart out to Tina’s catchy tune but occasionally, the policeman accompanying them in the car could not resist joining in too. Now, the 1989 song, one of the decade’s defining anthems, always reminds the future King of his mum.

He continued: “My mother, she’d be driving along, singing at the top of her voice. And we’d even get the policeman in the car, he’d be occasionally singing along as well.

“You’d be singing and listening to the music right the way out into the gates of school when they dropped you off. When I listen to it now, it takes me back to those car rides and brings back lots of memories of my mother.”

William said his children have “already inherited his family’s love of music” as he told the podcast that Prince George and Princess Charlotte now bicker most mornings about which track they will play. He continued: “Most mornings there’s a massive fight between Charlotte and George as to what song is played in the morning.”

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The Best was originally written for Bonnie Tyler but the 71-year-old Welsh singer only had minor success when it was released in 1988.

The following year, Tina brought out a cover version on her third album Foreign Affair which went on to become an international hit and was featured in several adverts, including one for Pepsi starring Tina herself.

That decade, the Proud Mary singer — who was then in her Forties — revitalised her career with the 1983 cover of Al Green’s Let’s Stay Together before releasing the hit album Private Dancer a year later.

Towards the end of the Eighties, she released the Foreign Affair album which featured her cover of The Best, one of her most popular songs. In fact, it has been played some 197 million times on Spotify alone.

In 2018, Tina revealed that she had previously suffered from intestinal cancer and a stroke. She said she had contemplated assisted suicide before her husband, Erwin Bach, who she married a decade ago, gave her a kidney.

Several fellow music legends have paid tribute to Tina, including Diana’s friend, Sir Elton John, who described her as a “total legend on record and on stage”.

He added: “We have lost one of the world’s most exciting and electric performers… She was untouchable.”

Her spokesperson told the world that Tina died “peacefully” at her home in Kusnacht near Zurich, Switzerland, saying that the world has lost “a music legend and a role model.”

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