#soon! Part Un - The 60s-00s Girl Band Debut Breakthrough Rate

PopJustice's Winner!!


60s Gold Medallist / Girl Band Début Gold
The Ronettes – Be My Baby
Average Score: 9.227
Highest Score: 11 x 4 (@kermit_the_frog, @Russron, @Aester, @Trouble in Paradise) 10 x 13 (@berserkboi, @Filippa, @GhettoPrincess, @Trouble in Paradise, @Baby Clyde, @Ironheade, @2014, @SuperNerd, @tylerc904, @iheartpoptarts, @Remorque, @ufint, @unnameable)
Lowest Score: 4 x 1 (@Empty Shoebox)

And here is your winner by a substantial margin, PopJustice! As predicted by @Russron – what really gave The Ronettes the edge in securing the top spot was the lack of divisiveness for Be My Baby. A fantastic record through and through, there wasn’t really much anyone could actively dislike about the song – minus an @Empty Shoebox or two. Our girls had a steady climb to the top, they were always in the top 10 but towards the bottom of it, the more voters we got though, the closer they kept getting to the top until by the last few, their lead on Sugababes became a substantial few points and bar a zero or two thrown The Ronettes’ way and 11s Sugababes’ way – they were uncontestably winning.

Although I had two other songs I was really pulling for in Overload and Will You Love Me Tomorrow – this result makes me extremely happy, not just for the fact Be My Baby is incredible, but it allowed me as a host to actually end the rate on an extremely high note with such a winner. It also goes to show PopJustice can still surprise you in doing the right thing sometimes and bestowing the win on an extremely deserved number without age being a prejudice. My personal top 5 picks for the rate were Sugababes, Salt-N-Pepa, Martha & The Vandellas, The Ronettes and The Shirelles so to have three of them in the actual top 5 and a godly top 2, has made this experience top notch!

Be My Baby is all sorts of incredible and listening to it again and again for this write-up – what a template it is for modern music structure with the soft but bombastic start, the charismatic vocals of Ronnie Spector, the bridge having the softer instrumental that bring in a different layer to the overall sound. All of this while keeping in mind the track follows the ‘Wall Of Sound’ approach Phil Spector is famous for, yet have so much drama and depth to still give interludes within the sound is majestic. Be My Baby isn’t called *THE* best song ever for no reason.

#22 of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Songs Of All Time, #1 of Greatest Girl Group Songs Of All Time, Library of Congress adding The Ronettes' version to the United States National Recording Registry. Mr. Brian Wilson (Beach Boys legend & father of the Wilson portion of Wilson Phillips) calls it the greatest record of all time, developing an obsession for the song and apparently listening to it 1000 times to try and work out how Phil got to this sound. The Beatles adore it and it can now even add PopJustice as a stan! The opening drum phrase has been mimicked numerous time, Back To Black by Ronettes’s superfan Amy Winehouse being one of the more PJ examples. Barbara Cane of EMI estimated that the song has been played in 3.9 million feature presentations on radio and television since 1963, the equivalent of 17 years back to back (adding to @modered’s points but also shows the impact on us even today!)

The Ronettes started out as a family band with Estelle and Veronica Bennett, and cousin Nedra Talley as they started singing together during childhood visits to their Grandmother’s house. By the time she was eight, Ronnie (Veronica) recalls she was working up whole numbers for the weekend that the girls would perform together. Their other cousin Elaine Mayes would also join in for three-part harmonies. By the time the group that would eventually become the Ronettes was formed in 1957, their other cousin Diane would also make up the five-some. After a disastrous start at an amateur night, Elaine and Diane left the band and our original three persevered. Their moment came through a case of mistaken identity, as they were thought to be the dancing act at the Peppermint Lounge and when they were called onstage, Ronnie started singing What’d I Say by Ray Charles to applause, and led to the girls getting a regular gig there. In early 1963 and frustrated with the lack of success of their initial releases on Colpix Records, Estelle phoned producer Phil Spector to audition for him.

The rest as they say is Pop history. In part 2, we will probably look at the impact the song had on the band’s career and the marriage of Phil & Ronnie Spector with its incredibly dark turn in mind too…. Suffice to say, Phil Spector was quite a deranged individual, and the events that sent him to prison are still chilling to this day.

PopJustice – Tell us how you came to this absolute justice of a result!

Unnameable (10) has only one thing to say, and boy does it stick! – another song that defines an ear/era. Ufint (10) has been in love this whole time but didn’t even know! -Hold up just a minute, this is a song I’ve listened a lot through the years, and in its original form and not as a cover. I love it! Lavish instrumentation and delicious harmonies. Yes please. Iheartpoptarts (10) will be pleased to hear we all agree!! - Everybody loves this song, right? Right?!

DominoDancing (9) has a word and it is: exception-al!! - An absolute classic, one of the few Spector productions I actually like. Hate, hate, HATE the wall of sound approach usually. I guess it's the castanets that make the difference here. Londonrain (9.5) joining DJHazey in the ‘Shoulda 10ed Brigade’ - My favourite sixties girl group song. An utter classic. Untouchable Ace (9.2) calls out some of the numbers that came as a result of greatness - In rating 'Be My Baby' along with 'Want Ads' in this rate, I may be biased in liking these 2 a bit more because of how well they have been sampled in 'B-Boy Baby' by M and 'Sunshine' by Ricki-Lee respectively.

Empty Shoebox (4) finishes the rate as our Super-Villain - Okay, so apparently this is 'the song' for Spector's Wall of Sound, and I don't think I appreciate it. I can hear some echo in the instruments (especially the drums), but nothing else. Maybe it's because I'm an uneducated plebeian or maybe it's because we're 55 years on and what was impressive then is commonplace now. Anyway, I'm not hearing it. Sounds a bit better than others of the time, but I don't like the lyrics. Filippa (10) of the Villain brigade abandons the post in time to crown the winner - Dirty Dancing! Love that soundtrack! And especially this song.

Spillett (8) inspired my top 2 post subliminally, I see! - (such a sing-a-long. B-Boy Baby by Mutya/Amy Winehouse definitely took this as inspiration/just copied it). Saviodxl (8.1) is on the road to redemption - The best girlgroup of their decade! ComeOnGloria (8.5) cannot explain what it is that touches him so - Love this song. Don't know why. Zar-Unity (7), to no one’s surprise gave this a 7! - Oh I know this one, nice melody! Tech: 5 Taste: 2 = 7 points.

The 11 Brigade or Team ‘Stanned Talent All Along’ have this to say -

Kermit_The_Frog (11) gives a preview of his picks for part 2 of the Favourites Rate - Not just the greatest girl-group song of all time, possibly/probably the greatest song of all time. Ronnie Spector (does she still use that surname?) is one of our most undervalued popstars and her career exile is criminal. Further Listening: Don’t Worry Baby (Ronnie Spector solo - originally written for her by Brian Wilson but never recorded by her, she eventually covered it in the early 00s). Aester (11) only commented on this one to say - From the iconic opening drum beat to the infectious chorus, this is an absolute rush of a song and one of my all-time favorites. Phil Spector may be a monster, but the man sure knew how to craft a perfect pop song.

Trouble In Paradise (11) sees with clear eyes - One of the most quintessential girl group songs. It has all of the youthful, romantic energy I could ask for in a girl group love song. Ronnie Spector’s voice has so much character to it with a perfect mix of swooning soft romance and power. The backing vocals create such a lush environment that we still hear reflected in contemporary music. There’s a reason so many artists continue to be influenced by this sound, it’s so immediate and emotional. Russron (11) brings receipts! - (Thee best pop song in history. If you don't believe me, just ask the greatest pop genius on earth i.e. Brian Wilson, and leave me alone.)​

What a winner!

What a journey!

What a ride of a hosting début!

Decade Recap & Final Thoughts

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Deleted member 26234

I love this winner, I love this song, I love that you all like the winning songs and really I loved @berserkboi 's write ups.

Brian Wilson (father of the Wilson portion of Wilson Phillips)

You didn't say that did you? The genius behind The Beach Boys referred as the father of Carnie and Wendy?

Let me finish with: I love Brian Wilson.
I love this winner, I love this song, I love that you all like the winning songs and really I loved @berserkboi 's write ups.

You didn't say that did you? The genius behind The Beach Boys referred as the father of Carnie and Wendy?

Let me finish with: I love Brian Wilson.

Whoops ! I am a master of misinformation til the very end, it seems! Thanks for letting me know!!<3