Twinkle

Biography: "Twinkle" was actually born Lynn Annette Ripley and this nickname was given to her at a very young age. It was derived from either being "A twinkle in her father's eye" as one story goes or a name her older sister gave her when she first saw her as "…a great, fat hideous red baby…" as another reminisces. Her father was wealthy printer and politician Alderman Sidney Ripley and she grew up in a Surry mansion surrounded by servants. At six it was said by her mother Twinkle had written her first song on the piano and through grade school she already had ambitions of being a huge pop star.

She acquired connections to the pop world through her sister Dawn (James) who was a leading pop journalist for magazines like Mirabelle, Rave and 19 Magazine. At fourteen she had composed some numbers for the beat group the Trekkers, but it was Dec Clusky of the Bachelors that was given a demo tape of Twinkle on the family piano doing the song "Terry" she'd written that her father wanted the
"Twinkle" was actually born Lynn Annette Ripley and this nickname was given to her at a very young age. It was derived from either being "A twinkle in her father's eye" as one story goes or a name her older sister gave her when she first saw her as "…a great, fat hideous red baby…" as another reminisces. Her father was wealthy printer and politician Alderman Sidney Ripley and she grew up in a Surry mansion surrounded by servants. At six it was said by her mother Twinkle had written her first song on the piano and through grade school she already had ambitions of being a huge pop star.

She acquired connections to the pop world through her sister Dawn (James) who was a leading pop journalist for magazines like Mirabelle, Rave and 19 Magazine. At fourteen she had composed some numbers for the beat group the Trekkers, but it was Dec Clusky of the Bachelors that was given a demo tape of Twinkle on the family piano doing the song "Terry" she'd written that her father wanted the Bachelors to record. Instead the group's manager Phil Solomon heard the demo and insisted she record it. "Terry" was about a fictitious boyfriend that rode off on a rainy night on his motorcycle after an argument and ends up being killed in an accident.

When the song was released, it was almost immediately banned by the BBC and pulled from "Ready Steady Go" as being "dangerous drivel" and "sick". The backlash of this immediately launched the unlikely popularity of it and thus put Twinkle on the British charts topping at number 4. In actuality the song's lyrics are no more graphic or gloomy than those of either "Leader of the Pack" made popular by the Shangri-Las or "Seasons in the Sun". Each dealing with young death and sorrow.

Photogenic and always "Mod", Twinkle was well-photographed wearing lots of striped jumpers, hats and leather boots in her teens. If you look at photos of her at that age she actually bears a resemblance to a current-day Brittney Spears. She never did quite catch on in the US the way other British pop stars had in the sixties, but wasn't forgotten. Although she only stayed in the business of recording off and on over the next decades, Twinkle still writes music today. At least one of her original songs "Golden Lights" was picked up by Morrisey of the Smiths and covered during their 1980s popularity.
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