Thursday, June 6, 2013

Leonard Cohen day

 
Like a bird on the wire
Like a drunk in a midnight choir
I have tried in my way to be free

Like a worm on a hook
Like a knight from some old fashioned book
I have saved all my ribbons for thee



In this late '60s clip, Judy Collins sings a live version of the song, which she had recorded on the exquisite album Who Knows Where the Time Goes. The sound is good, although the video is wacky.


I also love this footage of them duetting on "Suzanne."


Cohen's "Sisters of Mercy" was one of the first songs I learned to  play on the guitar. Anyone else fans of these artists? Judy really brought his poetic songs to mainstream audiences.

10 comments:

  1. Thanks for doing this - I do love Leonard and he sounds even better today - he has fantastic musicians behind him and I would recommend going to a concert if you get the opportunity!
    Well worth it!

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  2. I'm also a big Cohen fan. "Suzanne" is an all-time fave, but I still contend that "Hallelujah" is his high point. It's one of the most achingly gorgeous pieces of music ever written, in my opinion. For debate's sake, however, I say that Jeff Buckley's version is the best...
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HKnxmkOAj88

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    1. You've hit the nail on the head describing "Hallelujah" as achingly beautiful. Cheers!

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    2. I still remember the first time I heard Hallelujah (sung by Leonard Cohen), so I will have to say it's hauntingly beautiful. But, yes, there are some amazing versions out there.

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    3. Buckley's cover of "Hallelujah" never fails to give me pause. Achingly beautiful is perfectly said.

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  3. Never really a fan of either singer, although Cohen obviously is a fine songwriter. I saw Collins twice in the middle of her most intense Cohen phase; he wrote 3 of the 10 songs (including Sisters of Mercy) on Wildflowers, her record at the time. I really went to see her opening act on the tour: Arlo Guthrie.

    This photo of Judy and Leonard, taken backstage at the second concert I saw, accompanies an odd blog post about the two.

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  4. Big Leonard Cohen fan!!! One of my all time favorite tshirts I ever owned was a had Leonard Cohen's dashing face on it!!! Also "Hallelujah" is probably one of the most beautiful and heartbreaking songs ever written!!!

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  5. I will join the chorus of Leonard Cohen fans. His live in London Album is an incredible listen. He oozes wisdom.

    In addition, Leonard and his music led pretty directly to my marriage! That might be hyperbole, but a compelling argument can be made. My wife introduced me to Mr. Cohen. She also has a t-shirt with his face on it. It is yellow.

    Songs of Love and Hate is my favorite album, but like Zeppelin, you can't go wrong with his first four.

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    1. I have to put in a plug for "Famous Blue Raincoat" and for Jennifer Warnes album of his songs.

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  6. I'm a nearly-lifetime appreciator of Mr. Cohen. A favorite book gift from a young friend is a pairing of Dance Me to the End of Love with paintings by Henri Matisse. Beautiful. My favorite album/cd is Various Positions; though I have listened to it uncountable times, each listening reveals something new. It continues to be a comforting companion to my life's mysterious ways. He creates an opening in the ordinary world for me to view the mystical, ordinarily easily overlooked. "There is a crack in everything / That's how the light gets in."

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