Wednesday, January 12, 2022

Ronnie Spector (1943–2022)

Singer, survivor. The New York Times has an obituary.

Here’s the song that made Brian Wilson pull his car over to the side of the road.

[“Be My Baby” (Jeff Barry–Ellie Greenwich–Phil Spector). The Ronettes: Estelle Bennett, Ronnie Bennett, and Nedra Talley. From The T.A.M.I. Show (1964).]

comments: 10

Anonymous said...

One of my all-time favorite songs (despite P Spector's weird behaviour later on).

At a visit to the Cleveland Rock n' Roll Hall of Fame one of the video's mentioned that this was one of Iggy Pop's favorite songs -- it was always a good day when he heard it.

Also mentioned as one of the songs that influenced him:

And it is a good day when i hear it on the radio these days!


Michael Leddy said...

I didn’t know that Mr. Pop (as I guess the Times would call him) is a fan — or that he likes Sinatra. Joey Ramone produced one of her later records and sang one (I think) duet with her. Music knows no boundaries!

Joe DiBiase said...

This post prompted me to watch the documentary, The Wrecking Crew. I'd known about these studio musicians, but not how many songs they recorded for others. Highly recommend it, though I couldn't find it for free on any streaming service.

Michael Leddy said...

That’s a terrific film. It’s startling to learn how much music they created.

Here’s a joke from Hal Blaine that appears in the DVD extras:

What do you call a musician in a three-piece suit? The defendant.

Joe DiBiase said...

Being a music lover that has absolutely zero musical talent, musicians like those in the film really amaze me.

The joke I laughed at, at the very end of the film, is, "What do you call a trombone player with a beeper? An optimist."

Michael Leddy said...


Something that astonished me: in the documentary about recording Sondheim’s Company, Elaine Stritch struggles with “The Ladies Who Lunch” and there’s the suggestion to take it down a step or half-step. In other words, it’s a given that the musicians for the recording session can transpose on the spot, in their heads, without new charts. Whew.

Joe DiBiase said...

That is astonishing, given that sometimes I find my lips moving as I simply read English text. ;-)

Michael Leddy said...

It was once a norm — I think — to say the words while reading. Augustine writes about how remarkable it was to watch Ambrose read silently.

I still hear the words in my head as I read, another no-no.

Joe DiBiase said...

Me too. When reading James Joyce's Dubliners many years ago, the voice I heard in my head had an Irish brogue.

Michael Leddy said...

That makes sense. It’s esp. easy to hear the voice of the character in the narrator — what they call in lit crit free indirect discourse.