On KUT's Texas Music Matters on Sunday there was an hour-long show about Townes Van Zandt. This is really an excellent listen! It's a podcast, an mp3 stream that you can click on and listen through the browser.
I wasn't all that familiar with Townes before moving here, other than having heard his songs sung by other people, like "Pancho and Lefty" and "White Freightliner". Actually I'm still not familiar enough with him yet. He's a singer/songwriter's singer/songwriter (that's a mouthful) and is regarded by many to be one of the greatest songwriters who ever lived. He died in 1997 on New Year's Day, the anniversary of Hank Williams' passing, but he is still there like a ghost practically every time somebody gets up on stage and plays guitar, esp. if the leaning is a little folksy, rootsy, or just plain ol' Texan. They don't want to leave the stage until they've played something by Townes (sort of the folk equivalent of Stevie Ray Vaughan). We saw "Walk the Line" at the Alamo Drafthouse (which is a really great movie, by the way) and saw the preview for a documentary coming out about Townes called "Be Here to Love Me", appropriately before watching a biopic on yet another messed-up but much more famous legend. I'm hoping we can make it to a screening (which Austin, of course, will get before most places, see the link above for screening dates and more information). If not, it's sure to be available on DVD, which might even be a better way to see it... more time to watch things twice and let them soak in.
Townes Van Zandt website - Music - Austin - Texas -