Whether or not one will buy this killer box set may depend on the amount Hooker material you have in your collection. There's no question that this magnificent box set is the dinfinitive collection of John Lee Hooker material. It covers his entire recording career from the late 40's through the 90's. Still, it's a drop in the bucket considering the vast wealth of material he recorded over his 50 year career. One wouldn't be able to carry or afford his entire recording output. For new fans or people who may be a little "thin" with Hooker material, this is, without a doubt the way to go. As for me, I'm OK with John Lee Hooker cd's, but I do see this on my shelf in the near future. I mean what the heck, it's all Hooker and it's all good.
I do think they could of extended the set to another disc of material, along with a DVD of vintage Hooker in concert. They did it with the recently released Buddy Guy box set, "Can't Quit the Blues", with rave reviews. Anyway, no matter which way you slice it, you're getting quality John Lee Hooker material with this set. I consider this box set essential.
One more note for anyone who may be interested in early Hooker material. There's a 10 CD box set out there with vintage, mostly solo, Hooker recordings. I'm talking Johnny Lee with only guitar and a big o'l stomping foot. This isn't recomemmed for wimps, strictly die hard fans who enjoy this type of stuff. The better news is that the set is under $25.00. If you type in John Lee Hooker through Amazon, you'll come up with about 600 Hooker titles. You'll get a headache looking at all of them. But, if you type in John Lee Hooker: Portrait, which is tha name of this killer box set, you'll come to the page of this box set. I got a little pissed because the page didn't include any info on the set. I mean, I like to see what I'm buying. So I bought the set, brand new for around $25.00. I wrote a reveiw on it, and painstakenly inclucded the entire track listing, so anyone who may be interested can see the song titles. Remember, this set is for die hard fans only!!
I hope this reveiw helped all fans of John Lee Hooker. Thanks for reading.