I was checking the news today and came across a headline. "Soul Legend Isaac Hayes Dead at 65". After reading the headline, the first thing that came to mind was the theme to "Shaft". A song I had heard over and over while I was growing up and quite frankly never tired of it. A wickedly, smooth beat with no instrument left out. Drums, guitars, bass, keyboards, horns and the all too familiar deep voice blending together, creating one of the most recognized and admired theme songs of our generation.
How can you not bob the head? Tap the foot? Maybe even sing the entertaining lyrics, "That Shaft is a bad motha.... , SHUT YOUR MOUTH. I'm just talkin' 'bout Shaft". Come on. Who hasn't done that?
Some of you are probably asking, what does Isaac Hayes have to do with classic rock? Well he has more to do with the "70's" part of the title of this blog, which lends itself to the music part of this website. An icon to most... a bad motha... to me, his accomplishments earned him a right of passage into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2002.
For me personally, growing up on the southside of Chicago and listening to R&B music, which was played everywhere, I came to appreciate composers like Isaac Hayes and Quincy Jones. Their contributions to the music I grew up with and enjoyed, is a life long gift. Thank you for that.
Here's a few listings from his RRHF bio:
March 14, 1972: Isaac Hayes wins an Academy Award for “Theme from ‘Shaft,’” making him the first African-American composer to be so honored. It also won two Grammys, a Golden Globe award and the NAACP Image Award.
December 15, 1973: “Joy,” by Isaac Hayes, enters the R&B charts, where it will peak at #7. It will be the last time he cracks the R&B Top Ten until 1986.
July 23, 1994: Isaac Hayes is crowned a king in Ghana for his humanitarian work and economic efforts on the country’s behalf.
March 18, 2002: Isaac Hayes is inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame at the seventeenth annual induction dinner. Alicia Keys is his presenter.Please do yourself a favor and listen to the music. Tap a foot, bob your head and that's all the artist needs to know that he's left his mark.
In memory of Isaac Hayes....