Posts Tagged ‘Amy Winehouse’

Amy Winehouse rocks the Grammys….and my world!

my girl Amy 

My faith in the music industry is officially restored! Amy wins nearly every award for which she was nominated, and, more importantly, rocks the house with a crisp yet nasty medley of “You Know I’m No Good” and “Rehab”. The only award she was denied, Album of The Year, went to Herbie Hancock for “River: The Joni Chronicles”, ironically one of the only CDs of the last year that I actually have in its entirety (and a darn good one, assuming you dig jazz). While it might have been an advantage for Amy to be performing from London, in what appears to be a comfortable nightclub setting, surrounded by supporters and loved ones (save husband Blake: incarcerated, as she refered to him), bear in mind that it was 3:45 a.m. there. The video, already on YouTube, captures her performance and her acceptance speech for Record Of The Year (arguably the most important Grammy of them all) sandwich around what must have been the longest two and a half minutes imaginable for her and her audience, as Tony Bennet and Natalie Cole honor the late Doris Day with a lifetime acheivement Grammy. Luckily, YouTube is “fast-forwardable”, ’cause you want to see her acceptance, which goes from deer-in-the-headlights shock to the tightest, best, rock-and-roll thank you in about 90 seconds (only the last 30 seconds of which she speaks).

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: Amy is what rock and roll is all about. This is not some precious retro “Snorah Jones” schmaltz; it’s more like Brian Setzter’s modernized yet authentic rockabilly, which, in 1981-2, was conspicuously unique on the  alt-rock charts, then dominated by Soft Cell, Missing Persons, and The Clash’s “Rock The Casbah”

In other news, Gnarls Barkley, inexplicable loser of the 2007 Record of The Year Grammy (to The Dixie Chicks) have a new single. I don’t know about you, but I can listen to Amy Winehouse for hours, and I can take about ten minutes of Gnarls (maybe about 10 seconds of this new single), which is too bad. Obviously, Danger Mouse and Cee-Lo intended their Gnarls colaboration to be a one-off, but the lure of fame/fortune/etc. in the wake of the “Crazy” juggernaut was not to be resisted. Unlike other side project colaborations (Gorillaz, for example), this one seems to me to lack legs.
Gnarls at Avalon 8/11/2006
Gnarls at Avalon 8/11/2006
click to play “Run” by Gnarls Barkley

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Where have I been? Mark Ronson’s April ’07 release….

I awoke this morning (after the totally rockin’ Second Annual O Family Holiday Extravaganza) to learn about a CD from the most unlikely of sources: Parade Magazine. Evidently, around the time that I was ‘discovering’ Amy Winehouse (April 2007, some 4 years after her debut), DJ Mark Ronson released “Version”, an ambitious project of cover tunes – some hits, some obscurities – done with various special guest vocalists, rappers and players (including Ms. Winehouse, whom I continue to love unconditionally). As per usual, I prefer covers that are real departures from the original (think Talking Head’s “Take Me To The River”), so it’s no surprise that the Amy song is the one that knocks me out. I don’t know how, if this came out in April, I haven’t heard it till now (and only after reading about it in Parade and scouring the web). Can anyone tell me if this is being played on some radio station I don’t listen to? It’s called “Valerie”

If you’re unfamiliar with the original version, by The Zutons, here it is:

If you love Amy as I do (tho’ I doubt you do), check this old interview (it’s long), from before Back To Black was released, and before her many subsequent problems. Could these songs be any MORE prophetic?
Amy on The Interface

I don’t deny the train wreck that is her life, but her talent is equally undeniable. Like Janis Joplin in her day, and we can only hope that it doesn’t end similarly.

Check this awesome, raw, acoustic treatment of “Valerie”:

…then this drunken live version:

You gotta admire the lovefest that is the British music scene: Kate Nash covering Black Kids, Arctic Monkeys covering Amy….do American bands do that? Here’s the Arctic Monkeys cover of “You Know I’m No Good”:

Summer 2007 volume 9

I never wanted to stop listening to volume 8 (see previous post). While packing for August vacation, I slapped this together, no longer worrying about not repeating an artist or using a song that’s already on the radio. This turns out to be wifey’s and Alina’s favorite (some people like things to be familiar). I was happy to have a place to put some Albert Hammond Jr., whose CD came to my attention right after I burned volume 8.

Here’s a different track from his CD. It’s called “In Transit (Obstinate):

click HERE for a different player which also allows download.

Or, just right-click HERE for the player to play all of volume 9 (open in a new tab or new window) which will also allow you to download.