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iTunes Review

Yet another heartbreaking live album from a man who was destined for heartbreak from the moment he strapped on his guitar. These recordings are said to be from the same European shows that provided the material for Abnormal and The Highway Kind, and his voice is in the same shape: weathered but not yet destroyed, aged prematurely but in line with the body of man destined to die at age 52. There are better live albums—Live at the Old Quarter, Houston, Texas and Rear View Mirror, for starters—but for anyone interested in the soul of Townes Van Zandt, this is a truthful look at a life spent on the road performing for a living. There are plenty of first-rate choices ("Snowin' on Raton," "Nothin'," "To Live's to Fly") and some unusual ones ("Gone Too Long," "Lover's Lullabye," "Stopping Off Place"). The cover of his hero Hank Williams' "Alone & Forsaken" is chilling, with Van Zandt's voice unable to navigate the melody's nuances; it took on added resonance after he died on New Year's Day, just like Hank himself.

Customer Reviews

Sad, but a must have

This is the only album of his I'd give less than 5 stars. I gave it four. Any serious TVZ fan will hear in the first song the toll that alcoholism and drugs had taken on one of if not the best of all American songwriters. You can almost hear death in his voice. I prefer to remember and listen to a live, youthful, more in tune TVZ like in his early days at the Austin Outhouse. Try listening to an earlier version of Flying Shoes compared to the later version on this album. It is indeed sad, but like with everything TVZ did, it's magic and is a must have for the true fan. It will strike a chord in your soul, which all good music should.


Born: March 7, 1944 in Fort Worth, TX

Genre: Singer/Songwriter

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