Amy Winehouse wins Grammy for best new artist

Sun Feb 10, 2008 8:59pm EST
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LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - British singer-songwriter Amy Winehouse won the Grammy for best new artist on Sunday, bringing her tally for the ceremony to three statuettes.

The 24-year-old artist, whose promising career has been derailed by drug and legal problems, was the favorite to the win the coveted award.

The beehive-coiffed singer earlier won Grammys for pop vocal album and female pop vocal performance, and remains in contention for the key awards of album, song and record of the year, which will be handed out later during the ceremony.

Winehouse accepted her award at a London recording studio, from which she is scheduled to perform via satellite feed during the Grammy telecast. She checked into a rehab clinic last month and was unable to secure a work visa to travel to the United States until late Friday. By that stage, it was too late to change her plans.

Winehouse's old-school blend of soul, jazz and R&B turned her into a major star last year. Her second album, "Back to Black," was the year's top-selling release in Britain. It also peaked at No. 6 on the American charts.

However, she has garnered more headlines for her drug habits and erratic behavior.

She becomes the first British artist to win the best new artist Grammy since Nigerian-born R&B singer Sade in 1986.

The other nominees for the category this year were Canadian singer-songwriter Feist, R&B singer Ledisi, rock band Paramore, and country singer Taylor Swift.

(Editing by Steve Gorman and Philip Barbara)

<p>Amy Winehouse performs during the Glastonbury music festival in south-west England, June 22, 2007. REUTERS/Dylan Martinez</p>