Saturday, June 16, 2007

Amy Winehouse - The New Queen of Soul?


The folks at Spin magazine might be on some serious mind altering drugs.

Now I have heard a few of her songs.... and...she's a pretty talented Pop Singer, and she has a good voice. But that's it. She is not the Queen of anything.... certainly not Soul. Give her a chance to make a few more albums before putting her that high up.

I don't read Spin... they publish quite a bit of nonsense, especially things that just aren't credible. As an amateur musicologist.... my bull---t alarm sounded immediately when I heard about this.
A few years ago I recall Spin magazine putting out a list of the 50 Greatest Bands of all-time... and there were some obvious omissions and oversights... Groups like NWA (a gangster rap group...and not even a "band") made the list, but Earth Wind & Fire, for example, was left off. Earth Wind & Fire is a Hall of Fame Band. That list blew my mind. And that was one of several problems with the list...several other major Rock bands were left off as well. So I don't pay much attention to these music mags.... But I thought their Queen of Soul Proclamation was amusing.


10 comments:

Bronzetrinity said...

First it was rock & roll with Elvis, and now its R&B with Justin Timberlake and Robin Thicke, and now this. See what's happening? When the musician is painted a different colour from the usual people, Black people, who make the music suddenly that person is the new King or Queen of the music genre.

African American Political Pundit said...

The Queen and King of "Soul Music" will always be "black" no matter what other people say.

The King of Soul is James Brown (old school), The Queen of Soul, Aretha Franklin (old school).

Mary J. is the Queen of Soul, New School, and I guess we are in search of the King of Soul, New School.

The Angry Independent said...

I don't think race is necessarily the issue... Amy Winehouse wouldn't be considered the Queen of any genre even if she were black.

I think it is possible for a White person to be considered the Queen of Soul. We have Teena Marie and others who are great singers...and could hold their own with any black singer that I have heard.... including Aretha.
But it's just not likely that a white singer could enjoy such recognition right now. Possible...but not likely. Spin Mag has some nutty writers... either they are crazy, or just ill informed. Or maybe they just wanted to slight black singers.... Who knows.

But black singers have dominated this genre...and will dominate it for a long time.... although "Soul" as it was once known, is no longer Soul anymore.

Mary J. Blige??? I don't know about that one.

I am comfortable with Aretha being the Queen of Queens sitting at the very top all by herself right now. Although there are many other Queens and Princess's of the music IMO.

I don't mind sharing the genre, lol. The more diversity the better, IMO. But it is just aggravating... the way they try to co-opt what others have built.

Anonymous said...

Amy is indeed 'the truth' as they say. She is light years ahead of ANY current mainstream R&B/Soul artist. If not her, who???? 'Effing CIARA?? NOT. Amy Winehouse is a quality artist in a world full of cookie-cutter bullsh!t. Saw her live in Philly and she ripped the walls down.

In any event, we all have the right to an opinion. My opinion is that A.W. is brilliant.

The Angry Independent said...

Anonymous...

I conceded that she was good.

But you are comparing her to her contemporaries... Hell...based on that...damn near anyone would be considered great. With the exception of Badu, Alicia Keys, India Irie and a handful of others, the current flock doesn't offer much.

But Spin Mag is not comparing her to her contemporaries... They don't say the "Queen of the current generation of young artists" (although they would still be wrong). NO no.... Spin goes as far as saying that she is the Queen of the genre. Two different assertions.... although as I said... they'd still be wrong even if they had made that distinction.

"The Truth" to the current generation of music listeners is Justin Timberlake... In other words... The so-called "Truth" of today doesn't carry much weight in terms of the larger context and larger history of music, and therefore has a lot of trouble standing up to the "Truth" of the 60's, 70's and 80's. Computer generated overproduced cookie cutter studio music has changed the entire industry... unfortunately for the worst, particularly in terms of the quality of singers and quality of songs.

Anyway...Thanks for your comments.

Taureanblack said...

I really like Amy and her music. I knew however that once her label tried to make her an American success that she would be used in stupid campaigns like this one in SPIN. Ironically I think she probably hates the characterization more than most of us commenting on it. King and Queen don't enter into creating music that appeals to lovers of african american music. Unfortunately, Americans tend to take covers like this as fact and then repeat crap like this as some sort of agreed to truth. In that respect it's very dangerous. It obscures the very artists that influence people like Amy. Fortunately Amys music is more about her take on life. So when I think of her I think of her personal problems and struggles. Not her race. If the editors at Spin had any sense they would do a story about her musical influences rather than simply crown her Queen of soul.

On a side note I wonder what R. kelly is the "king" of. Pedophiles?

wphil said...

did u just say teena marie sings as good as Aretha Franklin? to anyone with an ounce of music knowledge,that sounds idiotic..i can't even entertain that..go learn some scales..also that first comment was so true..thnx 4 that..

The Angry Independent said...

Wphil,

I believe what I stated was-- Teena Marie could hold her own with the best Black singers that I have heard, including Aretha. The context of the discussion or my response had to do with the question of- Could a White woman be considered the Queen of Soul. I stated that it was possible...but not likely, and certainly not Winehouse.

Aretha even chose Teena Marie to sing at her honors celebration a few years ago... but that's beside the point. (and God forgive me for watching... because it was a BET program).

I stand by the Teena Marie comment 100%.

Teena Marie does not have the full range of an Aretha Franklin nor does she have all of the hits... and she is not even close to Aretha in terms of impact. But in terms of the quality of her singing voice, I put Teena Marie in the same category with some of the all-time greats.

Teena Marie has one of the best pure singing voices among women in the history of modern Soul/R&B.

This is open to debate and people will have various opinions on it. I'm sure a lot of people will agree with you... but that doesn't make other opinions invalid or idiotic.

But that's just my "opinion"... if I may indulge.

Blackitikat said...

Being a junkie and an alcoholic doesn’t make you the queen of anything…it makes you the queen of crack! Getting baked and staggering through your musical career in a drug induced fog doesn’t make you a queen…and being a lush and having a string of hospital visits from overdosing isn’t synonymous with “paying your dues”. Since when do queens live in the gutter? The inference that Amy Wine-O is the “Queen of Soul” is an insult to every authentic, hard working, soulful black female artist that paved the way for legitimate artists everywhere.

alexander said...

Amy Winehouse is actually the new queen of soul, aretha franklin is the queen of soul of her time.
Both are queens of soul, LIKE ELVIS PRESLEY WAS THE FIRST KING OF ROCK AND ROLL AND MICHAEL JACKSON IS THE ACTUAL KING OF ROCK AND ROLL, MICHAEL WAS MORE ROCK AND ROLL THAN PRESLEY, BECAUSE JACKSON DID AGRESSIVE HARD ROCK SONGS AND HARD FUNK SONGS

MICHAEL JACKSON IS THE UNDISPUTED "KING OF POP, ROCK AND SOUL" (KING OF POPULAR MUSIC, KING OF ROCK MUSIC AND KING OF SOUL MUSIC)