Various Artists: A Tribute to Howlin’ Wolf

Among the highlights on A Tribute To Howlin’ Wolf (Telarc 83427; 52:21) are Taj Mahal’s uncannily accurate Wolf call on “Saddle My Pony,” Kenny Neal’s wicked slide stylings on “The Red Rooster,” Lucinda Williams’ smoldering version of “Come To Me Baby” and Ronnie Hawkins’ rough-hewn take on “Back Door Man.” Guitarist (and former Wolf sideman) Hubert Sumlin plays on every track, adding his original six-string voice to the bluesy proceedings. He also sings in a creaky fashion on a rugged “Killing Floor.” Drummer Sam Lay’s relaxed Chicago shuffle beat fuels this all-star session.