New Audio: Now-Again Records Releases a Unreleased Version of an Isaac Hayes Classic for Record Store Day

 

With the release of 1969’s Hot Buttered Soul, the legendary Isaac Hayes quickly developed a reputation as being one of Stax Records‘ boundary pushing, bleeding edge funk and soul stars. At a time when most soul, R&B, pop, and rock songs were an extremely radio-friendly three minutes or less,  Hayes crafted expansive, mind-altering and epic compositions that bridged psych rock, funk, soul, early disco, rock and jazz — and routinely captures him and his backing band catching and holding onto a groove and taking it as far the groove would take them. Just as a few examples for those not familiar, the aforementioned Hot Buttered Soul consists of only four tracks with album closer “By The Time I Get To Phoenix” clocking it at 18:42; “I Stand Accused” and “Something” off 1970’s The Isaac Hayes Movement clock in at just under 12 minutes; and “The Look Of Love” off 1970’s . . . To Be Continued clocks in at a little over 11 minutes.  And this was before Hayes accepted the unique assignment of writing the beloved soundtrack for the seminal and canonical Blaxploitation film, 1971’s Shaft.

However, “Do You Thing” off the two LP Shaft soundtrack may have arguably been the longest song he ever wrote, as it actually took up most of the second LP’s B side, as the expansive groove before ending with the overdubbed sound of a record player needle violently scratching across a vinyl; however, interestingly enough, Hayes and his backing band The Bar-Kays had recorded an additional improvisational 13 minutes that sonically possessed elements of free jazz, jazz fusion and psych rock that had been consigned to the vaults  . . . that is until the folks at Now-Aagin Records stumbled upon it and decided that they needed to release the full 33 minute version of the song, from the 2-inch tape masters on the greatest day of all for audiophiles — Record Store Day.

Including with the vinyl release is a booklet detailing the history of the never-heard-before version of one of Hayes’ most famous and beloved songs. To celebrate the upcoming release of the 33 minute vinyl check out a 22 minute version of “Do Your Thing” that ends with wild peals of discordant noise featuring feedback, strummed guitar chords eventually played through wah wah pedal, shimmering and soaring organ chords with musician studio chatter before a quick fade out.

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