2021 – My Hometown Salutes The Isley Brothers

(ignore April 30, 2017 publish date – this was published on June 28, 2021)


This was welcome news: my hometown of Teaneck, NJ, AND its next-door neighbor, Englewood (where I lived for 3 years in the 70s) were BOTH going to rename (actually, add a name onto) streets on the same day in honor of the Isley Brothers, who lived in both towns.

That day was June 24, 2021.

Yeah, I didn’t have a pass or any press credentials for proper access, but – come on – it’s the Isley Brothers! (well, two of them: Ron and Ernie). Let’s see if I can still come away with some worthwhile shots.

The Teaneck ceremony was scheduled for 2pm with the very-nearby Englewood one starting at 3:30.

Their Teaneck house was on Van Arsdale Place (near the Teaneck Armory, for all you locals). It should be easy to just go there, park and enjoy the ceremony. After all, how many people are free on a Thursday afternoon? If they wanted crowds, they could have waited 2 or 3 days.

Well, it wasn’t as easy as I thought it would be. Police cars were blocking Van Arsdale and a couple of other streets. I finally found a space 3 or 4 blocks away.

As I walked up Van Arsdale, I saw people taking a picture of a house and I was told it was where the Isleys lived. Here’s the house:


Up ahead, I could see quite a few people at the intersection of Van Arsdale and Van Cortlandt where the ceremony was to take place (click to enlarge):


The tent with the two peaks was where the brothers sat. Unfortunately, the front-center was reserved strictly for dignitaries and press. By the time the ceremony started, there were twice as many press tripods in that line that no one was allowed in front of:


So I shuffled off to the right and took this shot of Press/Dignitary Row. By the way, the gentleman near center in the blue shirt, gray hair, baseball cap and with his back toward you is Teaneck Mayor James Dunleavy:


Here’s a much-wider panoramic shot (click to enlarge):


The place was still filling up, so before it got too crazy, I took a couple of establishment shots to show unobstructed images of where I thought most of the action would take place.

Almost straight across from me, on the left side, was the podium where all the speakers would be (this is probably why I picked the right side). I should mention that the Isleys named their label T-NECK Records in 1964, so that’s why it’s on the sign:


To my right was the corner where the street sign unveiling would take place. I made a mental note to be on the other side of it – the sun side – when that happened:


Gotta have music, right? Behind me was the DJ. And – again for all you locals – the big structure in the back is the Teaneck Armory, where my father took me to see the 3Q midget car races when I was a kid (and where David Bowie rehearsed for his Sound & Vision tour in 1990):

I’m glad I took this before it all filled in with humanity (Note: the crowd at that intersection was later estimated to be 500 people).

I also noticed a drone was flying around before and during the ceremony, but I’ve yet to see any video from it:


Prior to all the tribute speeches, there was entertainment provided by the Teaneck Twirlers (what were they twirling?):


…….and members of the Garden State Chorale chapter sang “Oh Happy Day”. Here are the Twirlers, the Chorale and a little boy clapping along:



Then came the speeches and some were quite long. I didn’t shoot everyone, but let’s start with the two mayors…….James Dunleavy of Teaneck:


………and Michael Wildes of Englewood:


Bergen County Clerk John Hogan (at the mic) and Bergen County Sheriff Anthony Cureton (far left):


Teaneck resident Ira Buckman, who had the idea two years ago to honor the Isleys in this manner and got it done:


There were also assorted former band members, friends and neighbors who spoke, but then it was FINALLY time for the honorees to show their faces.

Lots of people rushed in from the sides to squat down in the center and not block the press tripods. Somehow, I got swept along (yeah, right).

Here are Ron (l) and Ernie (r) Isley:


It looks like I’m pretty close, but this is where I really was:


Two more shots of R&E:


ISLEY FAMILY PHOTO TIME! Everyone is now standing and CLOSE:


Time to raise my camera……….except for one head, not bad:


I’ve now eliminated the head, but seem to have grown some lovely fingers and luscious lips:


Finally! A shot that makes it look like I’m the only camera in the house:


And now the grand unveiling – the man seems to be having a bit of trouble getting the cover off:


At the risk of repeating myself………..FINALLY!


That’s odd…………..how did I wind up on someone else’s phone screen?


I took that last picture at 3:27pm and – having gotten what I needed – beat it out of there quickly before the traffic jam started.

Englewood’s ceremony was supposed to start at 3:30………..I’ve had enough for today.


I think the old guy with the pocket camera did OK.



  1. Carol ross June 28, 2021

    Always great stuff !

  2. Eva Gallione July 1, 2021

    Great pictures and story! Only knew the Isley brotehrs lived in Englewood cliffs, or is it Alpine. Straight up from the Clinton Inn in TFLY. Thanks for sharing!

  3. Anne Raso July 2, 2021

    Thanks for sharing this! Very fun stuff! I know that the Isley Brothers also lived in Alpine (at least in the early ‘80s) but I guess they did not want to have three ceremonies in one day!

  4. Annemarie July 3, 2021

    Good shots! I watched Questlove’s Summer of Soul last night. Highly recommended!

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