email@example.com Ooooh yeah. The face may not be familiar, but the voice is always a dead giveaway. From the theme song to Shaft in 1971 to the voice of Chef in last year's South Park: Bigger, Longer and Uncut, Isaac Hayes' less than dulcet tones have always delighted. And in recent years Hayes (left) - part of the cast of Reindeer Games, which opens today - has enjoyed the rebirth of his acting career. Born on August 20, 1942 in Covington, Tennessee, Hayes was raised by his sharecropping grandparents. God-fearing folk, they encouraged the young boy to sing. And sing he did; first at the local church and, before long, in front of his own band, Sir Isaac and the Doo-Dads. By 1964 he'd joined Stax Records as a keyboardist and by the mid-1960s he had, in partnership with lyricist David Porter, penned hits such as Soul Man and Hold On, I'm Coming. But the spotlight beckoned Hayes and before long he was recording his own work, breaking through with 1969's Hot Buttered Soul. His love affair with the big screen began in 1971 when wrote the classic score for Shaft, which brought him an Academy Award - a first for an African-American. By 1974 he was in front of the cameras, starring in Truck Turner, one of the many blaxploitation action flicks being churned out at the time. His celluloid stardom was short-lived, however, and Hayes had to wait until 1981 until his next role, in Escape From New York. Never one to lie idle, Hayes kept up the singing, releasing a string of soul classics, all the while working for humanitarian causes in Ghana where, under the name of Nene Katey Ocansey I, he is a member of the Royal Family of Noyami Mantse of the Kabiawe Division in the country's Ada Traditional Area. By 1986 he was back in Hollywood's good books and has featured in Flipper (1996), alongside Deborah Harry in 1997's Six Ways To Sunday and Blues Brothers 2000. And, with the support of South Park creators Trey Parker and Matt Stone, he's never looked back.