Ernie Peniston – 2003 INDUCTEE

Born in Muscatine, Iowa, Ernie Peniston first began to develop his singing voice in state contests through the school system. His first professional band was Free Choice, formed in ’71 and lasting 3 years. Next was a 10-piece horn band called Approaching Storm that toured the south and Midwest for 4 years.

Ernie was now part of the vibrant Minneapolis music scene, where he met up with Morris Day, who played drums with Ernie’s band, Enterprise. Day and his band The Time would go on to perform in Prince’s movies, Purple Rain and Grafitti Bridge.

Ernie has opened for such huge names as Prince, The Temptations, Koko Taylor, Lonnie Brooks, James Brown, and Albert Collins. He spent four years as the frontman with Blind Pig recording artists, Chicago Rhythm & Blues Kings, traveling the country performing to much acclaim at many major festivals, including King Biscuit. Ernie is now back home with his own band in Iowa.