Nobody could howl like the Wolf, and his Chess sessions produced some of the best blues records ever made. And this is the best of the best, including How Many More Years; Smokestack Lightnin'; Killing Floor; Wang Dang Doodle; Back Door Man; The Red Rooster; I Ain't Superstitious; 300 Pounds of Joy; Evil; Sitting on Top of the World , and 10 more Howlin' Wolf classics as only he could do them.
Chester Burnett's ferocious growl was a staple of Chicago's electric-blues heyday. This 20-song compilation ranges from his 1951 debut "Moanin' at Midnight" with Willie Johnson on guitar to 1964's "Killing Floor" with Buddy Guy on guitar. His scratchy, sawed-off vocal approach and his energetic harmonica grace original classics such as "How Many More Years" and "Smokestack Lightnin'." By 1960, he became, along with Muddy Waters, the foremost interpreter of Willie Dixon's songs, lending his coarse voice to legendary Dixon cuts such as "Wang Dang Doodle," "Back Door Man," "Spoonful," "The Red Rooster," and "I Ain't Superstitious." Wolf's style was based on primal raw power, and he ranks among the genre's most distinctive performers. --Marc Greilsamer