This Is Howlin' Wolf's New Album

Howlin' Wolf

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This Is Howlin' Wolf's New Album Review

by Steve Leggett

Born in Aberdeen, Mississippi, Chester Burnett, better known by his stage name Howlin' Wolf, helped modernize the country blues with his powerful vocal style and harmonica work and his ability to connect with an audience no matter what stage he prowled. This album, though, originally released in 1969 on the Chess Records subsidiary Cadet Records, is hardly typical Wolf, and the bluesman himself hated it, which may in some way have contributed to the album's odd cult standing. The idea was as simple as it was probably misguided, an attempt to modernize Wolf's sound into psychedelic Jimi Hendrix land, and the results were, well, odd at best, and laughable and lamentable at worst, and through no fault of Wolf's, who obviously tried his best to make sense of all of it. Howlin' Wolf completists will want this for its novelty value, but it's far from an accurate portrait of this powerful bluesman's talent and appeal.

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