Amy Winehouse and Us

20 Jan

Amy Winehouse was supremely talented at writing and performing music.  She also had demons and ghosts that haunted her throughout her life.  Add to that drugs and alcohol and you have a potent mix with an early death as it’s outcome.

I’ve been watching Amy Winehouse videos on Youtube lately and the more I watch them the more I miss Amy.  She was a true artist whose vulnerability both allowed her to create great works of art and simultaneously bring about her downfall.  People who are vulnerable are just that.  Easy prey for external and internal forces to manipulate.  Her inner demons were parasites that haunted her until they killed the host that housed them, allowing them to return to the spirit world, but leaving us without Amy.

I miss her.  I trusted her honesty in song and in the way that she carried herself.

Amy lived in front of the cameras.  And when you watch her videos and examine pictures of her you can discern some of the emotions that we was feeling at the time.  It becomes readily apparent that she was very sensitive.  Her eyes were truly windows to her soul. Her tears were evidence that her inner world was in shambles.  Videos of her last concert showed Amy under the influence attempting to entertain but it was a slow train wreck and she knew it as evidenced by her tears while singing.  She was heartbroken.  Her tears flowed as she stumbled about the stage.  At one point the camera catches the drummer behind Winehouse drumming away but with a look of disdain and boredom. He seemed to want to be anywhere but on stage drumming for Amy.  Little did he know that days later she would be dead. But all the signs were there.

How humiliating it must have been for Amy to perform at that reduced level of competence when she knew her truth worth as an entertainer.  No amount of drugs or booze or dementia from excessive us of these could make Amy forget the magic she possessed when performing.  That may be party why she was seen crying on stage in Belgrade on her comeback tour.  I remember the media outlets ridiculing her performance. I thought it typical of the media to harass people who are clearly fighting mental health issues.  The public seems obsessed with seeing other people’s lives come apart. Perhaps it makes our own pathetic empty lives look a little less pathetic?

I know that this world is a tough go.  I mean, we here in North America find life tough and we are the most privileged of any society that ever lived.  Debatable. I cannot imagine the struggles that most people on this planet face finding adequate shelter, food and clothing. I imagine a God if there is one who put Art on this planet in order to make our struggles a little more bearable. So when a true Artist is taken from us, especially at an early age, I feel cheated. Teased by the Almighty even. Like God is into practical jokes. Give to us, then taketh away.  Some would argue that she took herself away but I submit that drug and alcohol abuse is not voluntarily. We dabble in it perhaps and some of us live to tell the tale and some of us perish.

Amy.  There are those on this planet who don’t judge you.  We knew of your ghosts and demons and your valiant fight to keep them from taking over your life.  In the end it appeared that you got tired of the fight.  It was a war of attrition.  Sooner or later they would win.  And it was sooner in your case; we are all the more diminished because of this.



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