Kelly Clarkson recalls doing karaoke with Amy Winehouse years before Amy was famous

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When Amy Winehouse died tragically in 2011 at age 27, she was a global superstar, but Kelly Clarkson knew her before then.

On the May 16 episode of her talk show, Kelly interviewed Marisa Abela, who portrays Amy in the new biopic Back to Black, in theaters on May 17. During the chat, Kelly revealed she got to sing with Amy years before she was famous — during karaoke.

“It’s funny, I actually saw her before she was who she was,” Kelly said. “She was just coming over [to the U.S.] with her boyfriend, and it was while I was shooting this movie that I absolutely hate.” She was referring to From Justin to Kelly, the 2003 movie that she was forced to film after winning American Idol.

“But anyway, we all did a karaoke night. And it was before she was her, and she almost sounded a little different as well,” Kelly recalled. “It was, like, before she became ‘Amy Winehouse.’ I don’t think she had a record deal or anything at that time. But we all went to karaoke and she sang Etta James and I was like, ‘Wait, what?'”

“It was like she, just from the jump, had such a presence about her voice,” Kelly added. “It almost became, like, more of a character, too, like, with herself throughout her career.”

Amy’s breakthrough album, Back to Black, was released in 2006.

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