For the Sake of the Song
Often referred to as 'The Best Songwriter In The World' (an epithet foisted upon him by Steve Earle), singer / songwriter Townes Van Zandt (1944 - 1997) was once described by the LA Times as "A cross between Woody Guthrie and Leonard Cohen". However, despite his passionately-loyal (albeit minuscule) fanbase, legendary status and unconditional peer group approval, Van Zandt achieved virtually no commercial success with his own records during his lifetime, and he never recorded for a major label. Due to the complicated legal mess into which his career and life descended, Van Zandt saw scant remuneration for the later hit recordings of his songs, by Emmylou Harris, Don Williams, Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard, and spent much of his life penniless, scuffling, and in debt. However, his body of work has continued to grow in stature since his death, and latterly there has been a huge revival of interest in his records. Van Zandt recorded eleven studio albums and a half-dozen or so live albums during his truncated career. Charly's reissue programme presents the best of these on 180 gram vinyl.