Anniversary of Ronettes' Estelle Bennett Death

02/11/2011
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On this day in 2009, Ronettes singer Estelle Bennett died at her home in Englewood, N.J. She was 67. The '60s girl group, best known for their work with producer Phil Spector, had the 1963 hit, "Be My Baby." Gibson takes a look back:

In the early 1960s, there had never existed a female rock act that exuded the raw underlying sexuality of The Ronettes. With exotic, multi-racial looks, wicked beehives and enticing slits up the sides of their skirts, The Ronettes meant business. When they beckoned listeners to "Be My Baby," men…and some women...stopped in their tracks.

Born in Manhattan's Washington Heights neighborhood, sisters Veronica and Estelle Bennett grew up in a musical household. They and their cousins, Nedra, Diane and Elaine Talley, were always singing around the house, encouraged by their grandmother and instructed by her on the art of harmonizing. In 1959, Grandma Bennett even went so far as to enter them into a talent show at the legendary Apollo Theatre, where the teenage girls won first prize. The group, known then as The Darling Sisters, got themselves a manager and started playing parties and sock hops. more on this story

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