Amy Winehouse's Biggest Feuds With Other Celebrities

The world lost a major musical talent when singer Amy Winehouse suddenly died in July 2011 from alcohol poisoning. Besides her musical legacy, her death has inspired an endless cavalcade of speculation, rumors, and gossip — precisely the kind of babble Winehouse would have hated. Winehouse was a no-nonsense, independent lady who went through ups and downs regarding her addictions, but in the end, succumbed to them. At the time coroner Suzanne Greenway dubbed the singer's passing a "death by misadventure," as sites like People quote. 

Numerous musicians idolized Winehouse and were open about mourning her death. As The Telegraph quotes, singer Lily Allen said, "It's just beyond sad, there's nothing else to say. She was such a lost soul, may she rest in peace." LeeAnne Rimes wrote, "RIP Amy Winehouse. So sad to see such a talent gone and her life end in tragedy." People quotes Lana Del Rey saying that when she heard of Winehouse's death she felt as though she "didn't even want to sing anymore." Rolling Stone quotes Lady Gaga saying, "I remember knowing there was hope, and feeling not alone because of her."

Winehouse, however — as a person with strong opinions about practically everything — didn't necessarily get along with every musician under the sun. Some of them, including Dido, Enrique Iglesias, Kanye West, and more, she openly disliked — at least in a joking way. More seriously, she even took a temporary disliking to those who considered her a friend, like musical collaborator Mark Ronson.

Winehouse yawned at Dido

Back in the late 1990s early 2000s, London-born Dido hit the music scene in a colossal way before vanishing in subsequent years. Dido blended folksy and acoustic elements with poppy, electronic influences that sent her debut album soaring into the stratosphere of 15 million-plus total sales. Dido wasn't — and isn't — universally loved, however. In 2019 The Guardian described her music as "serenely pedestrian," while that same year Picky Bastards called her style "tiresome" and "a fail-safe award-winning formula." Amy Winehouse, it seems, made the same assessment years ago.

As Out magazine quotes, Winehouse described Dido's music as "background music, the background to death" – she supposedly even yawned as she said this. Presumably, this was the worst kind of insult Winehouse could hurl at Dido, which makes sense given Winehouse's less-than-bland, extremely unique, Motown & jazz-infused approach to vocal stylings. There's even video footage of Winehouse before the 2004 Brit Awards throwing a rock at a Dido poster in the street while crying, "I hate you, Dido!" Later on in the video she blurts out of a megaphone at passersby, "Dido will kill you!" These actions were definitely silly jokes for the camera more than anything else, however. Ultimately, Winehouse seemed dismissive of Dido more than genuinely disdainful.

Winehouse lyrically insulted Kanye West

In yet another instance of Amy Winehouse hating-but-not-hating an artist (and enjoying the gag all the while), we turn to one of music's most infamous persons: Kanye West, aka Yeezy, aka Ye. No matter his talents as a producer, West has been in the headlines over the years as much for his music as his bizarre and troubling statements and actions. He was called out for antisemitic comments, for instance, and had various brands cut ties with him. He also called himself "the new Jesus," which rose the ire of Christian groups. 

Winehouse, as it turns out, might have been ahead of the curve when it came to a general dislike of West. TikTok user @amberolivia1 posted an old audio clip of Winehouse from 2008 singing about West, "At least I'm not opening for a c*** like Kanye!" As the user correctly writes, Winehouse indeed sings the line "with her whole chest" — especially c****. Users under the clip largely agreed with Winehouse's assessment, writing things like, "Kanye has shown himself since 2005 but everyone chose to ignore his behavior until now," and simply, "She tried to tell y'all."

It's important to note that much like when Winehouse poked fun at Dido, her delivery of her supposedly anti-West line carries just enough of her signature sass and humor to make the joke clear. To her, it was clearly fun to "take the piss" out of someone like West, as our British readers might say.  

Winehouse's tempestuous relationship with Mark Ronson

On the more serious side of things, we've got Winehouse's relationship with collaborator Mark Ronson. By all accounts, Ronson was an integral part of Winehouse's sound on her Grammy-winning "Back to Black" album, and worked with Winehouse on hits like "You Know I'm No Good" and "Rehab." The two apparently got along very well, and Ronson appreciated Winehouse being "brutally honest" with him, as Far Out Magazine cites. "It was an instant familiarity," he told The Guardian. "I just loved being in her company, her presence. She was just so funny." In 2023, on the anniversary of what would have been Winehouse's 40th birthday, Ronson sent up a tribute to the deceased singer on Instagram, writing, "We miss the Lioness so much but let's celebrate all the legends with some of her genius."

That being said, even the closest of relationships have their ups and downs. Per Far Out Magazine, Winehouse once took to Twitter (now X) in the early hours of the morning when she was going through a particularly difficult period, writing, "Ronson you're dead to me; one album I write, and you take half the credit — make a career out of it? Don't think so bruv." However, she followed this up with, "Ronson I love you; that make it better? You know I love you." It's unknown how much anger Winehouse actually held towards Ronson, but the two apparently made up. Regarding the conflict, Ronson said, "We definitely squashed that. Of course, that record is all her — the soul of it."

Enrique Iglesias allegedly lost his temper with Winehouse

Our next entry describes a musician being annoyed with Amy Winehouse rather than the other way around, but it's close enough to make the list. That is, if it actually happened. The unlikely musician in question — Latin singer Enrique Iglesias — denies the whole thing. In fact, he denies even knowing that Amy Winehouse was present when the whole beef started or didn't start.

As the story goes, Iglesias was in London at a private party performing his hit song "Hero" (you'd know it if you heard it, trust us). The song is mellow, quiet, tremulous, and if performed live, definitely capable of being drowned out by a noisy crowd. Or, capable of being drowned out by one person: Amy Winehouse. Iglesias reportedly got angry at Winehouse for being noisy while he was performing "Hero," and asked her to keep quiet. Iglesias, however, said the whole story was utterly fabricated. On the BBC he said, "The story came from 'a source'. How come they always say 'a source'? I didn't even know Amy Winehouse was there." The Mirror relates a much weirder, rambling version of the tale that admittedly sounds fake.

There's no information about events from Winehouse's perspective. That being said, it's not unreasonable to assume that Winehouse wouldn't have really liked the gushing emotionality of Iglesias' "Hero." It's also easy to imagine that she would have enjoyed poking fun at it during a performance.

Winehouse wanted distance from the Spice Girls

Finally, we come to a musical group that tops the list of easy targets to make fun of: The Spice Girls. Sporty, Baby, Scary, Ginger, and Posh were more or less architected into existence by their manager Simon Fuller with the help of Annie Lenox, of all people, per The Guardian. Fuller owned 19 Entertainment, the same management group that signed Amy Winehouse. Fuller is also the person who got Winehouse her initial deal with Island/Universal for her 2003 debut album "Frank." 

As Variety reported of the 2015 documentary "Amy," Winehouse wound up leaving 19 Entertainment because she didn't want to have connections with the Spice Girls. While we can't say precisely why Winehouse felt this, it isn't too hard to see why, considering her critiques of other musicians — if the statement is accurate, that is. Discussions on places like Reddit say that Winehouse wound up doing a 180 when it came to the Spice Girls and commending them for their accomplishments, but we aren't able to corroborate the source of this claim.

Feelings might not have run both ways, though, at least when it came to Victoria Beckham, aka Posh Spice. As The Daily Mail wrote about in 2008, Beckham did a photoshoot that year imitating Winehouse's signature "exposed bra" fashion choice, which it rather brutally described as a "particularly vulgar take on the already decidedly common look." We at least have no doubt that Winehouse would have found this description amusing, indeed.

[Featured image by Kura.kun via Wikimedia Commons | Cropped and scaled | CC BY-SA 3.0 DEED]