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Ronnie Spector at the Colston Hall, Fri 4th Dec

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Tickets are £29.50 and £35 including booking fee, and are available from Colston Hall Box Office in person or over the phone on 0844 887 1500 (calls cost 5p per minute plus your phone company’s access charge. Tickets are also available online at www.colstonhall.org

This show follows the news announced on 6th November that 50 years on, The Ronettes are to release a new single, penned by none other than Keith Richards of The Rolling Stones. The Stones toured with The Ronettes as their support act, and the song, now titled I’d Much Rather Be With The Girls, was written when they were travelling together.

Background

The Ronettes were one of the biggest girl groups of the 1960s, and comprised Ronnie Spector (then Veronica Bennett) and her sister, Estelle Bennett and their cousin Nedra Talley. The three were from Spanish Harlem in New York.

The Ronettes are instantly recognisable for their iconic look, with their enormous beehives and exaggerated eye make-up. It’s clear to see that they influenced the trademark style of the late Amy Winehouse. Ronnie has repaid the compliment by covering Winehouse’s hit, Back to Black.

They began in 1961 when they were signed to Coalpix records but hit the big time in 1963 when they were signed by Wall of Sound pioneer, Phil Spector.

Their biggest hits were ‘Be My Baby’, ‘Baby I Love You’, ‘(Best part of) Breaking Up’, and the Grammy Award-winning ‘Walking in the Rain’.

The Ronettes also contributed three songs to Phil Spector’s now classic Christmas album, A Christmas Gift for You – ‘I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus’, ‘Frosty the Snowman’, and ‘Sleigh Ride’.

The Ronettes were famously supported by The Rolling Stones on tour, while The Ronettes toured as opening act for The Beatles. In addition, Cher performed back up vocals for the group before she was famous.

Ronnie’s influence on music remains significant. As well as having John Lennon, Brian Wilson and Keith Richards as fans, Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen have cited Ronnie as an influence on their work.

Ronnie romanced John Lennon and Keith Richards, before marrying their producer Phil Spector. He then kept her as a near prisoner in their California mansion, and refused to release more Ronettes records. Ronnie left him in 1971, and they later divorced.

The Ronettes won a fifteen-year legal battle with Phil Spector for unpaid royalties. After he was imprisoned for murder, The Ronettes were finally inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007.

Ronnie’s 2014 autobiographical show ‘Beyond The Beehive’ garnered 5* reviews from the press, with The Guardian proclaiming that “the focal point of The Ronettes oozes charisma”, while The Independent raved that “this is where Amy Winehouse got her groove”.

With YouTube vids:

Sassy, stylish and charismatic, The #Ronettes were the ultimate 60s girl group. Check them out in their heyday: 

Still got it! Watch Ronnie Spector sing #Ronettes hit Be My Baby on Jools Holland
hear it live @Colston_Hall on 4Dec

#TBT Listen to the stunning harmonies in this vocals only version of #Ronettes singing their 60s hit Baby I Love You

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