Leonard Cohen dead: Canadian singer-songwriter passes away at 82


#1

CNN:

Leonard Cohen dead: Canadian singer-songwriter passes away at 82

Canadian singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen has died at the age of 82.“We have lost one of music’s most revered and prolific visionaries,” said a post on the artist’s official Facebook page.
A highly-respected artist known for his poetic and lyrical music, Cohen wrote a number of popular songs including the often-covered “Hallelujah.”
His 14th studio album, “You Want It Darker,” had just been released on October 21.

Cohen’s son, Adam, who helped produce his latest album, said in a statement his father died in the knowledge he’d made “one of his greatest records.”
“He was writing up until his last moments with his unique brand of humor,” he said.
Cohen’s manager, Robery Kory, said the artist’s work would inspire “for generations to come.”
“Unmatched in his creativity, insight and crippling candor, Leonard Cohen was a true visionary whose voice will be sorely missed,” he said in a statement.


#2

Leonard Cohen was a poet, songwriter, singer, visionary, and mystic. Alongside Bob Dylan, Paul Simon, and Joni Mitchell, he was the finest songwriter of his age. Many of his songs are dark but they are gems. He maintained his Jewish identity (including observing the Sabbath even while on tour) despite becoming a Buddhist monk and despite his fascination with Jesus. He will be sorely missed.


#3

Yes. A poet and visionary, and a gentleman. I’m so, so sad about this.

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#4

Praying for the repose of his soul.


#5

I will say he influenced my thinking a lot. In terms of concern about the future and just his profound deep thoughts. I saw his “The Future” tour back in the early 90’s in NYC-great show. However, as I have grown in the Faith, I am continually becoming more detached from the world and Cohen’s sexual lyrics make me uncomfortable. We must love Our Blessed Lord above all other loves. I pray for Cohen’s soul, I want to believe he was a good man and somehow made it in the end. And I pray for his family. + + +


#6

“Anthem”

"The birds they sang at the break of day
Start again I heard them say
Don’t dwell on what has passed away
Or what is yet to be

Ah the wars they will be fought again
The holy dove she will be caught again
Bought and sold and bought again
The dove is never free

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in

We asked for signs the signs were sent
The birth betrayed the marriage spent
Yeah the widowhood of every government
Signs for all to see

I can’t run no more with that lawless crowd
While the killers in high places say their prayers out loud
But they’ve summoned up a thundercloud
They’re gonna hear from me

You can add up the parts but you won’t have the sum
You can strike up the march there is no drum
Every heart to love will come
But like a refugee

Ring the bells that still can ring
Forget your perfect offering
There is a crack in everything
That’s how the light gets in"

Wow. I’d like to hear this from the pulpit!
Edit/Delete Message


#7

Tower of Song

Well my friends are gone and my hair is grey
I ache in the places where I used to play
And I’m crazy for love but I’m not coming on
I’m just paying my rent every day
Oh in the Tower of Song
I said to Hank Williams: how lonely does it get?
Hank Williams hasn’t answered yet
But I hear him coughing all night long
A hundred floors above me
In the Tower of Song

I was born like this, I had no choice
I was born with the gift of a golden voice
And twenty-seven angels from the Great Beyond
They tied me to this table right here
In the Tower of Song

So you can stick your little pins in that voodoo doll
I’m very sorry, baby, doesn’t look like me at all
I’m standing by the window where the light is strong
Ah they don’t let a woman kill you
Not in the Tower of Song

Now you can say that I’ve grown bitter but of this you may be sure
The rich have got their channels in the bedrooms of the poor
And there’s a mighty judgment coming, but I may be wrong
You see, you hear these funny voices
In the Tower of Song

I see you standing on the other side
I don’t know how the river got so wide
I loved you baby, way back when
And all the bridges are burning that we might have crossed
But I feel so close to everything that we lost
We’ll never have to lose it again

Now I bid you farewell, I don’t know when I’ll be back
There moving us tomorrow to that tower down the track
But you’ll be hearing from me baby, long after I’m gone
I’ll be speaking to you sweetly
From a window in the Tower of Song

Yeah my friends are gone and my hair is gray
I ache in the places where I used to play
And I’m crazy for love but I’m not coming on
I’m just paying my rent every day
Oh in the Tower of Song


#8

Its kind of just hitting me now. I’m in full-fledged grieving mode. This man has been a part of my life for almost 30 years. I feel like I knew him. I’ll never forget the day I first heard his voice. I was walking through my living room and the TV was on, a show he did in Austin, Texas, some off beat channel. I stopped dead in my tracks and was transfixed. My life was forever changed. My heart cries today!


#9

Will always remember Jeff Buckley’s version of “Hallelujah” from “The O.C.”


#10

A musician who in Buckley’s case sadly passed on much too soon.


#11

He wrote a lot of beautiful songs with sometimes haunting lyrics. He also had a very unique voice that may not have appealed to everyone, but he had a dedicated following.


#12

His voice appealed to me when he sang Suzanne, and Hey that’s no way to say good-bye.

Rest in Peace Leonard.


#13

Great article, written by Leonard Cohen’s cousin, giving personal details of his life, WARNING-some vulgar content: news.nationalpost.com/news/canada/andrew-cohen-after-a-feverish-life-its-closing-time-and-my-cousin-leonard-is-home

And how could I forget perhaps his greatest spiritual song??? Words I have often contemplated. I am breathless at these words, which are so very poignant at this present hour, as our dear Leonard has gone to the Lord…

“If It Be Your Will”

"If it be Your will that I speak no more
And my voice be still as it was before
I will speak no more
I shall abide until I am spoken for
If it be Your will

If it be Your will that a voice be true
From this broken hill I will sing to You
From this broken hill
All Your praises they shall ring
If it be Your will to let me sing

If it be Your will if there is a choice
Let the rivers fill let the hills rejoice
Let Your mercy spill
On all these burning hearts in Hell
If it be Your will
To make us well

And draw us near and bind us tight
All Your children here in their rags of light
In our rags of light
All dressed to kill
And end this night
If it be Your will"


#14

Rest in Peace dear Leonard. He was a one-of-a-kind. A lot of his songs are dark, but so beautiful.


#15

I want to follow-up on this thread: our parish has a priest who frequently fills in for our priest and associate priest. He’s a retired Jesuit and tonight, in what I sense was a bit of theatrics, he had the choir song “Hallelujah”. He always speaks for a minute after announcements and made a good talk tonight about not worrying about the election, Christ is our savior. Then he mentioned Leonard Cohen and asked if the choir knew the tune. They said no but once the closing prayer was said the gentleman who announces the songs said the closing song would be “Hallejuah”. The choir has a musician who sings solo on occasion and has kind of a baritone/smokers voice. She seems to be off chord sometimes, though very good none the less. She took the main lines of the song and it was unbelievable.

First, our three year-old had been asking if mass was over beginning after we said peace (we went early for confession so long one for the kiddos). Father was quick to get off the altar after closing prayer and people usually stampede out behind him. But nobody left. Nobody. People were crying, my wife cried, I was choked up, our daughter–who knows the song, to a point, from Shrek-- didn’t utter a word but stared memorized. Huge ovation at the end.

Father Porter mentioned during his little pre-closing prayer talk that the song had brought more people into or back to Christianity in the 20th century than anything else. Kind of ironic given Cohen was not a Christian, no? Whatever the case may be, it was a peek into what good Church music can do. Another member of the choir, with an operatic voice, sang “Ave Maria” once and it was unbelievable. And I think to myself, why are we not having these songs every mass? It’s so powerful and uplifting and in this post-Vatican II world in which we focus on the horizontal and not the vertical it is refreshing.


#16

I’m very sad to hear this.


#17

I expect with the demise of Bowie, Prince and others we will obviously have to get used to the slow fading away of many of the musical icons we grew up with and for youngsters to be asking ‘who them’ in a few years.


#18

Funny you mention that, I was just thinking about a controversial comment made a few years ago by April Lavigne in which she mispronounced David Bowie’s last name while saying she didn’t know much about him (if I remember correctly). Flash forward a few years and we’ve seen the enormous outpouring of grief regarding Bowie (somewhat surprising to me) whereas April Lavigne has all but faded away. Mind you, I don’t think it’s necessarily a good or healthy thing for our culture that we’re still obsessing about David Bowie, Mick Jagger and the Beatles in the absence of any new Bowies, Jaggers and Lennons, etc.


#19

Sorry, meant Avril not April.


#20

Agreed,. the best work by all those guys was many years ago and they represent a now long vanished era. Even when I was at school over 20 years ago they were perceived as music for an older generation. I think there is a place for those individuals but there is definitely a feeling that the age of iconic or seminal figures has ended and we seem now to have moderately popular figures who spring up and are popular but rarely in the way same way. Perhaps we now have too much choice to easily, whereas before one had to hunt for records, save to buy them and it enhanced the value of the listening experience.


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