Amy Winehouse has battled through her fair share of personal problems. Since she rose to fame in 2003 with her debut album 'Frank', the 26-year-old singer's turbulent personal life has filled thousands of newspaper inches. Amy has fought an addiction to heroin and crack cocaine, struggled through the breakdown of her marriage to Blake Fielder-Civil, lost her curvaceous figure and faced regular criticism for her drinking and partying.
But with the support and encouragement of loved-ones, the singing sensation has turned over a new leaf and recently celebrated being drug-free for 12 months.
While many youngsters would have crumbled under the pressures of fame, Amy has had one regular figure fighting her corner - her father Mitch Winehouse.
The former taxi driver has tirelessly dried his only daughter's tears and stood by her as she "lost her way" and faced her demons.
Now Amy is getting her life back on track, Mitch's fears for Amy are lessoning and he is relishing the chance to kick-start his own career.
Last month, the talkative Londoner launched his own chat show, titled 'Mitch Winehouse's Showbiz Rant' on online TV channel Liv, which sees him interview some of the world's best-known stars.
But Mitch is seeking a different type of fame. After watching Amy turn into one of her generation's most talented performers, the chatty cabbie wants success as a singer, too.
In March, Mitch hopes to become famous in his own right when he releases a swing album and jazz album.
However, he has vowed to go it alone, prove his singing ability and become a household name on his own accord - without the help of Amy and her goddaughter, 13-year-old singer Dionne Bromfield.
BANG Showbiz caught up with Mitch to discuss Amy's breast enlargement operation, her ongoing battle with addictions and his ambitions to follow in his daughter's musical footsteps.
Q. How's Amy at the moment?
A. Amy's fine. Amy's absolutely great. We're delighted with how she's doing. I mean I went out for lunch with her yesterday, and boy, she was eating a lot. In fact, we've booked her in for a gastric band operation because she's really putting on a lot of weight! Just kidding. She looks great.
Q. Does her new confidence have anything to do with her recent breast enlargement operation?
A. I don't think the boob job was about confidence. I think that when she lost all that weight, the weight never came back on her boobs and they were saggy. So whatever the reason is, she looks great now.
The thing is, she did ask me if she should have them done. She actually consulted me - which I couldn't believe, and I agree with her. I actually agree with her. I mean I'm not in favour of cosmetic surgery normally but in her case, I really felt like she needed it. Because when she lost a lot of weight, the weight in her boobs didn't come back when she put weight on. She really needed that.
Q. Amy recently celebrated being drug-free for a year. Do you feel like your hard work and support has paid off?
A. It's not only me, we've got a wonderful family. It's been difficult, but what you've got to realise is Amy's the one who decided to change. Whatever I said at the time would go in one ear and out the other. It was her decision to give up drugs. She was the one who started the process. She was the one who carried it all the way through. We were there to encourage her and help her in any way that we can. But you know, not enough recognition is given to her. As a family we just did what we were doing - being a family.
Q. Why did she decide to get clean?
A. I don't know, you'd have to ask her that. Everybody's got their own personal bottom of the pit and whatever was - I don't know. But obviously she didn't want to remain like that. It was a danger to her health and you know, she did it. She's recovering. She'll always be recovering. But it is nice to see her looking well again after she lost her way a little bit. I think that's a fair way of putting it, she lost her way a little bit. I think that's a fair way of putting it but now she's found her way back again, and that's great.
Q. Are you worried she will turn to drink instead?
A. Everything at the moment is under control. Sometimes - and I'm not talking about Amy - but sometimes other addictions come after another addiction. One of Amy's positive addictions is she's got her own gym. She's in the gym three or four hours a day. I mean boy is she fit - really, really fit. So that's a really positive addiction. But addictions can come in groups. It can be buying stuff, buying stuff that's not necessary. She's been through that as well. The whole process is one of recovery.
Plus, all her friends have supported her all the time. They're a very good network of people, so she spends a lot of time with them.
Q. We keep hearing reports she plans to remarry her ex-husband Blake Fielder-Civil. Is there any truth in this?
A. You are joking me, right? You are kidding me! No. No wedding. No.
Q. What's next for Amy?
A. Amy's always focussing on her music. She's always focussing on that. Hopefully there'll be an album out next year and we will go from strength to strength. She's never going to be a prolific writer. You're never going to get an album every six months out of her, because as you know, each one of her songs that she writes is dragged out of her guts. There's a lot of emotional turmoil that goes into writing an album for her. I really wouldn't want her to be releasing them all the time.
Q. Now you're branching out into a showbiz career of your own, what's next for you?
A. I've got an album coming out in March. It's a kind of jazz, swing album. It'll be nice. But it probably won't be with Amy's label Lioness Records because people will only say I've got the deal because I'm her dad. We've just got two more tracks to do, so we're not worried about it. We know we'll get a deal one way or another.
Q. Will Amy and her goddaughter Dionne Bromfield do some backing vocals for you?
A. No. I'm not having them on my album. I want proper stars on my album like David Hasselhoff. I know he's very successful in Germany, but I've never actually heard him sing.
By Rachel Jones.
since we're not getting almost any Amy news recently, i found thins and thought the interview part was quite nice to read, so i decided to post it
hope you like it. love you all