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The Post  
 
Ronnie Spector Concert at the Cape May Convention Center
 
  by: JoeS - Springfield, PA
started: 08/04/13 12:28 pm | updated: 08/04/13 12:28 pm
 
Every once in a while you get to see and hear a performer who just takes your breath away, I had that experience and pleasure on Monday night July 29th at 8PM at the Cape May Convention Center. Ronnie Sector was in a word magnificent! She was elegant, beautiful, funny, animated and delivered her songs with a real punch. Given the power that the original recordings were engineered to deliver by Phil Spector, I was concerned about the band that would be accompanying this legend . Trying to replicate the Phil Spector Wall of Sound is, for any group of musicians, a challenge. That is especially true is a live environment. She never introduced the band, but they were more than up to the challenge. There were two back up singers, a lead and a base guitar player, two keyboard players, one on a piano and the other an organ, a drummer and one of the back up singers also played rhythm guitar. They jelled on the first number and supported Ronnie wonderfully the entire show.

She came out and hit the ground in full stride singing, “Baby I Love You.” Her voice was clear as a bell and seemed as strong as ever. The audience stood and gave her a resounding round of applause that continued the entire night. She has great command of the stage and knows how to get an audience to respond. I was in the first row and was amazed at how she made eye contact with folks and played off of their energy. Her smile is contagious and lights up the room. After each song she would go to the platform the drummer was on and sit down, take a sip of water, and tell a little story or make a joke. It was obvious during these conversations how much she cherished her friendships with George Harrison, Billy Joel, Bruce Springsteen and Brian Wilson. She touched on escaping Hollywood, code for Phil Spector, and being sad when the Ronettes broke up. It was evident that she had a place in her heart for Amy Winehouse. But for the most part, she was upbeat and seemed to be glad to be performing for us.

The set consisted of:
“Baby I Love You”
“You Belong to Me”
“So Young”
“Walking in the Rain”
“Don't Worry Baby” (Beach Boys Cover)
“Is This What I Get for Loving You”
“You Baby”
“I Wish I Never Saw the Sunshine”
“You Can't Put Your Arms Around a Memory” ( Joey Ramone cover)
“So Young”
“Say Goodbye to Hollywood” ( Billy Joel cover)
“Time Is on My Side” ( The Rolling Stones cover)
“Back to Black” ( Amy Winehouse cover )

Encore:
“I Can Hear Music”
“Be My Baby”

Veronica Bennett, Ronnie, along with her sister Estelle and her cousin Nedra Talley became one of the most popular girl groups of their time, The Ronettes. The Ronettes had a short career because of the manipulation of Phil Spector. He would not release singles like , “Chapel of Love” that the Dixie Cups later released as a smash hit. He tried to stop them from touring and even sent different singers out on tour instead of the Ronettes themselves. This allowed the Motown based Supremes to take the scene by storm. Even with all of theses attempts to stifle their career, the Ronettes have earned just about ever possible recognition one could imagine. They are in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame; They are in Vocal Group Hall of Fame; They are in People's Hall of Rock and Roll Legends; They are on Rolling Stone list of 500 Greatest Albums for Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes Featuring Veronica and They won a Grammy for “Walking In The Rain.” They are the only girl group to tour with The Beatles and The Rolling Stones.

I did not get to see the Ronettes or Ronnie live at the height of their popularity, however, the show the other night was , in my mind, a close second. She looked and sounded every bit the star she was and is. JoeS

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