Anyone who has developed a deep love for Doc Watson will be elated by this three-disc biographical journey through his life and music. Two discs are devoted to conversations between Watson and longtime friend David Holt
, in which Doc recalls his youth, his early career, and his tours with son Merle
. Scattered throughout the interview are intimate performances of songs that Watson has played throughout his career, including "Deep River Blues," "Tom Dooley," and a version of "Tennessee Stud" that ranks among the most thrilling ever heard. The set's 72-page booklet, a detailed biography full of reminiscences, song notes, and rare photographs, is an absolute treasure, as fascinating as anything that is ever likely to be assembled on the man. Disc three is devoted to an excellent concert recorded at the Diana Wortham Theater in Ashville, NC, in 2001. Packed with favorites as well as some songs that Watson has never recorded, it proves that, at nearly 80, he is every bit as captivating as he was at Gerdes Folk City in the early '60s. It's a pity there aren't more sets like this around, but it seems fitting that the great Doc Watson should be among the first to have one.