The legendary singer, musician and arranger Isaac Hayes died today in Memphis, TN. The sheriff's department said relatives found Hayes unconscious near a treadmill in his home. The AP notes his work for Stax Records, as a songwriter and arranger and his solo success with Hot-Buttered Soul. But it was in 1971 when his theme song and movie score for Shaft that brought him huge acclaim--including an Academy Award for Best Original Song. Hayes said of "The Theme from Shaft," "That was like the shot heard around the world."
In 1997, Hayes voiced The Chef on South Park, leaving in 2006 when he disagreed with the creators' lampooning of Scientology. In June, Hayes kicked off the Celebrate Brooklyn Concert series in Prospect Park this summer--he told the Brooklyn Paper about his plans for the rest of the summer, "I’ll come back to Memphis and go in the studio. I’ll probably go on the road again — to Atlanta and Los Angeles. Just getting ready for the new album!" Below is a video of Hayes performing "The Theme from Shaft" in Prospect Park.