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Music gives soul to universe, wings to mind, flight to imagination, charm to sadness, and life to everything.


Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Howlin' Wolf - The Real Folk Blues (1966 us, blues master, MFSL ultra disc)

This was originally released by Chess in 1966 to capitalize on the then-current folk music boom. The music, however -- a collection of Howlin' Wolf singles from 1956 to 1966 -- is full-blown electric, featuring a nice sampling of Wolf originals with a smattering of Willie Dixon tunes.

Some of the man's best middle period work is aboard here; "Killing Floor," "Louise," the hair-raisingly somber "Natchez Burning," and Wolf's version of the old standard "Sitting on Top of the World," which would become his set closer in later years.

The Mobile Fidelity version sounds as sonically sharp as anything you've ever heard by this artist and its heftier price tag is somewhat justified by the inclusion of two bonus cuts. But those on a budget who just want the music minus the high-minded audiophile concerns will be happy to note that this is also available as a Chess budget reissue.
by Cub Koda

1. Killing Floor (Burnett, Howlin' Wolf) - 2:48
2. Louise (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:41
3. Poor Boy (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:32
4. Sitting on Top of the World (Chatmon, Vinson) - 2:30
5. Nature (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:44
6. My Country Sugar Mama (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:33
7. Tail Dragger (Dixon) - 2:55
8. Three Hundred Pounds of Joy (Dixon) - 3:02
9. Natchez Burning (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:09
10.Built for Comfort (Dixon) - 2:35
11.Ooh Baby (Hold Me) (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:36
12.Tell Me What I've Done (Howlin' Wolf) - 2:47
13.Smokestack Lightning (Howlin' Wolf) - 3:06
14.Hidden Charms (Dixon) - 2:20


*Arnold Rogers - Tenor Sax
*Donald Hawkins - Baritone Sax
*Johnny Jones - Piano
*Hubert Sumlin - Guitar
*Andrew Palmer - Electric Bass
*Willie Dixon - Bass
*Sammy Lay - Drums
*Earl Phillips - Drums
*Hosea Lee Kennard - Piano
*Jody Williams - Guitar
*Willie Johnson - Guitar
*Junior Blackman - Drums
*J.T.Brown - Tenor Sax
*Lafayette Leake - Piano
*Buddy Guy - Bass Guitar
*Otis "Smokey" Smothers - Guitar
*Howlin' Wolf - Vocals, Guitars, Harmonica

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