Posts Tagged ‘Townes Van Zandt’

I like to give musical gifts.

January 31, 2009

I recently got the opportunity to sit in my friend David’s movie and listening room. I got to experience a couple of tunes in this room, and it was way better than any listening experience I’ve ever had in my own home. I was sold instantly on the “5.1 channel super audio format.” During this enlightening listening experience, I discovered that my fellow music lover had never heard of the band Pavement. I of course was HORRIFIED. I decided to go out and purchase some gifts for him. I’ve included a picture of the 3 CDs I got for him below:


Pavement’s Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain (1994): L.A.’s Desert Origins (2006)

This was the first album that I ran out and got him, especially since he didn’t know who they were. I decided to buy him the 2006 rerelease box set of Crooked Rain, Crooked Rain. It’s my favorite Pavement album. The original recording was #8 on Pitchfork Media’s top 100 albums of the 90s and was listed in Rolling Stone’s 500 greatest albums of all time. I only own the original; the rerelease has 37 extra songs on it. 25 of these songs were previously unreleased. The box also contains a 62 page booklet of Pavement fun. I’m sort of jealous that he is going to have this and not me, but what can I say, I’m nice

Townes Van Zandt’s Live at the Old Quarter, Houston, Texas (1977)

I learned about this album from a very special someone named Mike. It’s one of his favorite albums, and it has recently become one of mine. One of the reasons why I decided to purchase this particular double live album for David is all the little crowd noises and the chatting between Townes and his audience. I can just imagine how beautiful this will sound in his listening room. There are some really stunning tracks on here such as “Pancho and Letty”, “Rex’s Blues”, “Cocaine Blues”, and the cover of Bo Diddley’s “Who do you love?”. I think my favorite though is the cover of Merle Travis’s “Nine Pound Hammer”. On some of the tracks he tells a couple of jokes to keep the audience’s attention, which reminds me a lot of David, especially the joke on Mr. Mudd & Mr. Gold. I’ve tried to write it out for you below:

There was this drunk walking down the street and he said to the cop “man someone stole my car.” The cop says, “Well where was it?” The guy says, “Well it was on the end of this key.” The cop says, “Well I don’t know, why don’t you go down to the precinct house and fill out the proper forms.” The guy says, “ok,” and he starts to walk off and the cop says, “Before you go down there you better zip up your fly” and the guy says, “Oh man they got my girl too.”

I knew David was a fan of Bob Dylan and Dire Straits, it will be interesting to see what he thinks of Townes Van Zandt.

The Best of Guided by Voices: Human Amusements at Hourly Rates (2003); includes tracks from 1987 to 2003

I chose to get David this album, due to a nightmare I had. I had a dream that because he had never heard of Pavement that it was highly plausible that he never heard of Guided by Voices either. Now, if you have never bought a Guided by Voices album it is extremely intimidating to go out and buy one of the many albums that they made. Just to give you an idea of how prolific they were here’s some stats: 15/16 Studio Albums, 1 Live Album, 4 Compilation albums, 16 Extended plays, 15 Singles, 6 Video Albums, 7 Soundtracks, 4 Box sets, and 2 Books. I could do a blog just on GBV. So instead of worrying over which studio album to buy him, I bought him, in my opinion, one of the best compilations ever done. It contains some of my favorite Guided by Voices tracks including: “I am a Scientist” (which David is one too), “Hot Freaks”, “My Valuable Hunting Knife”, “the official ironman rally song”, “motor away”, and “Bulldog Skin”. If he doesn’t like this, I don’t know if we can still be friends.

It was also David’s birthday about two weeks ago, normally I would give a mixed tape, but I decided to change it up a bit. HAPPY belated BIRTHDAY!