The late Great TVZ

TOWNES VAN ZANT - Pancho and Lefty (1972)

This just a great great song and the original by Townes Van Zandt in my opinion is the best. There is a new album of unreleased takes coming out by TVZ and it includes a take of Pancho without any strings. Should be worth listening to, as well as the rest of the album of course. The song first emerged on TVZ's fabulously titled album The Late Great Townes Van Zandt (1972).

WILLIE NELSON & MERLE HAGGARD - Pancho and Lefty (1983)

Willie and Merle two of country's real greats also did an excellent version which reached number 1 in the Country Charts. Although this is a top version too, I still think TVZ's is better. This is taken from their duet album imaginatively titled Pancho and Lefty (1983)

BOB DYLAN & WILLIE NELSON - Pancho and Lefty (1993)

Finally we have Dylan joining Willie on another fabulous take. Even Bobby's voice rises to the occasion here. Well done Bob. This was recorded at Willie Nelson's 60th Birthday, TV special on April 25th 1993.

What's your favourite take??


Singing Bear said...

One of THE great songs. The original is brilliant but there are some very fine Townes' live recordings, many of which I think are even better in their stripped down form (particularly 'Live At The Old Quarter, Houston'). Bob and Willie know a supreme tune when they hear one and you can't go wrong with old Merle. Really looking forward to the TVZ album.

Old Pa's Corner said...

SB - I an Having a Townes phase at the moment will definately check out your suggestion.

Anonymous said...

I wish I knew why I love this song so much. Can anyone help me out here?

Old Pa's Corner said...

Anon - easy it is just a fantastic song, I cant get it out of my head for the past few days...thanks for popping in!

jumprightin said...

In an interview, Townes remarked that he could tell Willie & Merle were reading the lyric.

A reason to like the song is the mysteries in it: you can fill in the blanks several ways and come up with different but still compelling stories.

Old Pa's Corner said...

Jumprightin - Willie you cheater...I bet Bob new his lines...as I said it is simply a great great song..but spot on with what you say

The Swede said...

Wonderful stuff indeed. I saw TVZ live towards the end of his life and to be honest, his performance was inconsistent, but, much like a few Dylan shows I could mention, the great moments were truly transcendent.

Old Pa's Corner said...

TS - at least you have the memory of seeing the great man. Even a die hard BD fan like myself has to admid his voice is gone...I would still go to another concert tho' 'good suffereing'

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