GIL SCOTT-HERON

RnB / Pop/Art Song/Folk • United States
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Gil Scott-Heron was born in Chicago (1949), Illinois, but spent his early childhood in the home of his grandmother Lillie Scott (mother's family) in Jackson, Tennessee. Gil's mother Bobbie Scott-Heron sang with the New York Oratorial Society. Gil's father was a professional soccer player and is also a poet. His father's family is of Jamaican descent. When he was 13, his grandmother died and he moved with his mother to the Bronx, where he enrolled in DeWitt Clinton High School. He transferred to The Fieldston School after one of his teachers, a Fieldston graduate, showed one of his writings to the head of the English department there and he was granted a full scholarship. Gil attended Lincoln University because it was the college of choice by his biggest influence Langston Hughes. It was at Lincoln University that Gil met Brian Jackson and they formed the band 'Black & Blues'. After read more...
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GIL SCOTT-HERON Discography

GIL SCOTT-HERON albums / top albums

GIL SCOTT-HERON Pieces Of Man album cover 3.15 | 4 ratings
Pieces Of Man
RnB 1971
GIL SCOTT-HERON Free Will album cover 3.00 | 3 ratings
Free Will
RnB 1972
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron / Brian Jackson : Winter In America album cover 3.24 | 7 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron / Brian Jackson : Winter In America
RnB 1974
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : From South Africa To South Carolina album cover 2.59 | 2 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : From South Africa To South Carolina
RnB 1975
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson, The Midnight Band ‎: The First Minute Of A New Day album cover 4.00 | 2 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson, The Midnight Band ‎: The First Minute Of A New Day
RnB 1975
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : It's Your World album cover 3.50 | 2 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : It's Your World
RnB 1976
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson : Bridges album cover 3.67 | 3 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson : Bridges
RnB 1977
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : Secrets album cover 2.48 | 3 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : Secrets
RnB 1978
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson ‎: 1980 album cover 2.54 | 3 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson ‎: 1980
RnB 1980
GIL SCOTT-HERON Real Eyes album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Real Eyes
RnB 1980
GIL SCOTT-HERON Reflections album cover 3.00 | 2 ratings
Reflections
RnB 1981
GIL SCOTT-HERON Moving Target album cover 2.00 | 1 ratings
Moving Target
RnB 1982
GIL SCOTT-HERON Spirits album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
Spirits
RnB 1994
GIL SCOTT-HERON I'm New Here album cover 3.76 | 6 ratings
I'm New Here
Pop/Art Song/Folk 2010
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Jamie xx : We're New Here album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron And Jamie xx : We're New Here
RnB 2011
GIL SCOTT-HERON Nothing New album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Nothing New
RnB 2014

GIL SCOTT-HERON EPs & splits

GIL SCOTT-HERON live albums

GIL SCOTT-HERON Small Talk at 125th and Lenox album cover 3.46 | 3 ratings
Small Talk at 125th and Lenox
RnB 1970
GIL SCOTT-HERON The Mind of Gil Scott-Heron album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Mind of Gil Scott-Heron
RnB 1978
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron / Robert Cray : In Concert-397 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron / Robert Cray : In Concert-397
RnB 1986
GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And His Amnesia Express ‎: Tales Of Gil Scott-Heron album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Gil Scott-Heron And His Amnesia Express ‎: Tales Of Gil Scott-Heron
RnB 1990
GIL SCOTT-HERON Minister Of Information - Live album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Minister Of Information - Live
RnB 1994
GIL SCOTT-HERON The Best Of Gil Scott-Heron Live (aka Save the Children aka Tour De Force) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best Of Gil Scott-Heron Live (aka Save the Children aka Tour De Force)
RnB 2004
GIL SCOTT-HERON Live At The Town & Country 1988 album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Live At The Town & Country 1988
RnB 2008

GIL SCOTT-HERON demos, promos, fans club and other releases (no bootlegs)

GIL SCOTT-HERON re-issues & compilations

GIL SCOTT-HERON The Revolution Will Not Be Televised album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
RnB 1974
GIL SCOTT-HERON The Best Of Gil Scott-Heron album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
The Best Of Gil Scott-Heron
RnB 1984
GIL SCOTT-HERON Glory: The Gil Scott-Heron Collection album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Glory: The Gil Scott-Heron Collection
RnB 1990
GIL SCOTT-HERON Ghetto Style album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Ghetto Style
RnB 1998
GIL SCOTT-HERON Evolution (And Flashback) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Evolution (And Flashback)
RnB 1999
GIL SCOTT-HERON Winter In America, Summer In Europe album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Winter In America, Summer In Europe
RnB 2004
GIL SCOTT-HERON Storm Music: The Best Of album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
Storm Music: The Best Of
RnB 2009
GIL SCOTT-HERON The Revolution Begins: The Flying Dutchman Masters album cover 3.50 | 1 ratings
The Revolution Begins: The Flying Dutchman Masters
RnB 2012
GIL SCOTT-HERON I’m New Here (10th Anniversary Expanded Edition) album cover 0.00 | 0 ratings
I’m New Here (10th Anniversary Expanded Edition)
Pop/Art Song/Folk 2020

GIL SCOTT-HERON singles (0)

GIL SCOTT-HERON movies (DVD, Blu-Ray or VHS)

.. Album Cover
0.00 | 0 ratings
Black Wax
RnB 2008

GIL SCOTT-HERON Reviews

GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron / Brian Jackson : Winter In America

Album · 1974 · RnB
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dreadpirateroberts
Jazz heavily influenced by soul, with some funk and spoken word.

On 'Winter in America' we hear a more sombre musical palatte than the jazzy funk of Scott-Heron's last album, 'Pieces of a Man.' What has also been toned down is his melismatic vocal style (where a single syllable may slide across several notes), which he uses less, to the benefit of the album. He also emotes a little more, which is nice. Brian Jackson's piano takes the fore (usually electric) and between the two, they craft some unforgettable songs and some that don't hold up under repeated listens.

The opener is an excellent indicator of the album's predominant tone, a slow moving, almost hymnal work, 'Peace Go With you Brother.' It's followed by 'Rivers of My Fathers' which is a showcase for some interesting chord combinations from Jackson, though Scott-Heron sounds a little strained toward the end of the track.

Most of the album is backed by a minimal rhythm section and it isn't until 'Back Home' that a bit more of beat surfaces, however, while not unpleasant (with a nice little flute solo) the song doesn't hold a candle to the single that pushed 'Winter in American' to 300,000+ sales in America - 'The Bottle.' Essentially a R&B workout led by piano and some more direct lyrics dealing with the troubles faced by those battling alcohol, it's one of his classics.

The second half of the record is further redeemed by 'H2O Gate Blues' a live-in-the-studio blues/spoken word piece that deals with the Watergate scandal and is comparable to 'The Revolution Will Not be Televised' politically and socially. Musically it's more laid back and less proto-rap, but Gil is on fire and even overdubs himself and other members of the session to fill in for an auidence, where they cackle and holler, giving the album a lift in mood, creating a brilliant track indeed.

If you are loiking for a lot of jazz, this is more soul, even blues, so keep that in mind. If you're a Gil Scott-Heron fan and don't have it already, get it right away. Comparably, a casual listener might be better served by buying a compilation. A good album with some stellar tracks and some that just aren't as memorable. Three and a half stars.

Note, the live version of the song 'Winter in America' available as a bonus track on the reissue, is fantastic, and superior to the studio version released on Gil's release 'First Minute of a New Day.'

GIL SCOTT-HERON I'm New Here

Album · 2010 · Pop/Art Song/Folk
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dreadpirateroberts
The last studio album from Gil Scott-Heron is a spoken word album, not without some musical backing, and an album which is as compelling as it is revealing.

As a writer of poetry and lyrics, this time around Scott-Heron had the advantage of looking back on quite a life, being able to draw upon a range of experiences and colour them not only with his usual razor-sharp wit, but his graveled voice too.

'I'm New Here' is an album that spreads itself over several genres. Spoken word, Interview, Soul, Electronica, Acoustic, it has a lot going on. But mostly in small doses. Pieces average two minutes each, some few get up over three and some of the 'Interludes' are under ten seconds, almost sound bites used to detail tiny insights from Scott-Heron.

Gil only sings on a few tracks, 'Me and the Devil' with its prominent beat, the Cohen-sounding 'I'm New Here,' the almost tortured 'I'll Take Care of You' and 'New York Is Killing Me.' Each have their own genre and feature fuller backings. Guitar, synth, piano and the wonderful hand-clap rhythm for 'New York...' are among the best moments on the record. But the words themselves are the focus. He is confessional, less aggressive and more reflective across these pieces. The two part, 'On Coming from a Broken Home' (which samples Kanye West's 'Flashing Lights') is a key example of this subject matter, and pays tribute to the women who raised him:

"But Lily Scott was absolutely not your mail order room service typecast black grandmother/ I was moved in with her; temporarily, just until things were patched, 'Til this was patched and 'til that was patched/ Until I became at 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9 and 10/ The patch that held Lily Scott who held me and like them 4/ I became one more and I loved her from the absolute marrow of my bones."

'Your Soul and Mine' and 'Running' are two other standouts, backed by menacing synths and subtle, programmed beats. From 'Your Soul and Mine':

"Charon brought his wrath from the sea that sails on souls/ and saw the scavenger departing taking warm hearts to the cold. He knew the ghetto was a haven/ for the meanest creature ever known."

And 'Running' where his defiance shows through:

"Because running makes me look like everyone else, though I hope there will never be cause for that/ Because I will be running in the other direction, not running for cover/ Because if I knew where cover was, I would stay there and never have to run for it/ Not running for my life, because I have to be running for something of more value to be running and not in fear"

There are many other moments as powerful, and though none are as scathing as 'The Revolution Will Not be Televised' or 'H20 Gate Blues' the pieces remain strong. Simpler on some levels, but more emotive on others. If you appreciate Gil Scott-Heron's lyrics, then this is definitely worth buying. If you want a more musical album, note that 'I'm New Here' is not really comparable to 'Pieces of a Man' or funkier albums. But it's just as good, even if it comes in under 30 minutes. Four stars.

GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson ‎: 1980

Album · 1980 · RnB
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Sean Trane
Last GSH album I investigated and while definitely not his weaker one, the general Scott-Heron propos had worn thin for quite a while, so I never pushed further down the Gil Avenue, with the prime non-incentive being the album’s title and date of fabrication. Need I explain more? Well just to get my warning published, it looks like I will have indeed expand on that idea, in order to reach the 100 words limit.

Indeed, right from the opening Shut’em down until the closing Late Last Night, we’re dealing with a horn-laden late-70’s and early 80’s funk that you’d get from EW&F or K&tG, sometimes close the Jackson’s Victory album funk. Good stuff if you wanna hit the dance-floors of the discotheque in those days and “score a chick”, but hardly anything a patient man would want to spin in the privacy of his living room. Some tracks have some soul flavourings added, but overall, it won’t change the outcome of the album’s general boring fate. Don’t get me wrong, tracks like Willing, the enthralling Shah Mot or the strange intro of the title track do have merits, but overall these isolated moments are drowned in an ocean of fillers and average funkiness. Better steer clear of this one, even though it’s not as bad as I make it out to be, and much worse albums will come in this brand-new decade.

GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : It's Your World

Album · 1976 · RnB
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Sean Trane
A double-live album with a striking artwork sleeve (reminding you of FSATSC), It’s Your World is probably one of the better intro you could get to post-75 GSH works, and even get you a good glimpse of what came before: the more seminal Gil. The album is divided in four parts (one/side), according to (it seems) the time of the day it was played upon: Sundown, Nightfall, Late Evening and Midnight & Morning. These titles might be a little misleading since the recordings were spread over two nights, but it’s almost an irrelevant anecdote. The line-up is more or less the same than the SA To SC album, btw.

If the first disc is rather interesting, dealing in the newer funk realm that GSH & BJ had settled on for the last two years. With the three tracks filling the Sundown A-side, you can sense that the band is getting worked up and is heating the crowd, but there is nothing spellbinding, just good jazzy funk. As soon as you get into the Nightfall B-side, you hear GSH is indeed cranking in the second gear and the soul seems to seep out from the vinyl spinning from your turntable. 17th Street oozes the flute and Brian unleashes the Rhodes while Gil delivers the vocal charm. Tomorrow’s Trane s another Coltrane-aimed track, but although exciting, like his other homages, it simply doesn’t have the power of his master, despite Sunni-Ali’s sax interventions and Brian doesn’t over-Tynerise his piano interventions. Close call but no cigar.

Opening the second disc, Late Evening C-side cranks up another notch in the gearbox with the legendary and ultra-funky Hatred Home, an early classic that was definitely laying on Gil’s demands and plights. However the following Bicentenial Blues is a typical GSH rapping rant, bit of a shame too, because it breaks the good inertia of the evening, a bit like a flat tire breaking the highway fun. As for the Closing Midnight D-side, it sees Gil sliding behind the keys and Brian stealing the flute from Sunni-Ali and unleash the horsepower into the freeways of jazz-funk with Bottles, with wild congas slapping, reminiscent of Santana. The shows ends rather abruptly in a very jazzy fashion with the very-slow Sharing, where a certain Vic Brown takes the microphone and sings us a ill-fitting lullaby…

While a good GSH album, this double-live collection is not exactly flawless and ends up a bit of an unfocused mixed bag against its own good. Nevertheless an interesting album for discovering his middle years.

GIL SCOTT-HERON Gil Scott-Heron And Brian Jackson : From South Africa To South Carolina

Album · 1975 · RnB
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Sean Trane
Another GSH & BJ collaboration featuring a poignant and impressive artwork, but unfortunately the music inside has a bit of a hard time living to its epic album sleeve and title. Don’t get me wrong, the lyrics are still often in the region of the CRM, but they don’t have the poignancy of GSH’s early days. Indeed, while some lyrics and texts still are still quite denunciatory, the music is definitely and resolutely in the middle of the road and insipidly mid-tempo.

On the opening South Africa side, only Summer of 48 seems to really deliver some kind of worthy energy, but there isn’t much else to write home about. The South Carolina flipside opens on its strong title track (about a toxic waste dump) then follows on a plaintive blues with an interesting sax-filled intro, before breaking into an interesting piece, that is probably the album’s highlight. After an also-interesting jazzy flute-filled Fell Together, but the insipid Lovely Day closes the album on a dwn note.

Definitely not GSH’s stronger album, but it is not exactly one of his weaker ones either… Just something that can be called a “run-of-the-mill” album, whose best assets come too late in the album to save it from averagedom.

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