Gil scott heron drug use
Gil Scott-Heron: Pieces of a Man by Marcus Baram
Best known for his 1970 polemic “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised,” Gil Scott-Heron was a musical icon who defied characterization. He tantalized audiences with his charismatic stage presence, and his biting, observant lyrics in such singles as The Bottle and Johannesburg provide a time capsule for a decade marked by turbulence, uncertainty, and racism. While he was exalted by his devoted fans as the “black Bob Dylan” (a term he hated) and widely sampled by the likes of Kanye West, Prince, Common, and Elvis Costello, he never really achieved mainstream success. Yet he maintained a cult following throughout his life, even as he grappled with the personal demons that fueled so many of his lyrics. Scott-Heron performed and occasionally recorded well into his later years, until eventually succumbing to his life-long struggle with addiction. He passed away in 2011, the end to what had become a hermit-like existence.
In this biography, Marcus Baram--an acquaintance of Gil Scott-Herons--will trace the volatile journey of a troubled musical genius. Baram will chart Scott-Herons musical odyssey, from Chicago to Tennessee to New York: a drug addicts twisted path to redemption and enduring fame. In Gil Scott-Heron: Pieces of a Man, Marcus Baram puts the complicated icon into full focus.
Gil Scott-Heron is called the inventor of rap, and after many years of struggling with drugs and prison, he's finally releasing a new album. Drugs and prison sidelined Gil Scott-Heron , whom many credit with inventing rap. By all rights, the year-old father of three should be growing fat off royalty checks and getting props from a generation of musicians who followed the path he blazed. On a chilly winter afternoon, Scott-Heron answers the door of his East Harlem apartment wearing a corduroy blazer, loose black jeans, and a frisky grin. Inside, his dark, cramped home is cluttered with notebooks and sheets of paper full of scribbled poetry. He takes a seat on a ratty sofa pockmarked with cigarette burns.
The judge in State Supreme Court in Manhattan stared sternly through her glasses at the defendant, whose body trembled. She was giving Gil Scott-Heron a choice. He could go into a lengthy drug rehabilitation program. Or he could go to state prison. Scott-Heron, the musician, writer, spoken-word poet and activist whose politically pointed lyrics in the 's helped give rise to rap, reached a crossroads on July 2. After years of reports about his drug use, and after 10 days in jail, the gaunt year-old pleaded guilty to felony possession of cocaine, and agreed to enter a residential treatment program in September. In return, Mr.
The unlikely survival of Gil Scott-Heron.
But I haven't had enough money to get any. I think you have to have quite a lot of money to get psychologically addicted to those things. Even a man with the verbal agility of year-old musician, poet, author and activist Scott-Heron couldn't make that defence stick. Whatever the nature of his addiction, or the state of his personal finances, he had been wrestling with an on-off cocaine habit for many years when he was arrested on New York's Amsterdam avenue in November last year in possession of 1. At his July court date, he pleaded guilty to possession of a controlled substance and accepted a plea deal of 18 to 24 months in rehab on his return from a European tour. After the tour, during which his gaunt, ragged appearance betrayed his troubles, he failed to appear in court. Four weeks later, he was arrested in New York and sentenced to one to three years in jail by state supreme court justice Carol Berkman.
The only one who approached that was Marvin [Gaye]. In the months that followed, other hip-hop artists started to release songs with lyrics about real life. The album sounded anachronistic in a music landscape that had been fully transformed by hip-hop and the dominance of electronic instruments, and it hardly made a dent on the charts. But something was happening to his fan base: though he played to packed houses across the ocean and basked in the praise of his European fans, he could get gigs only in smaller venues back home, and the critics were. Much had changed over the last eight years.