Most JSP box sets are comprehensive chronological core samples taken from the recording careers of great jazz, blues and country musicians. Some may find JSP's Lightning Special, Vol. 2, subtitled "Volume Two of the Collected Works," to be uncharacteristically difficult to navigate. Chronologically scrambled, this four-CD set also contains so many recordings by other musicians that Hopkins gets pushed aside, as it were, half way through his own retrospective. Yes, this is a wonderful grab bag of Texas blues recordings cut during the eventful years between 1946 and 1956, but Hopkins only appears on 62 out of 106 tracks. Yes, it is exciting to hear so many vintage postwar blues performances by the friends and contemporaries of Hopkins, including Manny Nichols, Lil' Son Jackson, J.D. Edwards, Soldier Boy Houston, Ernest Lewis and Frankie Lee Sims, but with so many guests on board the collection really should have been titled "Lightnin' Slim and His Buddies." The jumbled chronology seems most alarming as Hopkins' very first recordings -- waxed in Los Angeles on November 9, 1946 with pianist Thunder Smith -- show up halfway through Disc C in this second volume of Lightning Special! The inclusion of three rare sides by Thunder Smith without Hopkins is highly commendable, and the music throughout the collection is outstanding. Yet anyone seeking to cultivate an understanding of the man's recorded legacy might well find this sequentially convoluted anthology to be confusing and disorganized. During this time period, Hopkins' records were issued on a bewildering variety of labels, including Aladdin, Gold Star, Score, RPM, Specialty, Sittin' In With, Jax, Modern, Crown, Kent, United and Heritage. Is JSP's approach an attempt to transcend the particulars and go for the heart of the legacy? Maybe the whole point of this volume in the ongoing Lightnin' Hopkins retrospective is to ignore the details, kick back and enjoy the man's amazing artistry -- sort of a Southwestern parallel to that of John Lee Hooker -- and allow his music to be placed into context alongside 44 performances by his chums and competitors. Given the amount of uncommon material included herein, as well as the golden opportunity to study the back alleys of postwar Texas blues, this set is well worth latching onto. But the best way to follow the career of Lightnin' Hopkins, session by session from the very beginning, is still via the superbly researched and carefully presented Classics Chronological Blues and Rhythm Series. Compared to that impressive edifice, JSP's Lightning Special, Vol. 2 seems well-intentioned but confusingly presented, and in this case misleadingly titled.