Biographies of performers like Billie Holiday and Janis Joplin have always bothered me. It is sad enough to read about how they died, but to read a full biography that details the mistakes they made that led to their tragic ends is difficult for me. Even though I know the how it ends, I get to the part where the artist enters rehab and I find myself wishing that they make a change for the better.
With today's 24/7 access to performers' lives, it is possible to watch someone destroy herself as it happens. My beloved Amy Winehouse is one such case. She has experienced an alarming weight loss between her first album and her current one. There are stories all over the internet about her angry outbursts toward her own husband and others. Ms. Winehouse has been up-front about her alcohol use and even if she hadn't been, there are videos online of drunken performances. It is disheartening to see an artist who has brought me so much joy tearing herself apart. If I could have a superpower, it would be the ability to give troubled artists a little telepathic therapy. As it is, all I can do is enjoy the good performances and and pray that she turns herself around.