Top 10 Amy Winehouse Songs
The Top 10 Amy Winehouse Songs reveal the soulful voice and spunky spirit that dominated the British singer’s best work in a noteworthy but too-short career. Winehouse was a breath of fresh air when she debuted in 2003 with her retro jazz-soul sound. Many of her songs portrayed a bad girl image, which carried over into her personal life as well, as she struggled with addictions and personal demons. As the world mourns the young diva’s untimely death, PopCrush celebrates her musical legacy with our picks for the Top 10 Amy Winehouse Songs.
Winehouse's last single was her remake of this cute teen pop hit from 1963, which declared, "It's my party and I'll cry if I want to / You would cry too if it happened to you." Amy's version appeared on the 2010 album 'Q Soul Bossa Nostra,' a tribute to legendary producer Quincy Jones, who produced the original Lesley Gore recording. Winehouse took a few liberties with the vocal arrangements, giving the classic song her own spin.
On 'F--- Me Pumps,' Winehouse adopted a casual but snarky tone, delivering biting lyrics about the superficial girls at the bar who all look the same: "You can't sit down right / Cause your jeans are too tight / And you're lucky it's ladies night / With your big empty purse / Every week it gets worse / At least your breasts cost more than hers." Winehouse wrote the song with hip-hop producer Salaam Remi, her collaborative partner on the 'Frank' album.
Winehouse's music was often compared to Motown, and that's especially true in the case of 'Tears Dry on Their Own,' which utilized a sample from the Motown duet 'Ain't No Mountain High Enough' by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. On this track from 'Back to Black,' Amy sang about the frustration of dealing with guy troubles again: "I should just be my own best friend / Not f--- myself in the head with stupid men."
'Love Is a Losing Game' captured the feeling of enduring a breakup so bad that you consider giving up on love completely: "Love is a losing game, one I wish I never played / Oh what a mess we made / And now the final frame / Love is a losing game." The straightforward ballad from 'Back to Black' was definitely a downer, but it was honest and cathartic for listeners in similar situations.
One of Winehouse's more impressive early songs was 'You Sent Me Flying,' another track from her 2003 debut album 'Frank,' which was initially released only in Europe. The song began as a jazzy piano ballad but opened up halfway through with the appearance of a hip-hop-lite beat. Winehouse sang about having her ego bruised: "Although my pride is not easy to disturb / You sent me flying when you kicked me to the curb."
The title track from the singer's 2006 sophomore release is an easy choice for inclusion on our list of the Top 10 Amy Winehouse Songs. Another "doomed relationship song," this one featured an arty, black-and-white music video in which Winehouse and other mourners wore black clothes and pained expressions as they joined a funeral procession and drove to a graveyard, where they grieved during a ceremony representing the burial of the singer's broken heart.
'In My Bed' borrowed the beat from the Nas hit 'Made You Look' and added healthy doses of percussion, horns, sax and flute to create a contemporary R&B vibe. Multiple vocal tracks combined to form a strong chorus in which Winehouse sang about a complicated relationship in which both partners could only seem to agree whenever they were in the bedroom. 'In My Bed' was released in the U.K. as a double A-side single with 'You Sent Me Flying.'
"They tried to make me go to rehab, I said no, no, no." For many music fans, that line will probably be the one for which Amy Winehouse is best remembered. Aided by a remix that featured rapper Jay-Z, 'Rehab' ignited her success in America and won Record and Song of the Year at the Grammys. The irony is that not long after it became her biggest worldwide hit, reaching No. 9 in the U.S. in 2007, Winehouse checked herself into rehab.
The peppy 'Valerie' appeared on 'Version,' a 2007 album of covers by Winehouse's producer, Mark Ronson, and became her biggest hit in the U.K., reaching No. 2. As for why Winehouse was singing lines like "I've missed your ginger hair" about a girl named Valerie, the song was actually first performed by British indie rock group the Zutons, who wrote it about singer Dave McCabe's ex-girlfriend. Winehouse joined Ronson for a memorable performance of the track at the 2008 Brit Awards.
A single from 'Back to Black,' 'You Know I'm No Good' could be the song that best defines Winehouse and her music. The song pairs vibrant horns with devilish lyrics like, "I cheated myself like I knew I would / I told you I was trouble / You know that I'm no good." The remix with Wu-Tang rapper Ghostface Killah is worth hearing, but Winehouse's solo recording of 'You Know I'm No Good' is the definitive version and heads our list of the Top 10 Amy Winehouse Songs.