Amy Winehouse

Joe's Pub; Tue 16

Photograph: Mishca Richter

Like KT Tunstall and Katie Melua, this U.K. soul-pop chick has surely profited from the demand for female singer-songwriters that Norah Jones helped ignite nearly five years ago. But what other post-Jones crooner would title a song “Fuck Me Pumps,” as Amy Winehouse did on her 2003 debut, Frank? That album, a sly fusion of sleek guitar and scruffy hip-hop beats, wasn’t released in the States, where we prefer our soul-jazz chicks to be Starbucks safe (raise a latte to Joss Stone). Despite their differences, it may be thanks to the Internet buzz surrounding MySpace phenom Lily Allen that Winehouse’s follow-up, Back to Black, is getting the big American push: Universal will issue the CD in March, so this week Winehouse is here softening the ground in advance of its arrival. (You can bet that her appearance on Ghostface Killah’s new record, where he raps over her “You Know I’m No Good,” was also carefully timed.)

Back to Black, which came out in England last fall, is worthy of the fuss. Produced in part by canny hip-hop heads Mark Ronson and Salaam Remi, it’s a funny, funky tribute to girl-group pop (and girl-group intransigence), full of familiar samples that give Winehouse’s writing a timeless throb. Lead single “Rehab” makes no bones about her trash-talking spirit: “They tried to make me go to rehab,” Winehouse sings over a fuzzy electric-piano riff. “I said no, no, no.” — Mikael Wood