While we were in Italy giving one of our many talks I made a comment saying that “Talent alone is not enough.” One person took issue with that statement saying that he though talent was enough. He went on to give the example of Amy Winehouse, as she was a phenomenal talent who didn’t need to do much to become a global star.
I could understand where he was coming from. Obviously Amy Winehouse was a huge talent but I wondered at what point he became aware of Amy? Most likely it was on her Back to Black album not on her first album Frank.
You see on her Frank album, Amy Winehouse was just another Jazz singer, but on Back to Black Ms.Winehouse truly became a global superstar. Why? Because she was able to distinguish herself from the packs of other female Jazz singers. Take a look at the photos and performances below.
Her Frank era look:
Her Back to Black era look:
Same great voice, but now her voice was matched to an appropriate image. Tattoos, the beehive hair cut, other problems, they all were exactly what a fan would expect from such a big voice that mainly sang sad songs. Her talent definitely got her far, but for most people to understand what she was doing she had to match her image to her music.
People only have so much space in their brains for new artists. There are already so many artists that they enjoy and are occupying brain space. But if you can have great songs, videos, photos, that all work together to create a cohesive image, it’s a lot easier to find some space in a potential fans brain.