Backstage with Amy Winehouse

No Lies Radio Music – By Teri Perticone – December 29, 2017

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Amy Winehouse
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Amy Jade Winehouse (14 September 1983 – 23 July 2011) was an English singer and songwriter. She was known for her deep, expressive contralto vocals and her eclectic mix of musical genres, including soul[1][2][3] (sometimes labelled as blue-eyed soul and neo soul),[4][5] rhythm and blues,[6][7][8] and jazz.[9][10] Winehouse’s debut album, Frank (2003), was a critical success in the UK and was nominated for the Mercury Prize. Her follow-up album, Back to Black (2006), led to five 2008 Grammy Awards, tying the then record for the most wins by a female artist in a single night, and made her the first British woman to win five Grammys,[11][12] including three of the General Field “Big Four” Grammy Awards: Best New Artist, Record of the Year and Song of the Year.

Winehouse won three Ivor Novello Awards: in 2004, Best Contemporary Song for “Stronger Than Me”; in 2007, Best Contemporary Song again, this time for “Rehab”; and in 2008, Best Song Musically and Lyrically for “Love Is a Losing Game.” She also won the 2007 Brit Award for Best British Female Artist, having been nominated for Best British Album, with Back to Black.


Amy Winehouse – Back To Black

Winehouse died of alcohol poisoning on 23 July 2011, aged 27. Her album Back to Black posthumously became, for a time, the UK’s best-selling album of the 21st century.[13]

Early life

Amy Winehouse was born in Chase Farm Hospital, in north London, to Jewish parents.[14] Her father, Mitchell “Mitch” Winehouse, was a window panel installer[15] and then a taxi driver; and her mother, Janis Winehouse (née Seaton),[16] was a pharmacist.[17] Winehouse’s ancestors were Russian and Polish Jewish immigrants to London. Amy had an older brother, Alex (born 1979),[18] and the family lived in London’s Southgate area,[14] where she attended Osidge Primary School.[19] Winehouse as a child attended a Jewish Sunday school.[20] After she rose to fame, during an interview she expressed her dismissal towards the school by saying that she used to beg her father to allow her not to go and that she learnt nothing about being Jewish by going anyway.[21] In the same interview, Winehouse said she only went to a synagogue once a year on Yom Kippur “out of respect”.[20]

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Musical career
Early career

After toying around with her brother Alex’s guitar, Winehouse bought her own when she was 14 and began writing music a year later. Soon after, she began working for a living, including, at one time, as an entertainment journalist for the World Entertainment News Network, in addition to singing with local group the Bolsha Band.[18][36] In July 2000, she became the featured female vocalist with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra; her influences were to include Sarah Vaughan and Dinah Washington,[37] the latter whom she was already listening to at home.[23] Amy’s best friend, soul singer Tyler James, sent her demo tape to an A&R person.[23] Winehouse signed to Simon Fuller’s 19 Management in 2002 and was paid £250 a week against future earnings.[38] While being developed by the management company, she was kept as a recording industry secret[39] although she was a regular jazz standards singer at the Cobden Club.[38] Her future A&R representative at Island, Darcus Beese, heard of her by accident when the manager of The Lewinson Brothers showed him some productions of his clients, which featured Winehouse as key vocalist. When he asked who the singer was, the manager told him he was not allowed to say. Having decided that he wanted to sign her, it took several months of asking around for Beese to eventually discover who the singer was. However, Winehouse had already recorded a number of songs and signed a publishing deal with EMI by this time. Incidentally, she formed a working relationship with producer Salaam Remi through these record publishers.[39]


Amy Winehouse – Stronger Than Me

2003–2005: Debut album Frank
Winehouse performing live in July 2004

Winehouse’s debut album, Frank, was released on 20 October 2003. Produced mainly by Salaam Remi, many songs were influenced by jazz and, apart from two covers, Winehouse co-wrote every song. The album received positive reviews[40][41] with compliments over the “cool, critical gaze” in its lyrics[9] and brought comparisons of her voice to Sarah Vaughan,[42] Macy Gray and others.[9]


Amy Winehouse- Fool’s Gold

The album entered the upper levels of the UK album chart in 2004 when it was nominated for Brit Awards in the categories of “British Female Solo Artist” and “British Urban Act.” It went on to achieve platinum sales.[43][44] Later in 2004, she and Remi won the Ivor Novello Award for Best Contemporary Song, for their first single together, “Stronger Than Me.”[45] The album was also shortlisted for the 2004 Mercury Music Prize. In the same year, she performed at the Glastonbury Festival – Jazzworld, the V Festival and the Montreal International Jazz Festival (7 July 2004, at the Club Soda). After the release of the album, Winehouse commented that she was “only 80 percent behind [the] album” because Island Records had over-ruled her preferences for the songs and mixes to be included.[23] Further singles from the album were “Take the Box,” “In My Bed”/”You Sent Me Flying” and “Pumps”/”Help Yourself.”
2006–2007: international success, Back to Black and touring


Me & Mr Jones – Amy Winehouse live @ Isle Of Wight 2007

In contrast to her jazz-influenced former album, Winehouse’s focus shifted to the girl groups of the 1950s and 1960s. Winehouse hired New York singer Sharon Jones’s longtime band, the Dap-Kings, to back her up in the studio and on tour.[46] Mitch Winehouse relates in Amy, My Daughter how fascinating watching her process was: her perfectionism in the studio and how she would put what she had sung on a CD and play it in his taxi outside to know how most people would hear her music.[47] In May 2006, Winehouse’s demo tracks such as “You Know I’m No Good” and “Rehab” appeared on Mark Ronson’s New York radio show on East Village Radio. These were some of the first new songs played on the radio after the release of “Pumps” and both were slated to appear on her second album. The 11-track album, completed in five months,[47] was produced entirely by Salaam Remi and Ronson, with the production credits being split between them. Ronson said in a 2010 interview that he liked working with Winehouse because she was blunt when she did not like his work.[48] She in turn thought that when they first met, he was a sound engineer and that she was expecting an older man with a beard.[49] Promotion of Back to Black soon began and, in early October 2006 Winehouse’s official website was relaunched with a new layout and clips of previously unreleased songs.[43] Back to Black was released in the UK on 30 October 2006. It went to number one on the UK Albums Chart for two weeks in January 2007, dropping then climbing back for several weeks in February. In the US, it entered at number seven on the Billboard 200. It was the best-selling album in the UK of 2007, selling 1.85 million copies over the course of the year.[50]


Amy Winehouse – You Know I’m No Good

2008: Continued success and acclaim

On 13 January 2008, Back to Black held the number-one position on the Billboard Pan European charts for the third consecutive week.[71

Back to Black was the world’s seventh-biggest-selling album of 2008.[96] The album’s sales meant that the market performance of Universal Music’s recorded music division did not drop to levels experienced by the overall music market.[97]

Winehouse died on 23 July 2011. On the week of 26 July 2011, Frank, Back to Black and the Back to Black EP re-entered the Billboard 200 at number 57, number 9 and number 152 respectively, with the album climbing to number 4 the following week.[119][120] Back to Black also topped the Billboard Digital Albums chart on the same week and was the second best-seller at iTunes.[121] “Rehab” re-entered and topped the Billboard Hot Digital Songs chart as well, selling up to 38,000 more digital downloads.[122] As of August 2011, “Back to Black” was the best-selling album in the UK in the twenty-first century.[123]

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Amy Winehouse Foundation

After the singer’s death by alcohol intoxication in July 2011, the Amy Winehouse Foundation was set up by Winehouse’s family and launched on 14 September 2011 (which would have been Winehouse’s 28th birthday). Its aim is to help young people and it works with other charitable organisations to provide frontline support. Its central office is in North London, but it also has an office in New York (operating under the name ‘The Amy Winehouse Foundation US’).[216] Both Jon Snow and Barbara Windsor are patrons for the charity, and ambassadors include Keira Chaplin and Mica Paris. In October 2015 Mark Ronson became a patron.[217] Amy’s brother Alex works full-time for the foundation, having given up his career as an online music journalist.[19]

The charity itself works to prevent the effects of drug and alcohol misuse on young people and it also aims to support, inform and inspire vulnerable and disadvantaged young people to help them reach their full potential.[218] On 12 March 2013, with the help of ex-addict Russell Brand, the Foundation launched the Amy Winehouse Foundation Resilience Programme For Schools across the UK which aims to provide effective education around drugs, alcohol and dealing with emotional issues.[219]


Amy Winehouse – Rehab

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Video source: www.youtube.com

Posted by Teri Perticone

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