The Purple One made a downpour sound good
1. "Purple Rain," Prince
A moving, melodic, pop-soul ballad featuring a killer guitar solo, his purple majesty's signature song is eternally cool.
2. "Rain," The Beatles
The Fab Four get wonderfully trippy on this most splendid B-side recorded during the "Revolver" sessions.
3. "I Think It's Going to Rain Today," Randy Newman
Culled from Newman's self-titled 1968 debut album, this superb ode to gloomy skies and lonely souls has been covered by such gifted vocalists as Nina Simone, Judy Collins and Dusty Springfield.
4. "I Wish it Would Rain," The Temptations
Singer David Ruffin achingly admits that he wishes it would rain to hide the tears he's crying on this title track from the Temptation's stellar 1968 full-length.
5. "A Hard Rain's A-Gonna Fall," Bob Dylan
On of his first truly great lyrics, a young Dylan adroitly captures the early 1960s trepidation that choked the nation during the height of the Cold War.
6. "Blue Eyes Crying in the Rain," Willie Nelson
After years spent in obscurity penning hits for others, Nelson finally became a star in 1975 with his gorgeously understated, sparsely produced rendition of an old Fred Rose song.
7. "It's Raining," Irma Thomas
The Soul Queen of New Orleans pines for a lost love on this early 1960s, R&B masterpiece produced and penned by Crescent City royal Allan Toussaint.
8. "The Rain Song," Led Zeppelin
The rock gods set aside their hammer and deliver a beautiful, stirring epic on this classic from "Houses of the Holy."
9. "Have You Ever Seen the Rain"/"Who'll Stop the Rain" Creedence Clearwater Revival
Rain inspired two of John Fogerty's finest tunes. Take your pick. They're both excellent examples of vintage, mid-tempo roots rock.
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10. "November Rain," Guns N' Roses
Decades from now when music historians survey the hard rock genre, chances are, this much-maligned masterpiece will go down as one of the all-time best power ballads.
-- Wade Tatangelo