I bought this as a one-time effort to have as many ethnic blues artists as possible in order to put together a blues show for my hospital radio programme. As it turned out, I found the characters, and they ARE characters in the bizarre meaning of the word, fascinating. Their lives, a mixture of violence, poverty, riches, infirmities, recognition, obscurity...makes for great reading. Questionable as lives go, but gripping stuff. If you want an instant blues collection, but largely ancient re-mastered recordings from the 20's, 30's, 40's, 50's, then this set is the way to go. Many of the records are in the Library of Congress as significant in social and artistic terms. You'll have some favorites, and some tracks will make you wonder why someone thought they were good! But from Bessie Smith to Memphis Minnie, there's blues for everyone here.