Isaac hayesThis month marks six years since the sudden passing of music legend Isaac Hayes, but recent events may indicate a new beginning of sorts. His family has united to form the Atlanta based Isaac Hayes Enterprises to honor his legacy.

Though his discography includes 22 studio albums, five film soundtracks and three live albums, Hayes was a prolific composer far beyond what the public got to hear in his lifetime.

His son and company president Isaac Hayes III is deep in undertaking the project of digitizing hundreds of unreleased master recordings he’s recently discovered along with sheet music, photos and other priceless items.

HBS recordsAmong these recordings are albums and songs from Hayes and artists he produced for his record label Hot Buttered Soul, outtakes from work with late jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd and R&B singer Major Harris, and instrumentals ranging from rock, pop and country to disco, funk and electronic music. Not everything has weathered the test of time, but Hayes III has gone to painstaking lengths to restore the recordings that have been damaged. Several reels of analog tape, for example, had to be dehydrated and baked in an oven to rescue the precious, precious arrangements.

Isaac Hayes’ work has been widely sampled for decades and has contributed to the foundation of broad genres including hip-hop and dance music. Several leading producers in Atlanta who Hayes III recently assembled for a listening session and other elite performers, producers and music supervisors will be invited to hear excerpts of the music at a private event in Atlanta during September’s BET Hip Hop Awards weekend in Atlanta.

Father and Son Isaac Hayes II & III

Father and Son
Isaac Hayes II & III


Isaac Hayes III plans to relaunch the Hot Buttered Soul label, which will also put out albums that Hayes produced for other artists and intended to release before the fall of Stax Records forced his father into bankruptcy in 1976. With every mission of the new Isaac Hayes Enterprises, it’s more important to embark on the right endeavors for the brand than to put out products quickly. Timelessness, after all, does not need to be rushed. Let the church say “amen!”

Hayes III, 39, is an accomplished producer in his own right who licenses a steady stream of music to TV and film projects. So far in 2014, has had placements in several Bravo series as well as the films Think Like A Man 2 and About Last Night.

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