A Broadway musical about Phil Spector? If I were Rachelle Spector, the 32 year old woman who married Phil Spector after he was arrested for murder– and before he received a 19 years to life sentence– I’d keep my money. The latest and last (presumably) Mrs. Spector tells Tim Appelo in The Hollywood Reporter that she’s got plans to put Phil’s life and music on stage.
This sanitized version of Spector’s life, she says, is already underway. I don’t know who’s writing this thing. but my advice is, stop now. There is no audience for a musical called “Be My Baby” or whatever. Not one about Spector. As much as the excellent HBO “Phil Spector” movie is presented as a “fiction,” it’s pretty accurate up to a point. And I don’t think the public will be forking over $150 a ticket to see Rachelle Spector’s version of events turned into a musical comedy.
Indeed, while Rachelle complains to Appelo about the HBO movie, someone licensed Spector’s music to HBO for use in the film. And that would have to have been her, since Phil’s in jail. This is interesting since Spector won’t allow his famous ex wife Ronnie, who he treated like dirt, didn’t pay, etc, to use her songs in a dramatic presentation. Ronnie Spector has been trying to mount a stage show about her life. But as she says in the performance, Phil Spector has prohibited her from using her own hits.
Nevertheless, Ronnie’s master recording of “Be My Baby” is heard right at the beginning of David Mamet’s “Phil Spector” movie.
Rachelle Spector also says in that interview that she’s got a new deal with Sony Legacy. Well, no. The deal was announced in September 2009. The great Spector boxed set, “Back to Mon0,” is now out of print from ABKCO Records. Too bad.
And the musical? Phil Spector murdered Lana Clarkson. I do think audiences will be a tad uncomfortable celebrating his life and legend, dancing in the aisles, knowing their hard earned money will be going straight to his bank accounts. As much of a genius as Spector was, he was also crazy. And now, like O.J. Simpson, he is paying the price for his bad deeds.