Two for Tuesday: World Cup champ Briana Scurry is a soccer legend and Tina Turner is the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll
Two iconic women who changed the game — one in sports, the other in music
In honor of Women’s History Month, today’s Two for Tuesday recognizes international recording artist Tina Turner, who overcame poverty, racism, sexism and domestic violence to ascend the throne as the “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” as well as soccer phenom, Olympic gold medalist and World Cup champion Briana Scurry.
With big, famously spiky blond hair and always a short skirt or leotard to showcase those legs — gams nearly as famous and beautiful as her contralto voice — singer and actress Tina Turner was Beyoncé before Beyoncé changed the game.
Born Anna Mae Bullock on Nov. 26, 1939, in Nutbush, Tennessee, Turner reinvented herself in her 40s as a solo artist and actress after divorcing Ike Turner. She had huge success with hits such as 1984’s “Private Dancer” and “What’s Love Got To Do With It,” and was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1991.
It was 1976 when Turner split from her hit-music-making-machine husband Ike Turner. In wrenching herself free from her violent and destructive marriage, she also fled the chart-topping duo who began in the 1950s as the Ike Turner Kings of Rhythm. Later, the group was restructured and its name was changed to the Ike & Tina Turner Revue, through which they pumped out hits such as “A Fool in Love,” “Proud Mary” and “Nutbush City.” Tina Turner’s hardcore raspy voice and her high-impact dance moves captivated crowds and drew a close line between R&B and rock ‘n’ roll.
She has openly discussed her suffering at the hands of Ike Turner’s abuse and infidelity in her marriage and what seemed to be the end of her career after her divorce. Where once she’d toured with The Rolling Stones, as a solo artist, she was reduced to performing in small clubs and bars and guest appearances on other artists’ records.
In 1983, she recorded a remake of Al Green‘s “Let’s Stay Together” and her solo career took off. And more hits followed. “What’s Love Got to Do With It” reached No. 1 on the U.S. pop charts and earned the Grammy for record of the year. The “Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll” was in her proper place.
When African-Americans think about influential black women in soccer, Briana Scurry will forever be the one player to remain synonymous with the game. She, along with her teammates, “set the standard for women’s soccer,” according to her website.
Scurry was named the starting goalkeeper for the U.S. women’s national team (USWNT) in 1994, when the Americans went on a huge run that included two Olympic gold medals. Scurry is remembered for her iconic shootout save that helped the U.S. team to victory in the 1999 FIFA World Cup final. She is a founding player of the Women’s United Soccer Association, becoming the first black paid female professional in 2001.
Born Sept. 7, 1971, in Minneapolis, Scurry received the National Association of Black Journalists’ Sam Lacy Award, inclusion on the USWNT’s All-Time Best XI, and is featured in the National Museum of African American History and Culture.
Scurry retired in 2010 after suffering a debilitating concussion. She now openly advocates for traumatic brain injury awareness.