Friday, July 29, 2011
I was an Amy Winehouse fan
I was watching back to back episodes of Amy Winehouse and Janis Joplin on the Biography Channel and had a few thoughts.
First of all, I think that it's ludicrous for someone to think that Winehouse's legacy isn't comparable to Joplin's. To say I was "saddened" by the news of Winehouse's death would be an overstatement because it doesn't affect my life in the least bit. However, I was a little "bummed out" after hearing the news. Simply put, I thought Winehouse had the coolest sounding female voice I've ever heard. It was powerful, eerie, and completely original...as was Joplin's.
Second, for those who feel that it's blasphemous to compare the two and feel that Winehouse's career was vastly inferior, I pose this question to you: Can you name 5 Janis songs? I can't. I can name 3 great ones but that's it.
Besides, You Know I'm No Good and Rehab, I strongly urge you to take a listen to Winehouse's version of It's My Party (Leslie Gore cover) and Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow (Shirelles cover). My favorite song of her's is a little known gem off the Back to Black album entitled Love is a Losing Game. It's a great song that makes you want to Bogart-it up, alone with only your thoughts and a bottle of bourbon.
While watching Joplin's Life Story on Bio channel, I couldn't help but feel sorry for her. She was quoted as saying, "I make love to 25,000 fans at a show and then go home alone." Janis wasn't physically attractive and from all accounts, was very unpopular in school.
In 1970, the year she died, Janis decided to get some Sweet Revenge by attending her 10-year High School reunion in Port Arthur, Texas. She wanted to show everyone that this "Ugly Duckling" had made it big and that she had risen above all the bullying and teasing that she encountered in high school. She made a spectacle of it; dressing like a gypsy with an entourage in tow, flamboyantly parading around town while embarrassing her family in the process. Her big charade was halted after the news crew that followed along seized an opportunity to sit down with Janis and ask her a few questions. Their questions about her old high school classmates and how she was treated, struck a nerve with Joplin. She stopped smiling and began being evasive and uncomfortable. With a few stutters, she finally whispered, "No comment." Janis couldn't hide the sadness in her eyes...even behind those purple, circular sunglasses. The look of meloncholy on her face was proof that she was still carrying around the weight of being chastised in school. The reporters then asked about her High School Prom. Joplin's shoulders dropped and she quietly told them that she wasn't ever invited. She was visibly destroyed and her plan's of Sweet Revenge had pretty much back-fired as her act deflated on live t.v. The next day, from all accounts, Joplin's mother told her that she wishes she had never been born. It was the saddest damn thing I've seen in a while. I don't suppose I condone her rabid drug use...but after watching the show, I undersand it.
Anyway, I found the Bio's of these two tragic Rockstars pretty interesting. Do you agree with my opinion that Winehouse deserves the Joplin comparison? She was a brilliant singer.
Top5 Female Artists (not a lead singer of a band ex Debbie Harry of Blondie and in Brent's case, no Chrissie Hynde from the Pretenders and in Frank's case, no Zooey Daschnell from She and Him)
5. Loretta Lynn
4. Joan Baez
3. Amy Winehouse
2. Lucinda Williams
1. Alanis Morrissette
I'll try to "livin'" it up in my next Jive. Pun!