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The Revolution Will Not Be Televised

Gil Scott-HeronAudio CD
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)

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Gil Scott-Heron - 'Where Did The Night Go'  Video from his new album I'm Not Here, available 2.9.10


Without doubt one of the most important voices in 20th century music, Gil Scott-Heron has been called a Vietnam-era Langston Hughes, a proto-rap pioneer, and - offensively but not inaccurately - the black Bob Dylan, someone whose unfailingly sharp and ironic eye spared neither ... Read more in Amazon's Gil Scott-Heron Store

Visit Amazon's Gil Scott-Heron Store
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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 25, 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: RCA
  • ASIN: B000002WAW
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (44 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #30,001 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

1. The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
2. Sex Education - Ghetto Style
3. The Get Out Of The Ghetto Blues
4. No Knock
5. Lady Day And John Coltrane
6. Pieces Of A Man
7. Home Is Where The Hatred Is
8. Brother
9. Save The Children
10. Whitey On The Moon
11. Did You Hear What They Said?
12. When You Are Who You Are
13. I Think I'll Call It Morning
14. A Sign Of The Ages
15. Or Down You Fall
16. The Needle's Eye
17. The Prisoner

Editorial Reviews

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
44 of 48 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD
This is a unique and forward-thinking collection from the Godfather of Hip-Hop, Gil Scott-Heron. This record, produced by the jazz great Bob Thiele, is provocative, melodic, and urgent at the same time. Many of the tracks are nice, jazzy, hopeful jaunts ("When You Are Who You Are," "I Think I'll Call It Morning"). Many are ahead-of-their-time hip-hop joints (the title track, "Whitey on the Moon," "Brother"). Yet the most powerful tracks are the mournful ballads ("Did You Hear What They Said?," "Home Is Where The Hatred Is"). The entire album evokes all of the joys, pains and petitions of the black community. The work of Common, Mos Def, The Roots and Public Enemy, among others, contain clear echoes of Gil Scott-Heron's impressive work on this record.
Imagine "Nation of Millions," "Songs in the Key of Life" and "A Love Supreme" wrapped in one, and this record would fit the bill. Buy it.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent!!! June 27, 2001
Format:Audio CD
"Whitey on the Moon" was the first piece I heard from this album and as it finished I had a rye smile on my face. Herron is not shy about expressing his ill feeling toward "the man" and sticks it to him with a barrage of poetry and soul.
This album is more than just a stand, its a celebration of one mans obvious talent for poetry and jazzy soulful music. Lyrically it is one of the most poignant albums I have ever heard. Each song tells a different story about the struggles, triumphs and life of the ghetto.
Herons passion is evident throughout and his views are as plain as day. You know how he feels and this comes through in the music, making it irresistible.
"The Revolution will not be televised" is an in your face decleration of the hoped uprising of the masses in defiance of authority and sensless following "...the revolution will not go better with coke. The revolution will not fight germs that may cause bad breath..."
Its easy to get caught up in the mainly poetry spoken pieces, but it is the soulful and jazzy "Home is Where the Hatred Is" and "Lady Day and John Coltrane" that make me smile and continue to play this album. Herron has a gift as a soul performer and lyricist as can be heard with the meaningful "Save The Children", "Did You Hear What They Said" and "I Think I'll Call It Morning"
Gil Scott-Heron is one of those rare, gifted men with the ability to invoke change and the musical sense.
An essential and brilliant album in every way, shape and form.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Nothing More Powerful February 26, 2007
Format:Audio CD
"The revolution will not be right back after a message

about a white tornado, white lightning, or white people."

More than 30 years after its release, this album remains a powerful message of the realities faced by real people in the real ghetto of real America. With jazz and R&B as the backdrop, Gil Scott-Heron - in 17 tracks - raps straight about the truth from the streets.

"You will not have to worry about a dove in your

bedroom, a tiger in your tank, or the giant in your toilet bowl."

From one of the greatest tracks ever recorded - The Revolution Will Not Be Televised - to the smooth Lady Day and John Coltrane and the pointed questions - Brother - this is music achieving its full potential through poetry.

"The revolution will not go better with Coke."

My second favorite track remains Whitey On The Moon, with its dripping sarcastic lyrics comparing the squalor at home with the "triumph" in outer space. The Prisoner - because its the final cut - may not receive the props it truly deserves.

"The revolution will not fight the germs that may cause bad breath."

Scott-Heron was forging a path for the best elements of punk rock and hip-hop. But it says something about those genres that few artists could truly look outward, see clearly & write with any meaning at all. And what does it say about leadership and priorities when Scott-Heron's lyrics remain the motif of the struggle?

"The revolution will put you in the driver's seat."
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Phophetic pre-cursor to rap and ghetto life. June 6, 1999
By A Customer
Format:Audio CD
When listening to a record of such high quality it is easy to understand why many rap/hip-hop masters (KRS-one, P.E. etc.) often cite Gil Scott-Heron as a main influence of their work. After hearing this record just once it will provide you with a dimension of music that will always remain inside you!
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14 of 17 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Proto hip hop and jazz protest music with soul May 5, 2005
Format:Audio CD
Soulful, melodic and biting social commentary circa 1974 is what you'll find on "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised." Gil Scott-Heron pulls no punches in his assessment of America. This is not some feel good R&B or cartoonish gansta rap. Social protest and commentary are the order on this album. Kind of like the Public Enemy of his day, Gil Scott-Heron stays grounded in the real and the here and now. Musically I'd say that this is insightful and swinging proto hip hop with definite jazz influences. Conga and flute driven funk. Lyrically some of this stuff is funny yet caustic social comment and satire, and some is a bit more seriously political, sad and heartfelt. The song "Lady Day and John Coltrane" celebrates two powerfully emotive and creative musicians. Gil was influenced by The Last Poets with whom he played on his first album (I think), arguably the first rap group, and in turn influenced modern artists such as the Roots. Protest music rarely gets as soulful, funky and emotional as this. I still get as much of a kick from Whitey On The Moon now as I did when I first heard it back in the seventies. The ghetto is crumbling and people don't have enough to eat, and we'll spend millions to put a man on the moon. Talk about getting your priorities straight. Scott-Heron was putting a magnifying glass on black american society and experiences that were largely ignored by white majority America. This is one of Gil Scott-Heron's best works and not for those easily offended. Sometimes the truth hurts. He's out to wake people up, not put them to sleep.
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