For some, 14th September is just a normal day- but for others they know that today is a pretty sad day. If it wasn’t for that horrible day two years ago, today would have been a special day for one person and her family. Sadly it isn’t. A loss is a loss, regardless of who experiences it.
Today would have been Amy Winehouse’s 30th birthday; today is also Nas’ 40th birthday. A rapper she really loved, and spoke beautifully about it in her song Me & Mr. Jones. She even sampled Made You Look by Nas on her song, In My Bed. Both songs are incredible, and probably the two I can sort of listen to without this weird and awful feeling just hitting me.
If Amy wasn’t so open with her lyrics, if you thought she didn’t mean every word- then I guess her music is probably easy to listen to. I remember hearing her many years ago on Trevor Nelson’s radio show he had on a Saturday afternoon on Radio 1 and he played Stronger Than Me. I then saw her on Jools Holland and she had this baby blue guitar and leopard print trousers on. She looked a little vulnerable but an element of control was around her. Anyone who saw that performance knew that they were witnessing something that would become such a vital performance. More importantly it was one of the best performances on that show. Ever.
Of course we must not be sad, but there will always be an element of sadness when her name is mentioned. Or when we think about Amy Winehouse. Her music, her words..they made you feel as if you knew her. Of course we didn’t but she was so open with her words- you couldn’t help but feel something like, she was your pal. Her music got you through heartbreak. So many have leant on her record, Back To Black to get through emotional pain. It was a raw record that exposed the ugly and haunting feelings we have in a way that we never could. That no one else may ever do. She was a phenomenal song-writer; the sheer honesty in her songs was just absolutely beautiful. The way in which she sung them made them what they were; perfect.
Since her passing, Amy’s family have set up the Amy Winehouse Foundation. You can learn more about who they are and what they do: http://www.amywinehousefoundation.org and all through September they putting on events to celebrate her 30th birthday. Get involved.
Today is a sad day, but it..happens. She died far too young, and it is so easy to think of what could have been. But what we have is what we should treasure. There will never ever be anyone else like her. She will always be the Queen Of Camden, always.
Time can give hope, it can also continue to make matters worse. It does a lot of things. From healing to despair. It’s everything and nothing; all at once. I should be getting ready for work, but I’ll only annoy myself if I don’t write this down now.
Two years have passed. You remember exactly where you were and who you were with when you found out. I was crossing the road in a place I loath with a very good friend. We got home and put the news on.
For me, Amy’s death changed everything I feel towards music. It changed how I listened to music. It’s been two years since I listened to her music; I simply cannot listen to her voice without wanting to cry. I feel ridiculous feeling this way, but her music was as important to me as is Morrissey’s music. It is on that level.
When I went to see Patti Smith in April she performed her song, This Is The Girl. Her tribute to Amy. Of course I cried. But I cried because someone who I have looked up to since I was very young was singing a song dedicated to a person who was also an inspiration to many.
Regardless of the circumstances surrounding of her death and the demons she faced; she was someone’s daughter, someone’s sister. She will always be loved and always remembered. Seeing her being labelled as part of the “27 Club” is just disrespectful. I don’t agree with it, I never have.
Maybe one day I’ll listen to her music again and not want to cry like a baby, but until that day….
Her music comforted us in our own heartbreaks and also showed a side of love we may never know. Her music captured everything we wanted to say and if you have never cried to at least one of her songs; then your heart is made of stone. She got to the very core of a feeling and no matter how ugly it was, she made it into something beautiful. Her music was a source of comfort, and was that friend at 4am when your heart and thoughts got too heavy.
Some things, no matter how often you are faced with them. No matter how much time passes, no matter how often you talk about it or hear about it; it just doesn’t seem right. It feels like your heart broke over someone you never even met or knew, and you feel silly for feeling so sad. You’ve cried over the death of a person who you never met, and you don’t understand what kind of person you are. Are you silly or just in touch with your feelings? There’s no right or wrong. There’s no shame in feeling, ever.
You remember certain moments. Certain dates stick in your mind. Music does more than what we think it does. It heals, it hurts, it brings smiles, it causes tears. It is everything, and more. How do you go on without it? How do you go on when the one who told your story, and so many others, is no longer around? Maybe you learn to adjust to it, but that piece of your heart that broke; maybe it doesn’t heal.
Today, 14th September 2012, would have been Amy Winehouse’s 29th birthday. Some things just do not seem real. Regardless of how many times you read about it or hear others mention it. No part of you can get your head around any of this. So senseless and too much to take in.
The other day, for the first time since Amy died I tried to listen to her music. I got about 10 seconds in, and hearing her voice was too much to deal with. I turned it off. I hate that this is how it is now. I hate it. Maybe one day I’ll stop being such a wuss and get a grip. Until then, I will constantly believe that she should still be here. I could write thousands of words about all of this, but it has been said so many times before.
With all I have, I do hope that Amy is at peace and at ease. I hope she has healed and is safe.
“I don’t think your ability to fight has anything to do with how big you are. It’s to do with how much anger is in you.”
Time drags. Time goes fast. Sometimes you have to remove yourself from everything and everyone to make sense of even the tiniest of events. Events that mean nothing, events that can possibly mean the world. Change your world. Destroy your world. Your heart breaks from one event. An event that many may think “oh it was bound to happen.” Whereas those with heart know it never should’ve happened. I don’t want to write this. I feel the same as I did the day it happened. It will never feel right, it will never be justified. Personally, it still doesn’t feel true.
I’m writing this listening to Amy’s voice..the first time in a year. If I listen to anything else, the words won’t come out. I don’t want the words to come out, this isn’t fucking right. There’s nothing I can say that hasn’t already been said at all. Hearing what had happened..I remember everything. I remember where I was, and who I was with. I was crossing a road with my best friend. We we’re going back to my house before we went to a gig, for his birthday. You just don’t forget. We must never forget.
The whole “27 Club” pisses me off. You cannot glorify death. You cannot glorify tragedy. Glorify the talent.
We’ll never ever have another singer like Amy, that’s pretty obvious. I don’t mean just vocally but personality wise too.
I don’t know why I’m even writing this. It won’t bring her back, it doesn’t make the missing any easier. I used to play her music all the time. Frank is easily one of the greatest debut records of all time. Back To Black is one of the most vulnerable and pure records ever made. I cannot listen to them in the same way..not right now.
I’ll leave it here. There’s nothing I can say, it’s all been done.
Today would’ve been Amy Winehouse’s 28th birthday, nearly two months have passed and it still doesn’t feel right. It never will feel right. She should still be here blessing us all with her beautiful soulful voice and endearing presence.
As tribute to her on her birthday, a new song with Tony Bennett was given its first play on BBC Radio 2 this morning.
Their voices go so well together. It’s just so beautiful. You can just imagine them in the studio together recording this. It is quite painful to listen to this- but it just shows how amazing she truly was.
There are some people who make a difference in the music industry as soon as you are first exposed to them.
I remember being sat at home one Saturday afternoon in 2003 and hearing a song with the most stunning lyrics, “You should be stronger than me, you’ve been here 7 years longer than me.” There was something about this voice and this woman’s voice that just pierced my heart and won it instantly.
A few weeks later I was watching Jools Holland. This young girl was stood with a blue guitar wearing leopard print trousers with a nervous stance in front of the camera. She was singing the same song, again- I was just blown away.There was this look in her eye that you could see she found it overwhelming but at the same time had a strong enough voice to rule out the nerves.
Everyone is saying, “Oh another member of the 27 club.” Or “She was just a smack head.” Fuck off. Seriously. Just fuck off. Her voice was what made her. Her voice is one of the most powerful voices that this country has produced in such a long time.
What made her so appealing is that she sung her pain and you felt like it was your pain. She didn’t make you feel alone with having your heart ripped out and trampled on. She didn’t make you feel like you were the only person to have been hurt. She made you feel, simple as. Her music as one of the rawest pieces of art created, the way she could express pain in a way you’d expect a jazz singer to vocalise it showed she was beyond her years.
I firmly believe she was my generations Billie Holiday. There is no doubt about it.
Slayer or Wagner could be your favourite artist but I ca guarantee a part of you would have been moved by an Amy Winehouse song. How could it not be?
The wisdom and hurt in her lyrics is what her made generation’s Billie Holiday. For the past 70+ years Billie Holiday’s music has influenced so many singers. Amy Winehouse was evidently influenced by the jazz greats such as Holiday and of course, Sarah Vaughn.
Her vulnerability made her easy to relate to, it was like listening to your best friend. Maybe it is strange to regard someone you’ve never ever met as a best friend. But at 4am when you know you cannot call someone due to being hurt- you turn to music. A specific artist gets you through, they become your crutch.
Back To Black got me through some shit. That album oozes heartbreak in such a glorious yet dark way. Even if you had never been hurt before, one listen to this album and you feel like you have lost the most important person in your life and you just crumble. You emotionally crumble. Then again, if you have been hurt and you listen to songs such as Love Is A Losing Game, you are just in awe of how someone so young can word such a horrible feeling.
“You were so beautiful before today, and then I heard what you say man that was ugly” Everyone has had someone they were close to and adored so much. Beautiful to them inside and out- but something they said or did just made them to be the ugliest person in the world due to their cruelty and carelessness. We’ve all been there and that line just sums it up. Its amazing how one person can mean the world to you, and then as soon as they say something so ugly- they become nothing to you. One simple line just sums up the sheer trauma of this happening.
Sadly, stupid people are going to comment on her personal life rather than her talent. Her last live performance showed she was not ready. She seemed so fragile and frightened. You just wanted to take her home, put her in bed and give her a cup of tea and say to her, “Just get some rest- you’ll be okay.” Some people you just look at and think, “You need looking after.” Although her vulnerable words made her easy to relate to, her fragile state was utterly heartbreaking to watch. It was like seeing someone you cared about so much just fall apart.
I am fully aware that many people will just dismiss her as a junkie or whatever, but she had a talent that was so utterly rare. It’s okay to be a bit mad that she may have thrown it all away. But see that she was someone who just needed help. Maybe she was one of these artists who never should have been as famous as she was because fame was too much. Fame is a killer, the media is a killer. The British public and media love to see people fail. It’s almost as if they were waiting for this to happen so they could say, “Told you so.” It’s disgusting. She had problems just like the rest of us. Some of us get help and it works. Some of us get help, but it just isn’t enough. Things take time. Maybe she understandably had enough; we all have our own demons and battles to conquer. Our solutions to it are personal and are right for us. Nobody should judge. Nobody has the right to judge Amy as “just another junkie.”
Two albums seem so little, but they are two albums that changed the face of music created in this country. There aren’t many artists around now that can make such an impact instantly with their music- Amy was a rare talent. Her voice will be missed; she will be missed so much. Surrounded by “What ifs” and “If onlys.” It is a shame, an utter shame.
The way she and Mark Ronson created the Wall of Sound feel on Back To Black made it an instant classic. From just one listen you knew you were being exposed to one of the greatest albums ever. Frank didn’t sound like a debut album, it sounded like an album from someone who had been making music for decades. It’d be impossible to pick out her best lyric, they were all beautiful, and it’s just such a tragic and awful loss. Remember the music, it means more than anything else. Her personal life was just that- her PERSONAL life. It means nothing to us, it’s the music that counts.
One can only hope that she has found peace wherever she is now.
Uploaded either today or yesterday is another video of Amy Winehouse and Pete Doherty. It’s a billion times better than the baby mice thing…I didn’t really understand that one but never mind!
This video is of Amy and her god daughter covering Alicia Keys’ song If I Ain’t Got You. Some of the comments up on YouTube are just rude, some aren’t. Personally, I think her god daughter has a beautiful,strong voice- just like the god mother and the person who originally did the song.