Sunday, August 10, 2008

Isaac Hayes (1942-2008)

Isaac Hayes – whose taste and talent as a songwriter, producer and showman have been underappreciated – died today at his home near Memphis. The cause of death is unknown.

Hayes was 10 days short of his 66th birthday.

Two months ago, he performed a concert at Prospect Park in Brooklyn. A video clip from that show is embedded below.

I’m also streaming one of Hayes’s early solo hits. Click here to hear his cover version of “Never Can Say Goodbye.”

This was a Top-40 hit for Hayes in the summer of 1971, released only a few weeks after the Jackson 5’s smash original.

Before that year was over, Isaac Hayes had a monster hit of his own... “Theme from Shaft.” He would win an Academy Award for that composition.

20 comments:

maria said...

WHAT THE FUCK IS GOING ON!!!???

bklyn6 said...

What, what, WHAT!?

I saw your UBM tv post, navigated away for a split second, and then saw this!

R.I.P. Mr. Hayes.

Kellybelle said...

Isaac Hayes, Bernie Mac, and Sam Jackson have a movie coming out called "Soul Men." Sam might want lay low.

Shame he's gone.

LennieG said...

Can you believe this? Bernie Mack yesteday and Isaac today.

This is a BIG HIT on the black community.

Very sad, indeed.

jjbrock said...

UBM Black Moses was the man. My favorite song was I Stand Accused I am talking about the long version.

Geneva Girl said...

It always comes in threes. Who's next? And, no, I'm not taking bets.

My condolences to his family. Sad weekend.

dickster1961 said...

I was watching the news this evening in Maryland and saw the news. Isaac Hayes was a true innovator in the music world.

All I can say is that man Isaac was a bad mother...Shut your mouth...but I'm talking about Isaac.

My wife always says these things come in three's too. Let's hope not.

Michael A. Gonzales said...

Bad Mutha...

http://blogs.uptownlife.net/michaelagonzales

DeAngelo Starnes said...

In 1998, I sat in Washington DC’s Union Station enjoying happy hour at B. Smith’s. At the bar, you could look into the lobby. Nice spot if you wanted to people watch while getting your drink on. I fell in love numerous times watching the women walk by.

On this particular day, people-watching I spotted a familiar figure. From a distance, I couldn’t believe it. It seemed as if my parents’ album covers were coming to life. Dark-skinned, bald-headed, sunglass-wearing person walking in my direction couldn’t be Black Moses, could it? I didn’t have that much to drink, had I?

Sho’ ‘nuff, it was him in the flesh. Surrounded by some hip hopper B-Boys jocking him like he deserved, he entered the bar area with a slight smile on his face. I lost my mind. I jumped up from the bar stool and immediately rushed him.

“Mr. Hayes, I grew up on you. My Mom and Dad got all your albums. I studied Live at the Sahara Tahoe. I don’t want your autograph. I just wanna shake your hand.”

Mad smooth, in that silky-deep voice, he simply answered my slobbering fandom with a "Thank You."

I've been wearing out "Walk on By" off the highly innovative "Hot Buttered Soul."

When you think about soul music, the Mount Rushmore is Stevie Wonder, James Brown, George Clinton, and Isaac Hayes. The rear view mirror of my youth is shooting longer shots.

cuz said...

Issac Hayes was one of the first non-classical artists to perform in the [then] newly built Kennedy Center in DC. My sister went to that show. When my parents dropped her off, she said a heroin addict met her at the curb and said, "Don't worry moms, she'll be alright." Man, those were the days when dope addicts were just quirky weirdos especially the ones who show up at the Isaac Hayes concert at the Kennedy Center.

DAMN! DAMN! DAMN!

makheru bradley said...

... tear drops of water
meetin' under my chin
you can look at me and tell
oh the bag I'm in...

so its good-bye...
"Brother Ike"

Francisco said...

Dammit! All the great ones are being taken away from us. Isaac Hayes, RIP, you not only brought up umbelievable music back at Stax Studio in Memphis, you were ALWAYS funny in 'South Park' as well.

Vince Spence said...

David,

Not only Issac & Bernie Mac, but it seems to me an incredible amount of extremely talented black entertainers have passed away in the past 6-9 months or so! You do a fantastic job of chronicling (??) these deaths and celebrating their past lives. Could you publish a list of those who have passed in the past year?

Vince Spence said...

deangelo starnes said...I've been wearing out "Walk on By" off the highly innovative "Hot Buttered Soul."

I just listened to it and DS is 1000% correct. I'll never think of Dionne Warwick again when I hear this song.

Undercover Black Man said...

I've been wearing out "Walk on By"...

I ran into Elvis Mitchell last night, and he says that Isaac Hayes once told him that the inspiration for his "Walk On By" arrangement was Ennio Morricone's film music.

So when the Hughes Brothers put Isaac's "Walk On By" in the trailer for "Dead Presidents," it all came full circle.

Undercover Black Man said...

Could you publish a list of those who have passed in the past year?

Thanks for the kind comment, Vince. This sounds like a good idea for the end of the year.

But yeah... losing Bo Diddley, Johnny Griffin and Isaac Hayes within a few months is huge. The good thing to keep in mind, though, is that all three of them were still taking it to the stage until the end.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

Dayumm, taking it to the stage until the end. Absolutely goddman right, in the words of Captain Willard from Apocalypse Now. And this piece takes into consideration the loss of Bernie Mac, but Ike was a musical genius.

Any fan of Stax should know that Ike wrote most of the hits BEFORE he did his own thing with the chains. Insight to how baad Ike was. If you watch the special on Gordon Parks - a true Renaissance man - dig how much he dug what Ike came up with when scoring Shaft. His ear turned to the side and moving his arm in an unhip way shows how much he dug it. Ike was supersmooth just sittin there silently saying "Yeah." That to me is the shit.

fishesalot said...

Damn, first brother Brown, then Bernie, now Isaac, ...damn. Shaft, Cafe Reggios, Walk on By, ...Isaac made his mark.

RIP Isaac, ..RIP.

DeAngelo Starnes said...

I'm sorry but Ike's passing is emotional. Listening to him tear up Burt Barcharach's "The Look of Love." Picking up on Vince Spence, Jack Jones just wasn't hitting on six like smooth-ass Ike did. A true loss.

Anonymous said...

RIP, wished he knew the Lord as his Savior, he was a great misician.