Elton John has been a force in music for more than 30 years. He has an incredible amount of talent, both as an author of music, and as a performer. This collection attempts to pull together some of the best of Elton's work from his career, beginning with the "Elton John" album and ending with "Songs from the West Coast."
Nearly every song on this CD is musically good to excellent. Most of these songs were hits. As a sampler of Elton's music, this collection is a very good start. However, this CD does have a few flaws. The principal flaw is that while the CD purports to be Elton John's greatest hits, it does miss quite a few hits. The missing songs that stood out most noticeably to me are "Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds" and "Pinball Wizard". However, there are other songs that were top 10 that were missed as well. It is impossible to represent Elton's greatest hits with only two CDs, and that is the main flaw of this collection.
The difficulty with most "greatest hits" collections is choosing the songs. Regardless of how good a job you do, there will be a fan who thinks a song was neglected. Conversely, there will be other fans that think a song on the collection should have been excluded. Rather than complain about what was or wasn't on this collection, the focus should be on this collection alone. At this time, this collection is the best single representation of Elton over the bulk of his career. For the songs that were missed from this collection, you can add "Rare Masters" and "Love Songs", which pick up a lot more of Elton's early career and fills in more of Elton's best.
Note that there are several versions of this collection. The U.S. version has "Levon" and "Blessed." This version replaces those songs with "Blue Eyes" and "Made in England." I like all four songs, but choices have to be made to keep this collection to two CD's.
With more than 40 albums, comprising hundreds of songs, choosing the 34 best is an absolutely terrible job. Similar to those people who would have added other songs, or subtracted some of those included, I too would have done something similar. However, we would never have agreed on the best. So take this CD as the best collection available to sample Elton's career. From that viewpoint, this CD rates 5 stars. Then you can add the other CDs I mentioned, and in the case of the classic albums and a few others, add original albums as well. We live in an imperfect world, thus a less than perfect collection of Elton's career is better than not having this collection at all.