When The Isley Brothers released the titular lead single from their new album, Make Me Say It Again, Girl, many predicted the LP would be leaning in favor of traditional R&B. However, with features from Snoop Dogg, Rick Ross, 2 Chainz, Quavo, and Takeoff, that wasn’t entirely the case, and they’ve revealed why.
“It’s very important to work with the new generation,” Ronald Isley, 81, explained to Billboard. “That’s what keeps you up with the music and what’s going on and what they’re feeling, and you’re writing about feelings, people, and actual things that are happening. It keeps us young and in the business and know where we are going with the business. We’re here to show them the room. Follow the yellow brick road or The Isley Brothers road.”
With the group having been sampled over 900 times, mostly from Hip-Hop acts, the rap takeover was their way of showing appreciation.
The LP also includes classic R&B tunes like the aforementioned Beyoncé-assisted duet and a track with El DeBarge and Earth, Wind & Fire. With that, they also shared their take on the “R&B is dead” narrative that was revived by Diddy in recent months.
“I think Puffy was sleepy when he woke up and said that,” said the “Contagious” crooner. “That’s crazy. Music is music, man, and it will always be here… That type of statement doesn’t mean anything. That’s like me saying rap is dead. It’s always going to be there.”
Regarding their six-decade spanning career, Ronald detailed that tapping in with other genres is the key to longevity. “Gospel, country, rhythm and blues, pop, sing, everything that the people want to hear, and that’s how you last this long. We’re the Kings of Love Songs. We don’t want to brag, but you can check us out.”
Watch the video for new single, “The Plug,” featuring 2 Chainz below.