Jan 28, 2017

RhoDeo 1704 Grooves

Hello, it's the Chinese New Year, the year of the rooster and i for one wish them all the best, however there's this very cocky atomic rooster in the White House, hmm meanwhile Silicon Valley is sitting pretty as a prime retalliatory target on the Westcoast...That is if the aliens let us throw nukes at all...



Today's artist is an American soul and jazz poet, musician, and author, known primarily for his work as a spoken-word performer in the 1970s and 1980s. His collaborative efforts with musician Brian Jackson featured a musical fusion of jazz, blues, and soul, as well as lyrical content concerning social and political issues of the time, delivered in both rapping and melismatic vocal styles. He received post mortem a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012.  ..... N'joy

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

One of the most important progenitors of rap music, Gil Scott-Heron's aggressive, no-nonsense street poetry inspired a legion of intelligent rappers while his engaging songwriting skills placed him square in the R&B charts later in his career, backed by increasingly contemporary production courtesy of Malcolm Cecil and Nile Rodgers (of Chic). Born in Chicago but transplanted to Tennessee for his early years, Scott-Heron spent most of his high-school years in the Bronx, where he learned firsthand many of the experiences that later made up his songwriting material. He had begun writing before reaching his teenage years, however, and completed his first volume of poetry at the age of 13. Though he attended college in Pennsylvania, he dropped out after one year to concentrate on his writing career and earned plaudits for his novel, The Vulture.

Encouraged at the end of the '60s to begin recording by legendary jazz producer Bob Thiele -- who had worked with every major jazz great from Louis Armstrong to John Coltrane -- Scott-Heron released his 1970 debut, Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, inspired by a volume of poetry of the same name. With Thiele's Flying Dutchman Records until the mid-'70s, he signed to Arista soon after and found success on the R&B charts. Though his jazz-based work of the early '70s was tempered by a slicker disco-inspired production, Scott-Heron's message was as clear as ever on the Top 30 single "Johannesburg" and the number 15 hit "Angel Dust." Silent for almost a decade, after the release of his 1984 single "Re-Ron," the proto-rapper returned to recording in the mid-'90s with a message for the gangsta rappers who had come in his wake; Scott-Heron's 1994 album Spirits began with "Message to the Messengers," pointed squarely at the rappers whose influence -- positive or negative -- meant much to the children of the 1990s.

In a touching bit of irony that he himself was quick to joke about, Gil Scott-Heron was born on April Fool's Day 1949 in Chicago, the son of a Jamaican professional soccer player (who spent time playing for Glasgow Celtic) and a college-graduate mother who worked as a librarian. His parents divorced early in his life, and Scott-Heron was sent to live with his grandmother in Lincoln, TN. Learning musical and literary instruction from her, Scott-Heron also learned about prejudice firsthand, as he was one of three children picked to integrate an elementary school in nearby Jackson. The abuse proved too much to bear, however, and the eighth-grader was sent to New York to live with his mother, first in the Bronx and later in the Hispanic neighborhood of Chelsea.

Though Scott-Heron's experiences in Tennessee must have been difficult, they proved to be the seed of his writing career, as his first volume of poetry was written around that time. His education in the New York City school system also proved beneficial, introducing the youth to the work of Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes as well as LeRoi Jones. After publishing a novel called The Vulture in 1968, Scott-Heron applied to Pennsylvania's Lincoln University. Though he spent less than one year there, it was enough time to meet Brian Jackson, a similarly minded musician who would later become a crucial collaborator and integral part of Scott-Heron's band.

Given a bit of exposure -- mostly in magazines like Essence, which called The Vulture "a strong start for a writer with important things to say" -- Scott-Heron met up with Bob Thiele and was encouraged to begin a music career, reading selections from his book of poetry Small Talk at 125th & Lennox while Thiele recorded a collective of jazz and funk musicians, including bassist Ron Carter, drummer Bernard "Pretty" Purdie, Hubert Laws on flute and alto saxophone, and percussionists Eddie Knowles and Charlie Saunders; Scott-Heron also recruited Jackson to play on the record as pianist. Most important on the album was "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised," an aggressive polemic against the major media and white America's ignorance of increasingly deteriorating conditions in the inner cities. Scott-Heron's second LP, 1971's Pieces of a Man, expanded his range, featuring songs such as the title track and "Lady Day and John Coltrane," which offered a more straight-ahead approach to song structure (if not content).

The following year's Free Will was his last for Flying Dutchman, however; after a dispute with the label, Scott-Heron recorded Winter in America for Strata East, then moved to Arista Records in 1975. As the first artist signed to Clive Davis' new label, much was riding on Scott-Heron to deliver first-rate material with a chance at the charts. Thanks to Arista's more focused push on the charts, Scott-Heron's "Johannesburg" reached number 29 on the R&B charts in 1975. Important to Scott-Heron's success on his first two albums for Arista (First Minute of a New Day and From South Africa to South Carolina) was the influence of keyboardist and collaborator Jackson, co-billed on both LPs and the de facto leader of Scott-Heron's Midnight Band.

Jackson left by 1978, though, leaving the musical direction of Scott-Heron's career in the capable hands of producer Malcolm Cecil, a veteran producer who had midwifed the funkier direction of the Isley Brothers and Stevie Wonder earlier in the decade. The first single recorded with Cecil, "The Bottle," became Scott-Heron's biggest hit yet, peaking at number 15 on the R&B charts, though he still made no waves on the pop charts. Producer Nile Rodgers of Chic also helped on production during the 1980s, when Scott-Heron's political attack grew even more fervent with a new target, President Ronald Reagan. (Several singles, including the R&B hits "B Movie" and "Re-Ron," were specifically directed at the President's conservative policies.) By 1985, however, Scott-Heron was dropped by Arista, just after the release of The Best of Gil Scott-Heron. Though he continued to tour around the world, Scott-Heron chose to discontinue recording. He did return, however, in 1993 with a contract for TVT Records and the album Spirits.

For well over a decade, Scott-Heron was mostly inactive, held back by a series of drug possession charges. He began performing semi-regularly in 2007, and one year later, announced that he was HIV-positive. He recorded an album, I'm New Here, released on XL in 2010. In February of 2011, Scott-Heron and Jamie xx (Jamie Smith of xx) issued a remixed version of the album, entitled We're New Here, also issued on XL. Scott-Heron died on the afternoon of May 27, 2011, at St. Luke's Hospital, New York City, after becoming ill upon returning from a European trip, an airline cabin is always a cocktail of virusses and bacteria which proved to be too much for the weakened by HIV elderly man.

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

Gil Scott-Heron's 1971 album Pieces of a Man set a standard for vocal artistry and political awareness that few musicians will ever match. His unique proto-rap vocal style influenced a generation of hip-hop artists, and nowhere is his style more powerful than on the classic "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised." Even though the media -- the very entity attacked in this song -- has used, reused, and recontextualized the song and its title so many times, the message is so strong that it has become almost impossible to co-opt. Musically, the track created a formula that modern hip-hop would follow for years to come: bare-bones arrangements featuring pounding basslines and stripped-down drumbeats. Although the song features plenty of outdated references to everything from Spiro Agnew and Jim Webb to The Beverly Hillbillies, the force of Scott-Heron's well-directed anger makes the song timeless. More than just a spoken word poet, Scott-Heron was also a uniquely gifted vocalist. On tracks like the reflective "I Think I'll Call It Morning" and the title track, Scott-Heron's voice is complemented perfectly by the soulful keyboards of Brian Jackson. On "Lady Day and John Coltrane," he not only celebrates jazz legends of the past in his words but in his vocal performance, one that is filled with enough soul and innovation to make Coltrane and Billie Holiday nod their heads in approval. More than three decades after its release, Pieces of a Man is just as -- if not more -- powerful and influential today as it was the day it was released.



Gil Scott-Heron - Pieces Of A Man    (flac  257mb)

01 The Revolution Will Not Be Televised 3:06
02 Save The Children 4:26
03 Lady Day And John Coltrane 3:35
04 Home Is Where The Hatred Is 3:20
05 When You Are Who You Are 3:21
06 I Think I'll Call It Morning 3:30
07 Pieces Of A Man 4:52
08 A Sign Of The Ages 4:01
09 Or Down You Fall 3:12
10 The Needle's Eye 4:49
11 The Prisoner 9:25

Gil Scott-Heron - Pieces Of A Man  (ogg    115mb)

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

Gil Scott-Heron's third album is split down the middle, the first side being a purely musical experience with a full band (including flutist Hubert Laws and drummer Pretty Purdie), the second functioning more as a live rap session with collaborator Brian Jackson on flute and a few friends on percussion. For side one, although he's overly tentative on the ballad "The Middle of Your Day," Scott-Heron excels on the title track and the third song, "The Get Out of the Ghetto Blues," one of his best, best-known performances. The second side is more of an impromptu performance, with Scott-Heron often explaining his tracks by way of introduction ("No Knock" referred to a new police policy whereby knocking was no longer required before entering a house, "And Then He Wrote Meditations" being Scott-Heron's tribute to John Coltrane). His first exploration of pure music-making, Free Will functions as one of Scott-Heron's most visceral performance, displaying a maturing artist who still draws on the raw feeling of his youth.



Gil Scott-Heron - Free Will   (flac  193mb)

01 Free Will 3:40
02 The Middle Of Your Day 4:28
03 The Get Out Of The Ghetto Blues 5:08
04 Speed Kills 3:15
05 Did You Hear What They Said ? 3:28
06 The King Alfred Plan 2:54
07 No Knock 2:11
08 Wiggy 1:36
09 Ain't No New Thing 4:32
10 Billy Green Is Dead 1:31
11 Sex Education: Ghetto Style 0:54
12 ... And Then He Wrote Meditations 3:16

   (ogg   mb)

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

Gil Scott-Heron was at his most righteous and provocative on this album. The title cut was a moving, angry summation of the social injustices Scott-Heron felt had led the nation to a particularly dangerous period, while "The Bottle" was a great treatise on the dangers of alcohol abuse. He also offered his thoughts on Nixon's legacy with "The H2O Gate Blues," a classic oral narrative. Brian Jackson's capable keyboard, acoustic piano and arranging talents helped make this a first-rate release, one of several the duo issued during the 1970s.



Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - Winter in America  (flac 235mb)

01 Peace Go With You, My Brother (As-Salaam-Alaikum) 5:30
02 Rivers Of My Fathers 8:29
03 A Very Precious Time 5:13
04 Back Home 2:50
05 The Bottle 5:14
06 Song For Bobby Smith 4:42
07 Your Daddy Loves You 2:57
08 H2O Gate Blues 8:23
09 Peace Go With You Brother (Wa-Alaikum-Salaam) 1:11

Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - Winter in America (ogg   111mb)

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

The collaboration between Gil Scott-Heron and Brian Jackson was now a formal one, as they were issuing albums as a team. This was their second duo project to make the pop charts, and it included anti-nuclear and anti-apartheid themes, plus less political, more autobiographical/reflective material like "Summer of '42," "Beginnings (The First Minute of a New Day)," and "Fell Together." Scott-Heron was now a campus and movement hero, and Jackson's production and arranging savvy helped make his albums as arresting musically as they were lyrically.



Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - From South Africa To South Carolina   (flac 449mb)

01 Johannesburg 4:52
02 A Toast To The People 5:47
03 The Summer Of '42 4:41
04 Beginnings (The First Minute Of A New Day) 6:23
05 South Carolina (Barnwell) 3:46
06 Essex 9:17
07 Fell Together 4:30
08 A Lovely Day 3:29
Bonus
09 South Carolina (Barnwell) (Live) 6:29
10 Save The Children (Live) 4:23
11 Johannesburg (Live) 11:14
12 Let Me See Your I.D. 7:30

Gil Scott-Heron & Brian Jackson - From South Africa To South Carolina (ogg 175mb)

xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx xxxxx

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the Gil Scott Heron albums, Rho!

Are we possibly see the 'Bridges' album uploaded?