Ann Peebles

Ann Peebles was born in East St. Louis. Her father ran a church, and she grew up singing in his congregation. As a member of the Peebles Choir. Not just your average church singing group—they opened shows for gospel greats like Mahalia Jackson and Sam Cooke. So by the time she moved to Memphis for a shot at fame, Ann Peebles had some experience. She signed on with Hi-Records as their first and only female recording artist. On a roster alongside the likes of Al Green and O.V. Wright, she had a lot to live up to. And livin’ up she did. Didn’t take all that long before she was of the finest Southern soul singers of the ‘70s. Co-writing and singing a number of songs like this one. “I’m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down.”

Once the disco era hit, Peebles slowed down to focus on family. These days, she’s well represented in the world of hip-hop samples. The Wu-Tang Clan has mined her work. And even more famously, so has Missy Elliot. The sample on that track’s from Peebles most well known song. A number from 1973 that basically became an instant classic. How do you feel about the rain against your window? Let’s hear about it from Ann Peebles.