Amy Winehouse died this weekend, and I was a sad to hear some people respond “yes, well, you just had to look at her to know that was coming.” I was sad not from a deep place of “you can’t know what someone is going through just by looking at them.” I was sad from a really shallow place because there were times when, before her battle with drugs, Amy Winehouse looked terrific. I hate to think that people will just remember her looking beat up and blistered. So. Here is Russell Brand’s tribute:

“…As I made my way to the audience through the plastic smiles and plastic cups I heard the rolling, wondrous resonance of a female vocal. Entering the space I saw Amy on stage with Weller and his band; and then the awe. The awe that envelops when witnessing a genius. From her oddly dainty presence that voice, a voice that seemed not to come from her but from somewhere beyond even Billie [Holiday] and Ella [Fitzgerald], from the font of all greatness. A voice that was filled with such power and pain that it was at once entirely human yet laced with the divine. My ears, my mouth, my heart and mind all instantly opened. Winehouse. Winehouse? Winehouse! That twerp, all eyeliner and lager dithering up Chalk Farm Road under a back-combed barnet, the lips that I’d only seen clenching a fishwife fag and dribbling curses now a portal for this holy sound. So now I knew. She wasn’t just some hapless wannabe, yet another pissed up nit who was never gonna make it, nor was she even a ten-a-penny-chanteuse enjoying her fifteen minutes. She was a f**king genius.”

And here is ours: