Ike Turner

Before a teenage singer from Nutbush Tennessee (Anna Mae Bullock) jumped up in a session in a night spot in St. Louis, there was just Ike Turner and his band, The Kings of Rhythm.

The first thing that has to be straightened out is what many people consider the “first” Rock and Roll recording “Rocket 88“.
Jackie Brenston – Rocket 88

Ike was a great piano player and guitar player; he was one of the first to use the whammy bar on his Fender. The record is credited to Jackie Brenston and his Delta Cats.  Well first off, they did not exist; it was released by Chess but recorded by Sam Phillips in Memphis.  Brenston was a sax player and he used Ike Turner’s Band for the recording… but Turner did not get credit, so the feud started.  Brenston’s career was short when Ike and his band became session people for Buddy Guy, Howlin Wolf, Elmore James, Otis Rush and so on.

I also have some music from Ace Record Company who bought the legendary modern recordings.  I think “Rocket 88” was late ’51 and I do not think that anyone thought about plagiarism because it was derived from an old song that Ike and the boys did about a Cadillac.  Jackie Brenston once said, “Yep, exactly the same just different words”.

The big thing was the first fuzz tone on the guitar.  Two theories: first, it was an accident the amp fell off the car roof, and second, that it was planned,.. I go with the first one.

Ike was generally crucified in the divorce because of his treatment of Tina and probably justified, but not the crucifixion.  Now Anna Mae when she joined the group in 56, a teenager, first got pregnant by the sax player (Russ what’s with sax players?) and then had Ike’s baby and married by 58, so she was a little wild maybe.

I think most of the Kings of Rhythm recordings come from around ’54 except for “Rocket 88.”

Listen to Night Prowler by Billy Gale it’s a direct rip off of Lloyd Price’s ’52 recording of “Lawdy Miss Clawdy”… to me anyway.

All of the recordings, no matter who sings, are all Ike’s band.  I found this really rare black & white video of the band with a lot of white people.  He was very popular…  http://thehoundblog.blogspot.com/2009/08/ike-turner.html

Tina’s biggest beef, other than the obvious, was that Ike was just blues, R&B and funk, you know that’s what he was.  I look past the Ike & Tina problems and like Ike’s music.


Ike Turner – All the Blues, All the Time (Medley) Feeling Good, Love My Baby
Ike Turner & His Orchestra – Loosely (AKA The Wild One)
Dennis Binder – I Miss You So

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