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What Has Ronnie Spector Said About Her Marriage To Phil Spector?

Phil Spector's ex-wife Ronnie Spector appeared to be shocked when her ex was arrested for the murder of Lana Clarkson in 2003.

By Gina Tron
Killer Motive: What Drives People To Kill?

Disgraced music producer Phil Spector was a convicted murderer, but his former wife said he was also an abusive husband.

Spector was largely regarded for creating hits for 1960s legends like The Ronettes and The Beatles. He married Ronnie Spector, the star vocalist of The Ronnettes in 1968, and they remained married until their 1974 divorce.

When the two met, Ronnie was just a teenager — she was just 17 while Phil was 24. Phil signed The Ronnettes in 1963 and then assisted the group as they hit the charts with iconic songs like the 1963 smash hit “Be My Baby.” The Ronettes broke up shortly after the couple wed.

Ronnie had long been public about her marriage to Phil, the New York Post reported earlier this year. In her 1990 memoir “Be My Baby: How I Survived Mascara, Miniskirts, and Madness,” she depicted her former husband as vindictive and violent. She wrote that he allegedly threatened her life and that she feared she would die if she stayed with him. Eventually, she left him in 1972, literally running away from the home they shared while barefoot.

RELATED: What Drove Music Legend Phil Spector To Fatally Shoot An Actress In His Castle-Style Mansion

Phil’s violence towards women further became a part of his legacy in 2003 when actor Lana Clarkson, 40, was shot to death inside the foyer of his French Chateau-style mansion. Phil attempted to deflect blame, claiming that Clarkson, who worked as a VIP hostess at Hollywood’s House of Blues, had shot herself to death just three hours after meeting Phil.

Following Phil’s 2003 arrest, Ronnie said she was "baffled" over the murder allegation, according to “Good Morning America.”

Singer Ronnie spector and Producer Phil Spector

"I don't think he would murder anybody," she told the outlet at the time.

However, even then, Phil was seemingly trying to control Ronnie. He led a campaign to attempt to bar her from being inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2007, according to the New York Post.

“You’d think he might have focused on his murder trial,” Ronnie told the outlet.

The first trial in Lana Clarkson's murder ended in a hung jury, but Phil was convicted of the murder in 2009. He was sentenced to 19 years to life as a result. He died in 2021 at the age of 81 from COVID-19 complications while serving his sentence in California State Prison, the Los Angeles Times reported last year.

When he died, Ronnie told the outlet, “It’s a sad day for music and a sad day for me. The magical music we were able to make together was inspired by our love. I loved him madly and gave my heart and soul to him.”

She went on to state that “unfortunately Phil was not able to live and function outside of the recording studio. Darkness set in. Many lives were damaged.”

Ronnie died of cancer at the age of 78 in January 2022.

On Nov. 6, Showtime is launching a four-part docuseries titled "Spector," which promises to dive into the disgraced music icon's issues.

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