Here’s some cool soul for your weekend. I’ve recommended The Isleys here before, but they had to share a spot with Santana, so I didn’t get to express how much I love them. Their early-70s sound is one of the best examples of my favorite style of music. It’s what resulted from funk influence started to bleed into classic soul music. What you get in the Isley Brothers’ case is classic soul structures and vocals with Ernie Isley’s funk-rock guitar adding a beautiful edge.
To me, “3+3” is peak Isleys, “Summer Breeze” in particular. The song features a simple, 3 note piano part with groovy drums that allow Ernie to steal the show not only with the melody, but with an extended showcase at the end of the song that has been lost in history due to a single version that cuts it out and the chorus being so well known from film and TV.
Besides mega-hits, “Summer Breeze” and “That Lady,” standout tracks include, “Don’t Let Me Be Lonely Tonight,” “Walk Your Way,” and “What It Comes Down To.”