I’ve always been a bit late to the party when it comes to buying newer music. I became aware of Amy Winehouse when she became a sensation with “Rehab” in 2006, and although I considered getting her CD, I just didn’t get around to it. And now, after hearing of her tragic passing, and listening to several of her songs on YouTube, I know I’ll be buying some of her music. I always feel bummed when artists get a posthumous bump in their earnings, not because they don’t deserve it, but because they’re not around to enjoy the fruits of their labor. And I’m sure there will be some that exploit her death for more money, and that’s just wrong.
For now, I listen to more of Amy’s songs, and I enjoy her smokey, gritty delivery and the retro styling of Back to Black and Rehab. I love the funky way she wore her super beehive ‘do and Cleopatra makeup, but Amy sang lyrics that you’d never hear from The Ronettes. Although I haven’t heard all of Amy’s catalog, one of my favorites so far is “F— Me Pumps”, that really rips apart the sad bar-fly lifestyle that so many young women throw themselves into. But the one thing that I’ve taken away from her works so far is that you could always hear her soul in her music, and how the often happy girl-group sound of her songs cleverly hid the anguish and heartbreak of her lyrics. A good artist sings lyrics, a great artist feels them. I can’t truly review her music since I am still unfamiliar with much of it, but I extend my deepest sympathies to her family, friends, and admirers around the world. I am sorry that her personal demons took her life, a life that could have produced so much more, but I truly hope that she’ll find her peace in eternity.
Here’s a loving tribute by Amy’s friend, comedian Russel Brand: