Isley, whose skill in the pocket helped his older brothers manage the transition from ’60s soul to ’70s funk, died last night in Chicago.
Too young to be a part of the band’s “Twist and Shout” days, Marvin joined the Isleys for 1973’s “3 + 3” and quickly helped establish the band’s new sound. (Allmusic called him “one of the finest R&B bassists of the 1970s.”) Throughout the decade, the group had a number of crossover successes — chief among them “Who’s That Lady” and “Fight the Power” — and in later years found their work steadily sampled by everyone from the Notorious B.I.G. to Lily Allen.
With his brothers, Marvin was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1992. Complications from diabetes caused him to retire from playing with the group five years later.