In the early 2010’s my dude Matondo Miezi introduced me to a jazz poet musician discography in the name of Gil Scott Heron and nearly that year, he released I’m New Here, his first album in sixteen years. I reminisce those days; I was bumping when the revolution comes by The Last Poets and Matondo told me Gil-Scott-Heron had a similar track called The revolution will Not be televised in the last decade. Thus I looked at the work of this GSH, I got the album I’m New Here and I pressed play. I’ve missed spoken Intro on albums; he opened up the disk with a spoken word tribute to his grandmother in these terms She had more than the five senses, she knew more than books can teach, a sensual soul and self that African sense, they sent a limousine from heaven to take her to god, if there is one, so I knew she had gone, and I came from a broken home.
The intro elapsed, the next track Me and my Devil came to blow my brains with heavy bass drums accentuated by a ringing bell in each measure. The third track name is also the album’s title, he used Bill Callahan’s song I’m new here. Callahan made a hot song, Gil made a hot album. He delivered in a melismatic vocal power and insight, reflecting his lifestyle accompanied by an acoustic guitar stating he did not become someone different that he did not want to be. Your soul and mine precedes the first interlude Parents. I’ll take care of you was the uplifting and deepest track of the album according to me, I particularly felt that one, it was just an ode to his darling. Then came the second interlude and GSH asked himself where did the night go and let me appreciate his poetic style. A little break with the third interlude and then he revealed New York is killing him, the song started with hands clapping, the brass and bass cut effectively sprinkled with his soulful voice, certainly one of the best track of the album. He continued with running a thought provoking track, blending metaphors and melancholy. Crutch was that track with the bass samples and his voice harmonizing on the drum kit, all perfectly mixed with special mentions here to Richard Russell’s production, the energy will not leave before the last track on coming from a broken home part 2.
I’m New here, despite it’s very simplistic cover, was dropped to widespread critical acclaim, I heard the record session of the album started in 2007. Thumbs up, in a world saturated with statements about classic or mainstream albums, this masterpiece here saw him continuing to push boundaries. This album revealed to me something unexpected, a remarkable album; he went on storytelling, what he used to call Bluesologist to paint brilliant pictures of this world. I definitely needed to compare this with his older materials. I listened to his whole discography and I can say he was an outstanding musician, the godfather of rap, he is a pioneer and he laid the blueprint of the rap genre, regarding to that, he said in the 90’s There’s a big difference between putting words over some music, and blending those same words into the music. There’s not a lot of humor. They use a lot of slang and colloquialisms, and you don’t really see inside the person. Instead, you just get a lot of posturing. He always granted his voice with the production, hence his difference to others musicians. Now I can say he was one of the most important voices in the 20th century music, he spared black power phonies nor scheming politicians, the people’s poet. I guess the sample of we almost lost Detroit by Kanye West on common track the people was just a tribute to this guy, make sure you listen to his legacy and enjoy it like me.