A CHAOTIC personal life at times threatened to overshadow Amy Winehouse’s incredible music.
Now, ten years on from her death, one of Amy’s female lovers has revealed in a new film the singer was “confused” by her complex sexuality.
Amy had a brief fling with Catriona Gourlay.
In upcoming BBC documentary Reclaiming Amy, Catriona says the star — who was married to Blake Fielder-Civil from 2007 to 2009 and dated film director Reg Traviss for a year leading up to her death — was baffled by her strong feelings for other women.
Catriona says: “Our relationship was so unique, undefined. We just loved each other very much.
“What I took from it, knowing her, was that she was confused about what it made her. When you have something that is so undefined for years, it’s hard.
“She used to write notes while I was sleeping, saying, ‘You’re the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. And how can you look as beautiful asleep as you do awake?’.”
Catriona says Amy told one interviewer: “I’m not a lesbian until I’ve had three sambucas.”
Another of Amy’s pals describes them as “silly kids running around London doing naughty things we didn’t want our parents to know about”.
The group joked about Amy’s fling with Catriona but there was darkness beneath the laughter.
Naomi says: “It was just a funny thing . . . Cat and Amy slept together and we’d all laugh and that would be it.”
Through tears, Catriona says she would have “done anything” to save the singer but felt their fling took a toll on her.
Catriona, an aspiring TV presenter at the time of her affair with Amy, says: “It’s the thing I think is so fundamental in understanding her and the things that did trouble her.
“Perhaps people don’t realise there were other relationships in her life where someone really did love her and care about her and would have done anything in their power to make her happy.”
One clip in the film gives a bleak insight into Amy’s battle with booze. She is seen saying: “What makes me laugh? Nothing. When I’m drunk, I find everything quite funny. When I’m sober, I’m just like, ‘F*** off! Leave me alone!’.”
Another pal, Chantelle Dusette, recalls: “I’d see her drinking to feel normal and when she was not drinking, sometimes she would be anxious.”
By 2005, Amy’s drug abuse was widely known and she sought treatment after pleas from family and friends. In the documentary, her mum Janis says: “We thought the worst was behind us but there was something we had missed.”
Amy “switched one addiction for another” — from drugs to alcohol — because she “didn’t want to admit she had mental health issues,” Naomi claims.
She adds: “The alcoholism was a by-product of something much deeper that needed addressing and it was mental health issues.”
Naomi believes Amy feared they would “lock her up” if her inner turmoil was discovered.
Janis says: “She was prone to addiction. She could not stop herself. It’s a very cruel beast.”
The singer’s dad, Mitch, reveals there were “so many family interventions” — a “horrible experience” for everyone involved, including Amy.
He says: “Amy was very ill and I did try to have her sectioned. She was bouncing off the walls.
“When our doctor came, the episode had passed and she knew what they wanted to hear because she was smart.” Mitch claims his daughter’s wealth, around £3.4million when she died, made it hard for loved ones to get through to her. Janis breaks down as she reveals her own battle with multiple sclerosis stopped her looking after Amy.
Janis says: “That’s what was horrible — to be watching your child disappearing and dying. I could only watch, watch and wait.”
On July 23, 2011, Amy was discovered dead at her North London home, three empty vodka bottles close by. She was 27.
Her former residence is now a place of pilgrimage for fans.
Naomi, who lived with Amy in her final weeks, says the singer tried many times to see off her demons.
She adds: “There were long stints of sobriety but it was interspersed with weeks of binge-drinking as well. People were in and out of that house all that time. Everyone was out of their depth.”
Mitch says: “Ultimately the alcohol addiction got the better of her, so that last time she went on a bender she passed away.”
He adds: “I look back and there are lots of things I wish I had done differently.”
The family set up the Amy Winehouse Foundation shortly after her death to help young people battling addiction and mental health. To critics who have pinned blame on him for her death, Mitch says: “There isn’t a culprit, the culprit is the addiction. It was more powerful than any love anybody could give.”
Catriona says it is a “misconcep-tion” Amy’s parents “let her crack on with things” as her struggles worsened, and adds: “She couldn’t have been under any more supervision than she was.”
Naomi says: “There was a core team of people trying hard to get her better. So to have somebody say you didn’t care enough, that nobody cared, is bulls***.”
Recalling Amy’s fierce spirit, Chantelle says: “She was a lion, a lioness, you know what I mean? Yeah, she was vulnerable — but she wasn’t fragile.”
Mitch says Amy “packed a lot into her 27 years”, and adds: “What annoys and upsets me, more than anything, is when people say to me, ‘What a wasted life’. I go, ‘Yeah, don’t talk to me like that’. Wasted life? Five Grammys? She didn’t waste her life.”
- Reclaiming Amy airs on BBC2 at 9pm on Friday, July 23.
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