Founding Isley Brothers band member, Rudolph Isley, has died

By Rich McKay

(Reuters) – Rudolph Isley, singer, songwriter and founding member of the influential rhythm and blues band the Isley Brothers, whose hits included “Shout”, “Fight the Power”, and “That Lady”, died on Wednesday at age 84 at his home in Chicago, the family said in a statement.

“Heaven has gained another angel….we know he’s in a better place. Forever in our hearts,” the family statement read.

The cause of death was not disclosed.

Rudolph Isley, originally of Cincinnati, began a singing in church with his brothers Ronald, O’Kelly and younger brother Vernon, who died as a teenager in a traffic accident. Later members included brothers Marvin and Ernie and brother-in-law Chris Jasper.

While he sang harmony and at times lead vocals for the group, Rudolph Isley also co-wrote songs including their 1959 breakthrough hit “Shout,” a gospel-style call-and-response song built around the words “You know you make me wanna shout!”

Among other hits by the band include “Twist and Shout”, later covered by the Beatles, and “This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You)”, covered by singer Rod Stewart.

Rudolph Isley left the group in the late 1980s to become a Christian minister, but at times still sang with the group.

He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.

(Reporting by Rich McKay in Atlanta; Editing by Christian Schmollinger and Miral Fahmy)