Singer Ronald Isley accused of depriving his older brother Rudolph Isley of the benefits of a legendary musical group
American singer Rudolph Isley has filed a lawsuit against his younger brother Ronald Isley over trademarks benefiting the legendary musical group.
Rudolph, 83, said in legal documents reviewed by TMZ that Ronald, 81, made business transactions without his knowledge that could cost him money.
In the lawsuit, Rudolph told the court that Ronald successfully applied for the trademark in The Isley Brothers name last summer and has since collected all the proceeds.
Rudolph said in legal documents that he and his younger brother had agreed to split the group’s profits equally since the death in 1986 of their brother and bandmate O’Kelly of a heart attack.
According to Rudolph, his brother Ronald breached the agreed upon arrangement when he was granted use of the name for “visual recordings and audio-visual recordings containing music and animation” last August after applying in November 2021 .
Rudolph said Ronald needed his permission to get the mark, but did not contact him in advance about the deal.
Rudolph said for decades he and Ronald split profits evenly — including multimillion-dollar publishing deals — before recent developments.
Rudolph asked the judge in charge of the case to verify Ronald’s income since the change and to have him reimburse half of the amount.
He also asks the judge to restore his 50% share in the group’s income.
The Cincinnati, Ohio-based band first started as a quartet with his brother Vernon Isley, who died at age 13 in a car crash in 1955.
They continued with Ronald as lead vocalist and Rudolph and O’Kelly as backup vocalists.
The ensemble had such hits as Shout from 1959, Twist and Shout from 1962 (later covered by the Beatles), This Old Heart of Mine (Is Weak for You) from 1966, It’s Your Thing from 1969, That Lady from 1973 and Fight the Power from 1975.
The group was inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 1992.