Metropolitan police confirm death of singer notorious as much for her off-stage excesses as her music
Singer Amy Winehouse has been found dead at her house in north London She was 27. The award-winning artist, famous for hits including Rehab from the critically acclaimed album Back to Black, was discovered by police in the late afternoon. Her death was being treated on Saturday night as "unexplained" but sources said she had died of a drugs overdose.
The Metropolitan police said: "We were called by London Ambulance Service to an address in Camden Square shortly before 16.05hrs following reports of a woman found deceased. On arrival officers found the body of a 27-year-old female who was pronounced dead at the scene."
Winehouse was last seen with her goddaughter, Dionne Bromfield, earlier last week when the teenager performed at the iTunes festival.
Tributes began to pour in to one of the most celebrated and troubled British artists of recent times. Mark Ronson, who produced Back to Black, said: "She was my musical soulmate and like a sister to me. This is one of the saddest days of my life."
Singer and actress Kelly Osbourne wrote: "i cant even breath right now, im crying so hard i just lost 1 of my best friends. i love you forever Amy & will never forget the real you!"
Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood dedicated his show on Absolute Radio and the reunion performance by his former group the Faces in Hurtwood, Surrey, to Winehouse. "It's a very sad loss of a very good friend I spent many great times with," he said.
Two regulars at Winehouse's local pub, The Hawley Arms in Camden, paid tribute. "Some people might think it shows disrespect to come out drinking tonight but she was such a part of Camden she made it her home and she always got involved," said Mary Gallagher. "Amy even worked behind the bar here. She was such a lovely person and, to be honest, I don't think fame agreed with her. She was an ordinary girl at heart."
Gloria Woods, 26, who works for a record label, said: "There will never be another voice like that in our generation."
A spokesman for the late singer said: "Everyone involved with Amy is shocked and devastated. Our thoughts are with her family and friends."
Winehouse's father, Mitch, returned from New York, where he had been due to perform at the Blue Note jazz club. He said: 'I'm coming home. I have to be with Amy. I can't crack up for her sake. My family need me."
Flowers, teddy bears and candles were left outside her home in Camden Square. One card read: "You will not be forgotten by Camden. We all love you and will continue to love you. Your legend lives on."
Winehouse had suffered a well-publicised battle with drink and drug abuse that saw her withdraw from all of her scheduled performances last month after a series of erratic performances. She started her 12-leg European tour in Belgrade but was booed off the stage after appearing to forget her lyrics. She then pulled out of performances in Istanbul and Athens before she cancelled the tour as fears for her health grew.
A statement released by her spokesman at the time said that she would be given "as long as it takes" to recover. "Everyone involved wishes to do everything they can to help her return to her best," it read.
Winehouse rose to fame with her debut album Frank in 2003, which was feted by music critics in the UK and nominated for the Mercury music prize, but it was her 2006 follow-up album, Back to Black, that catapulted her to stardom and led to five Grammy awards. The album became the third-highest selling album of the 2000s.