Music & Culture
Amy Winehouse: A Tortured Soul and Wasted Life
Written by T.M. Gaouette | July 25, 2011
I’ll admit — I wasn’t an Amy Winehouse fan. Her songs were too explicit and often reflected her drug addiction. She sang about her dependence in songs like Rehab and Back to Black and her lyrics were also sordid and graphic. Who wants to listen to that? Actually, too many people do.
Regardless, when I heard that she had died, I was heartbroken. Why? Wasn’t she headed in that direction, anyway? The last news item I saw about Winehouse was when she was so wasted during a show she couldn’t sing or stand up. She was boo-ed off the stage and her European tour was cancelled.
Winehouse was talented, but she wasted her gift and life. She was blessed because, unlike millions of talented people, she had been discovered. Her job was her passion and she had thousands of adoring fans. But she was also a tortured soul, addicted to drugs and other destructive behaviors. I don’t know how it all began. Does it really matter? Millions of people get addicted to drugs in different ways and for different reasons, but the process is usually the same. The drug takes over and becomes more important than anything. It becomes more important than the person, the talent, the success, the fans, family and friends. It becomes the only thing that matters and eventually it eats away at all that’s good. Some people can beat it, but many others, like Winehouse, cannot. It beat her.
With so many destructible desires plaguing her life, death was inevitable…but my heart still breaks. So many young people die through some form of addiction. With every celebrity who dies from some form of accidental overdose — Michael Jackson, Heath Ledger, Cory Haim — hundreds of no-names meet the same end. I don’t know why so many superstars who seem to have blessed lives (at least from an outsider’s point of view) resort to doing drugs. Maybe it’s because they can afford it. Maybe it’s because their lifestyle calls for it. Maybe they think it’s cool. Maybe it’s because they cannot handle the pressure of being in the public eye. Who knows?
Whatever the reasoning, there is no denying that drugs will ruin you. And this is why it’s just better to stay away from them altogether. If you’re looking for a way to fill a void, or find comfort, or have fun, look to God for guidance. Find a cause where you can volunteer your time. Look to Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie as examples of stars doing good deeds with their celebrity status and fortune. Pursue a fun activity or sport to keep you busy. Travel the world, if you can afford it. Strive to fill your life with goodness and joy and reject destructive habits that will tempt you. Life is so short. Don’t waste it.
I ask you all to pray for Amy Winehouse and her family. She was a tortured soul, lost in a wasted life and beaten by addiction at 27 years young. God willing, she can now rest in peace.