Early recordings by George Shearing have been usually been reissued in a scattershot, rather incomplete fashion, but this 97-track boxed-set compilation includes just about everything he recorded between 1939 and 1951 for labels such as Decca, Parlophone, Ace of Clubs, Savoy, Discovery, and MGM, along with a few songs that made their first appearance a few years ago on a Hep CD. While not every cut is memorable, one can hear the pianist's style evolve over the time frame from a Teddy Wilson-influenced swinger into the famous locked-hands player who was equally at home in bop. Shearing also was a very capable accordion player in his early years, which he demonstrated on a Leonard Feather-produced recording session. In addition to his earliest recording of his famous quintet which added vibes, Shearing is heard extensively as a soloist, in trios, and in two rarely reissued collaborations with Stephane Grappelli. Joop Visser's extensive liner notes are an added bonus. Even though a serious Shearing collector may already have many of the selections in this set, the vastly improved sound, the proper documentation of the musicians and composers, and the thoroughness of the scope of this release make it an essential purchase.