Howlin' Wolf (album)

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Howlin' Wolf
Compilation album by
ReleasedJanuary 11, 1962
GenreChicago blues
ProducerRalph Bass[1]
Howlin' Wolf chronology
Moanin' in the Moonlight
Howlin' Wolf
Howling Wolf Sings the Blues
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic4.5/5 stars [2]
Mojo4/5 stars[3]
Rolling Stone5/5 stars [4]

Howlin' Wolf is the second studio album from Chicago blues singer/guitarist/harmonicist Howlin' Wolf. It is a collection of twelve singles previously released by the Chess label from 1960 through 1962. Because of the illustration on its sleeve (by Don S. Bronstein), the album is often called The Rockin' Chair Album, a nickname even added to the cover on some reissue pressings of the LP.

Legacy and awards[edit]

In 1966, fellow Chess artist Koko Taylor recorded a cover version of "Wang Dang Doodle" which reached #4 on the Billboard's R&B Charts and became a minor crossover hit by making #58 on the Billboard Hot 100.[5] Earlier in 1963 Sam Cooke released a single of "Little Red Rooster" making #7 on the R&B Singles chart and #11 on the Hot 100.[6] In 1969 the songs "Shake for Me" and "Back Door Man" were used in the lyrics to the Led Zeppelin song "Whole Lotta Love".

In 1985 the album won a Blues Music Award by The Blues Foundation for 'Classics of Blues Recordings—Album'.[7] In 2012, the album was ranked #238 on Rolling Stone magazine's list of the 500 greatest albums of all time and described as "an outrageous set of sex songs written by Willie Dixon."[8] It was named the third greatest guitar album of all time by Mojo magazine in 2004.[9]

Critical response[edit]

When reviewed on its 50th anniversary in 2012 by Pig River Records, the record was highly praised, receiving a score of 8.6/10.

Track listing[edit]

All tracks composed by Willie Dixon; except where indicated

Side one
  1. "Shake for Me" – 2:12
  2. "The Red Rooster" – 2:22
  3. "You'll Be Mine" – 2:25
  4. "Who's Been Talkin'" (Howlin' Wolf) – 2:18
  5. "Wang Dang Doodle" – 2:18
  6. "Little Baby" – 2:45
Side two
  1. "Spoonful" – 2:42
  2. "Going Down Slow" (St. Louis Jimmy Oden) – 3:18
  3. "Down in the Bottom" – 2:05
  4. "Back Door Man" – 2:45
  5. "Howlin' for My Baby" – 2:28
  6. "Tell Me" (Howlin' Wolf) – 2:52




In 1984 this album was reissued by Chess as CH-9183. The cover picture was changed slightly adding an elliptical logo beneath the album title that reads "CHICAGO 26 Golden years Single Album", and the "Chess LP 1469" trademark was replaced with the "CH-9183" identifier.


  1. ^ a b c "Howlin' Wolf - Howlin' Wolf (Vinyl, LP, Album) at Discogs". Retrieved 2012-01-06.
  2. ^ a b Cook, Stephen. "AllMusic review". Retrieved 2012-08-07.
  3. ^ Brown, Geoff (November 2014). "Howlin' Wolf Howlin' Wolf". Mojo. p. 112. Missing or empty |url= (help)
  4. ^ "223) Howlin' Wolf : Rolling Stone". Rolling Stone. Archived from the original on 2010-04-12. Retrieved 2012-08-07.
  5. ^ Huey, Steve. "Koko Taylor - Music Biography, Credits and Discography". AllMusic. Retrieved 2012-08-07.
  6. ^ Whitburn, Joel (1988). Top R&B Singles 1942-1988, Records Research, Inc., ISBN 978-0-89820-069-0.
  7. ^ "The Blues Foundation - Past Hall of Fame Inductees". Archived from the original on 2012-07-17. Retrieved 2012-08-07.
  8. ^ "Howlin' Wolf, Rolling Stone Music, Lists". April 5, 2010 (Updated Version). Retrieved September 11, 2010. Check date values in: |date= (help)
  9. ^ Barnes, Anthony (21 July 2003). "Hendrix heads list of 100 guitar greats with 'Are You Experienced'". The Independent. Retrieved 20 February 2010.[dead link]