Release Date

August 7, 1973

“That Lady” is a song by the Isley Brothers, made famous in 1973 when it was reworked in a funk rock style. It was originally performed as “Who’s That Lady?” in a classic R&B vocal style by the Isley Brothers in 1964, inspired by the Impressions.

In 1973, the core Isley Brothers vocal trio had recently expanded, picking up guitarist Ernie Isley, bassist Marvin Isley and keyboardist Chris Jasper to form their 3 + 3 configuration. Guitarist Jimi Hendrix had supported the Isley Brothers on tour in the mid-1960s, and Ernie Isley had been strongly influenced by Hendrix’s playing methods. At the Los Angeles Record Plant in 1973 recording the new version of “That Lady”, Ernie laid down a searing guitar line with heavy Hendrix-style sustain carrying a soft fuzz distortion. The recording project included other musicians on organ and congas to establish a funk/rock fusion sound. The song debuted at No.89 on the Hot 100 on July 14, 1973, as “Meet The Lady”, then the title would appear as “Meet That Lady” for the next six weeks and “That Lady” for the remainder of the run.

“That Lady” became the Isley Brothers’ first Top 10 pop single since 1969’s “It’s Your Thing”, spending three weeks at No.6 on the pop chart and reaching No.2 on the US R&B Singles chart. The RIAA certified the single Gold in October 1973. It was also a cross-Atlantic hit for the group, reaching No.14 in the UK. With its prominent electric guitar line, “That Lady” helped establish Ernie Isley as a powerhouse performer.

In 2003, the song was ranked No.357 on Rolling Stone’s list of the 500 Greatest Songs of All Time.