Talented singer and five time Grammy Award winner, 27-year-old Amy Winehouse was found dead in her London apartment earlier this morning. Police were called following reports of a woman found deceased, and currently, her death is being treated as "unexplained" by authorities.
But if you know anything about Winehouse, you know the deeply troubled jazz, soul, rock and classic pop singer battled addiction to drugs and alcohol for quite some time. Most recently, she cancelled her European tour following an incident last month when she stumbled onto a stage in Belgrade and gave an incoherent performance. A statement released by her rep said that Amy would be given "as long as it takes" to recover.
So, in many ways, her death -- while extremely tragic, don't get me wrong -- shouldn't come as shocking.
I wouldn't be surprised if after so many ins and outs of rehab, her tragic, drug-fueled romance with Blake Fielder-Civil and ups and downs with substance abuse problem, Amy couldn't fight anymore. Perhaps, consciously or not, she had a death wish.
She now joins a famous list, or "club," of enormously talented musicians whose lives ended far too soon, eerily all at the age 27: Jimi Hendrix, Janice Joplin, Jim Morrison, Kurt Cobain. I'm sure physicians have explored the phenomenon before, but there's got to be something about 27. Maybe it's the age when you physically just can't take the abuse anymore. You either start taking better care of yourself, and fast, or your body just gives up.
Even Amy's own mother, Janis, saw this coming. In a 2008 interview, she said she realized her daughter could be dead within the year. "We're watching her kill herself, slowly ... It's like watching a car crash -- this person throwing all these gifts away." It sounds like, even three years ago, Amy's mom had given up on her. She figured she had done everything she could to protect her child from destroying herself. It's heart-wrenching, but it's clear: Amy must have wanted to die. There's no way around it. She had people who loved her who wanted to help, but she couldn't help herself.
It's a damn shame for so many reasons. Because she was so young, because she was so talented, because she could have given the world so much more. Now, all we have is her memory and her music. Make no mistake: Whether she wanted it or not, Amy Winehouse will be immortalized.
Image via Ky Olsen/Flickr