July 23rd marks the 10th anniversary of the passing of one of Britain’s brightest ever talents. Here we celebrate and remember five of her greatest moments, on and off the stage
While Amy is and was known primarily for her incredible soulful voice, she was also full of wit and a lack of self-seriousness that makes her loss at just 27 all the more devastating. Here we have a look back at the moments that showcase her electrifying personality.
When she told an interviewer she was ‘fit’
Following a performance of Love Is A Losing Game and Valerie at the 2008 Brit Awards, a dejected Amy Winehouse came off the stage and was greeted by the television presenter Denise Van Outen.
During a short exchange, Amy candidly reiterates her disappointment with her effort, to which Van Outen replies: “Why are you so self-critical?”. Amy then hits back with an iconic one-liner: “It [the performance] was a piece of s**t. You look fit though.” She then abruptly walks off, leaving the presenter laughing behind her.
Her final public appearance was to support her musician goddaughter
Just three days before her tragic passing, Winehouse showed up at her then 15-year-old goddaughter’s concert at Camden Roundhouse. While Dionne Bromfield was singing a cover of The Shirelles’ Mama Do, Amy came up onto the stage and was met by a raucous audience. Amy sang and danced along with her for the entirety of the song, before hugging her goddaughter and leaving the stage.
Speaking to the Guardian, Dionne says of her godmother’s show of support: “Everything felt really, really good. I said to her that night, ‘I’m so thankful for everything you’ve done for me.’ I’d never, ever said it to her before—I thought she just knew. But that night, specifically, I felt the need to say it. And I’m so happy I did.”
Joking about record bosses trying to mould her into a triangle
On an appearance on the Jonathan Ross Show in 2004 to promote her debut album Frank, Ross asks her whether her record label and management had tried to “mould” her a certain way or change the way she looks, acts, or behaves.
She jokingly replies: “Yeah one of them tried to mould me into a big triangle shape and I went ‘no!’”. After the audience erupted in laughter, she then added: “You know, I’ve got my own style and I write my own songs and if someone has so much of something already, there’s very little that you can add.” Which could not be truer.
Her reaction to winning 5 Grammys in one night
Amy was unable to attend the 2008 Grammys due to visa approval issues, and so she had to make do with a live stream performance from Camden. The awards show went incredibly well for her, with Amy winning a total of 5 Grammys.
After her collaborator Tony Bennett announced her win of “Record of the Year” for Rehab, a visibly shocked and overcome Amy dedicated the award to London, and specifically her beloved Camden Town which had been affected by a fire over the previous weekend. Her “Best New Artist” win meant she became the first British artist to win that award since the soul singer Sade won in 1986.
When she wasn’t bothered about Dido
While on the promotional tour for her debut album Frank, an interviewer suggested that her music was reminiscent of Dido’s releases, before going on a long explanation of the similarities between the two musicians’ releases.
Amy couldn’t look less interested if she tried, with her rolling her eyes and sighing throughout. A truly classic moment that highlights how she never tried to pretend to be someone else for the media.
Read more about the iconic Amy Winehouse in Amy Winehouse - The Biography 1983 - 2011, available on Amazon.
Read more: Anoushka Shankar: I Remember
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