Gil Scott-Heron’s second album “Pieces of a Man” was recorded in April 1971. The released date unknown, so now is as good a time as any to mention it.
The album is most famous for the opening song, “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised”, a Jazz/Rap/Scat poem laid of a funky, bass-heavy and flute-driven background. This song is a sledgehammer to the face. “The Revolution Will Not Be Televised” is more relevant than ever and could deservedly be the theme song of the Black Lives Matter movement.
However, it is not a “one hit plus filler” album, it is a personal and social statement, with one strong song after another, many of them timeless and still relevant today:
“Save The Children”, exactly what the title suggests.
“Lady Day and John Coltrane”, how music can save your sanity.
“Home Is Where the Hatred Is”, the POV of people with addictions.
“When You Are Who You Are”, a beautiful love song.
“I Think I’ll Call It Morning”, I can’t describe well:
I'm gonna take myself a piece of sunshine And paint it all over my sky Be no rain Be no rain I'm gonna take the song from every bird And make em sing it just for me Cause why should I hang my head Why should I let tears fall from my eyes When I've seen everything there is to see
“Pieces of a Man”, when a man loses his job and can’t support his family.
Jagged jigsaw pieces Tossed about the room I saw my grandma sweeping With her old straw broom But she didn't know what she was doing She could hardly understand That she was really sweeping up Pieces of a man