In what is being described as Amy Winehouse's final interview, the oft-troubled chanteuse didn't talk about drugs, or messy breakups, or rehab. Instead, while in the midst of a recording session with Tony Bennett in March, Winehouse struck a humble tone, talking about her insecurities, a possible jazz album and offering her outlook for the future.
"I'm not a natural born performer", she told the The Telegraph. "I'm a natural singer, but I'm quite shy, really."
Winehouse spent the tail end of her 27 years (which came to an end on July 23) in self-destruct mode, but on that day in early spring, she was an appreciative admirer, trying to keep from crying at the sight of one of her idols.
"I'm so happy to be here", she beamed to Bennett while they recorded "Body And Soul". "It's a story to tell my grandchildren, to tell their grandchildren, to make sure they tell their grandchildren."
The interviewer describes Winehouse as "obviously nervous" during the sessions, but that she appeared healthier and fuller-figured than she had in years. "I grew up listening to your records", she told Bennett. "You taught me how to sing."
They did take after take of the track, each of which Winehouse swayed her elastic voice in different directions. Not that she thought she was any good.
"I'm my own worst critic, and if I don't pull off what I think I wanted to do in my head, then I won't be a happy girl", she said.
The sessions, which took place at Abbey Road studios, must have inspired the singer, who said she wanted to record a "more purist" jazz album at some point in her career. She also talked a bit about professional development.
"I would love to study guitar or trumpet", she said. "I can play a lot of different instruments adequately but nothing really well. If you play an instrument, it makes you a better singer. The more you play, the better you sing, the more you sing, the better you play."
Tony Bennett is releasing his "Duets II" album on Columbia Records on Sept. 20.
Thanks for the report to Billboard.com.