Tag Archive: Kurt Cobain


Nirvana‘s sophomore album and major label debut, “Nevermind,” celebrates its 20th anniversary next month, and Universal Music Enterprises is re-releasing versions of the album with deluxe editions, exclusive content and more on Sept. 27.

Released in Sept. 1991, “Nevermind” has sold more than 30 million copies and spent 253 weeks on the Billboard 200 chart, peaking at No. 1.

 

Dead At 27: Nine Artists Gone Too Soon

 

The re-release includes configurations ranging from a standard digital/CD remaster of the original album to a 4-CD/1-DVD Super Deluxe Edition, with unreleased recordings, obscure B-sides, alternate mixes, radio sessions, studio rarities, and live recordings.

The limited numbered Super Deluxe also features the first full official release of the pre-“Nevermind” demos recorded at producer Butch Vig‘s Smart Studios as well as boombox recordings of subsequent rehearsals and the “Devonshire Mixes”: the album as produced and mixed by Vig as opposed to the commercially released final version produced by Vig and mixed by Andy Wallace.

 

Billboard Bits: Nirvana’s ‘Nevermind’ To Be Re-Released

 

The Super Deluxe also comes with a DVD, featuring all four music videos from “Nevermind,” a pair of previously unreleased BBC recordings and the Live Halloween 1991 concert at Seattle’s Paramount Theatre, as well as a stunning 90-page bound book full of rare photos, documents and more.

The “Nevermind” reissue is also available as a 2-CD Deluxe Edition, a 4-LP 180-gram heavyweight vinyl edition, a remastered CD of the original album and digital versions of the standard, Deluxe, and Super Deluxe Editions.

 

 

Details surrounding the death of Amy Winehouse have begun to emerge today, and it has been claimed she purchased a combination of drugs that included cocaine, ecstasy and ketamine late on Friday evening in Camden.Amy Winehouse

Winehouse was found dead at her house on Saturday afternoon, and as yet police have still not been able to confirm the exact cause of death.

However, a source has reported to The People that Winehouse was seen buying a mixture of drugs in the hours before her death. Other reports have said that she was drinking heavily prior to her death.

According to the Sunday Mirror in Britain a “friend” of Winehouse has said she believes she died from a “bad” ecstasy pill that was mixed with a large amount of alcohol.

The friend said, “It was an ecstasy overdose. She could do cocaine until the cows come home. But this was obviously a dodgy pill.”

A post-mortem is scheduled for Sunday to determine the exact cause of death.

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After news broke of her death, hundreds of fans and friends rushed outside her home to see if the news was true, and a memorial has been established with well-wishers leaving flowers and messages outside her home.

Winehouse’s management company, Metropolis Music, released a statement Sunday saying: “We are trying to come to terms with the death of a dear friend and colleague, the most amazing artist and talent.

“We will always remember Amy as a vibrant, funny, caring young woman who made everyone around her feel welcome. We have lost a very special person, part of our family.”

Winehouse’s mother Janis has told of her concern for her daughter when they met just 24 hours prior to her death. Janis said, “She seemed out of it. But her passing so suddenly still hasn’t hit me.”

The heartbroken mother described the final time she saw her daughter alive; Amy told her mother “I love you, Mum.”

Janis said, “They are the words I will always treasure and always remember Amy by.”

Winehouse’s father had just arrived in New York on a jazz tour when the news of his daughter’s death was reported to him. He said, “I’m coming home. I have to be with Amy. I can’t crack up for her sake. My family need me.”

A police spokesperson said in a press conference has confirmed that as yet no cause of death had yet been confirmed: “I am aware of reports of a suspected drugs overdose, but I would like to re-emphasize that no post-mortem has yet taken place and it would be inappropriate to speculate on the cause of death.

“The death of any person is a sad time of friends and family especially for someone known nationally and internationally like Amy Winehouse. My sympathy extends not only to her family but also to her millions of fans across the world.”

Winehouse’s U.S. record label released a statement saying: “We are deeply saddened at the sudden loss of such a gifted musician, artist and performer. Our prayers go out to Amy’s family, friends and fans at this difficult time.”

amy winehouse

The death of popular singer Amy Winehouse, after a long battle with drink and drugs, means the Londoner joins a growing number of tormented musicians to die at the age of 27.

Known as the “27 Club”, Winehouse joins rock legends legends Jimi Hendrix, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain and Brian Jones, who all died at the age of 27.

Kurt Cobain (1967-1994)
The lead singer of band Nirvana, Cobain had a well-known addiction to heroin, and battled with depression. He died in 1994, aged 27, when his body was found by an electrician who had come to install a security system at his house.

He was found with a shotgun, and it was ruled he died from a gunshot wound to the head. The death was concluded to be suicide, although a private investigator hired by wife Courtney Love hinted that the death was in fact murder.

Jim Morrison (1943-1971)
The lead singer of rock band The Doors was found dead in his bath in a Paris flat in 1971, aged 27. Medics that first examined Morrison reported the death as heart failure and ruled out foul play. Therefore, no official post-mortem was ever carried out into the death.

Friends of the star, however, have claimed he died of a drug overdose. Others have said he suffered from a respiratory condition that had led to him coughing up blood, which he may have choked on.

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Jimi Hendrix (1942-1970)
Hendrix died in 1970, aged 27. An official post-mortem ruled that he choked on his own vomit. However, recently it was claimed he was murdered. James Wright, a roadie with the Animals, made the murder claim in a book. He wrote that Mike Jeffrey, Hendrix’s manager, had admitted that Hendrix had been killed because he wanted to terminate his management contract. It later emerged that Wright made up the claim to boost book sales.

Brian Jones (1942-1969)
Guitar expert and one of the founding members of The Rolling Stones, Jones died in 1969, again aged 27. He became known for his heavy drug addiction, and was replaced in the bank in 1969 by Mick Taylor. Just weeks later, Jones was found dead in a swimming pool in Sussex, England.

A coroner noted that the rock star’s liver and heart were greatly enlarged at the time of death; indicating heavy drug and alcohol use.

To add controversy to his death, it was later claimed that Jones was killed by his builder, Frank Thorogood because of a debt. Thorogood was said to have confessed the killing just prior to his death in 1993. However, police took no action on the claims.

Troubled singer Amy Winehouse’s death was simply a matter of time, her heartbroken mother said Saturday.

The soulful British singer-songwriter, who won five Grammys in 2008 at the age of 24, lived life on the edge of a cliff downing alcohol like water and taking destructive drugs like heroin, cocaine, and ecstasy.

Her mother, Janis Winehouse, told the U.K.’s Sunday Mirror that her 27-year-old daughter’s death had been “only a matter of time.” Winehouse was found dead in her apartment on Saturday by her bodyguard and was pronounced dead when the ambulance crew and police arrived.

“She seemed out of it. But her passing so suddenly still hasn’t hit me,” said the elder Winehouse, who was with her late daughter the day before she died.

Amy Winehouse had reportedly told her mother the day before she died, “I love you mum.”

“They are the words I will always treasure,” said Winehouse. “I’m glad I saw her when I did.”

Although Winehouse has a long history of alcohol and drug abuse, she was beloved by fellow musicians and fans for her enormous talent. Winehouse is considered one of the most important musicians on the pop scene this millennium, introducing a jazzy retro-soul sound to the genre.

Her game-changing album, Back to Black, in 2006 included the award-winning single “Rehab” that was named by Time magazine as the Best Song of 2007 and by Rolling Stone as the eighth-best song of the 2000s.

Notably, the lyrics to her song “Rehab,” which nabbed her three of her five Grammys, are sadly similar to her own life’s story. The lyrics include the lines:

“They tried to make me go to rehab but I said ‘no, no, no’/Yes I’ve been black but when I come back you’ll know, know, know/I ain’t got the time and if my daddy thinks I’m fine/ He’s tried to make me go to rehab but I won’t go, go, go”

Winehouse had unsuccessfully tried to kick her alcohol and drug addictions by going to treatment facilities several time, with the latest being in May when she entered The Priory clinic in southwest London.

The official cause of Winehouse’s death is still unknown, but friends say that she had been binge drinking and taking ecstasy pills in the days prior to her sudden death.

Condolences from celebrity friends and admirers of the talented but troubled singer have poured in.

Lady Gaga posted on Twitter: “RIP to the amazing #amywinehouse. Such a talented singer.”

Usher tweeted: “I’m so sad to hear the horrible news of Amy Winehouse’s death. I’m so happy I knew you Amy… Rest Well. Gone Too Soon … we’ll miss you!!”

And American Idol winner Kelly Clarkson said, “I’m incredibly sad. I didn’t know her but I met her a few times and got to hear her sing before she blew up. She was a beautiful and talented girl. I’m angry. What a waste of a gifted person.”

Country star LeAnn Rimes wrote, “Sometimes people’s demons are too hard to fight. I can only imagine her pain. What I imagine that torture is like makes me hurt.”

Fellow British stars Sir Elton John said, “She was one of the most seminal artists this country has ever produced,” while supermodel Kate Moss tweeted, “RIP Amy Winehouse, So upset, my heart goes out to her, sad to see such talent vanish from the world.”

Lily Allen said, “It’s just beyond sad, there’s nothing else to say. She was such a lost soul, may she rest in peace.”

While British comedian and actor Russell Brand, who is also a former drug addict, posted a tribute to Winehouse on www.russellbrand.tv : “Entering the space I saw Amy on stage with Weller and his band; and then the awe. The awe that envelops when witnessing a genius. From her oddly dainty presence that voice, a voice that seemed not to come from her but from somewhere beyond even Billie and Ella, from the font of all greatness. A voice that was filled with such power and pain that it was at once entirely human yet laced with the divine. My ears, my mouth, my heart and mind all instantly opened”

And legendary crooner Tony Bennett paid a touching tribute to Winehouse, who he recorded the song “Body and Soul” with.

“She was an extraordinary musician with a rare intuition as a vocalist and I am truly devastated that her exceptional talent has come to such an early end,” said Bennett to US Weekly.

“When we recorded together, she gave a soulful and extraordinary performance,” he said. “I was honored to have the opportunity to sing with her.”

“It had been my sincere hope that she would be able to overcome the issues she was battling and I send my deepest sympathy to her father Mitchell, her entire family and all of those who loved her,” Bennett said.

Even the wife of former British Prime Minister Gordon Brown mourned Winehouse’s death. Sarah Brown tweeted, “Sad, sad news on Amy Winehouse – great talent, extraordinary voice, and tragic death, condolences to her family.”

Many have noted that Winehouse is now part of the “27 Club,” made up of undeniably talented musicians whose drug and alcohol addictions led to their untimely death at age 27. “27 Club” members include Nirvana’s Kurt Cobain, The Rolling Stones’ Brian Jones, The Doors’ Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix, and Janis Joplin.

Dozens of flower bouquets have been left outside Winehouse’s home in Camden, England, according to the BBC.

Few artists summed up their own career in a single song – a single line – as well as Amy Winehouse.

“They tried to make me go to rehab,” she sang on her world-conquering 2006 single, “Rehab.” “I said ‘No, no no.'”

Occasionally, she said yes, but to no avail: repeated stints in hospitals and clinics couldn’t stop alcohol and drugs scuttling the career of a singer whose distinctive voice, rich mix of influences and heart-on-her sleeve sensibility seemed to promise great things.

In her short lifetime, Winehouse too often made headlines because of drug and alcohol abuse, eating disorders, destructive relationships and abortive performances. But it’s her small but powerful body of recorded music that will be her legacy.

The singer was found dead Saturday at age 27 by ambulance crews called to her home in north London‘s Camden area, a youth-culture mecca known for its music scene, its pubs – and the availability of illegal drugs. She joins the ranks of drug-addled rock stars Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, Kurt Cobain and Jim Morrison, who died at the same age.

The London Ambulance Service said Winehouse had died before crews arrived at the house in leafy Camden Square. The cause of death was not immediately known.

The singer’s body was taken from her home by private ambulance to a London mortuary where post-mortem examinations were to be carried out either Sunday or Monday. Police said in a statement no arrests have been made in connection with her death.

It was not a complete surprise, but the news was still a huge shock for millions around the world. The size of Winehouse’s appeal was reflected in the extraordinary range of people paying tribute as they heard the news, from Demi Moore – who tweeted “Truly sad news … May her troubled soul find peace” – to chef Jamie Oliver, who wrote “such a waste, raw talent” on the social networking site.

Tony Bennett, who recorded the pop standard “Body And Soul” with Winehouse at London’s Abbey Road Studios in March for an upcoming duets album, called her “an artist of immense proportions.”

“She was an extraordinary musician with a rare intuition as a vocalist and I am truly devastated that her exceptional talent has come to such an early end,” he said.

Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood said he was dedicating Saturday’s reunion performance of his band The Faces to Winehouse. “It’s a very sad loss of a very good friend I spent many great times with,” he said.

Winehouse was something rare in an increasingly homogenized music business – an outsized personality and an unclassifiable talent.

She shot to fame with the album “Back to Black,” whose blend of jazz, soul, rock and classic pop was a global hit. It won five Grammys and made Winehouse – with her black beehive hairdo and old-fashioned sailor tattoos – one of music’s most recognizable stars.

“I didn’t go out looking to be famous,” Winehouse told the Associated Press when the album was released. “I’m just a musician.”

But in the end, the music was overshadowed by fame, and by Winehouse’s demons. Tabloids lapped up the erratic stage appearances, drunken fights, stints in hospital and rehab clinics. Performances became shambling, stumbling train wrecks, watched around the world on the Internet.

Last month, Winehouse canceled her European comeback tour after she swayed and slurred her way through barely recognizable songs in her first show in the Serbian capital of Belgrade. Booed and jeered off stage, she flew home and her management said she would take time off to recover.

Fans who had kept the faith waited in vain for a followup to “Back to Black.”

Born in 1983 to taxi driver Mitch Winehouse and his pharmacist wife Janis, Winehouse grew up in the north London suburbs, and was set on a showbiz career from an early age. When she was 10, she and a friend formed a rap group, Sweet ‘n’ Sour – Winehouse was Sour – that she later described as “the little white Jewish Salt ‘n’ Pepa.”

She attended the Sylvia Young Theatre School, a factory for British music and acting moppets, later went to the Brit School, a performing arts academy in the “Fame” mold, and was originally signed to “Pop Idol” svengali Simon Fuller‘s 19 Management.

But Winehouse was never a packaged teen star, and always resisted being pigeonholed.

Her jazz-influenced 2003 debut album, “Frank,” was critically praised and sold well in Britain. It earned Winehouse an Ivor Novello songwriting award, two Brit nominations and a spot on the shortlist for the Mercury Music Prize.

But Winehouse soon expressed dissatisfaction with the disc, saying she was “only 80 percent behind” the album.

“Frank” was followed by a slump during which Winehouse broke up with her boyfriend, suffered a long period of writer’s block and, she later said, smoked a lot of marijuana.

“I had writer’s block for so long,” she said in 2007. “And as a writer, your self-worth is literally based on the last thing you wrote. … I used to think, ‘What happened to me?’

“At one point it had been two years since the last record and (the record company) actually said to me, ‘Do you even want to make another record?’ I was like, ‘I swear it’s coming.’ I said to them, ‘Once I start writing I will write and write and write. But I just have to start it.'”

The album she eventually produced was a sensation.

Released in Britain in the fall of 2006, “Back to Black” brought Winehouse global fame. Working with producers Mark Ronson and Salaam Remi and soul-funk group the Dap-Kings, Winehouse fused soul, jazz, doo-wop and, above all, a love of the girl-groups of the early 1960s with lyrical tales of romantic obsession and emotional excess.

“Back to Black” was released in the United States in March 2007 and went on to win five Grammy awards, including song and record of the year for “Rehab.”

Music critic John Aizlewood attributed her trans-Atlantic success to a fantastic voice and a genuinely original sound.

“A lot of British bands fail in America because they give America something Americans do better – that’s why most British hip-hop has failed,” he said. “But they won’t have come across anything quite like Amy Winehouse.”

Winehouse’s rise was helped by her distinctive look – black beehive of hair, thickly lined cat eyes, girly tattoos – and her tart tongue.

She was famously blunt in her assessment of her peers, once describing Dido’s sound as “background music – the background to death” and saying of pop princess Kylie Minogue, “she’s not an artist … she’s a pony.”

The songs on “Black to Black” detailed breakups and breakdowns with a similar frankness. Lyrically, as in life, Winehouse wore her heart on her sleeve.

“I listen to a lot of ’60s music, but society is different now,” Winehouse said in 2007. “I’m a young woman and I’m going to write about what I know.”

Even then, Winehouse’s performances were sometimes shambolic, and she admitted she was “a terrible drunk.”

Increasingly, her personal life began to overshadow her career.

She acknowledged struggling with eating disorders and told a newspaper that she had been diagnosed as manic depressive but refused to take medication. Soon accounts of her erratic behavior, canceled concerts and drink- and drug-fueled nights began to multiply.

Photographs caught her unsteady on her feet or vacant-eyed, and she appeared unhealthily thin, with scabs on her face and marks on her arms.

There were embarrassing videos released to the world on the Internet. One showed an addled Winehouse and Babyshambles singer Pete Doherty playing with newborn mice. Another, for which Winehouse apologized, showed her singing a racist ditty to the tune of a children’s song.

Winehouse’s managers went to increasingly desperate lengths to keep the wayward star on the straight and narrow. Before a June 2011 concert in Belgrade – the first stop on a planned European comeback tour – her hotel was stripped of booze. It did no good,

Winehouse swayed and slurred her way through barely recognizable songs, as her band played gamely and the audience jeered and booed.

Winehouse flew home. Her management canceled the tour, saying Winehouse would take some time off to recover.

Though she was often reported to be working on new material, fans got tired of waiting for the much-promised followup to “Back to Black.”

Occasional bits of recording saw the light of day. Her rendition of The Zutons’ “Valerie” was a highlight of producer Mark Ronson’s 2007 album “Version,” and she recorded the pop classic “It’s My Party” for the 2010 Quincy Jones album “Q: Soul Bossa Nostra.”

But other recording projects with Ronson, one of the architects of the success of “Back to Black,” came to nothing.

She also had run-ins with the law. In April 2008, Winehouse was cautioned by police for assault after she slapped a man during a raucous night out.

The same year she was investigated by police, although not charged, after a tabloid newspaper published a video that appeared to show her smoking crack cocaine.

In 2010, Winehouse pleaded guilty to assaulting a theater manager who asked her to leave a family Christmas show because she’d had too much to drink. She was given a fine and a warning to stay out of trouble by a judge who praised her for trying to clean up her act.

In May 2007 in Miami, she married music industry hanger-on Blake Fielder-Civil, but the honeymoon was brief. That November, Fielder-Civil was arrested for an attack on a pub manager the year before. Fielder-Civil later pleaded guilty to assaulting barman James King and then offering him 200,000 pounds (US$400,000) to keep quiet about it.

Winehouse stood by “my Blake” throughout his trial, often blowing kisses at him from the court’s public gallery and wearing a heart-shaped pin labeled “Blake” in her hair at concerts. But British newspapers reported extramarital affairs while Fielder-Civil was behind bars.

They divorced in 2009.

Winehouse’s health often appeared fragile. In June 2008 and again in April 2010, she was taken to hospital and treated for injuries after fainting and falling at home.

Her father said she had developed the lung disease emphysema from smoking cigarettes and crack, although her spokeswoman later said Winehouse only had “early signs of what could lead to emphysema.”

She left the hospital to perform at Nelson Mandela’s 90th birthday concert in Hyde Park in June 2008, and at the Glastonbury festival the next day, where she received a rousing reception but scuffled with a member of the crowd. Then it was back to a London clinic for treatment, continuing the cycle of music, excess and recuperation that marked her career.

Her last public appearance came three days before her death, when she briefly joined her goddaughter, singer Dionne Bromfield, on stage at The Roundhouse in Camden, just around the corner from her home.

Despite the years of frustration and disappointment, Winehouse retained a huge body of fans, all hoping she would find her feet again. Some gathered outside her home after her death, laying flowers, comforting each other and taking in the police tape and ambulance that marked the end of her journey.

Winehouse is survived by her parents and an older brother, Alex. Her father, Mitch, who released a jazz album of his own, was in New York when he heard the news of her death and immediately flew back.

Winehouse’s spokesman, Chris Goodman, said “everyone who was involved with Amy is shocked and devastated.” He said the family would issue a statement when they were ready.

Sylvia Hui contributed to this report. Jill Lawless can be reached at http://twitter.com/JillLawless

Read more: http://www.kansascity.com/2011/07/23/3032030/police-singer-amy-winehouse-dies.html#ixzz1T0breLhW

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