Trout's career began on the Jersey coast scene of the late 1960's early 1970's. He often decided to relocate to Los Angeles where he became a sideman for Percy Mayfield and Deacon Jones. He also worked in the bands with John Lee Hooker and Tex Joe.
In 1981 He becane the guitarist for Canned Heat. This led to the invitation to play in John Mayall's Bluesbreakers where he shared the stage with fellow guitarist Coco Montoya. Trout recalled in a 2018 interview Blues Radio International that while playing with John Mayall, he was rescued from a complete decent into alcohol and substance abuse by a post-gig encounter with Carlos Santana. Trout left the Bluesrockers in 1989 and formed the "Walter Trout Band" which has developed an amazing following.