The Last Holiday by Gil Scott Heron
A Memoir

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"The Last Holiday" unrolls the blueprints. Pieces of a man come together; a foundation is laid down.
-LA Times

Synopsis

The stunning memoir of Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award winner Gil Scott-Heron, The Last Holiday has been praised for bringing back to life one of the most important voices of the last fifty years. Now in paperback, The Last Holiday provides a remarkable glimpse into Scott-Heron’s life and times, from his humble beginnings to becoming one of the most influential artists of his generation.

The memoir climaxes with a historic concert tour in which Scott-Heron’s band opened for Stevie Wonder. The Hotter than July tour traveled cross-country from late 1980 through early 1981, drumming up popular support for the creation of Martin Luther King Jr. Day. King’s birthday, January 15, was marked with a massive rally in Washington.

A fitting testament to the achievements of an extraordinary man, The Last Holiday provides a moving portrait of Scott-Heron’s relationship with his mother, personal recollections of Stevie Wonder, Bob Marley, John Lennon, Michael Jackson, Clive Davis, and other musical figures, and a compelling narrative vehicle for Scott-Heron’s insights into the music industry, the civil rights movement, governmental hypocrisy, and our wider place in the world. The Last Holiday confirms Scott-Heron as a fearless truth-teller, a powerful artist, and an inspiring observer of his times.
 

About Gil Scott Heron

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In a musical career spanning five decades, from Small Talk at 125th and Lenox to I’m New Here, Gil Scott-Heron (1949-2011) released twenty albums and many seminal singles including "The Revolution Will Not be Televised," "Home is Where the Hatred Is," "Winter in America," "B Movie" "Johannesburg" and "Lady Day and John Coltrane." He was also the author of three previous books: two novels, The Vulture (1970) and The Nigger Factory (1972), and Now and Then: The Poems of Gil Scott-Heron.
 
Published January 3, 2012 by Grove Press. 337 pages
Genres: Biographies & Memoirs, Humor & Entertainment. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for The Last Holiday
All: 4 | Positive: 3 | Negative: 1

NY Times

Below average
Reviewed by Ben Ratliff on Jan 13 2012

In his time, he was a great artist; when he started writing this book, his time, as well as some of his curiosity, was over. I don’t know if we can expect him to be great in a book that he only half inhabited.

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NY Times

Good
Reviewed by Dwight Garner on Jan 09 2012

Much of this book’s beauty derives from its bedrock humility. Scott-Heron is fully aware of what he calls his “flawed makeup as a person,” his somewhat stunted emotional life and an inability to get close to people.

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NPR

Excellent
Reviewed by Michael Schaub on Jan 10 2012

...he never stopped thinking of himself as just "a piano player from Tennessee." It's that kind of humility, combined with his gift for charming, unforced prose, that makes The Last Holiday such a fascinating memoir.

Read Full Review of The Last Holiday: A Memoir | See more reviews from NPR

LA Times

Above average
Reviewed by Lynell George on Jan 29 2012

"The Last Holiday" unrolls the blueprints. Pieces of a man come together; a foundation is laid down.

Read Full Review of The Last Holiday: A Memoir | See more reviews from LA Times

Reader Rating for The Last Holiday
84%

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