December 30th, 2011
Gil Scott-Heron died this past spring. Most people know him for “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” but his oeuvre is much larger than that single song. Honestly, I didn’t know much of his music beyond “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” until his death when I heard more of his work in podcast tributes to him.
And so I’m no expert on the man or his music. What I have gleaned from obits by Greg Kot and others was that Scott-Heron’s career got sidetracked in the 1980s when he developed a drug addiction. Still, he had released 13 albums prior to drugs getting the better of his recording career and his socially conscious mix of jazz, soul, African & Latin American music, and poetry influenced many rappers and hip-hop artists.
This is a nice performance of Gil Scott-Heron’s Midnight Band from Berkeley, California on 16 January 1978. It’s probably a soundboard recording.
Gil Scott-Heron (Vocals, Guitar, and possibly Piano)
Brian Jackson (Keyboards, Flute)
Alan Barnes (Saxophone, Synthesizer)
Delbert Tailor (Piano, Trumpet, Congas, Flugelhorn, Vocals)
Barnett Williams (Congas, Percussion)
Sigi Dillard (Bass)
Reggi Brisbane (Drums)
Gil’s Opening Speech
“The Spirit of the Drum”
Hello Sunday, Hello Road
95-South (All of the Places We’ve Been)
Racetrack in France
We Almost Lost Detroit
Home is Where the Hatred Is (cut/fade out)
Song of the Wind (aka Blow Wind Blow)
Band Introductions > The Bottle
YouTube isn’t awash in GS-H live performances from 1978 but I did find this footage of “Angel Dust” from 1982.