British singer Amy Winehouse found dead aged 27

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Troubled British singer Amy Winehouse, whose struggle with drink and drugs overshadowed her sultry musical talents, has been found dead at her flat in north London, emergency services said. She was 27.

The Grammy award-winning soul singer with her trademark beehive battled with well-documented addictions that she documented in her hit single "Rehab". Her death is being treated as unexplained, police said.

"We were called at 3:54 pm (1454 GMT) to an address in Camden Square," a London Ambulance Service (LAS) spokeswoman told AFP.

"We sent two ambulance crews, a cycle responder and a duty manager to the scene. Sadly the patient had died. Both ambulances had arrived within five minutes."

A section of the road outside Winehouse's home has been cordoned off and police officers are on duty at the scene where reporters, local residents and fans had begun gathering.

Forensic officers were seen going in and out of the building.

A police statement said: "Police were called by LAS to an address in Camden Square shortly before 4:05 pm (1505 GMT) today, Saturday 23 July, following reports of a woman found deceased.

"On arrival officers found the body of a 27-year-old female who was pronounced dead at the scene.

"Enquiries continue into the circumstances of the death. At this early stage it is being treated as unexplained."

There was no immediate comment from her agents.

Winehouse rocketed to fame after winning five Grammy awards off the back of her 2006 second album "Back to Black" and the hit single "Rehab".

The singer had a European comeback tour schedule but pulled out following a disastrous opening performance in Serbia on June 18.

In the run-up to her live return, Winehouse spent a week at an addiction treatment clinic in London, reportedly at the suggestion of her father, Mitch, over concerns that she was drinking too much.

But she was booed at the opening performance in Belgrade, apparently too drunk to sing.

Some 20,000 people gathered for the highly-promoted concert at the sixth-century Kalemegdan fortress, but many soon left.

During the 90-minute concert, Winehouse could only mumble some of the lyrics, failing to follow her band.

She left the stage twice, with many fans showing their displeasure despite her band's attempts to calm the crowd.

"Amy Winehouse is withdrawing from all scheduled performances," a statement from her representatives said.

"Everyone involved wishes to do everything they can to help her return to her best and she will be given as long as it takes for this to happen."

She had also been scheduled to perform in Istanbul, Athens, Bilbao in Spain, Locarno in Switzerland, Italy's Lucca festival, Switzerland's Paleo Festival in Nyon, Nova Jazz and Blues Night in Wiesen, Austria, and Poland's Bydgoszcz Artpop Festival.

She made her final public appearance at The Roundhouse venue in Camden on Wednesday, joining her goddaughter Dionne Bromfield on stage.

She danced with Bromfield and ecouraged the audience to buy the youngster's album before leaving.

Known for her distinctive voice and beehive hairstyle, Winehouse's debut album "Frank" was released in 2003 and brought her wide acclaim. It went triple platinum in Britain.

The follow-up, "Back to Black", was a worldwide smash hit, reaching number one in Britain and number two in the US charts. It went six times platinum in Britain and double platinum in the United States.

She married Blake Fielder-Civil in Miami in May 2007 but they had a tempestuous relationship. He spent part of their marriage behind bars for a vicious attack on a pub landlord and a subsequent attempt to cover it up.

They divorced in July 2009.

Fielder-Civil, 29, was jailed again for 32 months in June for carrying out a domestic burglary with an accomplice "while in the grip of heroin addiction".

© 2011 AFP

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