Gil Scott-Heron’s thank you letter

Soul poet as gracious as you would hope, as note of thanks to record company proves.

30.11.11

Words by: Charlie Jones

Quick piece of internet archeology here – a thank-you letter written by Gil Scott-Heron to the record label TVT Records, who in 1997 rereleased his albums ‘Winter In America’, ‘The First Minute of a New Day’, ‘From South Africa to South Carolina’, ‘It’s Your World’, and ‘The Mind of Gil Scott-Heron’. On March 27th, even before the advances were paid, Gil was so taken with the project, he took time to type the below letter, charmingly.

BROUHAHA MUSIC INCORPORATED

245 EIGHTH AVENUE
SUITE 333
NEW YORK, NEW YORK 10011

MARCH 27, 1997

TO: VERA
RE: MAKING PREPARATIONS FOR “H”
AT: 23 EAST 4

LET ME TAKE THESE TWO LINES TO SAY
THAT I’M SORRY I WASN’T THERE YESTERDAY
BUT LOOK FOR ME AROUND TWO O’CLOCK
CAUSE RIGHT NOW THAT’S WHEN I’M PLANNING TO STOP
THIS NOTE IS TO ALLOW MY FAVORITE TRIO
A CHANCE TO GET SET FOR OLD SOULFUL MIO
I’M DOING THIS IN CASE I DON’T STOP TO SAY THANKS
SINCE I’LL BE IN SUCH A HURRY TO GET TO THE BANK
I THAT EXPLAINS WHY THE HELL I SPENT
SO MUCH TIME ON THIS FINE DOCUMENT.

WHAT I’M SITTING HERE TO SIGN
MEANS MORE TO ME THAN DOTTED LINES
WHAT I’M PREPARING TO DO RIGHT HERE
WILL BE THE HIGH OR LOW POINT OF MY CAREER
THIRTY FIVE YEARS OF PIANO PLAYING
THIRTY FIVE YEARS OF POETRY SAYING
TWENTY SEVEN YEARS OF RECORD MAKING
FORTY SEVEN YEARS OF RULE BREAKING
A FINAL TEST FOR THE SPIRITS I FOLLOW
THE REJECTION OF FOUR HUNDRED THOUSAND DOLLARS.
BUT SINCE I AIN’T AS RICH AS J. PAUL GETTY
PLEASE, (IF YOU CAN), GET AT LEAST ONE CHECK READY

(DRUM ROLL AND TRUMPETS BLARING🙂

TO STEVE AND VERA AND RANDY
NO WEED, NO BEER AND NO BRANDY
BUT FOR GIVING MY SPIRIT SUCH A LIFT:
THERE WILL BE FOR EACH OF YOU A PERSONAL GIFT:

gil

VIA