The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (album)
|The Revolution Will Not Be Televised|
|Compilation album by Gil Scott-Heron|
|Genre||Jazz, funk, R&B, proto-rap, spoken word|
|Gil Scott-Heron chronology|
1988 reissue cover
The Revolution Will Not Be Televised is a compilation album by American recording artist Gil Scott-Heron, released in 1974 by Flying Dutchman Records. The album takes its name from Scott-Heron's 1971 song of the same name. It features recordings previously featured on Scott-Heron's first three albums for the Flying Dutchman label, Small Talk at 125th and Lenox (1970), Pieces of a Man (1971), and Free Will (1972), which were produced by jazz producer Bob Thiele. The album's recordings feature musical elements of funk, jazz, and proto-rap.
Release and reception
When The Revolution Will Not Be Televised was released in 1974, it charted on Billboard's Top Jazz Albums. It peaked at number 21 on October 12 after spending five weeks on the chart. In a contemporary review, Ebony magazine's Phyl Garland called the album "mind-blowing" and said Scott-Heron "does not merely posture and pacify, but presses one to consider the uncomfortable truths of contemporary blackness."
Since then, The Revolution Will Not Be Televised has positive reviews from publications such as The Washington Post and Los Angeles Daily News, the latter of whom gave it an "A" and stated, "the roots of rap run deep through this superb retrospective". Robert Christgau gave it a "B+" in a 1981 review, writing that the compilation abandons the homophobia that plagued Scott-Heron's 1970 debut Small Talk at 125th and Lenox in favor of songs that show artistic progress, including agitprop that sounds less arrogant but still committed and improved singing that reveals his compassion. In his book To the Break of Dawn: A Freestyle on the Hip Hop Aesthetic (2007), William Jelani Cobb said of its significance in hip hop music:
While The Last Poets and This Is Madness pre-dated the beginnings of hip hop, Gil Scott-Heron's 1974 album The Revolution Will Not Be Televised was released as the art form took its first breaths of South Bronx air. Primarily a jazz album, Revolution's claim to the hip hop pantheon was anchored in a title track that found Scott-Heron delivering verse over a hypnotic, funk-indebted bassline—an approach that was so distinct at that point as to warrant classic status.
In a five-star review for the Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music (2002), writer Colin Larkin praised Scott-Heron's anger and passion in his spoken-word performances on "No Knock" and the title track. AllMusic's Alex Henderson also gave The Revolution Will Not Be Televised five stars and recommended the album's "innovative R&B and spoken poetry" to listeners interested in "exploring his artistry for the first time".
|1.||"The Revolution Will Not Be Televised"||Gil Scott-Heron||3:03|
|2.||"Sex Education: Ghetto Style"||Scott-Heron, Brian Jackson||0:48|
|3.||"The Get Out of the Ghetto Blues"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||4:59|
|5.||"Lady Day and John Coltrane"||Scott-Heron||3:32|
|6.||"Pieces of a Man"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||4:59|
|7.||"Home Is Where the Hatred Is"||Scott-Heron||3:18|
|9.||"Save the Children"||Scott-Heron||4:22|
|10.||"Whitey on the Moon"||Scott-Heron||1:26|
|11.||"Did You Hear What They Said?"||Scott-Heron||3:25|
|1988 CD bonus tracks|
|12.||"When You Are Who You Are"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||3:01|
|13.||"I Think I'll Call It Morning"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||3:45|
|14.||"A Sign of the Ages"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||4:05|
|15.||"Or Down You Fall"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||3:08|
|16.||"The Needle's Eye"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||4:01|
|17.||"The Prisoner"||Scott-Heron, Jackson||8:39|
- Ron Carter – bass
- Brian Jackson – piano
- Jerry Jemmott – bass
- Burt Jones – guitar
- Eddie Knowles – percussion
- Hubert Laws – alto saxophone, flute
- Pretty Purdie – drums
- Charlie Saunders – percussion
- Gil Scott-Heron – piano, vocals, songwriter
- David Spinozza – guitar
- Carmine Coppola – reissue artwork
- Joe Lopes – remastering
- Bob Simpson – engineer
- Stephen Sulke – engineer
- Bob Thiele – producer, remastering
Billboard Music Charts (North America) – The Revolution Will Not Be Televised
|United States||1974||Flying Dutchman Records||vinyl LP||BDL 1-0613|
|Spain||1975||RCA Records||vinyl LP, Spanish edition||DBL 1-0613|
|United States||1988||RCA||vinyl LP||NL 86994|
|United States||1988||BMG||vinyl LP||DRL 11798|
|United States||1998||BMG||reissued LP||DRL11798|
- "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised"
- "Home Is Where the Hatred Is"
- "Pieces of a Man"
- Taylor, Patrick. Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. RapReviews. Retrieved on 2009-07-31.
- Dellar, Fred. Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. Amazon.com. Retrieved on 2009-07-31.
- Henderson, Alex. Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised. Allmusic. Retrieved on 2009-07-31.
- Larkin, Colin. "Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". Virgin Encyclopedia of Popular Music: March 1, 2002.
- "Best Selling Jazz LPs". Billboard: 36. October 12, 2004.
- Garland, Phyl. "Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". Ebony: 30. December 1974.
- Harrington, Richard. "Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". The Washington Post: June 30, 1998.
- Columnist. "Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". Los Angeles Daily News: September 2, 1988.
- Columnist. "Review: The Revolution Will Not Be Televised". Los Angeles Daily News: December 30, 1988.
- Christgau, Robert (1981). "Gil Scott-Heron". Christgau's Record Guide: Rock Albums of the Seventies. New Haven: Ticknor & Fields. p. 346. ISBN 0-89919-025-1.
- Cobb (2007), pp. 43–44.
- The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (Album, Comp). Discogs. Retrieved on 2009-07-31.
- Rap Sample Search: Gil Scott-Heron. TheBreaks. Retrieved on 2008-09-25.