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Ann Peebles

Biography Discography Videos


Southern Soul RnBSouthern Soul RnB

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A diminutive singer with a powerful voice and an even stronger attitude, Ann Peebles was one of the artists who defined Willie Mitchell's legendary Memphis soul label Hi Records, along with Al Green and, later, O.V. Wright. Easily the best female singer in the Hi stable, Peebles ranked among the finest deep Southern soul singers of the decade, notching an instant classic with her 1973 hit "I Can't Stand the Rain." She co-wrote a generous share of her own material with husband Don Bryant, and while she cut plenty of love and heartbreak tunes, her persona was built on the grit and resilient strength she displayed on songs like "I'm Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down." Peebles wasn't always as appreciated on the charts as her work often merited, especially among pop listeners, but her best recordings hold up among the best of their era.

Peebles was born April 27, 1947, in East St. Louis, MO. Her father was a minister and her mother a singer, and naturally Peebles began singing at a young age in her father's church choir. She also sang with the family group, the Peebles Choir, which had been touring the gospel circuit since Peebles' grandfather founded it a generation earlier. As a teenager, she sang secular music on the St. Louis club circuit, supported and accompanied by her father. There she met blues bandleader Oliver Sain, a local legend, and eventually joined his revue. Peebles caught her big break in 1968 on a trip to Memphis, where she asked to sit in on a club set by trumpeter Gene "Bowlegs" Miller. Miller was already signed to Hi Records at the time, and duly impressed with Peebles' voice, he brought her to Hi house producer Willie Mitchell for a tryout. Mitchell, who was still in the process of shifting the label from country to RB (and had not yet discovered Al Green), immediately offered Peebles a contract; she was still shy of her 21st birthday.

Mitchell teamed Peebles with singer and house songwriter Don Bryant, seeking a bit more seasoning in her R&B phrasing. Peebles and Bryant soon began writing together, and would also end up dating in 1972. In the meantime, Peebles recorded her debut single, "Walk Away," a song written by Sain that just missed the Top 20 on the R&B chart; the follow-up, "Give Me Some Credit," was also a minor hit. Her fourth single, 1970's "Part Time Love," was her first R&B Top Ten, prompting a reissue of her debut album, This Is Ann Peebles, under that title. 1972's Straight from the Heart was her first artistically realized LP, however; it featured several minor R&B hits in "I Pity the Fool," "Slipped, Tripped and Fell in Love," "I Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody's Home" (later covered by Bette Midler), and "Somebody's on Your Case," plus the signature album track "99 Lbs." Her hot streak continued with 1973's I Can't Stand the Rain, which many critics still regard as her finest work. "I'm Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down" was a decent-sized hit, and the brilliant title cut -- written by Peebles, Bryant, and disc jockey Bernard Miller -- became her biggest hit, peaking at number six R&B and famously becoming a favorite of John Lennon. She also charted with "(You Keep Me) Hangin' On" and "Do I Need You," but more importantly married Bryant in 1974.

In the wake of "I Can't Stand the Rain," Peebles was a star on the soul circuit, even if she never duplicated its commercial success. "Beware," "Come to Mama," and "Dr. Love Power" were all charting singles from 1975's Tellin' It, but the rise of disco and the sale of Hi Records in 1977 would conspire against Peebles' career momentum. 1977's If This Is Heaven produced only one single in the title cut, which was more polished than Peebles' usual fare; none of the singles from 1979's The Handwriting Is on the Wall cracked the R&B Top 50. With Mitchell and most of the Hi house band gone, Peebles took a hiatus from the music business to concentrate on her family.

Peebles reunited with Mitchell in 1989 for Call Me, an album released on Mitchell's short-lived new label, Waylo; however, longtime fans generally found it a disappointing comeback overpowered by sterile electronic instrumentation. Peebles returned to a more organic approach by signing with roots label Rounder's Bullseye Blues subsidiary for 1992's Full Time Love. Another effort, Fill This World with Love, followed in 1996, which featured guest spots from Mavis Staples and Shirley Brown. During the '90s, Peebles guested on several albums by Maria Muldaur. Meanwhile, "I Can't Stand the Rain" was covered by numerous artists, including Tina Turner, and revived by Missy "Misdemeanor" Elliott via sampling on her 1997 smash "The Rain (Supa Dupa Fly)."
-- Steve Huey of All Music Guide.

I'm Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down [Live 1989]
I Can't Stand the Rain -- unplugged
Paul Brown w/ Memphis Horns & Ann Peebles

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1969This Is Ann Peebles
1971Part Time Love
1972Straight From The Heart
1974I Can�t Stand The Rain
1976Tellin� It
1978If This Is Heaven
1979The Handwriting Is On The Wall
1988Call Me
1992Full Time Love
1995It Must Be Love
1995Just You And Me
1996Fill This World With Love
1996The Best Of Ann Peebles: The Hi Records Years
2006Brand New Classics
2009I Can�t Stand The Rain (DVD)


1969 This Is Ann Peebles

01. Give Me Some Credit
02. Crazy About You Baby
03. Make Me Yours
04. My Man
05. Solid Foundation
06. Chain Of Fools
07. It�s Your Thing
08. Walk Away
09. Rescue Me
10. Won�t You Try Me
11. Steal Away
12. Respect
13. Part Time Love
14. I�ll Get Along
15. I Still Love You
16. Generation Gap
17. I Can�t Let You Go

1970 Straight

1971 Part Time Love

01. Part Time Love
02. I�ll Get Along
03. I Still Love You
04. Make Me Yours
05. It�s Your Thing
06. Generation Gap Between Us
07. Crazy About You Baby
08. Give Me Some Credit
09. Steal Away
10. Solid Foundation

1972 Straight From The Heart

01. Slipped, Tripped And Fell In Love
02. Trouble, Heartaches And Sadness
03. What You Laid On Me
04. How Strong Is A Woman
05. Somebody�s On Your Case
06. I Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody�s Home
07. I�ve Been There Before
08. I Pity The Fool
09. 99 Pounds
10. I Take What I Want

1974 I Can�t Stand The Rain

01. I Can�t Stand The Rain
02. Do I Need You
03. Until You Came Into My Life
04. You Keep Me Hanging On
05. Run, Run, Run
06. If We Can�t Trust Each Other
07. A Love Vibration
08. You Got To Feed The Fire
09. I�m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down
10. One Way Street

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1976 Tellin� It

01. Come To Mama
02. I Don�t Lend My Man
03. I Needed Somebody
04. Stand By Woman
05. It Was Jealousy
06. Doctor Love Power
07. You Can�t Hold A Man
08. Beware
09. Put Yourself In My Place
10. Love Played A Game

1978 If This Is Heaven

01. If This Is Heaven
02. A Good Day Of Loving
03. I�m So Thankful
04. Being Here With You
05. Boy I Gotta Have You
06. When I�m In Your Arms
07. You Gonna Make Me Cry
08. Games
09. Lovin� You Without Love
10. It Must Be Love

1979 The Handwriting Is On The Wall

01. Old Man With Young Ideas
02. Bip Bam Thank You Ma�am
03. The Handwriting Is On The Wall
04. I Didn�t Take Your Man
05. You�ve Got The Papers (I�ve got the man)
06. Lookin� For A Lovin�
07. You�re More Than I Can Stand
08. Livin� In, Lovin� Out
09. If I Can�t See You
10. Let Your Love Light Shine

1988 Call Me

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1992 Full Time Love

01. Bouncin� Back
02. St. Louis Woman (with a Memphis melody)
03. Read Me My Rights
04. Full Time Lover
05. Fear No Evil
06. Nobody But You
07. Ain�t No Business Like Your Business
08. I Miss You
09. Just You, Just Me
10. He�s My Superman
11. I Can�t Stand The Rain

1995 It Must Be Love

1995 Just You And Me

01. I Found Somebody New
02. I Like A Man
03. I Won�t Let Your Heart Roam
04. Call Me
05. Buckle Up
06. Didn�t We Do It
07. Your Well�s Gone Dry
08. One Bad Turn
09. If You�re Going To Leave Me
10. I Can�t Stand The Rain

1996 Fill This World With Love

01. I�m Yours
02. Fill This World With Love
03. When I�m Over You
04. Stand Up
05. Friends
06. I Don�t Think That I Can Last Tonight
07. Fired Up
08. Walk Away
09. Give Me Some Credit Where It�s Due
10. I�d Rather Leave While I�m In Love
11. I Pity The Fool
12. Bip Bam Thank You Ma�am
13. Ninety-Nine Pounds
14. One Way Street
15. I Wouldn�t Take Nothing

1996 The Best Of Ann Peebles: The Hi Records Years

01. Walk Away
02. Give Me Some Credit
03. Part Time Love
04. I Pity The Fool
05. I�m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down
06. I�ll Get Along
07. Slipped, Tripped And Fell In Love
08. I Can�t Stand The Rain
09. I Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody�s Home
10. Somebody�s On Your Case
11. You Keep Me Hanging On
12. A Love Vibration
13. Ninety-Nine Pounds
14. Do I Need You
15. Come To Mama
16. Doctor Love Power
17. Beware
18. Fill This World With Love
19. Old Man With Young Ideas
20. If This Is Heaven
21. I Didn�t Take Your Man

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2006 Brand New Classics

01. I�ll Get Along
02. You Keep Me Hanging On
03. I�m Gonna Tear Your Playhouse Down
04. I Want To Know What Love Is
05. Walk Away
06. Steal Away/I Still Love You
07. The Handwriting Is On The Wall
08. Love Vibration
09. I�m So Thankful
10. I Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody�s Home
11. Chase These Blues Away
12. Miss You
13. Tears In Heaven
14. I Can�t Stand The Rain
15. Spread

2009 I Can�t Stand The Rain (DVD)

01. Full Time Lover
02. I�m Yours
03. Friends
04. When I�m Over You
05. St. Louis Woman (with a Memphis melody)
06. I Can�t Stand The Rain
07. Fill This World With Love
08. Fill This World With Love (reprise)
09. Experience The Rain
10. Love vibration (live at Stax)
11. I Can�t Stand The Rain (unplugged)
12. Bonus Materials (DVD)

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Graphics by YSM

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