Be Here To Love Me

on August 01, 2008 by Kevin Courrier
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Margaret Brown's elliptical examination of the late Texan songwriter Townes Van Zandt ("Waiting Around to Die," "Pancho and Lefty") is a loving and beautifully rendered portrait of one of America's largely unheralded artists. But rather than simply chronicle the events that gave shape to Van Zandt's troubled career, Brown provides an appealingly impressionistic view of this iconoclastic folk and country performer. She deftly weaves together his songs and interviews in order to give her storytelling a musical texture. Although Van Zandt, who sounds like a hybrid of Hank Williams and Chris Isaak, became a legend to popular performers like Willie Nelson and Emmylou Harris, he always remained on the fringes of popular taste. In "Be Here to Love Me," Brown takes us on a sad but fascinating journey to those fringes and amply illustrates why Townes Van Zandt, long before he died in 1997, had already begun haunting the musical landscape. Starring Townes Van Zandt, Willie Nelson, Emmylou Harris, Guy Clark and Kris Kristofferson. Directed by Margaret Brown. Produced by Sam Brumbaugh and Margaret Brown. A Palm release. Documentary. Not yet rated. Running time: 99 min
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