Monday, 22 August 2011

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised - The enduring legacy of Gil Scott-Heron

THE last straw for Ryan Tubridy's twitter account came when a barrage of abuse followed an obscure reference to popular culture he made in relation to the London riots. "Watching rioters dousing a car with petrol before the match is struck. Awful scenes. The revolution is being televised", he tweeted.

What the brave twitter etiquette warriors who criticised Tubridy for this didn't realise, is that the Late Late Show host was subtly touching on the work of a hugely influential yet unsung poet, singer, spoken word pioneer, novelist and musician. The late great Gil Scott-Heron died in May of this year and left a legacy that will endure for generations. Scott-Heron is to American hip hop what Jack Kerouac is to American literature. A thinker, an innovator and someone who left his stamp both artistically and commercially.