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Rob Greaves

The Cream of The Crate

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The Cream of The Crate - Record #1

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From the Cream of the Crate Collection – This will be an on-going item as I work through my vinyl album collection and identify those in the collection that are simply irreplaceable, and simply a classic in their genre!

The first is a tribute to the influence of the Blues Masters. It may not be the last, but it should be the first.

Howling Wolf (Chester Arthur Burnett : 1910 – 1976). Real Folk Blues was released by Chess in 1966 to capitalize on the then-current folk music boom. The music, however, is a collection of Howling Wolf singles from 1956 to 1966 and 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. Many of the tracks feature the little recognised blues guitarist Hubert Sumlin (a great artist in his own right), whose distinctive guitar sound became so synonymous with the sound of the Wolf.

When he was inducted into the "Rock and Roll Hall of Fame" in 1991, it was said, "Howlin’ Wolf ranks among the most electrifying performers in blues history, as well as one of its greatest characters. He was a ferocious, full-bodied singer whose gruff, rasping vocals embodied the blues at its most unbridled."

This album has pride of place in my collection, it is an original pressing and whilst the Wolf put out many incredible albums (the first in 1959), I believe the selection of pieces on this album makes it most noteworthy, and in my mind, his finest album.

The Real Folk Blues (Chess LP-1502)
1. Killing Floor
2. Louise
3. Poor Boy
4. Sittin' On Top Of The World
5. Nature
6. My Country Sugar Mama (a.k.a. Sugar Mama)
7. Tail Dragger
8. Three Hundred Pounds Of Joy
9. Natchez Burning
10. Built For Comfort
11. Ooh Baby, Hold Me
12. Tell Me What I've Done

A video clip of the great Howling Wolf performing "How Many More Years"

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Updated 8th April 2013 at 07:45 PM by Mick Pacholli

Rob Greaves , The Cream of The Crate