Amy Winehouse was known for two things; her powerful contralto vocals and her history with drug abuse. She spent most of her career trying to get out of going to rehab, and even famously sang about it in her hit song “Rehab”.
The last couple of years her battle with substance abuse made more headlines than her singing career. In 2005 she went through a period of heavy drinking, heavy drug use and violent mood swings.
By October 2006 she gained international fame for her critically acclaimed album 'Back to Black', entering the Billboard charts at number seven and was named the best selling album in the UK in 2007.
By 2008 she won Grammy awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year and Best Female Pop Vocal Performance while her album 'Back to Black' was nominated for Album of the Year and won the Best Pop Vocal Album award.
The more success she gained, the bigger addict she became. In August 2007, Winehouse cancelled a number of shows in the UK and Europe, citing exhaustion and ill health. She was hospitalized during this period for reported overdose of heroin, ecstasy, cocaine, ketamine and alcohol.
Winehouse told a magazine at the time that the drugs were to blame for her hospitalization and that "I really thought that it was over for me then."
After a video of Amy smoking crack cocaine hit the internet, she entered rehab facility for a two-week treatment program in January 2008.
In September 2008 she was photographed with cuts on her arms and legs, sparking rumors of a relapse.
In June 2009 her father Mitch released a statement saying she was back in rehab claiming heavy drinking caused a “slight backward step.”
On May 25, 2011 Amy checked herself back in rehab. On the way to the rehab facility she stopped by a liquor store, bought vodka and drank it right out of the bottle in front of the liquor store attendant. She stayed in rehab for one week before bolting out early.
On July 23, 2011 at 3:54pm two ambulances were called to Amy's London home in Camden, London. Shortly afterward, the Metropolitan Police confirmed her death. She was only 27 years old.
Amy's public battle with drugs and alcohol undoubtedly led to her early death. She was always in and out of rehab, but never fully committed to getting clean. She'll go down as one of the successful artists in history and her voice surly won't be soon forgotten. Rest in peace Amy.