The music world is mourning the loss of Tina Turner, who passed away Wednesday at age 83.
Among Turner’s millions of fans is Kelly Clarkson, who spoke with ET Canada’s Britnee Blair about the influence the legendary singer had on her.
“I was actually in the middle of an interview and my manager just said, ‘Oh my gosh, Tina, Tina Turner just passed away.’ And I was like, ‘What?’ And then my phone has been blowing up ever since,” Clarkson said.
READ MORE: Tina Turner, The Queen Of Rock ‘N’ Roll, Dies At 83
According to Clarkson, Turner is “one of the main reasons why I feel like females, you know, there are certain artists that, female-wise, who weren’t just singing, they were, like, literally the first representation for a lot of us that we got to see, that you could truly be who you want to be if that’s rock and roll, if that’s more raw than people are willing to usually accept,” Clarkson continued.
“I think she’s just one of the best examples of like not only being an incredible singer ,and that’s why she’s an influence for me, but also just letting go and releasing,” Clarkson explained. “For a decade I jumped around, threw my head around on stage… and she’s one of the reasons, like her energy, like she felt the song with her whole body. And I feel like not every artist does that right. And not every artist just has that fire or that light about them.”
While Turner’s death leaves a large void in the musical pantheon, Clarkson pointed out that Turner left behind an unparalleled legacy.
“While it is a huge loss for us, what a blessing it is to have had all those years,” Clarkson said. “You know, I feel like a lot of our idols passed away young. Like, you know, they have passed away very young in their career and you’re like, ‘Man, what would have happened?’ We like to see this full career from this woman that was not only like, by the way, a pioneer for a lot of young girls, but young guys as well. She was just such a force. Even if you didn’t regularly listen to Tina Turner, everyone knew her name and everyone was impacted by her.”
READ MORE: Tina Turner Dead at 83: Beyoncé, Oprah Winfrey & More Stars React
Clarkson pointed to other ways in which Turner inspired her, such as being a woman from a small Southern town who became an international singing sensation, making her believe she could follow the path that Turner blazed.
“I can do that too. It’s okay. I don’t have to be too quiet. I don’t have to be so pristine or perfect or, you know, you can be unfiltered, you can be raw, you can be rock and roll, and that’s okay. And that that was, you know, one of the women [behind] reason why I am the singer and performer I am today,” she explained.
“So, you know, I guess I’m just living in a state of gratitude that I got to be in the space of this music industry at the same time as her. And to feed off of that and grow from there, line with my own career… I’m just I’m just feeling really blessed that we got to experience that…”