July 05, 2012 11:37am PT by Todd Gilchrist
Amy Winehouse, Nas Collaboration 'Cherry Wine' Premieres (Audio)
Amy Winehouse may have passed away in 2011, but her contributions to the music industry live on – and thankfully keep coming.
Following the release of her posthumous album Lioness: Hidden Treasures, a new Winehouse recording debuted Wednesday on the website Okayplayer.com, where she collaborates with rapper Nas.
“Cherry Wine” is the third single from Nas’ upcoming album Life is Good, and the rapper’s second track in which he works with Winehouse; he contributed a verse to her cover of “Like Smoke” on Lioness.
Produced by longtime Winehouse and Nas collaborator Salaam Remi, the track features a drumbeat that samples James Brown’s “Funky Drummer” as the singer and rapper trade verses. Not unlike Ghostface Killah’s version of Winehouse's “You Know I’m No Good,” the song feels more like a duet than a guest spot for either performer. As with their work on Lioness – and the material on that compilation as a whole – the track highlights the versatility of Winehouse’s sound, which complemented both old- and new-school production, and could be at once poppy and artistically distinctive.
Remi, who produced tracks on both of Winehouse's albums, observed that the late singer is destined to motivate aspiring artists in the same way that established legends inspired her. "Amy is going to inspire a bunch of kids that aren't even born yet -- the same way she was inspired by Donny Hathaway, or Billie Holliday, or many different artists that came and passed away before she was born," he said not long after her death in July 2011. "At the end of the day, what she's been able to do in her musical legacy is going to last very long. And someone will be inspired."
Watch the video below to hear “Cherry Wine.” Life is Good is scheduled for release on July 17, 2012.