Isley Jasper Isley
The Isley Brothers’ 3+3 lineup—combining the soulful vocals and experience of elder brothers Ronald, Rudolph and O’Kelly Isley with the songwriting, musicianship and fresh energy of younger brothers Ernie, Marvin and brother-in-law Chris Jasper—powered the group through its longest period of sustained success in the ’70s and early ’80s. 1983’s Between the Sheets was yet another peak for The Isley Brothers, both upon release and in terms of lasting influence. But behind the scenes, all was not harmonious and soon the group would split in two. The elder trio continued as The Isley Brothers, while Ernie, Chris and Marvin broke away under the moniker Isley Jasper Isley. Their debut album, 1984’s Broadway’s Closer to Sunset Blvd. made clear just how responsible Ernie, Chris and Marvin had been for the Isleys’ recent sound and success. Yet freed from the expectations of the parent group, Isley Jasper Isley pushed further into hard rock, electro funk and new wave sounds on the explosively creative Broadway’s Closer to Sunset Blvd. album. Soon thereafter, Isley Jasper Isley scored themselves a hit as timelessly enduring as any of their Isley Brothers collaborations: 1985’s “Caravan of Love.”
Did you know?
- Ernie Isley, Chris Jasper and Marvin Isley wrote nearly all of the Isley Brothers’ original material during the group’s 1973-1983 “3 + 3” heyday
- Before joining with the elder Isley Brothers, Ernie, Chris and Marvin performed together in their teenage years as “The Jazzman Trio”
- “Caravan of Love” hit #1 on the U.S. R&B chart in Isley Jasper Isley’s original recording, and reached #1 in the U.K. in an a cappella cover version by The Housemartins