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Poet, musician, spoken-word artist and writer Gil Scott-Heron passed away on Friday at age 62.

Scott-Heron died at New York City's St. Luke's Hospital, where he'd been since returning home from a European trip and falling ill. Though he announced in 2008 that he was HIV-positive and he'd been hospitalized for pneumonia, the cause of his death has yet to be announced.

Dozens of artists have since paid tribute to Scott-Heron, honouring his contributions to music and his influence.

"RIP GSH..and we do what we do and how we do because of you," Public Enemy's Chuck D tweeted Friday. "And to those that don't know tip your hat with a hand over your heart & recognize."

Radiohead also posted a list of Scott-Heron's songs on their website as a tribute.

Rather than mourn the passing of the man who's been called the godfather of hip-hop, we here at CHARTattack prefer to remember why Scott-Heron was such a hugely influential and important figure in music history.

Here, then, are 14 reasons why Gil Scott-Heron was cool:

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Devastating news. Details about his recent life made it sound very grim. He was one of the most fascinating and interesting performers I've ever seen perform live. During those years, he was often called "the black Bob Dylan."

Edited by MadScreamingGallery
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I spent Memorial Day weekend with little to no exposure to radio, television or the innerwebz so when I heard XM's Deep Tracks channel playing "The Revolution Will Not Be Televised" on Saturday I didn't think anything of it. It wasn't until I got home and had computer access that I learned of his passing. I was never a big fan but he was definitely a huge influence on a lot of artists. RIP, Gil-Scott.

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