Posts Tagged ‘ #greenbelt_ ’

#blogjammin: why i’m excited – gil scott heron

those of you who follow RQT regularly will know that i’m super-stoked about having been invited to blog for greenbelt_ this year. today saw an intensification of the anticipation, as my official status was upgraded from ‘sleeping’ to ‘active’. i was handed a padded, manilla envelope by a hatted stranger in a park, which contained (the envelope not the park) a beat-up Walkman and a metal cassette which both self-destructed after delivering me details of the first assignment.

my mission, should i have chosen to accept it (which i have), was/is to contribute to the Why I’m Excited series of posts, detailing one of the many reasons why i’m excited about this year’s festival. i would never tell my ‘handler’, but this mission is ridiculously easy because, despite the fact that their are myriad reasons for me to choose from, this first choice is insanely easy, all thanks to one man: Gil Scott-Heron.

i first encountered GSH as a musically and politically naïve 13 year old. from that day, when i first heard the passionate, political and deeply perceptive proto-rap of The Revolution Will Not Be Televised (which regular RQT readers will know as #showertune no. 28), to this, i have wallowed in his particular brand of comes-from-and-speaks-to-the soul music.

if you’re a soul fan and you’ve never heard his velvet (someways smooth, others rough, occasionally crushed, but always beautiful), then you’ve sorely missed out. if you think of yourself as a hiphop fan, then there is a significant piece of your understanding missing unless you have traced things back from Blackalicious, Aesop Rock and Saul Williams to GSH and before him The Last Poets and The Watts Prophets. if you like jazz or blues you will find solace and familiarity in GSH’s foundations, his obvious influences, and the references his music leaves behind everywhere it walks (seek out, for example, Lady Day & John Coltrane).

if you’ve struggled with addiction then you will recognise the special torment in much of his work generated by his decades-long battle with drugs and resultant spells in prison. if you are motivated by those who speak out and strive for social change, then you will no doubt see truth and hope in the unrelenting, bruised but strong humanity of his music, novels (The Vulture and The Nigger Factory) and poetry, and the dedication with which he has campaigned for change and sought to highlight those who have done the same.

basically, what i’m trying to say is that there are 1001 reasons to be excited about Gil Scott Heron being at greenbelt_ and if you can’t relate to at least one of them, then you seriously need to check yourself.

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this post also appears on the official greenbelt_ blog:

http://www.greenbelt.org.uk/blog/

#showertune: ‘dumb it down’ by ugly duckling

as well as being on the roster for greenbelt_ (have i mentioned RQT is going to be blogging there?), the UD are in town for a gig at Timepiece tonight, which i think i’ll try to drop in at for at least a little look-see.

in the meantime, incase you were thinking of thinking anything profound or discussing anything interesting with anyone today, here is their timely warning that such an action would be a massive error.

yes, today’s #showertune is Dumb It Down by Ugly Duckling

now, where’s that copy of Heat?

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#showertune: ‘jcb song’ by nizlopi

happy friday one and all.

apologies that today’s #showertune is a little later than normal but at least part of the reason was that Lassie the ginger Afghan hound and Rev. Ramping both stayed over last night and we were up to all hours, discussing the nature of genius, Marxist criticism, who’s doing whom in theological circles and various other jazz. i also then had to clean up the penthouse a bit this morning before i could settle down to proper RQT bid’ness.

anyway, two weeks today until greenbelt_ starts: hurrah! that got me thinking about the several great musical acts i’ve seen there over the years and that, in turn, led to today’s selection being JCB Song by Nizlopi.

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#blogjammin: greenbelt

many of you will know all about greenbelt_

for those that don’t, it’s a brilliant festival (currently) held at Cheltenham Racecourse each August bank holiday weekend (so in just over a fortnight).

annually, it pulls together an impressive gaggle of musicians, artists, writers, activists, performers, poets, comedians, politicians, commentators, theologians and other interesting types, for a weekend of walking around, sitting down, thinking, performing, listening, conversing, eating, drinking, sleeping and dreaming.

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the musical cream of this year’s crop include:

Gil Scott Heron, Courtney Pine, Beverley Knight, Ugly Duckling, Ty, The Dodge Brothers (Mark Kermode‘s band), The Herbaliser, Lovers Electric and Foy Vance

… and among the many notable speakers are:

Stanley Hauerwas, Oliver James, Claire Short, David Morrissey, Peter Tatchell, Roger McGough, Cole Moreton, Maggi Dawn, Abdul-Rehman MalikJames Wood, Ilan Pappe, Gareth Higgins, Michael Northcott and Simon Mayo

add to that: comedy from (among others) Robin Ince and Milton Jones, artwork by people like and including Peter Sanders, Jay Gadhia and Bobby Baker and contributions from hundreds of other good peoples and i reckon it all bodes pretty well for this year.

however … the one really impressive thing about this year’s greenbelt_ is the fact that here at RQT we have been asked to join the elite team that cover the festival for the greenbelt_ blog (http://www.greenbelt.org.uk/blog/) and contribute to the onsite newspaper. all this means that whether or not you will be at the races, you will be able to keep abreast of all the most important occurrences, in updates that will come with all the classic RQT wit, charm and frustrating, mostly-lower-case text that you know and love (although i might have to abandon the lower case fetish).

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if you’re going to be there, as well as checking the greenbelt_ website and the blog, you can also follow things on Twitter: @greenbelt (after all, there’s bound to be extra coolness announced between now and the start)

also, do be sure to follow us – before, during and after the festival – for our take on life, both here and on Twitter: @rllyquitetired

new to RQT?
here’s a taste of some of our flavours:

#tirednewsflash
#gastrognome
#getyourgeekon
#ranthill
#telosvision
#idealog

…and there’s plenty more where they came from (HOME)