Ronnie Spector may be headed to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, but she’s not a museum piece yet. Spector tells Billboard.com that the March 12 induction for the Ronettes will be “just the beginning of everything for me” — especially in the U.S., where she plans to bring out a new album (“The Last of the Rock Stars,” which was released in the U.K. in 2006) and hit the road in the coming year.
“That’s why I want the CD to be successful,” Spector says, “so people can see me. ‘Cause I was the first rock’n’roll singer, girl, female, and now I have to be the last.”
Spector says she “was trying to put my whole life into” “The Last of the Rock Stars,” which is only her third solo album and her first since 1987’s “Unfinished Business.” It includes a version of early influence Frankie Lymon & the Teenager’s 1957 hit “Out in the Cold” again and is filled with guests, including Patti Smith and the Greenhornes on “There is an End,” the Raveonettes’ Sune Rose Wagner on “Ode to L.A.,” the New York Dolls’ David Johansen and Nick Zinner of the Yeah Yeah Yeahs.
“Everybody on the album, they’re really friends of mine in real life. They brought everything to it,” says Spector, who’s particularly happy that the Ronettes will be going into the Hall of Fame in the same class as Smith. And she was proud of the Rolling Stones’ Keith Richards, who took a very serious approach to his guest appearance on the Amy Rigby-written “All I Want.”
“When Keith Richards is in the studio an hour before I even got there, and he’s always known to be late, you know something’s going on,” Spector says with a laugh.
Although she doesn’t yet know who will be inducting the Ronettes into the Hall of Fame, Spector assures, “I would love to sing that night. I’d rather sing than talk. To be in the Hall of Fame … it’s just blowing my mind. I can’t wait.”