Isaac Hayes RIP: the loss of an American Original

(Guest Post by Matthew Ladner)

A few weeks ago I wrote a Pass the Popcorn on an underappreciated cinematic gem: Truck Turner. Now we have the sad news that Isaac Hayes has passed away at the age of 65.

I had the chance to see Isaac Hayes perform in Las Vegas about 5 years ago. He brought the house down. One song he sang, more spoke really, was about his intention to give his woman a back massage, a foot rub and a warm bath. I have never seen so many middle aged women go bananas in my life.

Some standing advice I give to people is that if you have the chance to see a legendary performer on stage, do it. I’ve yet to be disappointed by an Isaac Hayes, Tony Bennett, Tom Jones or Ramones concert. You just don’t know that you’ll ever get the chance again, and longevity is a strong predictor of greatness.

Happy trails Mr. Hayes. You’ll be missed.

7 Responses to Isaac Hayes RIP: the loss of an American Original

  1. tfteacher says:

    Not even a passing mention of his membership in the cult of scientology? The guy was a nut, regardless of his music. Hell, he left Southpark because of their take-down of scientology. Isaac Hayes believed aliens lived in his body, and he is now with Xenu!

  2. matthewladner says:


    Unless you are aware of Hayes’ religious beliefs having harmed others, I can’t imagine any reason to bring it up.

  3. tfteacher says:

    I bring it up because in an obituary one is supposed to be truthful. Scientology is not really a religion, it is a cult. It seems reasonable to mention Hayes’ membership in one of the most controversial “religions” making money today.

    And what’s with the ‘unless his beliefs harmed others’ nonsense? If he even encouraged one person to shell out cash for scientology, he harmed others. And given how the cult works, he was involved in the direct harming of others financially, emotionally, intellectually, familialy, and countless other ways. And even on the slim chance he did not hurt others, perpetuating and giving credence to a lie, a cult, a separatist movement can’t be good for society, can it?

    Would it kill you to be thorough?

  4. Patrick says:

    I guess Chef really won’t be coming back.

  5. Ryan Marsh says:

    I can’t speak for Dr. Ladner, but for those of us who have strong religious beliefs I’ll offer a reason to set the standard he has–what’s to stop someone from deciding my church is just a cult that harms others (and historically we’ve got a decent body count) and so should be castigated? If we set broad rules for what we acknowledge as a religion, then the one we want to protect will fall within them.

    (Godwin’s Law alert) It’s like the saying from a priest during WWII, who talked about all of the people Hitler and the Nazis collected and how he did nothing because it wasn’t him, and then they came for him and there was no one left to stand up for him. Not to compare you with Nazis, although this unfortunately must seem to, but if we stand up early, people will stand up for us as well or perhaps we’ll never get to the point where we’re endangered.

    Plus it’s generally hard to say that a religion people are voluntarily entering, that beliefs people hold or have decided to hold, are harming them.

  6. tfteacher says:

    I think religion is worthy of castigation. All of it. Let it go away, and its absence hurts no-one.

  7. Xenu says:

    tfteacher–I don’t usually have the time to get into debates with humans on the interweb who are clearly infested with body thetans, but I thought you should know that Isaac is here with us and he is doing fine. He is making all the ladies here very happy.

    We do on occasion, however, have to tell him to “shut his mouth” when he refers to himself as a “bad mother******”.

    Your truly,
    Alien Ruler of the Galactic Confederacy

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