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'A Massive Loss': White House Press Secretary Reacts to News of Tina Turner's Death

White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre labelled the death of rock legend Tina Turner “a massive loss” during a press briefing on Wednesday, May 24.

“That is incredibly sad news. Tina Turner was an icon, a music icon,” Jean-Pierre said, adding that she was personally “a huge fan.”

United States President Joe Biden also paid tribute to the singer, calling her a “once-in-a-generation talent that changed American music forever”.

Turner died at her home in Switzerland on Wednesday at age 83. Credit: The White House via Storyful

Video Transcript

- And within the last hour, we learned that Tina Turner passed away. She was 83. I didn't-- clearly, a surprise to you.

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I did not know that.

- I didn't know if the White House had any heads up or if the President had any comment. But I'll give you time to [INAUDIBLE].

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: So look, that is the first time I'm hearing that. That is incredibly sad news. Tina Turner was an icon, a music icon, who had many stages and many amazing moments in her career. Very sad to hear the news. I was a huge fan of Tina Turner.

As you can see from my reaction, that is the first that I'm hearing of it. And it is a massive loss, massive loss to the communities that loved her and certainly, to the music industry. And her music will live-- will continue to live on. Very sad news.

Our hearts go out to her family and her friends on their loss.

- And within the last hour, we learned that Tina Turner passed away. She was 83. I didn't-- Clearly, a surprise to you.

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: I did not know that.

- I didn't know if the White House had any heads up or if the President had any comment. But I'll give you time to [INAUDIBLE].

KARINE JEAN-PIERRE: So look, that is the first time I'm hearing that. That is incredibly sad news. Tina Turner was an icon, a music icon, who had many stages and many amazing moments in her career. Very sad to hear the news. I was a huge fan of Tina Turner.

As you can see from my reaction, that is the first that I'm hearing of it. And it is a massive loss, massive loss to the communities that loved her and certainly, to the music industry. And her music will live-- will continue to live on. Very sad news.

Our hearts go out to her family and her friends on their loss.