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Amy Winehouse - SWR3 New Pop Festival, Baden-Baden, September 18, 2004
December 9, 2012 2:59 PM   Subscribe

Four days after her 21st birthday, Amy Winehouse sang at the SWR3 New Pop Festival in Baden-Baden.

It's just my music. It's the only thing I have real dignity in in my life. That's the one area in my life where I can hold my head up and say, "No one can touch me."
posted by Egg Shen (24 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
There was a DVD rip of this with 192 KB MPEG-1 audio floating around. I converted it to FLAC - to avoid further compression artifacts - and got rid of that annoying festival promo music at the beginning. I'm not stingy with it.
posted by Egg Shen at 2:59 PM on December 9, 2012


I guess I still can't watch her in her prime without feeling gut sick about what we lost.

No, not lost. Destroyed. In years past, artists with this sort of incandescent talent were lauded and drawn into an adoring relationship with the culture that formed them. We elevated them and they taught us things about ourselves we didn't know before.

But now? Now we scrutinize these people, magnify their weaknesses and hound them into their graves.

What the fuck does that say about us?
posted by R. Schlock at 3:39 PM on December 9, 2012 [4 favorites]


What the fuck does that say about us?

That we have no memory of the entire history of modern music?
posted by srboisvert at 3:48 PM on December 9, 2012 [7 favorites]


Now we scrutinize these people, magnify their weaknesses and hound them into their graves.

What the fuck does that say about us?


Winehouse wasn't the first artist to kill herself with drugs and alcohol. She certainly won't be he last. It says nothing about "us".
posted by dobbs at 3:57 PM on December 9, 2012 [10 favorites]


That we have no memory of the entire history of modern music?

Who needs that shit when we have Miley Cyrus, Perez Hilton and Twitter?

We're like gods now.
posted by R. Schlock at 3:57 PM on December 9, 2012


She looked and sounded wonderful at this point in her career. What a shame.
posted by tommasz at 3:59 PM on December 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Winehouse wasn't the first artist to kill herself with drugs and alcohol.

If you think that's all that caused her death, then you must have been living under a rock for the whole of 2007-2011.
posted by R. Schlock at 4:00 PM on December 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


If you think that's all that caused her death, then you must have been living under a rock for the whole of 2007-2011.

If you think "death by celebrity" is somehow a 21st century notion, then you're the one who's been living under a rock.
posted by incessant at 4:03 PM on December 9, 2012 [2 favorites]


Ok, I can see how this one is going to go. I'll just drop this here for when you're done listening to this concert. Thanks again, Egg Shen. This is really wonderful stuff.
posted by R. Schlock at 4:06 PM on December 9, 2012


So difficult, so marvelous to see and hear Amy like this. I remember so clearly the first time I heard her -- thirty seconds were enough for me to buy everything she'd ever done. What a talent, what a voice, what a waste. Thank you for posting this.
posted by ariel_caliban at 4:13 PM on December 9, 2012


In the destruction of Amy Winehouse, I think it's impossible to come up with any clear apportioning of blame between the demons of self-destruction (of which she had many) and the cannibals of celebrity culture (of which we have many). All I know is that this reminds me how fucking good she was, and what a tragedy it is that she's gone.
posted by scody at 4:13 PM on December 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


In years past, artists with this sort of incandescent talent were lauded and drawn into an adoring relationship with the culture that formed them.

Which years were those, exactly? Presumably sometime after the death of Chatterton, or the exiles of Lord Byron or Shelley, and sometime before the suicides of Janis Joplin, or Nick Drake. So I guess we could usefully ask if it was in the period before or after the miserable death of Oscar Wilde to help narrow it down to a particular century.
posted by yoink at 4:23 PM on December 9, 2012 [7 favorites]


What the fuck does that say about us?

What the fuck does her first hit single say about her?
posted by Sys Rq at 4:24 PM on December 9, 2012 [3 favorites]


It's moving watching that video of Amy when she was 21, a critical year in her life, when she hooked up with Blake Fielder-Civil , a hard drug user, who introduced her to heroin. So interesting the depth of musical intelligence there, the cadence, timing.

As far as I know, Amy Winehouse was a poster child for Borderline Personality Disorder, her self-mutilated left arm an example of the type of self-abuse that BPDs can do. So many of the other BPD traits were there as well, emotionally volatility, eating disorders, serious addiction issues. I think she had a complex and painful relationship with attention, on the one hand craving public adulation and on the other acting out in obvious ways that were sure to get her public denigration, being reviled. She sang with expressions on her face that varied from ones that seemed to be a helpless plead for protection and rescuing, then, split seconds later, sneering and contemptuous.

Some of her richly diverse musical voice reminds me of another complex singer, Nina Simone. It is a terrible pity Amy Winehouse was not able to live a longer, more fulfilled life but, seeing the agonies she suffered I also cannot help being thankful she rests in peace.
posted by nickyskye at 4:52 PM on December 9, 2012 [6 favorites]


A strong performance.

A really tragic story all around. Not a new story, not at all, but always sad.

RIP.
posted by lupus_yonderboy at 5:01 PM on December 9, 2012


She wasn't perfect, but damn me if she wasn't good. What a shame.

.
posted by ersatz at 6:01 PM on December 9, 2012


I wanted her to stick around, but for my own selfish reasons. I was thinking that well before she passed away. She may have lived on, but never recorded an album again. In either case, neither Amy Winehouse nor any other performer will ever owe me anything. All I need is what he or she chooses to record and send out into the world. I feel fortunate for what we were left with, and got so many hours of enjoyment out of her music, had my soul fed from it. Even if I didn't think it was enough, it's OK, ultimately. RIP.
posted by raysmj at 6:08 PM on December 9, 2012


Amy is a spark that the fire consumed. RIP.
posted by breadbox at 8:47 PM on December 9, 2012


What the fuck does her first hit single say about her?

It wasn't her first hit single. It was her international breakthrough. In the UK and elsewhere she was big news and playing several thousand seat concert venues, playing at Glastonbury etc, long before Rehab. I saw her live in 2004 when she was 20 and she was already getting a lot of mainstream coverage and airplay on the back of her debut album Frank.

Her first album stood out because of the engaging mix of youthful energy and innocence and the lyrics and voice that were much more mature. She was as insecure and shy as anyone would be in the same circumstances but also cocky, knowing and funny. When her peers like Katie Melua and Jamie Cullum were trying to conquer jazz-lite on Radio 2 she was coming up with songs like "Fuck Me Pumps" which turned the genre on its head.

In the three short years between Frank and Back to Black she discovered critical success, popular success, wealth, fame, love and hard drugs. For reference: Rehab was written when she was 23, and she was in the middle of a full blown addiction. If you listen to the two albums side by side you'd scarcely believe there was 3 years' difference between them - and Frank was considered the work of someone beyond their years. In Rehab, what got lauded as the magnum opus of a singer in her prime was Amy Winehouse already having lived the highs and lows of someone twice her age. It's interesting to go back and listen to Frank because it seems so tame in retrospect. Thanks for posting this Egg Shen. It brings back memories.
posted by MuffinMan at 1:53 AM on December 10, 2012 [6 favorites]


i have to say that every video i've seen of her live has blown me away. i wish i was more of a live music nerd so i would've been on top of it and gone to see her.

she could be staggering drunk but still belt out that amazing voice.

Tears Dry On Their Own is such a freaking amazing song. the honesty in "i'll be some next man's other woman soon" is just...well, i've felt that way about myself any number of times in my life. i just wasn't that eloquent about it.


I don’t understand, why do I stress the man
When there’s so many better things at hand
We could a never had it all, we had to hit a wall
So this is inevitable withdrawal

Even if I stop wanting you, a perspective pushes through
I’ll be some next man’s other woman soon
I cannot play myself again, I should just be my own best friend
Not fuck myself in the head with stupid men

this is that song live:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wckV4nyLMv4
posted by sio42 at 11:03 AM on December 10, 2012


and thanks for sharing this, egg shen. good stuff.
posted by sio42 at 11:05 AM on December 10, 2012


R. Schlock:
What the fuck does that say about us?
That we can't save others from themselves.

She entered showbiz as an unrepentant junkie. Watch her Rehab video - the words make it clear, and her gestures (picking at spots on her body, for instance) underline it.

Celebrity gawking and star treatment have ruined countless lives (Judy Garland thorugh Britney Spears come screaming to mind), but Amy was a smoldering bundle before she ever made it big. A talented huddle of self-harm.
posted by IAmBroom at 11:06 PM on December 10, 2012


She entered showbiz as an unrepentant junkie.

No, she didn't. She doesn't enter showbiz at the point at which US audiences discover her. The video in the FPP predates Rehab by two years and has Winehouse playing to a substantial audience in Germany. Rehab was on her second album, Back-to-Black, from 2006. She was a successful and well known artist before then on the back of debut Frank, which sold strongly in the UK and Europe in 2003/2004.

She is widely thought to have got into heroin after meeting boyfriend (and subsequently husband, and ex-husband) Blake Fielder-Civil.
posted by MuffinMan at 5:51 AM on December 11, 2012


Thanks, MuffinMan; didn't know that.

I'd still contend that "we" didn't make her a junkie. Shithead lover shares credit... with her.

Fame is ruinous for many people; moreso for people who acquire it without a solid emotional grounding (which includes pretty much everyone who's young).
posted by IAmBroom at 11:55 AM on December 12, 2012


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