He was the only child of Kalman and Ethel Chait, who escaped Nazi-occupied Poland and made their way by the end of the Second World War to an American displaced persons camp in Pocking, Germany, where Izzy was born.
The family moved to the US when he was three years old, first landing in New Orleans before traveling further west to California.
It was during his military years that Izzy discovered he had an affinity for Asian art (along with Eastern philosophy and religion) and he started buying and selling objects as a hobby.
On his return home from Vietnam in 1967, this hobby became a source of income, with Izzy concurrently selling Chinese porcelain at swap meets while managing his studies at UCLA.
Two years after he started selling Chinese antiques from his living room he opened his first gallery in 1969. He forged a successful career both as a dealer and an auctioneer at the IM Chait Gallery.
However, his first and final passion was singing. During his college years, he performed at many jazz clubs around LA. Taking a 25-year break to concentrate on his business, he returned to music in the early 1990s, finally realising his dream of cutting a record in 2001 when his debut CD Once Upon A Time was produced. He went on to make 10 albums in 11 years.