Few artists deserve a boxed set as much as this underrated New Jersey singer. His 30-year career is well-documented on this four-disc collection, as it touches on his fling with teen-pop, his love for country, and his obsession with rockabilly. This set proves there was a lot more to Nelson than “Hello, Mary Lou.”
You Had It Coming (Epic)
Guitar wizard Jeff Beck steps into the 21st century with this digital-age effort. Drum loops and keyboard clinks abound on this mostly instrumental outing, but Beck’s expert picking is pure old school. That’ll never change.
Hot Caribbean Hits (Victory World)
If you’re on your way to Antigua or Aruba to dodge winter chill, this Caribbean compilation is as necessary as suntan lotion. You get the original version of “Who Let the Dogs Out?,” along with cuts by General Grant, Kindred, and Canal that’ll conjure Caribbean moods, even if you’re stuck in a blizzard.
— MALCOLM MAYHEW