“Baby, I Love You” is a pop song originally recorded by The Ronettes in 1963. The song was written by Jeff Barry, Ellie Greenwich, and Phil Spector, and produced by Spector. The single peaked at #24 on the Billboard Hot 100 and Cashbox Hot 100, and peaked at #11 on the UK Pop Chart. Billboard named the song #56 on their list of 100 Greatest Girl Group Songs of All Time.
After their lack of success under contract to Colpix Records between 1961 and 1963, the Ronettes ended their Colpix contract and signed with Phil Spector’s Philles Records in early 1963. During their first few months with Phil Spector, the Ronettes achieved mainstream success with the release of “Be My Baby” in August 1963, which climbed to number two on the Billboard Hot 100 and number one on the Cashbox Hot 100. It was the success of “Be My Baby” which had Spector eager to do a follow-up for the Ronettes in the fall of 1963.
However, a problem arose when the Ronettes were booked to appear on Dick Clark’s “Caravan of Stars” tour across the country.
Phil Spector decided to keep lead singer Ronnie Bennett in California to record “Baby, I Love You” while the other two Ronettes, Estelle Bennett and Nedra Talley, went out on the tour with Dick Clark. Ronnie’s cousin, Elaine, took her place on the tour while Ronnie recorded the song at Gold Star studios in California. Since the other Ronettes proved to be unavailable for recording, Spector used Darlene Love and Cher to complete the backing vocals. The song also featured Leon Russell on piano. “Baby, I Love You” peaked at #11 in the UK during January 1964, at a time when the Ronettes were touring the UK as the support act to the Rolling Stones.
The song was featured on the album Presenting the Fabulous Ronettes, which was released at the end of 1964.
The song was also on the soundtrack of the film, Nine Months.
Phil Spector produced the Ramones’ cover version of the song which appeared on their 1980 album, End of the Century. This single reached #8 in the UK Singles Chart in 1980.