US singer, spoken-word artist, activist and author Gil Scott-Heron was born on April 1, 1949 in Chicago, IL. He passed away on May 27, 2011 in New York, NY. Known for his influential work as a spoken word soul performer during the late 1960s and early 1970s, Scott-Heron collaborated with musician Brian Jackson to create a fusion of jazz, blues and soul music. His lyrics addressed social and political issues of the time in both rapping and melismatic vocal styles. His recordings influenced genres like hip hop and neo soul.
Scott-Heron's most well-known composition "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" is often associated with black militant activism. His unique proto-rap style has been praised by Allmusic as having influenced a generation of hip-hop artists.
With his mixed heritage of Black American (maternal) and Jamaican (paternal) descent, Gil Scott-Heron left an indelible mark on the music industry through his powerful words and musical talents.