amy, amy, amy.

4 Aug

Here on Kitten Heel Marvel, I try to steer largely clear of entertainment-y things. Honorable mentions have come here and there, such as Mr. Darcy winning an Oscar, anything about my beloved Paul Newman, things like that. But for the most part, management (i.e., me) feels that “the wonder of it all” is less about life in Hollyweird and more about life itself.

However.

Amy Winehouse passed away almost two weeks ago, on July 23.

A lot has been said about Amy dying at 27, which adds her to the pantheon of Dead-At-27 musicians, such as Kurt Cobain and Ms. Joplin and Jimi Hendrix.

A lot has been said about the general lack of surprise at her death, being that her addiction to drugs and alcohol was both well-known and well-chronicled by the media and paparazzi. In other words, most knew that her passing would be coming, just not exactly when. 

A lot has been said about Amy paving the way for the British chanteuse craze that is currently permeating the airwaves, primarily with artists like Duffy and the wonderful, wonderful, wonderful Adele.  

A lot has been said.

So I’ll say the following. I was on an airplane in 2007, en route to Alabama to visit the bestie. We were mid-flight. I finally woke up from my stupor (I fall asleep, invariably, once I buckle in and lean back in my chair. It never fails) and pulled out my iPod. I had recently downloaded Amy’s second album, Back to Black, after reading a plethora of amazing reviews about it. It was time to listen. I listened.

I fell in love with her voice. I fell in love with the feeling it gave me, like we were in a jazz club somewhere (huge for me, hardly a jazz lover) in the 50s or 60s and she was performing and I was sipping a nice, non-headache-inspiring drink. I fell in love with the sound, with the horns and the thumping beats and all that. I fell in love with her music. (I fell in love with iTunes, which had offered me the option of purchasing a clean, edited version of the album, being that Amy was quite the pottymouth.)

But something happened with *Tears Dry on their Own, one of the tracks on the album. I sat up in my chair. I opened my mouth. I closed my eyes. I swooned. It slayed me. I remember wondering where in the world Amy Winehouse had been all this time and how she had written a song with so much depth, so much sadness, so much truth. That’s when I became a fan, with that song. That’s when I realized that the beehive and the slurred speech and slight off-kilter nature of the artist didn’t really matter.

She.Was.Talented. And that’s all I’ll say.

*I can’t link to the song. There are no edited versions of the song online. No edited version of the lyrics, either. But following are two pretty amazing songs in their own right: one from her first, more obscure album, Frank, and another one of my personal favorites from BtB.

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