UPR!SE is a blog dedicated to The Shrine's Patron Saint and inspiration, Fela Anikulpo Kuti.

The blog focuses on music, fashion, art, design, politics and culture. It is a celebration of trailblazing souls who rise up without compromise.


Saturday, May 28, 2011


The cruel irony of life is that many times our strongest voices are consumed and silenced by the very same ills they rally against. Gil Scott Heron spent his entire career giving voice to the struggles and experience of Black Americans. He fell prey to the same vices he talked of in The Bottle and Home Is Where The Hatred is. Sadder, is he seemed to have begun to outrun his demons in recent years, recording his first album (I'm New Here) in sixteen years. His influence on what has become known as modern Hip Hop cannot be under-estimated. KRS-One, Public Enemy, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Blackalicious, Lupe Fiasco... all have taken pages from Heron's book. Sad day. Let's hope more people will pick up on his message. We need more Hip Hop artists and less rappers these days.

"the message is here: inside the man / bubbling brain cells and heart-soul cells /
ax-cell-er-ating faster until understood / and used and passed on and used and
passed on and used and..."

-Gil Scott-Heron

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