by Red Casual 22nd October 2018
Football, Music & Politics
He was the first black player to play for Scottish club Celtic and was the father of poet and musician Gil Scott-Heron.
He was spotted by a scout from Celtic when the club was on tour in North America and he was signed by the Scottish club in 1951 after being invited over for a trial. Becoming the first black player for Celtic, and one of the first to play professionally in Scotland, Heron went on to score on his debut on 18 August 1951 in a League Cup tie against Morton that Celtic won 2–0. Heron only played five first-team matches in all, scoring twice. He was released by the club the next year after making one appearance in the Scottish football (having been unable to displace the established John McPhail and joined Third Lanark where he played in seven League Cup matches, scoring five goals but did not appear in the League.
It’s a very important part in Celtic’s history, culturally and also musically. At Holywell Street we have big affection for Gil Scott Heron the son of our famous player.
Scott-Heron’s work has influenced writers, academics and musicians. His work during the 1970s influenced and helped engender subsequent African-American music genres, such as hip-hop He has been described by music writers as “the godfather of rap”
Throughout the 1970s and early 80s, Scott-Heron used his songs to rail against the Vietnam war, the drugs and alcohol, the Watergate scandal and racial injustice.
Going with the culture and music vibe. Holywell Street would like to pay tribute to both legends one the player and one the musician/political activist.