The Crystals’ lead singer dies from the flu
Barbara Ann Alston, one of the most influential artists in rock and roll music in the ‘60s, and lead singer of The Crystals, died in Charlotte on February 16, aged 74.
Her death comes as part of the nation’s ongoing flu epidemic: the singer had been in intensive care at a Charlotte hospital for more than two weeks when she became one of 200 North Carolinians to die from the flu this season.
“She loved The Crystals,” her daughter Donielle Prophete told BBC News. “She always talked about singing with them, the work they created together. She loved the sisterhood part of it, the travelling.”
The Crystals were an American vocal group based in New York, considered one of the defining acts of the girl group era in the first half of the 1960s.
Their 1961–1964 chart hits, including “There’s No Other (Like My Baby)”, “Uptown”, “He’s Sure the Boy I Love”, “He’s a Rebel”, “Da Doo Ron Ron” and “Then He Kissed Me”, featured three successive female lead singers, and were all producedby Phil Spector.
The Crystals, along with The Ronettes, were among the definitive girl groups of the 1960s and helped construct Phil Spector’s Wall of Sound.