Three years ago, at the opening ceremony of “La Comuna 2.0”, our new flat in Barcelona, everybody stood for a few seconds in absolute silence. “Amy has passed away” someone said. Everybody knew of who we were talking about; we didn’t need to say anything else. Probably, we were expecting that new, one way or another. Her lifestyle, her chaotic personal life and her exposure to all kind of drugs presaged that this terrible new could come at any moment.
And it came.
And all the people in the party still remember that night as the night when the writer of “Back to Black” left us. And the room where we received the news is still nowadays, the Amy Winehouse room.
With only 27 years, Amy Winehouse was found dead in her apartment in Candem. Against all predictions, her family confirmed that there were no “illegal drugs” in her body, but there was always a residue of mystery in everything related to his death, until the toxicologic test confirmed her family’s theories. “Everything he did, she did to excess: She drank to excess and he did detox to excess”, was the explanation of his father, Mitch Winehouse. The forensic investigation confirmed that Amy died from excess of alcohol in her body (416 mg of alcohol per deciliter of blood were fatal levels, closer to death than to life).
Leaving just two albums behind her, Frank (2003) and Back to Black (2006), Amy Winehouse achieved the legend. Impressive sales, huge critical acclaim (winning five Grammy Awards, including Song of the Year and Record of the Year, what made her make history: she was the woman with more awards in one single night and the first British woman to win 5 awards) and the most dangerous thing, a high level of attention from the worldwide press , that followed closely her personal life and excesses, being daily new in all kind of media.
“I told you I was trouble,
you know that I’m no good”
Her constant flirting with alcohol and drugs, which were widely evidenced in her concerts, made contrast with the impressive quality of the songs she offered, some of the best songs of XXI century, full of sincere, true and autobiographic masterpieces. Her image in the mass media did not stop millions of people from around the world from being pledged by the greatness of her personal voice and her songs, which reached its peak with her second disk “Back to Black” (*****), an incontestable masterpiece of its genre and one of the best and most sold disco in the XXI century. Even in a country so musically tambourine as Spain, Amy got a remarkable critical and commercial success.
The first single of “Black to Black” was the well-know “Rehab”, a declaration of intent about her career and her life.
“They’re tryin to make me go to rehab
I said no, no, no “
“Rehab” was followed by one of the best concatenation of singles in the music’s history, with “You know I’m no good”, “Back to Black”; “Tears Dry on Their Own” and “Love is a losing Game”. All of them are in our TOP 10, and to arrange them in a top has been really complicated, because the number of honest hits in the short Amy’s career is breathtaking.
From NETP we highly recommend the book “Amy, my daughter”, where his father, Mitch Winehouse, let us know more things about her daughter and take us closer to the truth behind the headlines, from her mischievous early years to her musical influences and dreams of success, and her incredible rise to stardom to the darkest days of her battles to cope with her addictions.
Some of us purchased the ticket to see her in the “Bilbao BBK Live” festival, in the summer of 2011 but we could never saw her. And will never do. At least, “Frank” and “Black to black” , with songs that have made our lifes a litte better at certain times, will always be a tiny, but appreciated, compensation for an irrecoverable loss.
TOP 10 | AMY WINEHOUSE
10. “Help yourself“
9. “In my bed“
8. “Just Friends“
7. “Me and Mr. Jones“
6. “Take the Box“
5. | “Rehab”
4. | “Love is a losing game”
3. | “Tears dry on their own”
2. | “You know I’m no good”
1. | “Back to black”
PROLOGUE – “MY DAUGHTER”
“You’ve got to come home”, he repeated.
My world drained away from me. “Is he dead?” I asked.
And he said, “Yes.”