This photo of my beloved 1970′s Gibson J200, converted with the photoshop plugin, fractalius, is to pay tribute to the great American songwriter Townes Van Zandt. On this day in 1997 Townes died. Townes was considered by many to be one of the greatest songwriters ever, if not the greatest. I had the opportunity to see Townes play on a number of occasions and through friends in Nashville, met the man twice. Throughout his performances he would often share silly jokes, guaranteed to fill the hall with laughter. In his performances, he would also play a cover song or two by Hank Williams or the great Texas bluesman Lightning Hopkins. I’ve heard it said that Townes spent his summers in the Colorado wilderness with his horse Amigo and his summers down in Texas. Townes’ songs flow, flawlessly, as if he pulled them out of the sky while they floated by. “Sky Songs” I believe he once called them. His timeless music follows me on every road trip I take.
Please click here for Townes singing “Pancho & Lefty”, one of his most popular songs, and here for Steve Earle’s “Fort Worth Blues” which was written for Townes when he died. If you ever have a chance, check out the DVD “Be Here To Love Me Today” about the life and times of this true great Texas songwriter, it is superb.
Here’s to Townes!