Monday, August 11, 2008

A Bittersweet Weekend..

This weekend the world lost two of it's greatest entertainers. The hilarious Bernie Mac and the incredibly multi-talented Issac Hayes. Both men were masters of their fields. Bernie Mac, a former Chicago bus driver, took a small weekend comedy routine and turned it into a comedy gold. As one of the original Kings of Comedy he seemingly came out of nowhere to steal the show. At the time very few people knew the name Bernie Mac. His honest, down to earth, gut busting routine made people sit up and take notice. A year later Fox gave Bernie Mac his own show. The Bernie Mac Show was a huge success, and in my opinion one of the funniest shows on television at the time. By breaking the "forth wall" and talking directly into the camera viewers were given an invitation to look into the mind and life of a man who, despite the occasional threat of violence, cared deeply for his family. I also admire the respect he had for his craft, the consummate showman, Bernie Mac always brought his "A" game. There are so many examples of his work on the Internet - You Tube is full of funny Bernie Mac moments and there's no better way to remember the man than to enjoy him doing what he was put on earth to do....Make you laugh!

Last night while I was at the Virgin Mobile Festival (more on that later) I found out that Issac Hayes also passed away this weekend. To be honest, my knowledge of Issac Hayes only goes back as far as Shaft. I remember a few years ago, I was rummaging through some old records at my grandmothers place and found a unopened original vinyl copy of the Shaft soundtrack (among other goodies). I was too scared to open it, so I went on-line and downloaded the album. Now, I'm not a musician but I do appreciate good music, and what I heard through my earpods was just that, good music. Issac Hayes' career began in the early 1960's at the infamous Stax Records. While at Stax he wrote, produced and played on a string of hits that helped make Stax one of the most influential record labels of the era. He went on to enjoy critical success as a solo artist throughout the 60's and 70's. By the 1980's Issac Hayes began popping up on the big screen in films like Escape from New York and I'm Gonna Get You Sucka'. Most younger folk are most familiar with Issac Hayes' work as the soul singing cafeteria worker, Chef . In 2006 Issac Hayes was released from his contract with South Park over what some believe was his dis-satisfaction with the way they portrayed followers of Scientology. Before his death Issac Hayes was working on a film called Soul Men starring Samuel L. Jackson and guess who....Bernie Mac...Wow.

R.I.P. Bernie Mac & Issac Hayes.
I'll be back later to tell you about the sweet part of my bittersweet weekend.

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