AMY WINEHOUSE

SEPT 14, 1983 - JULY 23, 2011

 

“The minute I even start to think about what I'm doing, I just lose it.

I have to just shut my eyes and flow.”          

                                                      - Amy Winehouse

Amy Winehouse.

Sultry. Sexy. Painful. Pained.

A powerful voice.

So filled with hurt and love and passion.  

 

Amy came from modest beginnings. She studied with her ears. She heard not just the lyrics and progressions of the music of her day, but the complex and intricate voicings of the jazz music revolution that has innovated and challenged the world of popular music.

 

The dissonant pulling of minor and major tonality, combined with frenetic time signatures and a rebellious subject matter - Jazz was a form that challenged the establishment, before being adopted and watered down by the music industry.  In a resurgence of the art, Amy took a struggling genre and breathed life into the form. In the pursuit of revitalizing the energy of the counterculture roots of Jazz, she embraced the form completely. This genre is often associated with a lifestyle that has historically been interlaced with alcohol, drugs, and decadence.

 

Unfortunately, the rigors of the industry, and the relentless pursuit of the press and paparazzi, stole all of the energy from this rising star. Her support group became increasingly obsessed with their own self interests, and their own financial rewards.

 

When Amy needed support, all she got was greed. When she needed love, she was pushed to keep giving more of herself than her body and spirit could withstand. In the end, her music, that was once her salvation, could not give her the strength to handle the toll of her lifestyle, and the demands of her schedule that were ultimately beyond her control.

 

THE DESIGN

This piece is inspired by Amy’s heartache and the support group she never had. This piece is a calling to reach out to those around us who are feeling alone and without hope. It serves as a reminder that we all need help, and we all need a support structure that will be there for us in difficult times.

The heart is empty, and broken. It is laced with black thread, to represent the thread of history she weaved through her timeless music.  The two halves of the heart create a whole, and represent unity regardless of physical distance. The necklace is meant to be worn by two individuals who share a single bond, reminiscent of the necklaces my best friend Nicole and I wore as young girls.

Bigger Picture...Our heart is our community. Our community is who we interact with, and how we treat each other. Our community is broad, wise, and compassionate. Our community is power. We have more power than the small faction of people that comprise our governing bodies, who dominate the media and airwaves of networks and our social media feeds. Our heart and our community will govern the future, and we all share the same goal to make the world of tomorrow greater than the social construct of today. Give your energy in a positive way, and you will receive infinite energy in return.

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