August 28, 2009
ELLIE GREENWICH 10/23/4o – 8/26/09
When Andy Caploe and his wife Susan e-mailed me about the passing of Ellie Greenwich, I was devastated. She was one of the first people I worked with after I left Aldon Music as a staff writer…and one of the few people I could talk to about almost anything. She was everybody’s home girl. One of the most talented and down to earth people I’ve ever met. I was so happy to reconnect with her on FACEBOOK!
“I was hanging out at Paul Vance’s (“Catch A Falling Star”, “Itsy Bitsy Bikini”) office where Ellie and Tony Powers who wrote “Today I Met The Boy I’m Gonna’ Marry” for Darlene Love and “Why Do Lovers Break Each Other’s Hearts” for Bobbi Soxx and the Blue Jeans, would come in and play their new songs for Paul’s opinion. If I was lucky enough to be there at the time, I’d be invited to come in and listen as well.
One day I’m starting a new song with Paul’s nephew Danny Jordan (The Detergents). Not only do we write with each other, but everybody we can corner who comes into the office. One day Ellie walks in. She asks us if we mind if is waits for her fiancé, Jeff Barry (“Tell Laura I Love Her”) who’s picking her up for lunch. About a half hour later the three of us have finished “You Should’ve Told Me”
We play it for Jeff when he arrives and he seems to like it, but doesn’t say very much. A few days later, Paul Vance gets The Angels (“Til”) to record it.
While Danny and I sit daydreaming of songwriting super stardom, collaborating with this talented young lady on dozens of future hits, Jeff has plans of his own. He and Ellie start writing with Phil Spector and create songs that not only become classics, but songs that define the ‘60s as well.”*
Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne from the forthcoming book “I Did It For A Song”
Thank You Ellie for all the joy, passion, and music you’ve given the world…and the friendship and support you’ve given me when I most needed it.
Ellie Greenwich R.I.P. ROCK IN PERPETUITY!
Ellie “at home” L to R…Lesley Miller, Ellie Greenwich and Mickie Harris Photo courtesy of John Madera
TOP L-R Artie Ripp, Jeff Barry, Phil Spector, Paul Case, Ellie Greenwich, Jerry Leiber, and Ed Silvers.
OFFICIAL ELLIE GREENWICH WEBSITE http://www.elliegreenwich.com/
HERE”S A SPECIAL TRIBUTE TO ELLIE FROM HER FRIENDS SONGWRITER/PRODUCER , and FATHER OF WOODSTOCK ARTIE KORNFELD, AND HIS SPECIAL GUEST PRODUCER BROOKS ARTHUR ON HIS WEEKLY RADIO SHOW @ Artist First Radio http://18.104.22.168/ArtistFirst_Artie_Kornfeld_Show_2009-09-01_Brooks_Arthur.mp3
TO HEAR ELLIE”S GREATEST HITS…CLICK ONTO BRIAN FERRARI’S TRIBUTE ON 60 DEGREES @ www.eastvillageradio.com. here is the link: :http://www.eastvillageradio.com/shows/nowplaying.aspx?contentid=1206&showid=16782 The program is from September 7th – the complete track list will appear if you click on the date.
MY FRIEND BRIAN IBBOTT AT COVERVILLE HAS PUT TOGETHER A SPECIAL EPISODE FEATURING ALL OF ELLIE”S BEST SONGS! http://coverville.com/archives/2009/09/coverville-607-the-ellie-greenwich-tribute-and-cover-story/
When I announced Ellie’s passing I was flooded with e-mails, some of which I had transcribed to the comments below. If you haven’t made a comment yet please feel free to do so…I’ll make sure her family gets each one.
BACK TO THE R.I.P. ROCK N PERPETUITY ARCHIVES http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2008/08/20/rip-rock-in-perpetuity-archives/
BACK TO ARTIE WAYNE ON THE WEB http://artiewayne.wordpress.com
April 15, 2009
L to R: Artie Ripp, Jeff Barry, Phil Spector, Paul Case, Ellie Greenwich, Jerry Leiber, and Ed Silvers at BMI award dinner in 1964
Yesterday I was talking to a pal from the past, Ira Howard, the former editor of Cashbox Magazine, who ran the music division of Readers Digest for 28 years. He was telling me about a new super website he’s about to launch especially for our generation, who never lost our love for the ‘50s, ‘60s, and ‘70s. As we talked about old times, the conversation turned to the headlines and Phil Spector, and our encounters over the years with him.
I told Ira, “After I left Aldon music, I started hanging out at Paul Vance’s (“Itsy, Bitsy, Teeny Weeny, Yellow Polka Dot Bikini”) office at 1650 Broadway. Ellie Greenwich (“Hanky Panky”) dropped in one day to see Paul who wasn’t there, and wound up writing a song with me and Danny Jordan (The Detergents), “You Should’ve Told Me”, which the Angels recorded. As Danny and I were dreaming of further collaborations with this talented young lady, Ellie, her fiance Jeff Barry (“Tell Laura I Love Her”) had other plans.
The two of them had started writing songs with 21 year-old producer, Phil Spector (“To Know Him Is To Love Him”). ..songs that defined a generation. “Be My Baby” by The Ronettes, “Da Doo Run Run” by the Crystals, and “River Deep Mountain High” by Ike and Tina Turner.”
Ira Howard recalls, “I was at Cashbox in the early ’60s when Phil came in and immediately blurted out “I got a hit record and I need a name for this new group I’m producing.” (the group, by the way, included Bobby Sheen, Darlene Love and Fanita James, who recorded under many group names back them.) We began throwing around some ideas, when, out of left field, I mentioned that we could possibly name them after the clothes the kids were wearing. I then said “how about dungarees…or blue jeans?’ Phil’s eyes lit up and said “bingo…it’s The Blue Jeans.” He followed it by saying, “now how about a lead singer?” I then followed with “how about bobby sox?” Phil had a grin from ear to ear and said “great…it’s Bob B. Soxx and The Blue Jeans.” The recording was “Zip-a-Dee-Doo-Dah” and it went Top Ten in November of ’62. Ira went on to mention that Phil had an amazing memory. The two didn’t meet until 40 years later at a songwriters awards dinner in New York. Ira got past Phil’s bodyguards and went up to him and just smiled. Phil then said “Bob B. Soxx & The Blue Jeans as his hello.”
Copyright 2009 by Artie Wayne http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/about-artie-wayne/
For more personal encounters with Phil Spector click onto
To see and hear Phil’s brilliant recordings with the Beatles as well as EVERY BEATLE VIDEO EVER MADE! http://artiewayne.wordpress.com/2009/04/11/every-beatle-video-ever-made-for-free/