Musician and Poet Gil Scott-Heron Dead at 62

Famed musician, poet and activist Gil Scott-Heron, best known for his spoken-word piece "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised," died Friday in New York.

Scott-Heron, who has been noted as one of the progenitors of hip-hop and neo-soul, was 62. A cause of death has not yet been released, but the artist had apparently gotten sick following a trip to Europe and had been hospitalized in recent days.

The Chicago native's career began to spark in 1970 when he released his debut album Small Talk at 125th and Lenox, which included the first version of "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised."

He went on to release the album Spirits in 1994, and after overcoming a public battle with substance abuse, released I'm New Here in 2010.

Scott-Heron's poetic style and charged lyrics, tackling social and political issues, been an influential force on today's generation of hip-hoppers. Kanye West, for example, included a sample of Scott-Heron's voice on the album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy.

May he rest in peace.