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I arrived late and as I made my way to the audience through the plastic smiles and plastic cups I heard the rolling, wondrous resonance of a female vocal.

He goes onto talk about how he and Winehouse became familiar with each other, saying he “first met her around Camden she was just some twit in a pink satin jacket shuffling round bars with mutual friends, most of whom were in cool Indie bands or peripheral Camden figures Withnail-ing their way through life on impotent charisma.” Amy, though, had a different charisma, as Brand calls her “sweet and peculiar but most of all vulnerable.” At the time of their early interactions, Brand was still a drug addict — a characteristic that was common among Winehouse’s group of friends.

“She was “a character” but that world was riddled with half cut, doped up chancers, I was one of them, even in early recovery I was kept afloat only by clinging to the bodies of strangers so Winehouse, but for her gentle quirks didn’t especially register,” Brand writes.

But it’s his summary of hearing Winehouse perform live for the first time that truly grasps the power — and tragedy — behind Winehouse’s legacy.

Stars of all genres and ages took to Twitter yesterday to mourn the sudden and sad loss of singer Amy Winehouse, and now there’s a sprawling tribute that goes far beyond 140 characters, written by fellow Brit (and also former addict) Russell Brand.

The funnyman took to his own website to write a post titled “For Amy,” in which he remembers how he came to know Winehouse during her early days in the music biz, and what it was like seeing her perform for the first time — and watching her ascend into the darkness that ultimately led to her demise.

Brand opens the post reflecting on what many have been thinking since news of Winehouse’s death broke: That somewhere inside, many knew this day might come.He wrote: When you love someone who suffers from the disease of addiction you await the phone call. The sincere hope is that the call will be from the addict themselves, telling you they’ve had enough, that they’re ready to stop, ready to try something new.Reports the pair are dating were fuelled by pictures of Russ getting very cosy indeed with a blonde at London's Soho Theatre Comedy bar on Tuesday night - where Sheridan just happened to be in attendance.In the piece posted on his website he wrote: 'Entering the space I saw Amy on stage with Weller and his band; and then the awe. From her oddly dainty presence that voice, a voice that seemed not to come from her but from somewhere beyond even Billie and Ella, from the font of all greatness.'That twerp, all eyeliner and lager dithering up Chalk Farm Road under a back-combed barnet, the lips that I'd only seen clenching a fishwife fag and dribbling curses now a portal for this holy sound.''Now Amy Winehouse is dead, like many others whose unnecessary deaths have been retrospectively romanticised, at 27 years old.Whether this tragedy was preventable or not is now irrelevant.It is not preventable today.'We have lost a beautiful and talented woman to this disease. Or Kurt's (Cobain) or Jimi's (Hendrix) or Janis's (Joplin), some people just get the affliction.