Note: Originally posted April 6, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
The Original Leonard Cohen’s Jukebox
Biggest Influence on My Music – The jukebox. I lived beside jukeboxes all through the fifties. … I never knew who was singing. I never followed things that way. I still don’t. I wasn’t a student of music; I was a student of the restaurant I was in — and the waitresses. The music was a part of it. I knew what number the song was.
– Leonard Cohen (Yakety Yak by Scott Cohen, 1994)
Leonard Cohen’s Jukebox: Over the years, Leonard Cohen has mentioned a number of specific songs he favors. Leonard Cohen’s Jukebox is a Cohencentric feature that began collecting these tunes for the edification and entertainment of viewers on April 4, 2009. All posts in the Leonard Cohen’s Jukebox series can be found at The Original Leonard Cohen’s Jukebox Page.
Leonard Cohen – “I was a huge fan of Elvis”
From Bård Oses intervju med Leonard Cohen by Linn Gjerstad (BA: March 26, 2012) in Google Translation:
I have plans to sing an Elvis song on stage soon. … – I was a huge fan of Elvis! I was in town until today and bought a compilation LP of the man. Soon you will hear me sing “Don’t” and “Are You Lonesome Tonight” – but not at the plate. My voice is too deep. 20,000 cigarettes have led my tone of voice three to four notches down too far.
Elvis Presley – Don’t
Elvis Presley – Are You Lonesome Tonight
DrHGuy Note: While I am unaware of any recordings of Leonard Cohen singing “Don’t” or “Are You Lonesome Tonight,” he did cover “Can’t Help Falling in Love” by Elvis Presley. He sings a bit of it, in fact, during this 1988 BBC interview.
A full version of Leonard Cohen singing “Can’t Help Falling In Love” is available on The Other Leonard Cohen Album.
For another Leonard Cohen-Elvis Presley connection, see Elvis’s Rolls Royce
Credit Due Department: Thanks to Roman Gavrilin aka Hermitage Prisoner for his help in ascertaining that the first Elvis Presley song mentioned by Leonard Cohen was “Don’t” rather than “Don’t Be Cruel” as I initially thought. Photo of Elvis Presley “Elvis Presley 1970” taken by Ollie Atkins, chief White House photographer, when President Nixon & Elvis Presley met.