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Flyin' Shoes

Townes Van Zandt

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iTunes Editors’ Notes

Whether singing from the heady heights of a Saturday night spree or the regret-strewn squalor of a Sunday morning spent in the drunk tank, Townes Van Zandt was able to inject unanticipated shades of meaning into his weathered baritone. A catch in Townes' voice could turn the happiest song into a graveyard lament or a murder ballad into a fond memory. Though often covered by other artists, Townes Van Zandt was always his own best interpreter, and nowhere is this better demonstrated than on 1978's Flyin' Shoes, an album full of deceptively simple ballads of heartbreaking depth and Dylanesque flights of lyrical fancy with a plainspoken edge. Townes always thrived on this sort of lyrical ambiguity. In his hands the nonsense couplets of "Dollar Bill Blues" become signposts on the road to damnation, while his matter-of- fact delivery demystifies the cryptic lyrical pirouettes of "Flyin' Shoes," making them sound as ageless as Robert Johnson's "Love In Vain.” Though Townes had made astounding albums before this, with Flyin' Shoes he proved himself a songwriter on par with Hank Williams, Roy Acuff and anyone else you'd care to name.

Customer Reviews

I'll Be Tying on My Flyin' Shoes

It does Townes justice to say that he is the most underrated and forgotten songwriter of the 20th century. When people talk about the best songwriters of the century, the names usually heard are Bob Dylan, Kris Kristofferson, Paul Simon. Paul McCartney, John Lennon, Bernie Taupin, Etc.. And still somehow the name Townes Van Zandt doesnt find itself among the list. This Album, Flyin' Shoes, has to be one of the greatest country records to never be heard by the masses. The song, "When She Don't Me," could make you miss someone who is sitting right next to you. "Flyin' Shoes" is the song I've always wished that I had written. I came across Townes Van Zandt on accident whilst searching for a Rolling Stones song, and have been in love with his music ever since. To me Townes is the 70's equal to what Ryan Adams is today in the Alt-Country world. Don't waste any chance that you have to buy this album.... you will not be disappointed.

Steve Earle calls Townes . . .

. . . the greatest songwriter of the 20th century, and I believe he stated that he would stand on a table and shout that statement out! Indeed he is right. These songs are beautiful, sad and sorrowful, and they are crafted with just the right amount of quiet introspective moments. What a terrific album to finally come across. Sorry it took me so long.

Biography

Born: March 7, 1944 in Fort Worth, TX

Genre: Country

Years Active: '60s, '70s, '80s, '90s

Townes Van Zandt's music doesn't jump up and down, wear fancy clothes, or beat around the bush. Whether he was singing a quiet, introspective country-folk song or a driving, hungry blues, Van Zandt's lyrics and melodies were filled with the kind of haunting truth and beauty that you knew instinctively. His music came straight from his soul by way of a kind heart, an honest mind, and a keen ear for the gentle blend of words and melody. He could bring you down to a place so sad that you felt like you...
Full Bio