Musical Playlist #4: Isaac Hayes Retrospective

Isaac In Chains

Isaac In Chains

Growing up, I heard so much about Isaac Hayes and how wonderful his music was.  Everyone knew one of his biggest hits, the Theme from Shaft, for which he won an Academy Award.  In my quest to add to my musical catalog and to delve deeper into classic soul music, I decided to learn more about Isaac Hayes, as the artist---not just the actor and voice of Chef from South Park.  Needless to say, I am so glad that I did.

Known for his lush orchestration, long funky grooves and reinterpretations of classic songs, I have fallen in love with his music and now play his records all of the time.  This musical playlist is dedicated entirely to some of my favorite songs by Isaac Hayes.

The Look Of Love

I can't say enough about this tune.  It begins slow and melodramatic and then rises into a beautiful crescendo and groove that has been sampled many times over.  It's just one of those songs that you never get tired of and find something new to love each time you hear it.  A classic song that Isaac Hayes made his own and I would say is the best version I've ever heard of this lovely song.  I've also included a live appearance by Isaac Hayes and his featured band, The Love Movement, in 1973.

Your Love Is So Doggone Good

They don't make love songs like these anymore.  In this tune, Isaac Hayes isn't afraid to tell his woman how much she loves him and how addicted he is to her loving.  It has a full orchestral sound that Hayes was famous for complete with the strings, horns, drums and bass.  Magnificent.

A Few More Kisses To Go

Another great love song.  Definitely a bedroom classic.  I think the first time I heard this rhythm was in a hip hop sample, and although this song has been sampled many times nothing beats the original.  Just another great song.

Hyperbolicsyllabicsesquedalymistic

A really funky tune that seems to have multiple meanings.  Some think he's referring to a love relationship and wanting more.  Others think that the song refers to a love relationship with drugs.  I can't tell either way, but I absolutely love this song.

Walk On By

A remake of a Dionne Warwick classic that Isaac made his own. From the very beginning this song just draws you in.  A crescendo of violin strings leads to this funky bass groove and drum beat that gets funkier by the second.  Notorious B.I.G. sampled the bass line alone for one of his biggest songs.  It was also featured in Dead Presidents and a music video was shot for this tune featuring Mr. Hayes, Chris Tucker and Larenz Tate.  Need I say more.  Just a classic.

Soulsville

A political song that speaks about life in the inner city.  Featured on the Shaft soundtrack and in the scene where Shaft goes around Harlem knocking on doors looking for his man.  This song speaks the truth and sounds so good while doing it.  This song really follows the "message in our music theme."  Also included in this playlist is a video performance of this song at Wattstax.

Do Your Thing

A groovy song that at times feels like a combination of several other songs.  Can't tell what I love more, the horns, the drums, the bass line...A timeless song that has influenced so many modern artists.  This song was also featured on the Shaft soundtrack.  I've included the single and extended version in this playlist.

Joy

This song has a disco vibe to it.  A funky dance tune that combines that orchestral sound with a groovy bass line.  A love song that everyone can dance to.  I'm sure the discotheques went crazy over this one!  I've also included the single and extended version in this playlist.

I've enjoyed this musical playlist too much!  Until next time...

Naj

Naj