Monday, May 30, 2011

Gil but not forgotten

Just like Poly Styrene and Ari Up before him the Godfather of Rap, Gil Scott Heron,passed away just as he seemed to be making a much overdue comeback. Whilst Poly and Ari's absence from the public eye was pretty much self imposed Gil had sadly been 'detained' for various reasons over the past decade or so and was known to be HIV positive - a fact that may or may not have caused his untimely passing. If you've never listened to anything he recorded you're in for a treat. At the height of his powers in the early 70's he was capable of producing the most devastating attacks on corruption, urban decay and inequality ever committed to vinyl. Here's three of his best, The Bottle and The Revolution Will Not Be Televised are pretty much essential listening, but the H20 Gate Blues is a lesser known gem. A stinging blast against the Nixon Watergate scandal it's recorded raw, live and unedited, warts and all...which appropriately enough is how Gil seemed to live his life. RIP.

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