Townes Van Zandt made a career out of weathered, introspective songs dedicated to despair and yearning. Spanning nearly 30 years and 10 studio albums, the late Texan’s country-folk has endured, weary and enigmatic and elegant. And today’s previously unheard “Sky Blue” is no different.
The track is part of Van Zandt’s forthcoming Sky Blue, his fifth posthumous collection to date. Out 3/7 in honor of what would have been the songwriter’s 75th birthday, the album contains 11 recordings made in early 1973 with close friend Bill Hedgepeth. There are raw, acoustic drafts of TVZ classics, a few traditional covers, as well as two never before heard originals.
Today we get to hear the opening track, “All I Need.” Van Zandt is an honest storyteller, and here, his words tumble out soft and sunken. He wades through hopelessness and daydreams with a dusty sweetness. But that’s the thing about Van Zandt, no matter how emotionally depleting, his music still feels kind.
Listen to “All I Need” below.
01 “All I Need”
02 “Rex’s Blues”
03 “Hills of Roane County”
04 “Sky Blue”
05 “Forever For Always For Certain”
06 “Blue Ridge Mountain Blues (Smoky Version)”
07 “Pancho and Lefty”
08 “Snake Song”
09 “Silver Ships of Andilar”
10 “Dream Spider”
11 “The Last Thing On My Mind”
Sky Blue is out 3/7 via TVZ/Fat Possum. Pre-order it here.