Rest in Peace

At only 27 years old, Amy Winehouse is dead.

I logged into my Facebook account, the news feed full of comments about the untimely death of the singer, and I all I felt was disappointment in people. One status simply read “no sympathy!”. Now of course, with recent events in Norway, I understand that people will be more concerned with that, but the fact that people are so absent minded they don’t share sympathy for both those affected in Norway and for Amy’s family, I feel, is a sign of the selfish and warped minds of our society.

Some of the statuses in my Facebook news feed that had no sympathy, commented on how Amy’s death was self-inflicted. As I write, the official cause of death is unknown, but obviously, taking into account Amy’s issues with drink and drugs, people are going to think that her death is a result of her own self-poisoning. Again, I feel that people are being so absent-minded. They don’t see addiction as an illness and didn’t notice that Amy had obvious psychological troubles. It’s like these people (not necessarily friends, just people I didn’t speak to at school, and now don’t speak to on Facebook) don’t think for themselves; they don’t use their eyes to really see what is going on. It’s like that scene in Men in Black (see bottom of page) when Will Smith shoots at a cardboard girl in firing practice and he goes on to explain why he shot her, not shooting the aliens like everybody else did because he saw beyond their exterior. People need to look beyond the exterior of others, that’s how you get to know and understand them.

People’s lack of human-ness aside; and Amy’s drink and drug problems aside, she was a great singer/songwriter. Her Back to Black album is one of my favourites; she knew how to convey her emotions, and her songs were… honest. I don’t know many singers who sing of people wanting them to go to rehab; she was real and didn’t seem to hide from who she was or the pain she was feeling. At specific moments in my past I have felt that some of Amy’s songs were written specifically with me in mind; what I was feeling was perfectly captured in her lyrics and soulful voice. Writing is definitely the best medicine.

The double edged sword of Amy’s life, was that the drinking and drug taking would have affected a new album badly were she still alive. If she had gotten clean, and found a new happiness in life, I still think it would have affected a new album badly. The greatness of Back to Black is the pain and heartache she put into every song. Alcoholism or rehabilitation would’ve affected her song style and I don’t think new material could match that of Back to Black.

The story of Amy Winehouse is definitely a sad one, and though I can’t speak for many people, my sincerest sympathies go out to Amy’s family and friends at this time.

Rest in peace Amy, and those who died in Norway. x

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