More Than A Thousand Kisses Deep
Leonard Cohen’s recitation of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” has varied in content over the years. This composite of some of these versions is an especially gratifying coalition of international forces, featuring AlanM5049 of Adelaide, Australia, Roman Gavrilin (aka Hermitage Prisoner) of St. Petersburg, Russia, Sony of Canada (and everywhere else on Earth), DrHGuy of Chapel Hill, North Carolina, and Leonard Cohen, residing in Los Angeles, California [at the time of the original posting].
AlanM5049 describes the process.
I initially contemplated conjoining all the verses of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” from the several versions presented during the Leonard Cohen World Tour. A LeonardCohenForum posting by Goldin, Two “A Thousand Kisses Deep” recitations from 1997-1998,1 however, directed me to older recordings, which I analyzed for content.
I cleaned up the sound on both where I could, but the connections between the versions were too abrupt.
Cohen’s pauses and Neil Larsen’s organ playing in the “Live In London” recording of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” provided the opportunity to integrate the unduplicated verses from the earlier recordings. I looped each organ piece several times until I had enough to add to the unaccompanied verses. I think that although the acoustics of the three recordings are different, adding the organ track has supplied the continuity I was seeking. I confess that until I separated out Neil’s music, I hadn’t realized how beautifully complex it is.
I also moved the last stanza from the “Live In London” recording, at which point the delivery slows, to the end to produce a sense of an ending.
Cohen spoke a bit faster in the unaccompanied recitations, but when I tried to slow the speed the result sounded like “phasing,” dissuading me from using the slower version.
I was stimulated to finish the project by the impressive result created by combining Cohen’s recitation [of “Two Worlds,” a “specially written verse” of “A Thousand Kisses Deep”] with musical backing in the Sony 3D television advertisement.
DrHGuy Note: My own role was limited to adding photos and a movie clip pertinent to Leonard Cohen as well as a few sketches by the Canadian singer-songwriter to complete the video montage.
“A Thousand Kisses Deep” By Leonard Cohen
A Composite Presentation
Note: Originally posted Dec 30, 2011 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
- The pertinent portion of that post follows:
I’ve found on YouTube 2 unattributed recitations. Haven’t received replies from the uploaders so far, but I think I cleared up the details.
1. The first recording is inexplicably under-viewed (less than 1 view per day!). It is a fragment of 1997 – Beautiful Losers – Arte Network, France – 34m Interview for French TV, broadcast on 29 July 1997. See screenshot @ Diamonds in the Mine to receive evidence: “film & arts” logo, the same suit, the same window frame finally 🙂
2. The other one is extremely popular (more than 1,1 million views) audio-only recording, Briefly, this recitation is taken from KCRW interview (March 3, 1998). It was mentioned on the Forum by Jean-François Bédard in 2002 and by Tom Sakic in 2003. This lyrics also appeared here, in Lily’s post. But the lyrics recited in 1997 are little-known. Google finds its ONLY appearance on the Net.
Read this masterpiece below and note the second strophe!
A Thousand Kisses Deep (1997)
Don’t matter if the road is long
Don’t matter if it’s steep
Don’t matter if the moon is gone
And the darkness is complete
Don’t matter if we lose our way
It’s written that we’ll meet
At least, that’s what I heard you say
A thousand kisses deep
Don’t matter if you lie to me
Don’t matter if you cheat
When you sell me down the river
I’ll pretend to be asleep
There’s a pair of leather gloves for you
And a blade against your cheek
But it’s strange what you forget to do
A thousand kisses deep
I loved you when you opened
Like a lily to the heat
You see, I’m just another snowman
Standing in the rain and sleet
Who loved you with his frozen love
His second hand physique
With all he is and all he was
A thousand kisses deep [↩]