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Walter "Wolfman" Washington

Born on December 21, 1943, Washington was born and raised in New Orleans, where he performed in his mother's church choir as a child. As he grew older, he fell in love with blues and R&B and learned how to play guitar, beginning with a homemade instrument made from rubber bands and a cigar box before moving up to the real thing. In 1962, the 19-year-old Washington landed his first major gig, playing guitar with New Orleans soul legend Lee Dorsey. He spent two years in Dorsey's road band, and in the mid-'60s, he began playing with a local combo called the All Fools Band. He also spent time backing soul diva Irma Thomas and gigging with David Lastie's Taste of New Orleans Band. Near the end of the '60s, Washington started playing alongside another noted New Orleans R&B singer, the great Johnny Adams; the two proved to be a solid match, and Washington worked with Adams on-stage and in the studio for 20 years.

Washington cut his first solo album, "Rainin' in My Life", for the small New Orleans label Hep Me Records. Rounder Records, who had released several of Johnny Adams' albums with Washington, offered the guitarist a deal, and he released three albums for the respected roots music label, 1986's "Wolf Tracks", 1988's "Out of the Dark", and 1991's "Wolf at the Door". The year 1991 also saw Washington release the album "Sada" through Virgin Records' blues subsidiary, Point Blank Records. A compilation drawn from Washington's Rounder recordings, "On the Prowl", was issued in 2000.

"Doin' The Funky Thing" was released by Zoho Roots in 2008 . In 2018, the 74-year-old Washington was given the Anti/Epitaph treatment for "My Future Is My Past"

Album Discography

"Wolf Tracks" (Rounder 1986)

I'm Tiptoeing Through 4:43
Thinking For Yourself 3:45
Are You The Lady 5:33
Sweet Cakes 4:16
It Was Fun While It Lasted 3:37
You Got Me Worried 5:54
One Way Or Another 5:19
Can I Change My Mind 4:14
Without You 5:02

"Rainin' In My Life" (Maison De Soul Records 1987)

A1 It's Rainin' In My Life 5:00
A2 Good And Juicy 4:10
A3 Girl Don't Ever Leave Me 4:03
A4 Nobody's Fault But MIne 4:02
A5 Honky Tonk 3:52
B1 Get On Up (The Wolfman's Song) 7:20
B2 You Got Me Worried 3:51
B3 Sure Enough It's You 3:52
B4 Lovely Day 3:38

"Out In The Dark" (Rounder 1988)

You Can Stay But The Noise Must Go
On The Prowl
Steal Away
Out Of The Dark
Ain't That Loving You
Feel So Bad
Nobody's Fault But Mine
Save Your Love For Me

"Wolf At The Door" (Rounder 1991)

1 Hello Stranger
2 Is It Something You've Got / I Had It All The Time
3 I Want To Know
4 Peepin'
5 It Doesn't Really Matter
6 Heatin' It Up
7 Tailspin
8 At Night In The City
9 Don't Say Goodbye

"Sada" (Pointblank 1991)

I'll Be Good
Skin Tight
Ain't No Love In The Heart Of The City
Girl I Wanna Dance With You
Share Your Love
Southern Comfort
I Got A Woman
Nothing Left To Be Desired
What's It Gonna Take

"Get On Up" (Charly 1992)

It's Rain' In My Life
Good And Juicy
Girl, Don't Ever Leave Me
Nobody's Fault But Mine
Honky Tonk
Get On Up (The Wolfman's Song)
You Got Me Worried
Sure Enough It's You
Lovely Day

"Best Of New Orleans Rhythm & Blues Volume 2" (Mardi Gras 1994)

1 Get On Up 7:19
2 Worry 3:51
3 Sure Enough It's You 3:53
4 Lovely Day 3:38
5 Good & Juicy 4:11
6 Girl Don't Ever Leave Me 4:04
7 Nobody's Fault But Mine 4:04
8 Honky Tonk 3:53
9 Just My Imagination 4:56
10 Raining In My Life 5:00
11 Get On Up (Reprise) 4:35

"Funk Is In The House" (Bullseye Blues 1998)

Trials And Tribulations 3:54
Funkyard 4:57
I Stand Accused 6:15
Mary Ann 4:48
Please Come Back To Me 4:17
Wolf Funk 6:46
When The Answer Is Clear 5:37
Close The Door 5:55
The Big Easy 4:58
I'm In Love 3:54
Funk Is In The House 5:26
Cousin Joe 0:06

"Blue Moon Risin'" (Go Jazz 1999)

1. Stop & Think
2. Glasshouse
3. You're Fine
4. Blues Has Got To Go
5. I Had A Dream
6. Fever
7. Blue Moon Risin'
8. Use Me
9. Can't Stop Loving You
10. Cadillac Woman
11. He Will See Us Thru
12. Drown

"On The Prowl" (Bullseye Blues & Jazz 2000)

1 You Got Me Worried
2 Can I Change My Mind
3 Out Of The Dark
4 It Was Fun While It Lasted
5 Don't Say Goodbye
6 I'm Tip Toeing Through
7 Doen't Really Matter
8 Nobodys Fault But Mine
9 Hello Stranger
10 On The Prowl
11 You Can Stay But The Noise Must Go
12 Without You

Joe Krown, Walter Wolfman Washington, Russell Batiste Jr. ‎"Live At The Maple Leaf" (Joe Krown 2008)

1 Steal Away
2 What's Going On
3 Maple Leaf Strutt
4 Use Me
5 Talk To Me, Talk To Me
6 Under The Influence
7 I Fell So Bad
8 Sunday Night Crawfish
9 You Can Stay But The Noise Got To Go

"Doin' The Funky Thing" (Zoho Roots 2008)

1 Shake Your Booty / Funky Thing Part 1
2 I'm Back
3 Tweakin'
4 One Day From Being A Fool
5 Crescent City Starlights
6 Just Like That
7 Only You
8 Wolf Jazz
9 Landslide
10 Shake Your Booty / Funky Thing Part 2

**** The "Wolfman" has always been Funky (in a N'Awlins way) but this time out Lee Dorsey-styled Funk is his starting template. The two-part title cut is one of those slippery, loose and greasy numbers with horn blasts and slappin' bass only James Brown could do equally well. Backed by the great Roadmasters (bassist Jack Cruz, Jimmy Carpenter on sax, Antonio Gambell on trumpet and drummer Kevin O'Day) Washington gets his JB on throughout. Brown would've captured that long sought-after comeback had he cut an organic funk n' jazz record like this.

"I'm Back" is the requisite Hurricane Katrina song (afterall Washington is from the Crescent City). Again the horns are brilliant (arranged by Carpenter). The good Dr. John also shows up to play his Hammond B-3 on a track that promises "we're gonna bring New Orleans back!". Washington fingers out a nose curling guitar solo about four minutes in. "Tweakin'" has one nasty backbeat and the Wolfman gets to his trademark howlin' again. I'm working up a sweat just writing about it. It's that funky. Fortunately for my heart he mellows it out on the slick, cool Blazz burner "One Day From Being A Fool".  "Crescent City Starlights" works like a sequel/encore to "I'm Back" where Washington sings "like a tree coming back to life/New Orelans is growing through the night...under the Crescent City starlight". Great harmony vocals too. Washington either penned or co-penned with Cruz all the pieces except for the Big Band blueser "Just Like That", which Cruz gets full credit for. This disc is sonically superb as well and those of us who dig horns with be in a state of bliss listening to this "funky thing".

"Howln' Live At DBA New Orleans" (Frenchmen Street 2013)

1 Funkyard 5:02
2 I'm tip toeing through 5:53
3 When tha answer is clear 6:34
4 At night in the city 4:44
5 Girl i want to dance 7:20
6 You got me worried 7:22
7 I'm in love 5:05
8 Blue moon risin' 5:03
9 Tweakin' 7:29
10 Ain't that Lovin you 4:35
11 Tailspin 5:30
12 Stop and think 4:31
13 Wolfman outro 1:41

"My Future Is My Past" (Anti/Epitaph 2018)

1 Lost Mind
2 Even Now
3 What A Diff'rence A Day Makes
4 Save Your Love For Me
5 I Don't Want To Be A Lone Ranger
6 Steal Away
7 She's Everything To Me
8 I Cried My Last Tear
9 I Just Dropped By To Say Hello
10 Are You The Lady

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