R&B legends the Isley Brothers are working on their first album in four years, one that will feature songwriting and production contributions from R. Kelly, Raphael Saadiq (Tony Toni Toné, Lucy Pearl) and Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis.
Though the disc has not yet been titled, the project is called "The Isley Brothers Featuring Ronald Isley a.k.a. Mr. Biggs," according to a statement from Dreamworks Records. Ronald Isley appeared as a character named Mr. Biggs in Kelly's 1995 "Down Low (Nobody Has to Know)" video.
In the statement, Isley emphasized his brother Ernie's guitar playing as being integral to the project's sound. "He'll definitely have a lot of guitar solos. Every time Ernie has solos, like on 'Who's That Lady' (RealAudio excerpt) or 'Summer Breeze,' they turn out to be hits," he said.
The album, which will be recorded in Minneapolis, Chicago and Los Angeles, will feature a cover of Chicago's ballad "If You Leave Me Now." Ronald Isley's wife, singer Angela Winbush, also contributed songs to the project.
The Isley Brothers had their first hit in 1959 with "Shout" (RealAudio excerpt). Later hits included 1969's "It's Your Thing" (RealAudio excerpt) and 1975's "Fight the Power." They were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.