Video: Jennifer Warnes’ Way Down Deep & Leonard Cohen’s A Thousand Kisses Deep

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“Way Down Deep” + “A Thousand Kisses Deep” Video Returns

As is true of many Leonard Cohen songs, “A Thousand Kisses Deep” has a complex history. Tom Sakic and I thought it would be interesting to present the earliest performed precursor of this song juxtaposed with the most recent version.1

The result was a striking video that opens with Jennifer Warnes singing the gorgeous but inexplicably overlooked “Way Down Deep” (credited to Jennifer Warnes, Leonard Cohen, and Amy Latelevision) from her 1992 album, The Hunter, which is followed by Leonard Cohen’s July 20, 2009 recitation of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” in Dublin. Between these end points, “A Thousand Kisses Deep” – both the song and the poem, both in print and as performed – has undergone changes in specific lyrics and the addition, subtraction, and rearrangement of stanzas.

The closest we have to a definitive manuscript of all verses is dated September 21, 1998 and is available online at Blackening Pages: A Thousand Kisses Deep. From that point on, the versions are combinations and permutations of these verses with occasional changes in lines and phrases.

The video, first posted Feb 12, 2010, was well received, garnering over 16,000 views. It was, however, off the air for several weeks until I re-uploaded it 2

From Way Down Deep By Jennifer Warnes To A Thousand Kisses Deep By Leonard Cohen
Video by Allan Showalter

Bonus: Leonard Cohen’s 1996 “A Thousand Kisses Deep”

This video clip is from Armelle Brusq’s movie, “Leonard Cohen Spring 96,” shot at the Mt Baldy Zen Center.

Leonard Cohen – A Thousand Kisses Deep – 1996 Demo
Video from a1000kissesdeep (AKA Tom Sakic)

 

Note: This material originally posted Feb 12, 2010 and July 24, 2011 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

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  1. Tom Sakic charts the development of “A Thousand Kisses Deep:”

    1992 – Warnes’ “Way Down Deep”
    1996 – documentary “Leonard Cohen Spring 96” by Armelle Brusq
    1997 – video interview “Beautiful Losers” (ARTE)
    1998 – radio interview KCRW
    1998 – on Blackening Pages
    2001 – “Ten New Songs” – song
    2006 – “Book of Longing” early draft sent to publishers, printed as two songs (A Thousand Kisses Deep /album version/ and Still Into That)
    2006 – Book of Longing – all verses combined into two parts, 1 and 2 (album version)
    2008-2009 some late extra verses, recited during World Tour, and variations
    2009 – Recitation with N.L. (Live in London) – recitation of Part 1 (variation)
    2011 – Sony Two Worlds Ad
    2013 – Recitation w/ N.L. (Live In Dublin) []

  2. Those 16,000 views are, of course, lost forever []

2 Replies to “Video: Jennifer Warnes’ Way Down Deep & Leonard Cohen’s A Thousand Kisses Deep”

  1. Christine Roberts

    A marvellous posting altogether Dr. H.-thank you for this and I’ve shared the video.