Poet: A Tribute to Townes Van Zandt
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Top Customer Reviews
Poet may not be the last Van Zandt tribute we'll ever hear, but it sets the gold standard. Its producers have assembled a stellar collection of folk and country artists, all of whom turn in impassioned performances. The production is right, too -- a big consideration when one considers the clunky production that mars a number of Van Zandt's own recordings. Billy Joe Shaver offers a rocking roadhouse-blues version of "White Freightliner Blues," and it's great. But except for Steve Earle and the Dukes ("Two Girls"), everybody else prefers an austere acoustic approach whose effect is to underscore Van Zandt's roots in traditional music. No one does it so explicitly as Emmylou Harris, who sets the obscure "Snake Song" to a plaintive old-time banjo sound. If one didn't know better, one might almost think this was some venerable Appalachian lyric and melody. Willie Nelson's stark take on "Marie," one of Van Zandt's last songs, brings to mind the mood and storyline of Woody Guthrie's "I Ain't Got No Home."
Still, for all his manifest influences, Van Zandt was an original, a melancholy romantic who never lost his ability to laugh. Few have known, either, how to tell a story better than he did.Read more ›
I sympathize with the reviewers who write that TVZ's originals top most of these covers (though in fairness, Townes' studio recordings were often marred by cheesy production). As an introduction, "Live at the Old Quarter" is superior. This disk is a complement to, not a substitute for, Townes' own recordings. But this collection works, if only for that while Townes was a "poet" and the cover illustration has him looking suitably folkie/poetical, enough of his contemporaries who have retained their edges (if not their chops) are on hand to keep TVZ from being embalmed in treacle.
Personal favorites: Willie Nelson absolutely nails "Marie," and the Lucinda Williams/"Nothin'" pairing is inspired. (In general the artist/song pairings work well: Nanci Griffith gets "The Tower Song" and John Prine on "Loretta," for example.) Billie Joe Shaver reminds us that while TVZ carried an acoustic, he could wail.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Mediocre covers at best. Just listen to the originals, you won't miss anything here.Published 3 months ago by ivan
I give it five stars before I've even listened to it. Just because TVZ is one of my all-time favorites.Published 3 months ago by Kevin W Bishop
I love it, much better than Cats. I'd see it again and again.Published 8 months ago by Robert Sikes
I don't know which is the better reason to own the cd "Poet: A Tribute To Townes Van Zandt", the songs, all written by Townes Van Zandt, that are performed on this disc or... Read morePublished 8 months ago by Janet Chandler
Overall a very good cover for the artist, but not quite as good as I had hoped for. Like others who reviewed this item I also feel like it was done by the right people for the... Read morePublished on June 25, 2013 by Tony H.
Poet is one of the best cover albums I've ever heard. Townes was a tortured soul but he was a great Poet no doubt. The Tower song ,Pancho n Lefty, If I Needed You Wow!Published on May 9, 2013 by george stone
Really like this CD, great renditions of Townes music...would totally recommend it;
I didnt give it a 5 star rating as I will always loves Townes Versions.
Townes is indeed a 'Poet' and some wonderful interpretations. Especially love Willie Nelson and Lucinda's voices on their chosen songs. Read morePublished on December 17, 2012 by Carmela Daly