When Amy Winehouse was a girl she told her mother that she needed to be rougher with Amy, that she was too soft and that she could get away with murder around her. That was my first clue to Amy’s nature as I watched the documentary about her entitled “Amy” last week at Upstate Films in Woodstock.
Amy’s father left her and her mother when she was still a girl. Her mother claimed she could not handle Amy’s overwhelming and intense energy. And Amy couldn’t handle the overwhelming and intense illusion of fame that came with her success as a pop singer. She was bold and brash, outspoken and seemed incapable of keeping her feelings in but at her core she was highly sensitive, a raw and open wound that needed more than anything else to feel loved, understood and protected.
I didn’t start to really pay attention to Amy’s music until after she had passed. But like anyone in the America I could not get away from her music when she was the height of her short lived career. It was everywhere, this old soul jazz vocalist in the body of a young Jewish girl and the face of a lead actress in a Pedro Almadovar film crossed with a Ronette. Where did she come from? Why was she like this?