Saturday, February 14, 2009

ESTELLE





Estelle Bennett, former singer with the Ronettes and sister of Ronnie Spector, has died aged 67.

As a member of the Ronettes, Estelle sang backing vocals on the 1963 hit Be My Baby, considered by many, including the Beach Boys' Brian Wilson, to be the greatest pop song of all time. The song was written by Phil Spector (with Jeff Barry and Ellie Greenwich), whose work with the group helped forge his trademark "wall of sound" technique. Spector went on to marry Ronnie, but the marriage ended in divorce and the Ronettes launched an unsuccessful case to sue Spector over unpaid royalties.

The Ronettes – whose lineup consisted of sisters Estelle and Ronnie, along with their cousin Nedra Talley – formed in 1959, going on to record a string of hit singles including Baby I Love You, Walkin' In the Rain and (The Best Part of) Breakin' Up. The group split in 1966, after which Estelle remained mostly out of the spotlight.

Bennett was found dead at her New Jersey home on Wednesday. The cause of death is not yet known. Ronnie Spector has posted a tribute to her sister on her website, which reads: "To my beloved sister, rest in peace, you deserve it. I love you, Ronnie."

In 2007 the group were inducted into the Rock'n'Roll Hall of Fame, although Estelle refused to perform. Instead, she delivered a two-line acceptance speech: "I would just like to say thank you very much for giving us this award. I'm Estelle of the Ronettes, thank you."

Bennett is survived by her sister, a daughter and three grandsons.


2 comments:

Sara said...

Awwwww, there is too much of this happening lately! :( I just love the Ronettes.

SIRLORDTHOMAS said...

I KNOW IT SEEMS TO COME IN WAVES!:(