In the new video for 'Champion', Kanye turns into a puppet-Rocky and runs his felt-covered ass off.
Has Yeezy learned nothing from Isaac Hayes?
Running is bad, mmmkay?
Seriously, though. I miss Isaac Hayes already. As you probably know, this giant of soul music collapsed next to his treadmill last sunday and never recovered.
Isaac was bad mother *shut your mouth* and probably my first clue to the vast amount of awesomeness that lies just beyond the sampling archive of your average producer.
Being a middle class white kid, 15 years old with the internet still but a flicker in Al Gore's eyes, I knew nothing about Mr. Hayes. Until "The Fresh Prince" (yes, that one) made a reference to a certain TV-show called 'Shaft'. I looked up the name in the local library and came home with a soundtrack that would remain spinning in my cd-player (a solid steel Sony dinosaur, weighing in at about 30 pounds) until I racked up a library-fine hefty enough for me to get banned for life (srsly). But more importantly, that cd would change the way I looked for music. Turns out, this Isaac Hayes character was sampled by just about half the bands I knew. Portishead, Tricky... they all plundered his catalogue. From then on, the first thing I did when I bought a new cd was read the liner notes. Who got sampled? And where could I get my hands on the original?
This is why, when most of my peers would be singing along to 'Discotheque' (especially the 'uhn! aha! aha! part - man, I just don't get that song...), I knew all the words to 'By the time I get to Phoenix'.
I'm posting a few extra gems from my private reserve as parting shots, in honour of the big man.
Everyone's already posting the 'Shaft' tune, so I'm trumping all y'all with the simply obliterating funk version of Bernard Purdie, probably the best drummer of all time. It was taken from the full LP 'Pretty Purdie'.
And of course, still my favourite, 'By the time I get to Phoenix'.
Thank you Mr. Hayes. You shall be missed.