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this is why we have YouTube: Amy Winehouse drunk in Belgrade

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Amy Winehouse drunk in Belgrade 2011

You know, you could make the following out to be a reason why we don’t need music criticism/journalism any more …

I disagree. I want to know more. The context, the reasons, what the crowd looked like, how many songs did she actually fuck up on (was this an aberration?), what the knock-on effects were, what the sound was like, how the band reacted, the mood backstage, what other songs she sang, whether this is the norm …

I really like Amy.

Even so, the above is a fairly compelling argument for why the Internet can be so fun. A few years back, we’d have had to rely on a few shocked word-of-mouth reports and tried to gauge for ourselves whether exaggeration was involved. Now we get to witness the car crashes without any of the unpleasant smells.

P.S. A former colleague has just picked up on that final paragraph. I wondered whether anyone would.

“‘ … whether exaggeration was involved’?” she quotes me. “You’re implying video can’t exaggerate or distort! Not sure about that…”

I wasn’t meaning to, actually – because I’m fully aware it can. Only the other weekend, on an Unconvention panel, I needed to remind someone that both photography and video can distort, if not downright lie. (This to someone who runs a video site, and should have known better. He was trying the old line that videoing something is somehow more ‘honest’ than writing about something.) I knew it was an ambivalent statement, and should have been expanded upon further, but my attention was distracted. I was writing the post while trying to put my two sons to bed.

Glad to have the opportunity to clarify.

Amy Winehouse R.I.P.

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