A Look Back at 'Be My Baby' Singer Ronnie Spector's 1991 Inside Edition Interview
In a 1991 interview with Inside Edition, Ronnie Spector said Phil Spector was a vicious and emotionally abusive husband who held her captive at their Beverly Hills mansion. "I found myself in a prison. I couldn’t get out," she said.
The music world is mourning the death of Ronnie Spector, the lead singer of the Ronettes, who died Wednesday at age 78 after a short battle with cancer.
Spector was a music legend and later spoke out about surviving a tumultuous marriage with Phil Spector, who produced the Ronettes’ first hit “Be My Baby,” which launched the group into stardom.
Five years later, frontwoman Ronnie married the eccentric hitmaker, who she says became her tormentor.
“The gates were up and barbed wire, and I found myself in a prison. I couldn’t get out,” Ronnie Spector told Inside Edition in 1991, adding that Phil Spector threatened to kill her if she ever left.
She says Phil Spector was a vicious and emotionally abusive husband who held her captive at their Beverly Hills mansion, where she says she was rarely allowed to leave. And if she did, she was made to drive with a bizarre, inflatable mannequin made to look like him.
“He put a cigarette in his mouth and the whole bit. It looked exactly like Phil,” Ronnie said.
Six years into their marriage, as she was plotting her escape, Phil Spector brought home adopted twin boys.
“They were out in front playing around the fountain. He said, ‘Happy birthday,’” Ronnie said.
It was a tactic that she says was meant to keep her tethered to her husband.
She made her escape six months later and lost custody of the children.
Louis Spector and his brother Gary are Phil Spector’s adopted children. They too once told Inside Edition the mansion they lived in was like a prison.
“Go to school, come back from school, get locked up back in our room again until dinner, come back down, eat dinner, no talking, go back upstairs and lock up,” Louis said.
In 2009, Phil Spector was convicted in the murder of actress Lana Clarkson. He died in prison last year.
Ronnie Spector is survived by her second husband, who she married nearly 40 years ago and by two adult sons.
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