It's a brave move to call something `Definitive' when the artist has recorded so much and has such a variety of styles but this box set pretty much does it. With almost 90 tracks that cover the spectrum of Leadbelly's output taking in Blues, Cowboy songs, Folk, Work songs, Prison songs and just about anything else you can think of - there's even a song on here of him demonstrating his dancing skills!!
The sound has obviously had a lot of time spent on it so you can hear his imperious voice and stunning musicianship and the notes explain a lot about the myth and the reality of the man. The design is well thought out and there are quite a few pictures I'd never seen before. I didn't even know footage of Leadbelly existed so to have him performing three songs which are included on the DVD is a revelation and the little news film of him and Lomax shows what life must have been like for a Southern black man back in those days. The price of this box means that it's great for new fans of Leadbelly as all of the classics are included as well as old fans as there's just so much stuff that you wouldn't find on any other release.