Oprah: That's what you thought?
Tina: Yes. I also saw that he had a temper when he would fight with the girl he was dating. Then I learned that his father had been beaten up by some whites for going out with the same woman one of them was going out with. His father later died. I learned a whole story about Ike.
During the time when I didn't have a boyfriend and Ike had broken up with his woman, he started touching me. I didn't like it, but I didn't know what to do or say. We were sitting in the backseat of a car. In those days, everybody did what Ike said. He had the power. He had never been mean to me, so I felt loyal to him. But I didn't want a relationship with him.
Then came the recording. I went to a studio, recorded "A Fool in Love," and Ike sent it to New York. Soon after, Ike and I had a little run-in and I said to myself, I think I'd better get out of this. So I told the girl who was managing everything that I didn't want to be involved with the recording. That was the first time I really got a beating from Ike.
Oprah: A beating?
Tina: With a shoe stretcher.
Oprah: Wait a minute. He hit you with a wooden shoe stretcher?
Oprah: Where were you?
Tina: At his house in East St. Louis. I was afraid of Ike—I'd talked to the manager because I felt the vibration of what was about to happen. I wanted out.
Oprah: Even if it meant giving up your music?
Tina: I had a reputation around town as Little Ann. I could have gotten jobs with other bands—but I was loyal to Ike. That's how I am. Ike would ask me over and over: "Oh, you want to hurt me like everybody else, don't you?" I'd be saying, "No, no, no," but the more I said no, the more he'd say, "Yes, that's what it is." Later on, that pattern of dialogue became so familiar that when he'd start with it, I'd know a beating was coming. He'd walk around biting his lip and working himself up. I'm sure he needed a bit of therapy.
Oprah: A bit?
Tina: Anyway, wham! I was shocked. How could you hit someone with a shoe stretcher? Then he hit me with the heel of a shoe.
Oprah: In your face?
Tina: Always. Later he'd hit me in the ribs, and then always try to give me a black eye. He wanted his abuse to be seen. That was the shameful part.