Lincoln Heights represent, represent zent. Lincoln Heights, Cincinnati has one of the longest tenured soul band of all times. The Isley Brothers formed in the early 50s, so were looking at almost 60 years of active duty in one form or another. Like most of the better groups and singers, they have strong ties to the church and Gospel music.
They were a staple in the Reynolds household while I was growing up. They were played at parties, picnics, or just while sitting around and letting the stink of the day fall off of you. I probably started liking them for the wrong reason: they were the first group I ever heard to cuss in a song. I could get away with singing “…by all this BULLSHIT going down.”, in front of my parents without getting smacked in the mouth. And of course I would play Fight the Power every day. Also, as a kid, I wasn’t really trying to hear no ballads and beggin’ music, but I never minded that while I was playing one of their albums.
You can’t have 60 years of banging without connecting with someone, and they have been influences from people like The Beatles and The Yardbirds to Ice Cube and Biggie. Hell, they were the ones to first give the world a little taste of Jimi Hendrix back in 1964. Plus, they have 60 years of mostly quality time. Sure, not every album was hit, but they sound like they always put their best into them. Except for Ronald Isley‘s songs with R. Kelly. I know I’ve posted songs by people who have questionable past, and will post more, but I just can’t get with R. Kelly. I don’t know why he gets a pass from everyone; shit, he was just on Saturday Night Live with Lady Gaga. And I’m pretty open musically and can usually separate the songs from the actual singers, but R. gets the Gas Face. Him and Chris Brown.
Anyway, given the vast library that is 60 years in the making, how do I pick out songs out for just 1 post? I can’t. Check out Part II of the Isleys next Sunday.
Ladies and Gentlemen:
Between the Sheets- The Isley Brothers
Fight the Power (Part I & II)- The Isley Brothers
It’s Too Late- The Isley Brothers
Hello, It’s Me- The Isley Brothers
Keep On Doin’- The Isley Brothers