Yes – Isaac Hayes, the enigmatic and fantastically talented musician and singer has died at 65 – too young as far as I am concerned. The picture above is of one of my most favourite and very played albums of his – Live at the Sahara Tahoe. I am sure many just think all Isaac Hayes ever did was sing Shaft and voice the part of the chef in South Park – but no – here is a tiny pocket guide to the breadth of his performing, composing and writing talents.
Not many people know that….
Isaac Hayes was a self-taught musician
Isaac Hayes was hired in 1964 by Stax Records as back-up pianist and saxophonist working as a session musician for big names such as Otis Redding.
Isaac Hayes wrote big hits for Sam and Dave such as Hold On, I’m Coming and Soul Man.
Isaac Hayes didn’t get a recording contract until the age of 26 in 1969 – he then shot to fame with the release his groundbreaking and influential album Hot Buttered Soul.
Isaac Hayes scored the soundtrack to the film Shaft. It was a number one hit in 1971. He won an Academy Award for the title song and was nominated for another one for the entire score. The song and score also won him two Grammys.
Isaac Hayes appeared in several films including It Could Happen to You with Nicolas Cage and Ninth Street with Martin Sheen.
Isaac Hayes was a Scientologist – which is why he quit South Park in 2006 after they released an episode where Scientologists were made fun of and lampooned.
Isaac Hayes was married four times and has 12 children.
Isaac Hayes was a unique talent and the music world will be a slightly emptier place without him.
Rest well Isaac.