Over the holiday weekend one of my personal artistic heroes, Gil Scott-Heron, passed away. Although it's wrong to credit him as one of the "first rappers," he widely criticized rap and considered the culture largely corrupt, he was an incredible lyricist who had an enormous impact on hip-hop, most recently seen on Kanye's "Who Will Survive in America."
Heron's death sadly doesn't come as a surprise - as anyone who read the f**king depressing New Yorker piece knows he struggled with hardcore drug use for years - but it doesn't dull the impact of his loss. We hope you're finally free Gil, you will be missed.
A few of my favorite Heron pieces are below. And if you're looking for even more ways to pay tribute to an extraordinary lyricist, check out Cookin Soul's new mixtape, as well as must ready article from Lupe Fiasco.