Rest in Peace Gil Scott Heron….
Yeah, I heard about him dying all over the news this weekend. Who is he anyway?
Gil Scott-Heron is a famous American musician and poet often called “The Godfather of Rap”.
What, like James Brown is the “The Godfather of Soul”?
Exactly, except Heron’s meant that he refused the title, rather than try and use it to get his wife off parking tickets like Brown did. He preferred to describe himself as “a bluesologist”.
Wow. So why is Heron such a big deal?
Well if you’ve ever used or heard the term “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” then Heron takes the credit. "If there was any individual initiative that I was responsible for it might have been that there was music in certain poems of mine, with complete progression and repeating ‘hooks’, which made them more like songs than just recitations with percussion," Scott-Heron wrote in the introduction to his 1990 Now and Then collection of poems.
Heron’s style of mixing minimalist percussion with poetry on issues such critiquing the depiction of minorities in the mass media age and anti-apartheid in South Africa. you can see the blueprint for later musicians. His vocal style, and his political message, would be a major influence on such groups as Public Enemy, NWA and Nas
He sounds amazing. What song should I start listing to first?
R.I.P Gill Scott-Heron