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Music

BBC Four to air new Ronnie Spector special

BBC Four will air a TV special tonight honouring the late icon Ronnie Spector. Spector, who passed away on Wednesday, January 12th, aged 78 “after a brief battle with cancer”, was the leader of the 1960s group The Ronettes, and an early feminist hero. 

“She was with family and in the arms of her husband, Jonathan,” Spector’s family wrote in a statement. “Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humour and a smile on her face. She was filled with love and gratitude. Her joyful sound, playful nature and magical presence will live on in all who knew, heard or saw her.”

BBC Four is honouring Spector by changing its Friday schedule to air a programme titled Ronnie Spector At The BBC. According to a press release, the 30-minute special will delve into the BBC archives, tracing the life of the late cultural titan, known for hits such as ‘Walking In The Rain’ and ‘Be My Baby’.

“This journey through the archives features Ronnie in her own words, discussing her life and career through the years,” the press release explains. “It also includes a selection of her incredible performances on BBC, including on Later… With Jools HollandDavid EssexThe Old Grey Whistle Test and her most recent performance at Glastonbury Festival on the Park Stage in 2016.”

The programme will air from 9pm until 9:30pm on BBC Four. When the news of Spector’s death broke, tributes poured in from every corner of the globe. Brian Wilson of The Beach Boys wrote: “I just heard the news about Ronnie Spector and I don’t know what to say. I loved her voice so much and she was a very special person and a dear friend. This just breaks my heart. Ronnie’s music and spirit will live forever.”

E Street Band legend, Steve Van Zandt, wrote: “RIP Ronnie Spector. It was an honour to Produce her and encourage her to get back on stage where she remained for the next 45 years. Her record with the E Street Band helped sustain us at a very precarious time (thanks to Steve Popovich). Condolences to her husband and family.”

Read more celebrity tributes to Spector here. A huge loss, Ronnie Spector will not be forgotten. She triumphed in the face of absolute evil in her life, making her one of the most well-respected artists to have ever lived. Read her remarkable story here

Listen to ‘Be My Baby’ below.