Thursday, September 01, 2011

The bandit and the Judas

A young Emmylou Harris in 1977, covering Townes van Zandt's classic "Pancho and Lefty". This is one of the songs I cover myself, because it's a classic.

Here's a couple more versions:

The Willie Nelson / Waylon Jennings version was the one that made the song somewhat famous, and kept Townes in booze for several years.

And Townes himself, only four years before the end. He can't hit the high notes anymore, but his cracked voice full of the sadness of the world still fits the song so well...

-- Badtux the Music Penguin


  1. Good post. Nice coming across someone who appreciates Townes. I was there in the audience by accident when he recorded Live at the Old Quarter in Houston in the late'60s and he completely blew me away. Years later I used to go see him during his declining years travelling with Guy Clark when they'd play at the Cactus Cafe at UT. Watching him on the long downhill slide didn't take a thing away from him.

    Always regretted not knowing about Gram Parsons when Emmylou must have been at her absolute heavenmost. I'd love to have seen one of those performances.

    Thanks for good sounds and some great memories. J

  2. Thanks. Still one of my favorites.


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