Saturday, March 19, 2011

Howlin' Wolf - The Real Folk Blues - Released in 1966 , Recorded Between 1955 and 1965.


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. [Originally released in 1966, the LP was reissued on an import-only Japanese CD in 2004.]

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