Sunday, 9 January 2011

MUSIC MEMORIES: GIL SCOTT-HERON'S LONDON GIG TWELVE YEARS AGO...

Recalling Gil Scott-Heron's London gig in 1999...
Back then most of us weren't as active on the net as we are now. I have upgraded some of the info below:

Jazz Café, Camden Town, North West London, has been his favoured concert venue for years.
We have been told the event shall start 9 p.m. but 25 minutes are gone. To make things worse it is a “standing” gig. Half way through the concert some people (especially ladies)massage their lower backs. If you want to sit, you have to book a table upstairs “and eat” says the regulations. Many of us have come to see a great musician, not dine.

Gil Scott Heron (left) and the blogger after his gig at Jazz Cafe, 1999.
Photo by : Amita Tiwari Macha

Nobody announces him.
There is no hint, either. The funk music from more than four JBL speakers is still on. Sometimes James Brown; sometimes Chaka Khan…we are in African American territory here.
A man with a cotton hat slides quietly down the stairs- there are ropes – barriers …so he steps under like someone doing something forbidden. The “I don’t care vibe” is on- it will colour the gig from start to end.

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