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Bill Isles, Co-Founder of the O'Jays, Dies From Cancer At Age 78

Updated On 09 Apr, 2019 Published On

Bill Isles, the co-founder of R&B group the O’Jays, has died at his home in Southern California. He was 78.

His death was confirmed by his family. His son, Duane Isles, told The San Diego Union-Tribute, that his father passed away last month from cancer at his Oceanside home. The funeral service for the late musician was held on Saturday, April 6.  

Bill Isles and his childhood friends formed the Mascots in 1958 but they later changed the name to the Triumphs and released a single in 1961.

The band again changed its name to the O’Jays after getting advice from a Cleveland DJ, Eddie O’Jay.

Bill was featured on multiple hit songs including Lipstick Traces and Lonely Drifter before he quit the band in 1965.

Duane said that his father was the O’Jays’ tour manager from 1971 to 1974 when it released its biggest hits, Back Stabbers and Love Train.

In 2005, the O’Jays group was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

Bill is survived by his wife, Laural Isles, 7 children, 7 grandchildren and 3 great-grandchildren. Rest In Peace Bill Isles!

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