On an otherwise underwhelming, at times boring Video Music Awards, MTV offered a superb tribute to the late Amy Winehouse.
It began with Winehouse's good friend Russell Brand speaking of their first meeting. He recounted how he thought she was just this crazy girl he knew, until he heard her voice.
"That incredible, extraordinary voice coming from that crazy person, a person I knew would wander stinking of the booze, a loopy, loose cannon person. I thought, how can that be coming out of her," he said.
Unlike most eulogies, it was a frank, warts and all discussion of Winehouse's battle with addiction and how that often contradicted her genius songwriting and vocals.
Brand then introduced the legendary Tony Bennett, who showed a video of he and Winehouse recording a duet for his upcoming album. The footage, shot in March, displayed the talent that the singer was capable of when she focused on her craft. It was a stark reminder of what music fans have truly lost.
Then R&B singer Bruno Mars performed an uptempo, doo-wop tinged version of Winehouse's "Valerie."
While I was prepared to see someone like Adele or Lady Gaga perform for the late singer, it turned out Mars was the perfect choice. His doo-wop soul sound is reminiscent of Winehouse and you could see them singing together if she were still alive.
His performance provided one of the night's genuinely nice moments and concluded a pitch perfect tribute to an artist who we didn't get enough time with.