Sunday, October 14, 2018

"Caravan of Love" Isley Jasper Isley

Song#:  2557
Date:  12/07/1985
Debut:  96
Peak:  51
Weeks:  14
Genre:  R&B

Pop Bits:  This family trio formed when they splintered off from the Isley Brothers. Their debut album sparked a couple of minor charting singles including "Kiss and Tell," which crossed over to the Pop chart (#52 R&B/#63 Pop). However, it would be this title track from their second album that would give them a long-lasting hit. The track was the first lifted off of the Caravan of Love album and it would be an instant hit reaching #1 at R&B and staying there for three weeks. The song would cross over to Pop and be their best (and last) effort on that chart nearly getting inside the Top 50. It would do better at AC where the track got to #16. The trio would score another Top 20 single from the album and then grab two more Top 20's from their third LP Different Drummer. After that, the members parted ways. The two Isley brothers would reunite with their siblings early in the 90s while Chris Jasper would set out on a solo career. He would end up getting one R&B Top 10 in 1988 with "Superbad."

ReduxReview:  I know I heard this way back when but couldn't remember it. When I started playing it, I thought "this sounds really familiar." Then it hit me. This song sounds an awful lot like Gregory Abbott's 1986 hit "Shake You Down." Since this tune came out first and was a major hit, I'm guessing Abbott really liked it! Yet unlike Abbott's single, this one couldn't quite made it at Pop, which is too bad. It's a lovely tune with a nice message.

ReduxRating:  7/10

Trivia:  "Caravan of Love" would be the trio's signature tune and it would be covered by many artists over the years. Perhaps the most well-known cover was done in 1986 when the UK band The Housemartins recorded a version. Known for their jangle-pop style of music, the band would occasionally perform songs a cappella in their concert shows. This Isley Jasper Isley tune was one that they did in that fashion. Folks seemed to love it so they recorded it and issued the song out as a one-off single sandwiched between their first two albums. It ended up being their biggest hit reaching #1 on the UK chart and hitting the Top 10 in several other countries (it did not chart in the US). The band would break up following their second album. Two member would then go on to form the highly successful band The Beautiful South. That band would end up with six UK Top 10's including one #1.


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