Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Amy Winehouse 'not prepared' for tour

Cigarettes, alcohol and photos are left with flowers and messages near Amy Winehouse's home in London. Source: AFP

Amy Winehouse's management was criticised by music industry figures yesterday for letting her embark on a lucrative tour while addicted to crack.

The singer, found dead on Saturday, was "completely unprepared for touring", a record label executive said.

Darcus Beese, co-president of Island Records, her label, is understood to have said last week that it was "mad" to send her on a 12-date European tour last month. One executive said Mr Beese had suggested that the management company should stop working with her. He said: "Darcus said that it was mad for her to tour and said Island representatives had had a discussion with the management about [them] resigning. He said her problem was crack cocaine."

Winehouse's management company, Metropolis Management, denied that Island Records had wanted it to part company with the singer. Island Records did not return calls.

A source close to Metropolis Management said: "Amy really wanted to do the shows. It wasn't a gruelling tour, more fly in, fly out. She's a grown woman and it was her decision."

Winehouse, 27, was booed off stage in Belgrade, Serbia, while apparently intoxicated. Mica Paris, the singer and broadcaster, said it was likely that the Serbian debacle was responsible for Winehouse's increasingly fragile state.

"The feeling of being rejected by the very people that brought you to where you wanted to be all your life, that's massive. She was very fragile after that, I'm sure she was. I'm an artist. I could not imagine people booing me. She was broken."

Paris said it was a "disgrace" that Winehouse had been allowed to perform in such a state. "If you know that your artist is not well, has an addiction problem, the last thing you should do is put them on stage," she added. "Time and time again you saw the girl crying out for help, and she was still pushed on stage like a machine."

A music executive said: "There is a feeling that with some artists their behaviour is not discouraged, that it's only rock'n'roll. Many are surrounded by people who give them permission to indulge in their worst excesses."

The Metropolis source said Winehouse had performed a well-received warm-up gig at the 100 Club in London before she went on tour. "In those circumstances the decision was not a bad one." He described Winehouse's addictions as "stepping forward and stepping back. You hope that the normal starts overtaking the bad bits."

Winehouse's most famous song, Rehab, was inspired by her first manager's attempt to get her to attend a rehabilitation clinic. She was in and out in less than half an hour, Nick Godwyn later recalled. He was dispensed with a short while later.

Mr Godwyn told Broadcasting House on BBC Radio 4 that she received much support. "She certainly had a lot of help from record companies and publishers, and her family were amazing," he said.

Before the Serbian concert, Winehouse's management reportedly tried to have all alcohol removed from her hotel room. A week later Raye Cosbert, her manager, withdrew her from all scheduled performances, saying that the singer would stay out of the spotlight for "as long as it takes to recover".

As fans gathered outside her flat in Camden, North London, her family said: " We have been left bereft by the loss of Amy, a wonderful daughter, sister, niece. She leaves a gaping hole in our lives."

Janis Winehouse, the singer's mother, was quoted in the Sunday Mirror as saying it was "only a matter of time" before she died.

She had seen her daughter the day before she died.

“She seemed out of it. But her passing so suddenly still hasn't hit me," Mrs Winehouse said.
Father Mitch, who flew back from New York when he heard the devastating news, said: “This isn't real. I'm completely devastated.”

A post-mortem examination is expected today. There were reports that the singer had bought alcohol and narcotics in Camden on Friday night.

Author | Source | Alexi Mostrous | Alex Ralph | Vaentine Low | The Times | July 25 th

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: only a member of this blog may post a comment.