Category — Obituaries
Rufus Wainwright stood on the stage and announced the loss of a great soul singer, Amy Winehouse. There were gasps from the crowd, most of whom had not heard the news, but the gasps were short; whilst it was a minor surprise that Winehouse had died today, her death was not entirely unexpected. Tabloids have been predicting it ever since the release of her multi-million selling ‘Back To Black’ album.
It is, unfortunately, not the music that will be the focus of Winehouse’s obituaries. Rather, the words will be dedicated to her extended downfall from young and talented to wiry and shambolic. Her last gig in June ended in what will increasingly be seen as an appropriately unprofessional manner, booed by fans for a rough and inebriated performance. This is, after all, what Winehouse became known for – not her music, but her onstage stumbles, slurs and occasional fights. Rarely has a talent so great been so publicly diminished by drugs and alcohol.
Ultimately the death of Amy Winehouse will be viewed with much less mythology than other great musicians who died young. After all, Winehouse released just two albums in her career – her legacy will be a tragic warning rather than her catalogue of unrepenting soul songs. The wide perception will be that through drugs and alcohol the singer stole a better life away from herself. The sad fact of Amy Winehouse is that she will be mourned not for the music she’d released, but for the music she never had a chance to make.
July 24, 2011 No Comments