Just a couple days to go before my heart breaks all over again, with the release of Amy Winehouse’s Lioness: Hidden Recordings. The posthumous set collects 12 songs from the singer, who died of accidental alcohol poisoning in July, most of which are previously unreleased.
While there are a few original tunes to be found among these Hidden Treasures, covers dominate the compilation. There’s a revamped, fuller-sounding take on The Shirelles’ “Will You Still Love Me Tomorrow?” (first done for the soundtrack to Bridget Jones’ Diary: The Edge Of Reason), a slower version of “Valerie,” plus “The Girl From Ipanema” and her “Body And Soul” duet with Tony Bennett (nominated for a Grammy). Winehouse also pays tribute to one of her musical heroes, Donny Hathaway, doing “A Song For You.”
While that number fittingly closes out Lioness, it opens with Winehouse singing “Our Day Will Come,” a 1963 #1 hit for Ruby & The Romantics. My familiarity with the song comes via The Carpenters’ cover, included on the brother-sister duo’s Now & Then, a double-album I adored as a kid.
For Lioness, Winehouse’s longtime producer Salaam Remi has given “Our Day Will Come” a ska beat. While the song’s message is a hopeful one, it’s hard to hear it as such in the still-heavy context of Winehouse’s untimely death at 27. This tribute video for the track, which Island Records put together from live performance clips and music-video snippets, taps a wellspring of emotions.
Remi recently told Billboard that hearing Lioness: Hidden Treasures for the first time helped Winehouse’s family heal. I’m hopeful that the album’s release will bring some sort of closure to the hurt her many fans similarly feel, especially since we’re told that the rest of Winehouse’s unreleased material will stay forever locked in the vaults. It may take a few years, but I bet its day will come.
Free download of Amy Winehouse – “Our Day Will Come” (Ruby & The Romantics cover) via MP3.com