Isaac Hayes Dies at Age 65

Aug. 9, 2008
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Isaac Hayes died today at age 65. His death is particularly shocking because, though he’d suffered a stroke last year, physically Hayes was just about as fit as ever: trim, muscular, and fittingly, given the nature of his music, seemingly virile. His body was found near a running treadmill.

Though his bassy, dramatic soul music was often parodied, Hayes was always in on the joke, revisiting his Shaft theme for any movie of sitcom that asked him to, and voicing his satirical alter-ego, Chef, on “South Park.” Unlike that other deep-voiced ladies man, Barry White, Hayes kept close ties to rap music, which drew heavily from his punchy, symphonic arrangements.

Eerily, Hayes died just one day after Bernie Mac. The two had recently finished filming the upcoming movie Soul Men together.
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