The Voice UK contestant has been sober for five years following a stint in rehab, but struggled not to "go under" when 27-year-old Winehouse was found dead from alcohol poisoning in July 2011.
"I spent a year of my life drinking a bottle and a half of vodka a day and taking tablets to switch me off," he told Metro. "I remember my mum saying, 'What happened to my little boy who was going to make me proud?' and I wanted a hole to open up and swallow me.
"[When Amy died] there were people around me who fully expected [a relapse] to happen. When bad things happen, my first thought is that I'll go under again, but now I find a strength in me I didn't know I had.
"What happened when I lost Amy - loads of people deal with stuff like that all the time, you have to get on with it. It's a desire not to go back to where I was."
The 'Single Tear' singer also claimed that The Voice "brought [him] back to life" after Winehouse's death.
[Tyler James with The Voice UK mentor will.i.am]
"When Amy passed, I felt differently about everything," he explained. "I spent the first three months depressed, walking around the streets and not knowing what to do with myself.
"Then a friend told me about The Voice and for the first time in my life I thought, 'F**k it, just do something'.
Copyright: PA Images Ian Nicholson/PA Archive"I'm so glad I did. That show was an amazing experience. It brought me back to life. I'd been so unhappy for so long - it made me rediscover the buzz I get from singing to people".
Watch Tyler James in the video for new single 'Worry About You' below: