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Rehab by Amy Winehouse

Album: Back to BlackReleased: 2006Charted:
  • This song is autobiographical. Many successful musicians are haunted by their own personal demons of drink and drugs, and Winehouse is no exception. In February 2007 her father gave a candid interview to the Sun newspaper in which he denied that his daughter was an alcoholic, although he admitted that like many single women of her age she sometimes overdid the drink. On one occasion, after splitting up with her boyfriend, she fell over and hit her head.

    Her previous management company wanted her to go into rehab but she said she didn't need to. Her father agreed, adding that she wasn't an alcoholic but had been drinking too much because she was lovesick, and "You can't go into rehab for that." Alcoholics drink everyday, he said, and his daughter didn't. Hence the line: "They tried to make me go to rehab, I said no, no, no." >>
    Suggestion credit:
    Alexander Baron - London, England
  • Amy Winehouse was asked by The Daily Mail on August 3, 2007 how she writes songs. Said Winehouse: "With 'Rehab' I was walking down the street with Mark Ronson, who produced my last album. I just sang the hook out loud. It was quite silly really." She was then asked, "Did you sing the 'no no no' bit as well?'" "Yeah, I sang the whole line exactly as it turned out on the record! Mark laughed and asked me who wrote it because he liked it. I told him that I'd just made it up but that it was true and he encouraged me to turn it into a song, which took me 5 minutes. It wasn't hard. It was about what my old management company (run by former Spice Girls manager Simon Fuller) wanted me to do."
  • This won the 2007 Ivor Novello Award for Best Contemporary Song.
  • At the 2008 Grammy awards, this won for Song Of The Year, Female Pop Vocal Performance and Record Of The Year. Winehouse also won for Best New Artist, and performed a medley of songs that were televised from London. Ronson won for producer of the year.
  • Backstage at the Grammy ceremony Mark Ronson recalled to Billboard magazine what it was like playing "Rehab" for Winehouse's A&R for the first time. "About the first 15 seconds in, he said 'Rewind, rewind!' I didn't think there would be dollar signs lighting up."
  • Winehouse did a few stints in rehab to treat her drug and alcohol addiction, but it was ultimately unsuccessful. She was found dead in her London home on July 23, 2011.
  • The lines, "I'd rather be at home with Ray" and "There's nothing you can teach me that I can't learn from Mr. Hathaway" are references to two of Winehouse's soul music inspirations: Ray Charles and Donny Hathaway. Hathaway is best known for his duets with Roberta Flack: "Where Is The Love?" and "The Closer I Get To You."
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Comments: 23

Yeah, I would just like to say that a lot of people didn't read the lyrics in their entirety, just assuming that it's about not going to rehab. A lot of people missed the references to Ray Charles and 70's Soul Singer Donny Hathaway. It's partly autobiographical, but I also think there's a lot of dark, Monty Python-like humor, which I don't think necessarily translated to American audiences. One thing people overlook about Ms. Winehouse is her sense of humor. They tend to paint her as a tragic figure, which she really wasn't. She was no Kurt Cobain by any stretch of the imagination. If you knew her personally, you'd have fun hanging out with her. She was known to have cooked up some good chili. I think both John Belushi and Gilda Radner would have been some of her biggest fans. If you really think about it, she was a throwback to an earlier era, much like Brian Setzer or current country artist Miranda Lambert. I don't care who you are, when you hear her voice, you know it's her. Much like Kurt Cobain in the 1990's, she changed the course of popular music forever.Dana - Woodbury, Mn
One of a kind, so much like Janis Joplins story.Lyn - Brooksville, Fl
Very great song and album. So sad to hear of her death. She will always be remembered. She was a great artist!Megan - Stevenson, Al
They wanted me to go to rehab but I said no, no, no.Joel - Columbia, Sc
Its one of the nice song.She's very talented and nice voice.Lara111 - Coimbatore, India
This has become Amy's signature song and IMO a social commentary (not quite a protest song) on out-of-control celebrities instead of simply being one woman's personal troubles with the idea of rehabilitating herself when she and her father believe she's okay, just sad. This was her introduction to the US and it's stuck to her image since. Great song, but it shouldn't be *the* Amy Winehouse song. There's too many others that are brilliant.Tiffany - Little Rock, Ar
I somewhat suspect that Mr. Hathaway is not soul American soul musician Donny Hathaway, but William Shakespeare. I know it seems absurd, but William Shakespeare was married to Anne Hathaway. If you know how to read Shakespeare you can learn more about life than you would ever imagine. Therefore I suspect, or like to give Amy Winehouse credit for saying that she looks to the philosophy of Shakespeare for life advice than the relavist moral teachings of today.Pat - Hartofrd, Ct
Certainly a good song. Could have been sung more beautifully. The video is good though.Sum Sum - New Delhi, -
The song is a great one. But its singer is troubled.Robert - Sweetwater, Tx
Listening to the Rehab song reminded of the "oldies" on the Quadrophenia soundtrack (remember Ronnie Spector?). History and human nature has proven since time began that many of the world's most brilliantly talented individuals have been tormented by alcohol and drug addiction as well as a host of psychological disorders too numerous to mention. (Edgar Allen Poe, Jim Morrison, Charles Bukowski, etc.) However I hope this will not prove to be the case for Amy Winehouse. She is lovely and so talented.Angelina - La Jolla, Ca
Whoops I mean personal life.Violet - Santa Barbara , Ca
Wow, I didn't know the story behind it. Love how it just came to her, and it worked. And I love the little details about the lyrics...how her daddy really thought she didn't need to go to rehab. I hope she is a legend in the making, she certainly is talented enough. It's a shame she seems to have made a mess of her personally life, but musically she sure has it right. Love AMY!!!Violet - Santa Barbara , Ca
She's very talented.
She is wasting her life away, shame really.
Nicky - Southampton, England
She scares me but she can really sing. I like her motown taste.Allox - Qld, Australia
I like this song a lot and I think that Amy Winehouse is awesome. She sounds just as good live as she does on her record.Amy - Baltimore, Md
She's sure making waves in the UK now, if you live in the UK you can't get away from Amy Winehouse (or her chart "rival" Lily Allen) these days!Dave - Cardiff, Wales
The references to Ray and Mr Hathaway are in reference to Ray Charles and Donny Hathaway. Both who have influenced her music. She has a great talent reminisent of the musicians she references in her song.Carla - Somewhere, Mi
What I need to know I can learn from Mr. Hataway. A sentence in the song, who is Mr. Hathaway?Sally - Danville, Ky
I'm not crazy about this song, but the rest of the album is great. Reminds me of a funkified Dusty Springfield.John - Flin Flon, Canada
A GREAT song and a huge talent... too bad she's such an extremely troubled person - sadly makes one wonder if she's going to last long...Rohan - Johannesburg, South Africa
I really dislike this song and her voice.Krissy - Boston, Ma
I really like the 60's sound of this song. At first I thought it was the silliest song I ever heard but it kind of grows on you. It's quite catchy and I agree Laurent, very sexy artist.Ben - Pensacola, Fl
A great song, by a most sexy artist!Laurent - Paris, France
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