Howlin’ Wolf

Howlin' Wolf, born Chester Arthur Burnett, was a towering figure in the world of blues music, renowned for his powerful voice, electrifying stage presence, and iconic songs. Here's a concise profile capturing the essence of his influential career:

Early Life and Musical Beginnings

Howlin' Wolf was born on June 10, 1910, in White Station, Mississippi. He grew up immersed in the blues traditions of the Mississippi Delta, learning to play the guitar and harmonica at a young age. Wolf's early influences included blues legends like Charley Patton and Sonny Boy Williamson II, whose raw, emotive style would shape his own musical identity.


In the 1940s, Howlin' Wolf moved to Chicago, where he began performing in local clubs and bars. He quickly gained a reputation for his electrifying live performances, powerful voice, and larger-than-life stage presence. Wolf's recordings for Chess Records, including hits like "Smokestack Lightnin'," "Spoonful," and "Back Door Man," showcased his dynamic vocals and intense, driving rhythms, earning him widespread acclaim and establishing him as one of the leading figures in the Chicago blues scene.

Collaborations and Influence

Howlin' Wolf collaborated with a diverse range of artists throughout his career, including fellow blues legends like Muddy Waters and Willie Dixon. His collaborations with these artists helped define the sound of Chicago blues and influenced generations of musicians, from rock icons like The Rolling Stones and Eric Clapton to contemporary artists like Jack White and The Black Keys.


In the 1960s and 1970s, Howlin' Wolf continued to record and tour prolifically, releasing albums such as "The Real Folk Blues" (1966) and "The London Howlin' Wolf Sessions" (1971). These albums showcased his enduring talent and versatility as a musician, earning him critical acclaim and introducing his music to new audiences around the world.

Legacy and Influence

Howlin' Wolf's influence on the blues genre and popular music as a whole is immeasurable. His powerful voice, electrifying stage presence, and iconic songs have inspired generations of musicians and left an indelible mark on the history of American music.

Wolf's songs have been covered by countless artists over the years, attesting to the enduring appeal of his music. His legacy as a pioneering blues musician and larger-than-life personality continues to resonate with audiences around the world, ensuring that his influence will be felt for generations to come.

Howlin' Wolf's legacy as a pioneer of the blues endures, his powerful voice and iconic songs continuing to inspire and captivate listeners around the world.