The Story of Amy Winehouse
Once upon a time back in 2007, a little starlet appeared on the music scene. She looked like a little tattooed pixie pin-up girl but had a voice that rivaled Aretha Franklin’s. She won all kinds of awards for her album, “Back to Black”, and music lovers everywhere exalted in the possibilities to come.
But alas, new music did not come. The pixie drank too much, she used illegal drugs, she got married, her husband went to prison, they got divorced. And still no new music came. She tried a comeback of sorts, but it did not go well. Then she drank too much one last time, this time more than her little body could handle, and she died. The music world mourned the possibilities lost.
Amy Winehouse: September 14, 1983 – July 23, 2011.
May she rest in peace.
Not so fast. It turns out Amy Winehouse did a bit more than lie around her house drinking wine as her name would suggest. She was still dabbling in music. She sang some of her own songs from “Back to Black” but at a different tempo. She sang a song made famous by her idol, Carole King. She did duets with Tony Bennett and Nas. And she wrote a few new songs. But for some reason, another album never came. Until after she was dead.
Now, four months after Amy Winehouse’s untimely death, we have “Lioness: Hidden Treasures”. This album is not the result of a nearly finished album that just needed some finishing touches. It’s more a collection of whatever could be found of her previously unreleased work. Hmm, I wonder if maybe she had decided not to release those songs for any particular reason? Sadly, the answer is “possibly yes”.
We were all anxious for more music from Amy Winehouse, but I’m not so sure she would have wanted “Lioness: Hidden Treasures” to be her posthumous swan song. It’s simply not nearly as good as the music on “Back to Black”. She doesn’t sound as strong and the songs have a quality to them that I can best describe as “messy” because it sounds like she was just randomly singing while music that may or may not have matched her voice was playing concurrently. I don’t think she would want that.
If you are truly desperate for more music from Amy Winehouse, go ahead and get “Lioness: Hidden Treasures”. But if you are looking for the follow-up to “Back to Black”, I don’t think this is it.
Filed under: Album Reviews