Born Chester Burnett (1910-1976), and named after President Chester Alan Arthur, Howlin’ Wolf had blues credentials so authentic they seem parodic. As a teenager in the Mississippi Delta, he really did pester Charley Patton (Mississippi’s seminal blues singer) for lessons, and took on Patton’s grainy voice and powerful, elemental slide guitar style. In the ‘30s and ‘40s, he became one of the Delta’s many wandering entertainers, using the nom de guerre he derived from a childhood nickname, and he really did team up with Patton and such legendary figures as Robert Johnson and Son House. Presented here is Howlin’ Wolf’s outstanding debut album for Chess Records, Moanin’ in the Moonlight (1959) – one of the all-time cornerstones of the genre. It features several of his early hits (“How Many More Years,” “Moanin’ at Midnight,” “Smokestack Lightnin’,” “Forty Four,” “Evil,” and “I Asked for Water [She Gave Me Gasoline]”), and is a pretty potent collection in its own right.