Amy Winehouse's ex-girlfriend speaks out for the first time on the ten year anniversary of her death
Today marks the ten year anniversary of Amy Winehouse's tragic death.
A decade on, the music icon's closest friends and family, including her beloved mother Janis and father Mitch, will be coming together in a new BBC documentary tonight, titled Reclaiming Amy, to reveal the truth about the star.
In the hour-long film, Catriona Gourlay joins the late singer's parents to talk openly for the first time about her six-year romantic relationship with Amy – a decision which she describes as "difficult".
Amy Winehouse 'was confused about her sexuality'
"There is no point in me waiting for ten years and never speaking about Amy if I'm not proving any new information, any more context around her life, that might be meaningful to somebody that is either navigating their way in terms of their mental health or sexuality," Catriona told BBC's Woman's Hour in a joint interview with Amy's mother.
"Unfortunately, whilst lots of people know that Amy was incredibly talented, I think her life seems to be punctuated by certain things. People think about the drinking or the other stuff or the most obvious relationship in her life.
"Perhaps they don't know that she was really loved by her friends and she had a lot of other things going on that she would have perhaps felt more comfortable talking about if she were Amy in 2021. I think that would be something she would be a lot more open about."
According to Catriona, while Amy's relationship with husband Blake Fielder-Civil dominated headlines, behind closed doors, the star was "confused" about her sexuality. However, she did once allude to her attraction to women during one interview, telling a journalist: "I’m not a lesbian until I’ve had three sambucas."
Pouring her heart out about the late star for the first time, Catriona admits that Amy struggled when it came to understanding her sexuality: "Our relationship was so unique, undefined. We just loved each other very much. What I took from it, knowing her, was that she was confused about what it made her. When you have something that is so undefined for years, it’s hard."
'Six years is not a fling'
Giving some insight into what Amy was like as a girlfriend, Catriona says: "She used to write notes while I was sleeping, saying, ‘You’re the most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen. And how can you look as beautiful asleep as you do awake?'"
Sadly, in the lead up to the release of the documentary, some have sadly tried to downplay Catriona and Amy's relationship as a "fling" – a claim she has furiously shut down.
Taking to Instagram, Catriona wrote: "I’m really disappointed that certain media outlets have chosen to run stories that use incredibly salacious terminology - 'fling', 'affair', 'ex -lover' and so on", she wrote underneath a picture of her and the Rehab singer.
"Six years is by no means a ‘fling’ and, quite frankly, if that’s the only thing you glean from me talking about our very long close friendship in the documentary, you’ve totally missed the point.
"Our friendship was years longer than that, the physical side being a bi product of what was, first and foremost, two people being madly into each other as mates. Why make it sound sordid?! [sic]."
Neon Hitch and Amy Winehouse
However, Catriona isn't the only woman to have spoken out about a romantic relationship with Amy over the years. In 2016, pop star Neon Hitch claimed to The Sun on Sunday that she and the later singer had once been in love.
According to the musician — who identifies as bisexual, the pair were so serious they even lived together in Amy's home in Camden, North London.
Discussing her alleged relationship with the star, she said: "I love Amy, Amy loved me. We were dearly close."
The musician also claimed that the duo recorded a number of songs together while she was alive, however, even ten years on, she doesn't want to cash in on them.
She explained: "It was jam stuff recorded on a camera. I don’t think it would be appropriate to release. It’s a very touchy subject for me. Some things are best left alone."
Although Hitch has been keen to keep the details of her reported relationship with Amy secret, she tellingly has the late singer's name tattooed to her finger, showing what an important role the singer played in her life. When asked to comment on the late star, she described Amy as "one of most amazing people to ever grace this planet".
Prior to her 2016 interview, Neon did previously allude to her romantic relationship with Amy to the Daily News. "She introduced me to being kind of a lesbian," she admitted, refusing to name the famous woman in question. "She’s not with us now, but she’s looking down upon us.
"I really don’t want to say her name, but she’s not with us anymore," the singer said, calling the mystery celebrity "the most beautiful human being I’ve ever met".
Addressing the rumours
During Amy's life, several sources spoke out about her sexuality – and the singer did little to quash rumours.
For example, in 2009, a woman called Ellie Kemm alleged that she caught her girlfriend, Jemma Jerman, having sex with the singer after they met at a luxury hotel in St Lucia.
Rather than apologising, Kemm claimed that Amy urged her to join them for a threesome.
"Amy looked at me and growled, ‘Shut the door and get over here. They were kissing and entwined — arms and legs everywhere," she said.
"I was so shocked."
Despite the claims making national headlines, Amy never confirmed or denied the reports.
Per The Sun, a friend of Amy's also once claimed that Amy had had a "string of female lovers".
According to the source, while the star was married to husband Blake, she would often arrange threesomes with women.
"It was Blake’s idea but Amy said she’d been with women before so it wasn’t a problem," the insider alleged. "She said she’s had a string of female lovers. Whenever Blake said he wanted three in a bed Amy would fix it."
But again, Amy never commented on the stories.
In tonight's documentary, Amy's dad Mitch addresses the rumours around his daughter's sexuality for the first time.
Proudly showing support for his daughter, he tells the cameras: "I have no objections – I just wanted Amy to be happy."
Commenting specifically on Amy's relationship with Catriona, he adds; "Catriona and Amy, they were sisters. They were more than best friends.
"And if they had that kind of relationship good luck to them. I know [Amy] was always happy with Cat in whatever way. So that’s great."
Reclaiming Amy is on BBC Two tonight at 9pm.