Ronnie Spector


January 20, 2022

Ronnie Spector (actually Veronica Greenfield, born Veronica Yvette Bennett August 10, 1943, died January 12, 2022) was an American vocalist and frontman in the girl group The Ronettes.


Ronnie Spector has been called "the original bad girl of rock and roll".

Growing up and career

Veronica Yvette Bennett was born in New York and was very young when she started performing as a singer, something she was encouraged to do by close family. The other members of The Ronettes were her sister, Estelle Bennett (1941–2009), and cousin Nedra Talley. These too were encouraged by their loved ones to attempt a singing career. Thus, they merged into a trio. The girls in The Ronettes had a multicultural background, in that Bennette's mother was partly African-American and partly Cherokee, while her father was Irish. Their cousin, Nedra Talley, on the other hand, had African-American and Puerto Rican ancestry. Ronnie Spector has even said that at some point in her childhood she did not really know for sure what skin color she had. In the years 1968 to 1974, Ronnie was married to the record producer Phil Spector. She used his family name as a professional artist name. According to Ronnie's autobiography Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts, and Madness (1989), Phil kept her almost as a prisoner in her own home with very limited opportunities to take care of her music career. He was even so paranoid that he hid her shoes so she could not leave the house. Phil Spector was so sickeningly jealous when Ronnie toured with The Rolling Stones that he banned her from dating them. He was convinced that she would use every opportunity to be unfaithful to him. She goes on to say that he incessantly forced her to see Citizen Kane to remind her that she was a zero without him. In the basement he had a gold coffin with a glass lid, and in it he threatened to bury her if she dared to try to run away. Besides, the house was always in pitch darkness because he was afraid that someone outside would see his bald head. They adopted three children before Phil Spector's ruling sickness led to the marriage breaking down. Ronnie managed to escape with the youngest of the children, Donté. One day in 1972, she smashed the glass in the sliding door and walked out. Without shoes, as she was, she was severely cut on her feet before reaching the gate. She now demanded a divorce and never returned. Phil later became the sole breadwinner of two older children, who were twins. Later Ronnie wrote in his autobiography: "I can only say that when I left in the early 1970s, I knew that if I did not leave at that time, I was going to die there". Ronnie and Phil Spector were separated in 1973, and they divorced the following year. The autobiography Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts, and Madness, which she co-wrote with Vince Waldron, was reissued as a cheap paperback 15 years later. Ronnie Spector now lives in Connecticut with her new husband, Jonathan Greenfield, and their two sons, Austin Drew and Jason Charles. She has performed with her annual Ronnie Spector's Christmas (Xmas) Party around the United States since the late 1980s and for the past decade in New York City at the B. B. Kings Blues Club & Grill.


Phil Spector was the producer and manager of The Ronettes. In the early 1960s, the group had great success with songs such as "Be My Baby", "Baby I Love You" and "Walking in the Rain". The group disbanded in 1966 and did not reunite until they were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2007. The group felt let down when Phil Spector took a break from them to help Tina Turner get a hit with "River Deep - Mountain High" {US # 88; a UK # 3}. In 1969, a single, sung by Ronnie, but credited as "The Ronettes Featuring the Voice of Veronica", appeared on Herb Alperts A&M with an older Ronettes B-side on the other side. The single was called "You Came, You Saw, You Conquered", and the others felt completely superfluous. Early in the year in 1971

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