Beyoncé and Andre 3000; streaming at soundcloud.com
When the reviews roll in for Baz Luhrmann’s reimagining of F. Scott Fitzgerald’s The Great Gatsby, comparisons will undoubtedly be made to a previous adaptation of the classic Jazz Age novel, the Robert Redford-starring film from 1974.
The long-awaited update arrives May 10, but this weekend a great flap arose with the debut of Beyoncé and Andre 3000’s cover of Amy Winehouse’s Back to Black, part of a Jay-Z-produced soundtrack that is a suave mix of modern fashions.
The decelerated hip-hop version of the infidelity blues number is tripped out and gin dry, but lacking the jaggedness of the original.
Mitch Winehouse, father of the late singer, tweeted his discontent, saying that Andre’s delivery was “terrible.”
It is true that his vocals are peculiar and that Bey’s breathy emoting is typically overdone. But a duet done in fear is a song only half sung, and a big shot like Jay-Z would hardly stand for any semi-measures.