The Isley Brothers – Twist And Shout (1962)

FrontCover1The Isley Brothers  are an American musical group originally from Cincinnati, Ohio, that started as a vocal trio consisting of brothers O’Kelly Isley Jr., Rudolph Isley and Ronald Isley. The group has been cited as having enjoyed one of the “longest, most influential, and most diverse careers in the pantheon of popular music”.

Together with a fourth brother, Vernon, the group performed gospel music until Vernon’s death a few years after its formation. After moving to the New York City area in the late 1950s, the group had modest chart successes during their early years, first coming to prominence in 1959 with their fourth single, “Shout”, written by the three brothers. Initially a modest charted single, the song eventually sold over a million copies. Afterwards the group recorded for a variety of labels, including the top 20 single, “Twist and Shout” and the Motown single “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)”, before recording and issuing the Grammy Award-winning hit “It’s Your Thing” on their own label, T-Neck Records.

Influenced by gospel and doo-wop music, the group began experimenting with different musical styles incorporating elements of rock and funk as well as pop balladry. The inclusion of younger brothers Ernie Isley (lead guitar, drums) and Marvin Isley (bass guitar), and Rudolph’s brother-in-law Chris Jasper (keyboards, synthesizers), in 1973 turned the original vocal trio into a complete band. For the next full decade, they recorded top-selling albums including The Heat Is On and Between the Sheets.

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The six-member band splintered in 1983, with Ernie, Marvin, and Chris Jasper forming the short-lived spinoff group Isley-Jasper-Isley. The oldest member, O’Kelly, died in 1986 and Rudolph and Ronald released a pair of albums as a duo before Rudolph retired to a life in the Christian ministry in 1989. Ronald reconvened the group two years later in 1991 with Ernie and Marvin; five years later, in 1996, Marvin Isley left the group due to complications of diabetes. The remaining duo of Ronald and Ernie achieved mainstream success with the albums Mission to Please (1996), Eternal (2001) and Body Kiss (2003). Eternal spawned the top twenty hit “Contagious”. As of 2019, the Isley Brothers continue to perform under the lineup of Ronald and Ernie.

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The Isley Brothers have had four Top 10 singles on the United States Billboard chart. With their first major hit charting in 1959 (“Shout”), and their last one in 1996 (“Down Low”), they are among the few groups ever to have hit the Billboard Hot 100 with new music in five different decades. Sixteen of their albums charted in the Top 40. Thirteen of those albums have been certified gold, platinum or multi-platinum by the RIAA. The brothers have been honored by several musical institutions, including the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, which inducted them in 1992. Five years later, they were added to Hollywood’s Rockwalk, and in 2003 they were inducted to the Vocal Group Hall of Fame.[They received the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2014.

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Twist & Shout is the second studio album released by The Isley Brothers on the Wand label in 1962. Their second album after Shout! three years prior, the album was released on the success of the title track, which would later be covered by The Beatles more than a year later for their own hit version. Other stand-outs in the album include Isley-penned tracks such as “Right Now”, “Nobody but Me” and the charter, “Twistin’ with Linda”.

In 1964 the record label rereleased & renamed Twist & Shout album as Take Some Time Out for The Famous Isley Brothers due to the popularity of the Beatles “Twist & Shout” version of the same year.
The cover of Take Some Time Out for The Famous Isley Brothers picture of the trio performing in a night club. (by wikipedia)

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On this album, the Isleys tried to mine the “Twist & Shout” groove for all it was worth. Produced by Bert Berns, over half the material was written or co-written by “Russell” — the same Russell who co-wrote “Twist and Shout,” which was a pseudonym for Berns himself. Not that this was necessarily a bad thing. “Twist and Shout” was a stone classic, and many of the other tunes do their best to emulate its groove with Latin rhythms and the Isleys’ frayed, gospelish vocals. Some of the tracks, though, do little more than rework the basic riff, and even the ones that aren’t blatant rewrites don’t measure up to the hit. The ballad “Time After Time” is a nice change of pace, and the brothers are never less than energetic and entertaining, but this is really not that strong as a whole. (by Richie Unterberger)

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Personnel:
O’Kelly Isley, Jr (background vocals)
Ronald Isley (vocals)
Rudolph Isley (background vocals)
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a bunch of unknown studio musicians

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Tracklist:
01. Twist And Shout (Medley/Russell) 2,34
02. I Say Love (Medley/Russell) 2.05
03. Right Now (Jasper) 3.13
04. Hold On Baby (Medley/Russell) 2.21
05. Rubber Leg Twist (Nelson/Jasper) 2.01
06. The Snake (Jasper) 2.13
07. You Better Come Home (Russell) 2.18
08. Never Leave Me Baby (Russell/Medley) 2.21
09. Spanish Twist (Russell) 2.28
10. Time After Time (Styne/Cahn) 2.37
11. Let’s Twist Again (Mann/Appell) 2.10
12. Don’t You Feel (Russell/Drowty) 3.06

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