Amy Winehouse was a person who divided the opinion of many. Musically, she was a genius – few could say a negative word about her songwriting, musical and vocal abilities. As a person, she was troubled – I’m not going to start a debate or speculate about her lifestyle, because that’s not the Amy her fans knew. As a true Amy Winehouse fan, I saw something different through her music – a girl who was sensitive, tormented by things she felt couldn’t control and, above all, honest.
A few people have asked me whether I am going to do an Amy Winehouse tribute look on YouTube – the answer is no. I won’t judge those who do, but to me Amy was so much more than her image. It would feel wrong to me to ‘reduce’ her to a make up tutorial video as a tribute. This will be my tribute to her.
I was travelling into town with Tiz, in the car, when I heard of her death on the radio yesterday. As soon as the news interrupted the radio show, and the newsreader said ‘Amy Winehouse…’, I knew that something awful had happened. I’m not often speechless, but I had no words. All I could think was, “I hope they’ve got it wrong.”
Amy is someone that I have loved from the beginning – her debut album, Frank, made such an impact on me – I fell in love with her voice, and her sense of humour shone through her songs so boldly. I loved the way she sung about things that actually happened – arguments with her boyfriend, her amusement at seeing ‘wannabe WAGs’ on a night out, but most of all – her feelings about life, love and the world. When Back to Black was released, my utter adoration for Amy only grew. Since I was around 15, I have probably listened to Amy’s songs more than any other artist or band. I, like so many others around the world, feel like I know every note of them, and feel everything she so soulfully conveyed.
Although many, through the eyes of the media, saw Amy at her worst, I always saw something different. Yes, Amy undoubtedly had many troubles, and I could never condone the use of drugs. Many are anti-drugs because of modern ideals; I am anti-drugs because I have seen how it can rip someone so special apart. And now Amy has been added to that list of those who couldn’t be saved from their demons – this is, of course, assuming that drugs are what so tragically killed her.
I feel that I could write forever, echoing the thoughts of her true fans. I never knew Amy in person, but I felt so close to her through her music. I have often heard people say “they will live forever through their songs”, but have never truly felt that until now. I lay awake last night, hoping that this was all some kind of twisted film plot that we were witnessing unfold, and that soon the lights would go on and it would all be over. But the fact remains, Amy has gone. But she will never, and could never, be forgotten.
Amy Jade (Mermaid) Winehouse – 14th September 1983-23rd July 2011.