Father Mitch Winehouse on Amy Winehouse’s Death and New Book

An excerpt of an interview about the late British songstress Amy Winehouse’s life through the words of her father Mitch Winehouse, and his new book dedicated to the life of his daughter.

Interviewer: There’s a lot of things we learn about Amy in the book that the public has no idea about — her math ability, her dancing prowess. Is there anything else the public doesn’t know?

Winehouse: We probably wrote enough for two books, but I can’t remember what was edited out and what was kept in. But I will say, Amy could read and write before she even went to school. I think that explains a lot about her disruptiveness there. She was clearly not engaged, and obviously very bright.

Interviewer: What was the impetus for you to write this book?

Mitch Winehouse: Three reasons, mainly. Immediately after Amy passed away, people were beginning to speculate that it was a drug overdose or that she’d committed suicide, and of course neither of those are true. I had to address that. Also, I felt that the writing process would make me feel better and help me with my personal recovery — which it has. And lastly, it’s an important way to raise funds for the [Amy Winehouse] Foundation.

Interviewer: How did you deal with the stress of knowing that your daughter was taking that kind of drug?

Winehouse: I don’t know why it took me so long to realize …  I must have been deluded. It was only when I actually saw the drug paraphernalia  — which involved the silver foil — and that’s when I realized what was happening. It was very difficult. I knew I had an uphill battle on my hands.

Interviewer: If you look back in music history, a lot of truly brilliant musicians have had inner demons. Was Amy always so happy-go-lucky? Or did she have a dark side?

Winehouse: She was very happy-go-lucky. I think her problems started when my mom passed away in May of 2006. Amy was very vulnerable at that point, and she loved my mother dearly. Also, that’s when Blake reemerged. It ended up being a very dangerous scenario. Blake and vulnerable young women are not a good match — he has a history with this kind of stuff. It was an accident waiting to happen.

Interviewer: What would you like people to remember most about Amy, other than her music?

Winehouse: That’s a good question, and I’ve told this story about 15 times, but I love it. People talk a lot about Amy and Camden Town; well, she loved the west end of London. She loved Soho. When we were walking down this particular street after Back to Black, she was a massive star, and Amy knew literally every single person on the street. She stopped at every store and talked to everyone. I was so proud of her. She didn’t have to do that. She was a huge superstar, but that’s exactly what she loved to do. It’s my favorite memory of her — smiling, laughing and being a normal person.

Interview via ZayZay Media

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