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Shaft Anthology: His Big Score and More! (1971-1974)
Music by Isaac Hayes, Johnny Pate, Various
Shaft Anthology: His Big Score and More! Shaft Anthology: His Big Score and More! Shaft Anthology: His Big Score and More!
Click to enlarge images.
Price: $24.95
Limited #: 3000
View CD Page at SAE Store
Line: Silver Age
CD Release: August 2008
Catalog #: Vol. 11, No. 8
# of Discs: 3

Released by Special Arrangement With Turner Classic Movies Music.

From FSM and SAE: This anthology has been in the works for three years and its release is coincidental to the untimely passing of the great Isaac Hayes. In fact, it was sent to the pressing plant for manufacturing three weeks prior to his death. Mr. Hayes, we salute you!

“They say that cat is a bad mother—”

Yes, they’re talking about Shaft! On the famous record album, the lyric is “that cat Shaft is a bad mother—.” However, the name “Shaft” is omitted above because this is the film version of the legendary score—not the familiar record album—and this is one of many differences, both subtle and large, in the two versions of Isaac Hayes’s seminal work. This pioneering 3CD set features the previously unreleased original soundtrack to the 1971 Shaft along with music from the sequel, Shaft’s Big Score!, and 1973-74 TV series. It is the Shaft Anthology: His Big Score and More!

Shaft is one of the landmark characters and films not just of 1970s “blaxploitation” cinema but all of pop culture. For the first time, a black leading man (provocatively named and dynamically played by Richard Roundtree) talked back to white authority and acted like a cool James Bond who did whatever he wanted...and he was the hero. The character starred in seven novels, three feature films (with a fourth in recent years) and a TV series. FSM has compiled the best of Shaft’s 1970s previously unreleased-on-CD soundtracks as follows:

The original 1971 Shaft was one of the seminal films of “blaxploitation” movement, as Shaft gets involved in the Harlem rescue effort of a gangster’s kidnapped daughter. The score by Isaac Hayes not only set trends in film music but pop and R&B, with its spoken/sung lyrics, disco-era wah-wah guitar and high-hat cymbals, and lush, soulful orchestrations. The soundtrack was widely distributed on a 2LP set (later a CD) by Enterprise (Hayes’s personal label on Stax Records) but that was a re-recording done in Memphis. For the first time, this CD presents the original Hollywood-recorded film score featuring primordial versions of the source cues as well as all of the dramatic underscoring (little of which was adapted for the LP). It is a fascinating glimpse into Hayes’s creativity and an important archiving of this legendary work. As a bonus, disc one of this collection adds Hayes’s two singles released in 1972 related to M-G-M productions: “Theme From The Men” (a TV theme) and “Type Thang” (used in Shaft’s Big Score!).

The second Shaft film, Shaft’s Big Score! (1972), was scored by the director of the first two installments, Gordon Parks, when Hayes was unavailable. Parks was a multitalented musician, poet, author and photographer, in addition to filmmaker, who had scored his directorial debut, 1969’s The Learning Tree, and was technically assisted on his film scores (as was Hayes on Shaft) by Tom McIntosh. The Shaft’s Big Score! soundtrack called upon an earlier, Duke Ellington-style of sophisticated jazz compared to Hayes’s Memphis-style R&B, with a bravura climactic chase (“Symphony for Shafted Souls”) that has long made the soundtrack LP a treasured collectible. The complete soundtrack is presented here.

The third Shaft film, Shaft in Africa (1973), is not presented here for licensing reasons (though most of it was included on a 1999 compilation, The Best of Shaft). That film’s composer, Johnny Pate—the brilliant arranger for Curtis Mayfield on Superfly and other projects—returned for the short-lived Shaft TV series in 1973-74 (starring Roundtree), which had seven 90-minute episodes produced for CBS. Pate provided inventive adaptation of Hayes’s “Theme From Shaft” as well as his own groovy and suspenseful scoring—from an era in which most TV crime music sounded like Shaft, this is, delightfully, the real thing. Pate provided three full scores and two partial scores for the Shaft series (with the rest tracked with earlier cues), almost—but not all—of which are presented at the end of disc two and all of disc three of this set.

This entire collection is in excellent stereo sound, meticulously remixed from the first-generation M-G-M session masters. There are lots of afros in Joe Sikoryak’s art direction. The comprehensive liner notes are by Lukas Kendall. 

Isaac Hayes Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Isaac Hayes (1942-2008) was a soul legend whose "Theme From Shaft" (released in its original soundtrack recording by FSM) defined '70s urban film music. He was a hugely talented composer, arranger, songwriter and performer who set trends in pop music and R&B as well as film, and was the first African-American composer to win an Academy Award for music (Best Original Song, "Theme From Shaft"). In recent years he voiced the "Chef" character on South Park, further cementing his place as a pop icon.IMDB

Johnny Pate Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Johnny Pate (b. 1923) is a composer, arranger and producer who was the arranger for Curtis Mayfield and The Impressions in the 1960s, which led to his work arranging Mayfield's legendary 1972 Superfly soundtrack (for which his gift at arranging strings is particularly evident). He parlayed this into solo credits scoring primarily "blaxploitation" productions such as Brother on the Run, Shaft in Africa, the Shaft TV series and Dr. Black, Mr. Hyde. IMDB

Various Scores on FSM
About the Composer

Greek composer Various is best known for his synthesizer, we are kidding. This is a placeholder we use for collections representing more than two composers. Although it would be fun to write "Various's" bio; he's had quite a career.

Comments (49):Log in or register to post your own comments
The SHAFT Anthology is pure gold to me if only for the presence of Johnny Pate's five episode scores for the 1973-74 Shaft TV series. It's a rare treat indeed to get so much great TV music on one disc. Someday, I may even give the other two scores a listen... ;)

Iam truly wondering that this set is not sold out until yet.
Because not only the fans of filmmusic should love it, also the fans of Isaac Hayes and of good 70s funky music should crap this box!
Maybe, they didnt know, that it exist?

How many boxes are left?

Someday, I may even give the other two scores a listen... ;)[/endquote]

Jim you should listen to SHAFTS BIG SCORE at least. The Gordon Parks music as conducted by TV vetteran Dick Hazard is great...I almost wore out my MGM LP playing SYMPHONY FOR SHAFTED SOULS (the whole B side) over and over!
I'm so thankful to Lukas and the boys for finally getting it onto a cd.

Someday, I may even give the other two scores a listen... ;)[/endquote]

Jim you should listen to SHAFTS BIG SCORE at least. The Gordon Parks music as conducted by TV vetteran Dick Hazard is great...I almost wore out my MGM LP playing SYMPHONY FOR SHAFTED SOULS (the whole B side) over and over!

I enjoy Isaac Hayes' original score, there's no doubt about that--love it! And while I was aware of the classic "Theme From Shaft", I never owned the original album and so I don't have that sentimental attachment to it. I also didn't grow up when that song was played endlessly on the radio back then, either. In fact, the re-record would sound strange to me after having heard the original so many times.

I'm not surprised that many aren't into these scores, as they aren't sci-fi, not by Goldsmith or Williams, and so the lack of "name brand" doesn't appeal to them. Plus, the existence of the re-record probably has them thinking that this release is superfluous. I encourage any seventies funk fans and TV music afficionados to give the anthology a chance--there's a lot of wonderful music there.

Yes Jim I agree the set is outstanding,in fact I'm now listening to the Johnny Pate stuff on the train home from work.

This set has some great funky, jazzy music and of course the iconic wah-wah guitar and cymbal sound that Hayes made so famous at the time. I actually like the music to the sequel and the TV series in this set better than the original Shaft OST as I prefer the re-recording myself personally. The re-recording has quicker tempi for some tracks and a little more pizazz in the orchestration and the guitar riffs (at least in the famous title track). So for me at least, having the OST version in this set and also having the re-recording of the first film's score is a lot like a release where both are included so you can compare the differences, which are many, and have a choice of a preferred version if you so choose. No complaints whatsoever here. Great set!

Note: It would have been great to have the re-recording included as well, but since it still is in print on another label... It would also have meant one more disk and that would have increased the cost. In any case I have it already!

The re-recording is available in a beautifully remastered Hybrid SACD edition.

This release was nothing short of fantastic, and a compilation I made from it, the 1971 album a copy of Shaft In Africa that I put together is credited by a friend of mine for at least being partially responsible for his wife's pregnancy.

It would be nice to see a release of David Arnold's score from the 2000 version.

Note: It would have been great to have the re-recording included as well, but since it still is in print on another label... It would also have meant one more disk and that would have increased the cost. In any case I have it already![/endquote]

Am I the only one who doesn't much care for the rerecording/original album/whatever you wanna call it, but loves FSM's version?

I was really curious about this set. I love the so called "blaxploitation" soundtracks even though I wasn't around for them originally. I enjoy the Shaft re-recording & love Johnny Pate's work. His "Shaft in Africa" is great! So I was wondering if this collection is worth buying. Seems like response is positive. Is the tv stuff really that good?

Isaac Hayes also did a "disco" version of Shaft that is worth checking out. Also, if you enjoy this type of music, check out Pate's "Brother on the Run" soundtrack. Good 70s jazz / funk!

If you like Shaft and Shaft In Africa, then you will find much to enjoy with this set!

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Track List
Click on each musician name for more credits
For more specific musician lists for the scores on this album, go here:
Shaft TV Series: Cop Killer
Shaft TV Series: Hit-Run
Shaft TV Series: The Executioners
Shaft TV Series: The Kidnapping
Shaft TV Series: The Killing
Shaft's Big Score

Leader (Conductor):
John V. Allen, Isaac Hayes, Richard P. Hazard, James L. Johnson, Johnny Pate

Murray Adler, Henry Arthur Brown, Bobby Bruce (aka Robt. Berg), Salvatore Crimi, Barbara Durant, Bernard Kundell, Alfred Lustgarten, Joy Lyle (Sharp), Stanley Plummer, Lou Raderman, Sally Raderman (aka Sarah Kreindler), Carroll Stephens, Robert "Bob" Sushel, Gerald Vinci, Heimann Weinstine, Walter S. Wiemeyer

Joseph DiTullio, Justin DiTullio, Raphael "Ray" Kramer, Frederick R. Seykora, Gloria Strassner

James Alexander, Max R. Bennett, Charles C. Berghofer, James E. Bond, Jr., Raymond M. "Ray" Brown, Charles L. Domanico

Louise M. DiTullio (Dissman)

Gene Cipriano, William "Buddy" Collette, Wilton L. Felder, Norman Foster, William E. Green, Plas Johnson, Hubert Laws, Ted Nash, Jerome Richardson, Marshall Royal, Thomas W. Scott, C. E. "Bud" Shank, C. E. "Bud" Shank, Ernest J. Watts, Philip Woods

William "Buddy" Collette, James R. Horn, C. E. "Bud" Shank

French Horn:
David A. Duke, William A. Hinshaw, George W. Hyde, Sinclair Lott, Arthur Maebe, Jr., Richard E. Perissi, George F. Price, Gale H. Robinson, Henry Sigismonti

Albert Aarons, Oscar Brashear, Robert O. "Bobby" Bryant, Don Fagerquist, Fred Hubbard, Oliver Mitchell, Fortunatus Ricard, Manny Stevens, Anthony "Tony" Terran, Eugene E. "Snooky" Young

George Bohanon, James Cleveland, James L. Johnson, Grover Mitchell, Richard "Dick" Nash, Richard Noel, Benny Powell, George M. Roberts, William Schaefer, Thomas Shepard, Maurice Spears, Phillip A. Teele, Britt Woodman

Douglas Clare Fischer, Caesar Giovannini, Pete Jolly (Ceragloli), Artie Kane, Lincoln Mayorga, Joseph L. Sample, Lester Snell

Michael J. Anthony, Thomas Bruner, Dennis Budimir, David H. Cohen, Joe Passalaqua, Charles Pitts, Jr., Howard Roberts, Thomas "Tommy" Tedesco, William Michael Toles

Fender (electric) Bass:
Wilton L. Felder

Dale L. Anderson, Colin J. Bailey, Larry Bunker, Gene Paul Estes, Victor Feldman, Willie C. Hall, Paul N. Humphrey, Harvey Mason, Earl C. Palmer, Joe Porcaro, Emil Radocchia (Richards)

John E. "Jack" Arnold, Victor Feldman, Victor Feldman, Emil Radocchia (Richards), Kenneth E. Watson

John E. "Jack" Arnold, Dale R. McMickle

Orchestra Manager:
Harry W. Lojewski, Gerald C. Whelan

Jack Dulong, Camillo Fidelibus, Willard W. Jones, Ray Mace, Fred Sternberg, Harry Taylor, Harry Taylor

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