Isaac Hayes (1942 to 2008)
It is with sadness that Bluesbunny marks the passing of Isaac Hayes. He was someone who could rightfully lay claim to be a genuine soul legend and he leaves a musical legacy that few have matched, or indeed are ever likely to. It is rare for anyone to produce one piece of music that stands the test of time and becomes truly iconic yet Isaac Hayes has achieved this feat many, many times.
He will undoubtedly be best remembered for 1971's "Theme From Shaft", which earned him both Oscar and Grammy awards. A song that still retains its freshness and vitality even today, it was , however, not his first iconic masterpiece. A couple of years previously in 1969 he had delivered the revolutionary "Hot Buttered Soul", an album which ranks as one of the most ground breaking albums of any era. Earlier in his musical career he was influential in reshaping the sound of soul music and helping to bring it not only to a wider audience in America, but also to worldwide prominence. With writing partner David Porter he produced a string of outstanding songs for Stax, most notably for Sam and Dave with classics such as "Soul Man" (a Grammy winner for the duo), "Hold on I'm Coming" and "When Something is Wrong With My Baby".
In his later years he once again found fame, this time in cartoon form as the voice of South Park's Chef, and thereby gained recognition from an entirely new audience of fans. However, ultimately it will be for his music that he will be remembered, and for music lovers he will always be remember as a true Soul Man.
Author: Craig Cumming
August 11, 2008
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