Amy Winehouse was a legend. She was one of the most successful jazz-pop stars to ever walk the planet, one of the best to in my opinion. Sadly she passed away, although her death has taught us so much about mental health and addiction.
Who are some other famous alcoholics who tragically passed away?
Only famous people who tragically passed away may be able to help us see this issue as it truly is. However, most of us probably have someone close to us who has struggled with addiction. Perhaps it happened very recently? Maybe it’s time to admit you understand how that feels? We do have brains that make us vulnerable to it. Many of us don’t realize the risks of drinking until we are way past rock bottom.
That’s why Saturday is a big day for me. It’s also why I was so confused when I read the message J.D. Rockefeller left behind in his will that morning.
While reading it made me feel sick to my stomach, I was immensely relieved. Yes there is a 17-year-old girl who would’ve died if nothing was done. Yes, insurance wouldn’t have covered the cost,and yes J.D. had been a recovering alcoholic and once tried to die by drinking himself. All the life he took, while he was still hell-bent on kicking the habit, wasn’t in vain.
Life is funny like that.
I’m no expert on alcohol or addiction. My papa was an alcoholic, my mama is struggling with a drinking problem herself. Alcoholism isn’t one big monolith and no amount of detoxes will ever get out of my mom’s head. You can’t beat the monoliths; you know them and you feel them in your bones.
I did learn from my papa that addiction can suck all the joy out of life. I learned that alcoholism is a shock to the system, unlike drug abuse or smoking where you can numb out and forget about it. There was a sense in which I found some happiness in drinking. It was a relief, no guilt attached. I’d get drunk, but I’d feel accepting that my mind was right and I was OK. Turns out alcohol can become an escape from a troubled mind.
You don’t have to hang out with J.D. Rockefeller to grasp life lessons from his letter. Happy families help build happy brains. Alcoholics Anonymous helped my mama when she was drinking heavily. We all have someone — anyone — who can’t help us when it comes to drinking. Everyone has a damaged brain. We just have to find, not one, but two people who can.
Celebrity addiction stories can help us organize our thoughts about these issues in a positive way. Like this one I can take to heart. This may be the only record of a celebrity having once tried to kill themselves.
She did it to herself.
It’s tough enough to be an addict in any kind of relationship, but it gets even worse when that relationship is with a celebrity. Essentially she took it to the next level and willingly became a therapist for her friends who were already struggling with addictions. She took her own life because she needed help herself.
Many would say this is impossible, that not only is she too beautiful to attempt such a feat, but she’s also too young to attempt it.
But we love her so, are we not?
So I wanted to celebrate her birthday — I mean, many people’s birthdays — with her, so here we are, reading her music and she’s not only kicking it with the next generation of music superstars, she’s helping us get through these tough and dark times as a society if we’re lucky enough to have her around.
And I think being part of her concert is proof that we can all learn so much from someone as inspirational as she.
Miss You So Much
I grew up with this music.
My parents bought me my first music player when I was ten, and I’ve been hooked ever since. It was the Beatles going through heaven and earth, and sure enough to be in the right place at the right time.
Thankfully this song is “Bluebird,” the last song The Beatles ever recorded. Let’s hope they’ll beat cancer and do it again.
Ever wonder what The Beatles sound like live?
Here they are, sitting in the studio making timeless classics with producer George Martin. It really shows that not even 40 years old, Beatles songs still sound great, and this was their swan song as a lineup. It was their swan song, the last song they ever performed live.
It’s up on the public domain now. For those who want it, here you go.
Your Favorite Amy Winehouse Moments
Below are some of the quotes in the playlist from the concerts where I found myself in tears, pouring out my heart, or smiling from ear to ear. You never know where you’ll be, even in the elevator, but these seven moments will always be with me.
1. “That dress shall make you happy”
In 2009, shortly after she announces to the world that she’s pregnant, we see her for the first time in that dress. I’m crying from the anticipation, she’s screaming from the depression. It frees our minds in so many ways, as we learn to see ourselves through her eyes.
But can you give any role models, people who break all the rules of our stories, a lesson in success?
Did Amy Winehouse give herself less of a chance because everyone was trying to destroy her? Was she just another celebrity with a drug problem? Or could she also have learnt from the experiences of Marilyn Monroe, people who are famous for not being able to seem happy all the time?
I asked the experts for their views.
Could drinking, smoking and drug taking affecting your mental health bring the same amount of negative consequences as celebrities like Amy Winehouse?
Why do we need to take a step back and look for success outside the numbers? Celebrities are like the lottery winners that have the press writing about them. Do we really think a millionaire with a drug and alcohol problem has less chance of success than a former factory worker with a laundry list of mental health problems? We tend to dismiss them as anomalies like Amy Winehouse or Chris Brown. But is that really true?
66% of people with a drug and alcohol problem said they think of themselves as being very successful. This rate is disturbingly high. If we take a different approach to Covid-19 and celebrities who have been seriously affected by it, perhaps we should reflect on the winners, and all the Black wives and ex babes with drug problems, and the starlets that got high drinking every day. They didn’t even think that such problems were possible.
They are like High Standard, people that we discuss success with for an hour before pulling the least amount of weight on the scales. They are outliers to the norm, although we continue to talk about them in a negative way.
It is hilarious to see such negative comments online about people with drug and alcohol problems that reveals how little success people have outside the numbers. Drug use does not mean you will never make it as a star, but it does make your chances of success harder to predict. It really
If we accept the reality of the news articles, and celebrities who struggle to manage their addiction and mental health, how do we avoid lowering our expectations of basic human passion?
Maybe it is about learning to take a break from the drama of our journey. With mental health being such a hot topic, maybe we can start a TED-talk style module on self-discipline, where we talk about how much drama we can handle at bedtime. Or maybe someone can make an app that shuts people up with noise.