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Amy Winehouse

Much can be said about the late Amy Winehouse, one of the U.K.'s flagship vocalists during the 2000s. The British press and tabloids seemed to focus on her rowdy behavior, heavy consumption of alcohol, and tragic end, but fans and critics alike embraced her rugged charm, brash sense of humor, and distinctively soulful and jazzy vocals. Her platinum-selling breakthrough album, Frank (2003), elicited comparisons ranging from Billie Holiday and Sarah Vaughan to Macy Gray and Lauryn Hill. Interestingly enough, despite her strong accent and vernacular, one can often hear aspects of each of those singers' vocal repertoire in Winehouse's own voice. Nonetheless, her allure had always been her songwriting -- almost always deeply personal but best known for its profanity and brutal candor.

Born to a taxi-driving father and a pharmacist mother, Winehouse grew up in the Southgate area of northern London. Her upbringing was surrounded by jazz. Many of the uncles on her mother's side were professional jazz musicians, and even her paternal grandmother was romantically involved with British jazz legend Ronnie Scott at one time. While at home, she listened to and absorbed her parents' selection of greats: Dinah Washington, Ella Fitzgerald, and Frank Sinatra among others. However, in her teens, she was drawn to the rebellious spirit of TLC, Salt-N-Pepa, and other American R&B and hip-hop acts of the time. At the age of 16, after she had been expelled from London's Sylvia Young Theatre School, she caught her first break when pop singer Tyler James, a schoolmate and close friend, passed on her demo tape to his A&R representative, who was searching for a jazz vocalist. That opportunity led to her recording contract with Island Records. By the end of 2003, when she was 20 years old, Island had released her debut album, Frank. With contributions from hip-hop producer/keyboardist Salaam Remi, Winehouse's amalgam of jazz, pop, soul, and hip-hop received rave reviews. The album was nominated for the 2004 Mercury Music Prize as well as two Brit Awards, and its lead single, "Stronger Than Me," won an Ivor Novello Award for Best Contemporary Song.

Following Winehouse's debut, the accolades and inquiring interviews appeared concurrently in the press with her tempestuous public life. Several times she showed up to her club or TV performances too drunk to sing an entire set. In 2006, her management company finally suggested that she enter rehab for alcohol abuse, but instead, she dumped the company and transcribed the ordeal into the U.K. Top Ten hit "Rehab," the lead single for her second, critically acclaimed album, Back to Black. Containing evocative productions from Salaam Remi and British DJ/multi-instrumentalist Mark Ronson, the album somewhat abandoned jazz, delving into the sounds of '50s/'60s-era girl group harmonies, rock & roll, and soul. The fanfare over the release was so great that it started to spill over onto U.S. shores; several rappers and DJs made their own remixes of various songs, not to mention covers by Prince and the Arctic Monkeys.

One month after Winehouse won Best Female Artist at the Brit Awards in February 2007, Universal released Back to Black in the U.S. The LP charted higher than any other American debut by a British female recording artist before it, and it remained in the Top Ten for several months, selling a million copies by the end of that summer. Just as in the U.K., she became the talk of the town, landing on the covers of Rolling Stone and Spin magazines. Not long afterward, though, Winehouse canceled her North American tour. Early reports revealed that she was entering rehab for alcohol and drug addiction, but her new management denied the claims, stating it was due to severe exhaustion. Her erratic behavior kept her and her new husband, Blake Fielder-Civil, in the tabloids constantly, on and off stages on both sides of the Atlantic, but in late 2007, American fans were finally given a chance to hear Winehouse's early work, with a slightly abbreviated (two songs removed and one added) version of Frank.

Unfortunately, the next four years were filled with drama, disappointment, and very little music. By 2009, her marriage had ended in divorce, she had repeatedly been arrested on assault charges and/or public order offenses, her struggles with substance abuse and mental health issues tragically played out in the press. Public performances turned into incoherent disasters, the worst of them posted to video-sharing sites for all to see. A track on the Quincy Jones tribute Q: Soul Bossa Nostra appeared in 2010, while a duet with Tony Bennett was announced in early 2011, but a planned follow-up to Back to Black would never make it past the demo stage. Winehouse was found dead in her Camden, London apartment on July 23, 2011. The coroner's report, delivered three months later, revealed that her blood alcohol content had reached a potentially fatal level.

Nearly two months after her death, Winehouse's first posthumous appearance was released on Tony Bennett's Duets II, where she duetted with Bennett on "Body and Soul." Near the end of 2011, her family's foundation announced the release of Lioness: Hidden Treasures, a posthumous compilation featuring recordings from throughout her career (although a few of the arrangements were recorded after her death). A year after Lioness came At the BBC, a deluxe CD/DVD set -- available both as a four-disc box and a smaller two-disc compilation -- rounding up all of her live performances for the British Broadcasting Company. ~ Cyril Cordor, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Pumps / Help Yourself (Explicit)

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Track List: Like Smoke / Our Day Will Come (Single)

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Track List: Rehab (Radio Single)

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Track List: You Know I'm No Good (Single)

Comments

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Don't read this because actalyworcks y o u will be
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Why do you have the the worst songs ever
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Gone far too soon. Love your music Amy Winehouse... .
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maiacarlson0 0 7
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest Friday by the love of your life. However if you don't post this you will be injured(but won't die) in two days now you started reading this so don't stop. Post this on at least five other songs in the next 143 minutes when your done press f6 and your lovers name will appear on the screen with big letter this is so scary because it actually works
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I'll never forget the first time I heard rehab on the radio here in the US. I was like who is this?!?! I've been intrigued by your music ever since. You are incredibly missed, Amy.
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taragassenme y e r
you are a legend forever and always
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I don't know you but I sing your music
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Such a great loss vocals gendere of soul & old school R&B flawless ..legend
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Agreed
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dennis.woolw i n e
Boo......... . . . . . . . .
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I'm so sorry of your death Amy ����.love your songs and you will always be remembered.
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RIP Amy Winehouse ������������
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REST IN PEACE AMY YOU WILL BE MISSED
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Haha this is nice to listen to me and my friend just got in a big fight today that probably needed it all and this came on nice.
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Fate screwed us royally on this one
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Who are you again ???????
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to me one of England's best singer.!!! r.I.p. AMY beautiful voice.
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artist685
Amy I wish you never met
Blake cause you'd prob still be with us giving us great soulful music still. I'm glad I met you & had some drinks with you in Amsterdam. You were awesome! Love ya!
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still missing you amy!!!!!!
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Amy Winehouse ur music rocks, RIP pretty lady
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He Can Only Hold Her: I love Amy Winehouse's music
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Rip you were an amassing singer
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Rip Amy you were so inspiring :(
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ortizedelia
Shut up y'all so nice to people yall don't know when to shut up dang ��
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Hey
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one of my favorite stations to listen to on pandora, not only that one of my famous artists to ever sing & songwrite. everything that came from amy was a masterpiece & her music still has an everlasting effect on society & the music world today .
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Omg this girl is so pretty and had a beautiful voice! #love her!��
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I love her song Rehab "no no no":)even though Im 8 I still love it RIP Amy WinehouseRIP
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Luvvvvvvvv this side, RIP Amy Winehouse
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A shame talent ends abruptly... We still enjoy her though.
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Hope a kid did not write that....
Bad news! Mogebier...
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angsmith94
I love you Amy Winehouse!!! ! ! ! ! ! ! !
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angsmith94
Don't read this because it actually works. U will be kissed by the love of your life on the nearest Friday. You will be injured in 2 days. Put this on 5 other songs in 143 minutes.
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Mogebier you shouldn't put your info online
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luelena67
Yor a great singer Amy ��
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mogebier
Lick my stiff dick at midnight my house is 412 Cardiff lane and it is in mosouri
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SORRY BUT ...
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krystina.boy l e s
Say iPhone 5 five times
Say a color
Post this on two other ppl
Look under your pillow

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amy winehouse is nothin like fiona apple. put in joss stone and tori amos with fiona apple please.
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ramosi724
You look pretty city girl
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I love this song so much that I love amy wine house too much now
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angelshidein w y o
��
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angelshidein w y o
Sorry you died����
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angelshidein w y o
Y
Yo
You
You r
You ro
You roc
You rock
You rock!
You rock!❤️
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I don't think she is going to be able to read any of this praise directed towards her.
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YOU HAVE/HAD A BEAUTIFUL VOICE MISS YOU SOOOOOO MUCH ❤❤❤❤❤������� � WISH YOU WERE STILL HEAR LOVE YA
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ludmilamflow e r s
❤️��❤️��❤️��
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hann_paig
U rock
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your were so great i dont know why you left you had a beautiful voice. You had a great future ahead of you and you could have been richer.you were also pretty. Only if you were here still my wish would be is to meet you. Love you Amy!!!! ^.^
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celestejones 1 9 6 9
Amy was a great singer and I wish her the best of luck in heaven, where she's probably singing her heart out right about now.��<-sad face emoji------- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - ^
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