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CosmicPal
04-25-2006, 11:56 AM
I've been running through these promises to you
That I made and I could not keep
Ah but a man never got a woman back
Not by begging on his knees
Or I'd crawl to you baby
And I'd fall at your feet
And I'd howl at your beauty
Like a dog in heat
And I'd claw at your heart
And I'd tear at your sheet
I'd say please, please
I'm your man

He's a poet, he's a novelist, and he's a barroom crooner. He just might be the best songwriter you've never heard of. Check out this opening stanza from his song, Take This Waltz:

Now in Vienna there's ten pretty women
There's a shoulder where Death comes to cry
There's a lobby with nine hundred windows
There's a tree where the doves go to die
There's a piece that was torn from the morning
And it hangs in the Gallery of Frost
Ay, Ay, Ay, Ay
Take this waltz, take this waltz
Take this waltz with the clamp on its jaws

When you hear the man sing, you might think you're listening to Frank Sinatra, but he tricks you- he tricks you like a street magician for your wallet. His songs might sound sweet, but if you listen to the lyrics- they are instead shockingly dark and brutal.

Give me crack and anal sex
Take the only tree that's left
and stuff it up the hole
in your culture
Give me back the Berlin wall
give me Stalin and St Paul
I've seen the future, brother:
it is murder!

Like Tom Waits, he's not easy on the ears. It will take a few listens to really get Leonard Cohen. Listening to his music is the equivalent of sitting in a smoke-filled bar listening to some old drunk sing poetry over the din of accomplished musicians. He'll not only break your heart- he'll tear into it and discard everything you love.

There'll be the breaking of the ancient
western code
Your private life will suddenly explode
There'll be phantoms
There'll be fires on the road
and the white man dancing
You'll see a woman
hanging upside down
her features covered by her fallen gown
and all the lousy little poets
coming round
tryin' to sound like Charlie Manson

If you want something different, something cool- do yourself a favor and listen to the man- Leonard Cohen.

Baby Lee
04-25-2006, 12:10 PM
A couple of my favorites

Well I see you there with the rose in your teeth
One more thin gypsy thief

Now Iíve heard there was a secret chord
That david played, and it pleased the lord
But you donít really care for music, do you?

ChiefFripp
04-25-2006, 12:16 PM
Good singer, even better lyricist.

phisherman
04-26-2006, 08:48 AM
one of my favorites ever...

ahhh, famous blue raincoat

bp

CosmicPal
04-26-2006, 12:06 PM
one of my favorites ever...

ahhh, famous blue raincoat

bp

It's four in the morning, the end of December
I'm writing you now just to see if you're better
New York is cold, but I like where I'm living
There's music on Clinton Street all through the evening.
I hear that you're building your little house deep in the desert
You're living for nothing now, I hope you're keeping some kind of record.

Yes, and Jane came by with a lock of your hair
She said that you gave it to her
That night that you planned to go clear
Did you ever go clear?

Ah, the last time we saw you you looked so much older
Your famous blue raincoat was torn at the shoulder
You'd been to the station to meet every train
And you came home without Lili Marlene

And you treated my woman to a flake of your life
And when she came back she was nobody's wife.

Well I see you there with the rose in your teeth
One more thin gypsy thief
Well I see Jane's awake --

She sends her regards.

And what can I tell you my brother, my killer
What can I possibly say?
I guess that I miss you, I guess I forgive you
I'm glad you stood in my way.

If you ever come by here, for Jane or for me
Your enemy is sleeping, and his woman is free.

Yes, and thanks, for the trouble you took from her eyes
I thought it was there for good so I never tried.

And Jane came by with a lock of your hair
She said that you gave it to her
That night that you planned to go clear --

Sincerely, L. Cohen

Baby Lee
05-28-2008, 09:43 AM
http://entertainment.timesonline.co.uk/tol/arts_and_entertainment/music/article409551.ece

BigOlChiefsfan
05-28-2008, 06:57 PM
They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
For trying to change the system from within
I’m coming now I’m coming to reward them
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

---
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

Jennifer Warnes did a Leonard Cohen 'cover' album called Famous Blue Raincoat, and she actually recorded 'First we take Manhattan' before Leonard did. By the way, Stevie Ray Vaughn provides the very tasty guitar licks on Jennifer's cover, they've recently re-released her album. Highly recommended for Cohen fans.
I'm a long time LC fan, but he's not the sort of singer/songwriter you suggest to all and sundry. Some folks are too close to the edge to listen to Leonard. Only the strong survive, and a lot of people discover Leonards music when they're not all that strong. Watch 'em.


Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river
You can hear the boats go by
You can spend the night beside her
And you know that she's half crazy
But that's why you want to be there
And she feeds you tea and oranges
That come all the way from China
And just when you mean to tell her
That you have no love to give her
Then she gets you on her wavelength
And she lets the river answer
That you've always been her lover
And you want to travel with her
And you want to travel blind
And you know that she will trust you
For you've touched her perfect body with your mind.
And Jesus was a sailor
When he walked upon the water
And he spent a long time watching
From his lonely wooden tower
And when he knew for certain
Only drowning men could see him
He said "All men will be sailors then
Until the sea shall free them"
But he himself was broken
Long before the sky would open
Forsaken, almost human
He sank beneath your wisdom like a stone
And you want to travel with him
And you want to travel blind
And you think maybe you'll trust him
For he's touched your perfect body with his mind.

Now Suzanne takes your hand
And she leads you to the river
She is wearing rags and feathers
From Salvation Army counters
And the sun pours down like honey
On our lady of the harbour
And she shows you where to look
Among the garbage and the flowers
There are heroes in the seaweed
There are children in the morning
They are leaning out for love
And they will lean that way forever
While Suzanne holds the mirror
And you want to travel with her
And you want to travel blind
And you know that you can trust her
For she's touched your perfect body with her mind.

Baby Lee
05-28-2008, 07:08 PM
Jennifer Warnes did a Leonard Cohen 'cover' album called Famous Blue Raincoat, and she actually recorded 'First we take Manhattan' before Leonard did. By the way, Stevie Ray Vaughn provides the very tasty guitar licks on Jennifer's cover, they've recently re-released her album. Highly recommended for Cohen fans.
Famous Blue Raincoat and Jazz at the Pawnshop are two of the best mastered recordings in history.

BigOlChiefsfan
05-28-2008, 07:25 PM
Agreed. I take Famous Blue Raincoat and Dark Side of the Moon with me to buy new stereo equipment, shows what the new gear can do.

Baby Lee
05-28-2008, 07:30 PM
Agreed. I take Famous Blue Raincoat and Dark Side of the Moon with me to buy new stereo equipment, shows what the new gear can do.

Have you heard Jazz at the Pawnshop?

I was in love with that from the first time I got ahold of a fuzzy cassette copy [that didn't even give me an inkling of the recording quality]. For the longest I thought I was going to have to shell out the $40-60 it sells for on Ebay, until I lucked across an Audiosource promotional pressing [SACD no less] for $20.

BigOlChiefsfan
05-28-2008, 07:37 PM
No, but I'll keep an eye peeled. Sounds good.

Baby Lee
05-28-2008, 07:42 PM
No, but I'll keep an eye peeled. Sounds good.

I'd say it is to laid back cool jazz what Cowboy Junkies' Trinity Session was to indie folk, seminal.

Amazon has some samples here

http://www.amazon.com/Jazz-at-Pawnshop-Various-Artists/dp/B000BBOTA0/ref=sr_1_4?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1212021678&sr=8-4

BigOlChiefsfan
05-28-2008, 08:08 PM
That's good stuff. Nice 'How High The Moon'.

You might like this one - I always have:
http://www.amazon.com/Haunted-Heart-Charlie-Haden-Quartet/dp/B0000046L7/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1212023126&sr=1-10

Baby Lee
05-28-2008, 08:12 PM
That's good stuff. Nice 'How High The Moon'.

You might like this one - I always have:
http://www.amazon.com/Haunted-Heart-Charlie-Haden-Quartet/dp/B0000046L7/ref=sr_1_10?ie=UTF8&s=music&qid=1212023126&sr=1-10

Very '80s, not in a bad way. I'm getting visuals of Moonlighting reruns and somber montages from the likes of Risky Business.

BigOlChiefsfan
05-28-2008, 09:01 PM
Yep, it was written to be the soundtrack to an imaginary film noir. Always liked it.

Anyhoo, am I the only one who was knocked over by them using a Leonard Cohen song in Shrek?

Rausch
05-28-2008, 09:11 PM
Very '80s, not in a bad way. I'm getting visuals of Moonlighting reruns and somber montages from the likes of Risky Business.

I first got into Cohen after hearing 'Everybody Knows' by Concrete Blonde on 120 minutes (back when MTV played music.) Still some of the most passionate vocals I've ever heard.

Baby Lee
12-22-2008, 07:01 AM
First time the same song was #1 and #2 in the charts, also original version checks in at #36. 3 versions in the top 40.


http://www.breitbart.com/article.php?id=081221191744.lddpfn2j&show_article=1

#1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bsuXbkrA_AQ
[embedding disabled]

#2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AratTMGrHaQ
[same]

phisherman
12-22-2008, 09:55 AM
i always liked the lyrics to Field Commander Cohen:

Field Commander Cohen, he was our most important spy
Wounded in the line of duty
Parachuting acid into diplomatic cocktail parties
Urging Fidel Castro to abandon fields and castles
Leave it all and like a man,
Come back to nothing special,
Such as waiting rooms and ticket lines,
Silver bullet suicides,
And messianic ocean tides,
And racial roller-coaster rides
And other forms of boredom advertised as poetry.

AZORChiefFan
12-23-2008, 12:10 AM
This movie may be of some interest to people on this thread. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0478197/ 2005 "I'm your man." Biography and performances from many different artist all giving their unique take on Cohens songs.

phisherman
12-23-2008, 08:43 AM
This movie may be of some interest to people on this thread. http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0478197/ 2005 "I'm your man." Biography and performances from many different artist all giving their unique take on Cohens songs.

great flick.

some great performances in it. Rufus Wainwright's version of Chelsea Hotel, No. 2 is outstanding! so is teddy thompson's version of Tonight We'll Be Fine.