Gil Scott-Heron

Gil Scott-Heron

Pieces of A Man

Book - 2014
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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-Heron's--will trace the volatile journey of a troubled musical genius. Baram will chart Scott-Heron's musical odyssey, from Chicago to Tennessee to New York: a drug addict's twisted path to redemption and enduring fame. In Gil Scott-Heron: Pieces of a Man , Marcus Baram puts the complicated icon into full focus.

Publisher: New York :, St. Martin's Press,, 2014.
Edition: First edition.
ISBN: 9781250012784
1250012783
Characteristics: 305 pages : illustrations ; 24 cm

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Jeffsuke
Jul 18, 2016

Good examination of GSH's life. Disappointed in some aspects, his assistant isn't mentioned till page 270? I would think that person would be a wealth of knowledge for a biography. How does a junkie employ an assistant? These would be interesting things to know but don't look here to find out.
Author grinds his political axe too by making blanket statements about the Reagan years which should be fact checked.( Seems to me runaway inflation tamed and knocking down the Berlin Wall should get equal time if you are knocking a guy.)
The only reason it gets a 3 out of 5 is that I know more about this great artist than I did going in.
GSH's tragic ending makes you wonder what if?

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