Personalities | Townes Van Zandt | Country Rock & The Outlaws | Country
(Vocals, guitar, 1944–97)
Van Zandt, the bohemian son of Texas aristocracy, spent much of his life drifting from place to place and battling alcoholism, but he became a songwriting mentor for Steve Earle, Guy Clark, Susanna Clark, Nanci Griffith, Rodney Crowell and The Flatlanders. His small, roughened voice limited the appeal of his own albums, but the many gems there were covered by countless artists. Two of his best songs became Top 3 country duets: ‘If I Needed You’ for Emmylou Harris and Don Williams in 1981 and ‘Pancho And Lefty’ for Willie Nelson and Merle Haggard in 1983.
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