Dig it!: New box set celebrates the soul and spirit of Isaac Hayes

Craft RecordingsLate soul legend Isaac Hayes enjoyed huge success as a songwriter and producer for other musicians, and as a solo artist. Now, a new four-CD compilation called The Spirit of Memphis (1962-1976) looking at the various facets of his diverse career will be released on September 22.

The first disc features songs that Hayes produced and/or wrote or co-wrote for various artists on Memphis’ Stax Records label. Among these are the Sam & Dave classics “Soul Man,” “Hold On! I’m A Comin'” and “I Thank You”; Carla Thomas‘ “B-A-B-Y”; and Booker T and the MGs‘ “Boot-leg,” as well as tunes by The Emotions, Billy Eckstine and William Bell.

Disc two focuses on Hayes’ solo releases, including, of course, his chart-topping and Oscar-winning 1971 funk/soul classic “Theme from ‘Shaft.'”

The third disc takes a further look at some of Hayes’ renditions of other artists’ songs, including his hit version of “Walk On By,” plus several live performances from an October 1972 concert in Chicago.

The box set’s fourth CD showcases some Isaac’s extended jams, including several previously unreleased tracks.

The Spirit of Memphis (1962-1976) also features a seven-inch vinyl single containing the first recordings that  Hayes released — “Laura, We’re on Our Last Go-Round” and “C.C. Rider.”

The discs are collected in a 60-page hardcover book boasting a variety of photos, an essay by respected music journalist Robert Gordon, and interviews with and contributions from various people associated with Stax Records, including Sam & Dave’s Sam Moore.

Hayes was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2002. He died in August 2008 at the age of 65.

Here’s the full track list of The Spirit of Memphis (1962-1976):

Disc One: Soul Songwriter, Soul Producer
“Sassy” — Floyd Newman
“Can’t See You When I Want To” — David Porter
“How Do You Quit (Someone You Love)” — Carla Thomas
“Boot-leg” — Booker T and the MGs
“Candy” — The Astors
“Can’t Do Nothing Without You” — Danny White
“I Had a Dream” — Johnnie Taylor
“Hold On! I’m A Comin'” — Sam & Dave
“I’ll Run Your Hurt Away” — Ruby Johnson
“Let Me Be Good to You” — Carla Thomas
“Your Good Thing (Is About To End)” — Mable John
“Fighting to Win” — Homer Banks
“B-A-B-Y” — Carla Thomas
“Never Like This Before” — William Bell
“Patch My Heart” — The Mad Lads
“Little Bluebird” — Johnnie Taylor
“When Something Is Wrong with My Baby” — Charlie Rich
“Love Is After Me” — Charlie Rich
“You Can’t Run Away from Your Heart” — Judy Clay
“Soul Man” — Sam & Dave
“As Long as I’ve Got You” — The Charmels
“I Thank You” — Sam & Dave
“The Sweeter He Is (Parts I & II) ” — The Soul Children
“Stormy” — Billy Eckstine
“Can’t See You When I Want To” — David Porter
“Show Me How” — The Emotions

Disc Two: Volt & Enterprise Singles
“The Big Dipper” — Sir Isaac and The Do-Dads
“Blue Groove” — Sir Isaac and The Do-Dads
“Precious, Precious”
“By the Time I Get to Phoenix”
“The Mistletoe & Me”
“Winter Snow”
“I Stand Accused”
“The Look of Love”
“Never Can Say Goodbye”
“Theme from ‘Shaft'”
“Do Your Thing”
“Let’s Stay Together”
“Ain’t That Loving You (For More Reasons Than One)” — Isaac Hayes and David Porter
“Baby I’m-A Want You”– Isaac Hayes and David Porter
“Theme from ‘The Men'”
“Rolling Down a Mountainside”
“Joy (Part 1)”
“Someone Made You for Me”
“Title Theme (From ‘Three Tough Guys’)”
“You Gotta Have It To Really Be In” (Radio Spot)
“The Rapper Is Back” (Radio Spot)

Disc Three: Cover Man
“When I Fall In Love”
“Walk On By”
“I Just Don’t Know What to Do with Myself”
“Man’s Temptation”
“Never Gonna Give You Up”
“Windows of the World”*

Recorded Live at Operation PUSH Black Expo, International Amphitheatre, Chicago, IL, October 1, 1972:
“The Ten Commandments of Love”*
“Just Want to Make Love to You”/”Rock Me Baby”*
“Stormy Monday”*
“I Stand Accused”*
“If Loving You Is Wrong”
“His Eye Is on the Sparrow”

Disc Four: Jam Master
“Ike’s Mood I”
“You’ve Made Me So Very Happy”*
“Black Militant’s Place”*
“Ain’t No Sunshine”*
“Hung Up on My Baby” (Extended Jam)*
“Groove-a-Thon” (Extended Jam)*
“Do Your Thing” (Extended Jam)

7″ Single:
“Laura, We’re on Our Last Go-Round” b/w “C.C. Rider”

* = previously unreleased.

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