Video: Anjani Sings “Crazy To Love You” – 2012 Leonard Cohen-Glenn Gould Prize Gala

Neil Larsen Accompanies Anjani Thomas – Leonard Cohen Tribute

By all accounts, this rendition of “Crazy To Love You” (from the Anjani Thomas-Leonard Cohen Blue Alert album) by Anjani with Neil Larsen on the keyboards, was a high point of the May 14, 2012 Glenn Gould Prize Leonard Cohen tribute concert held in Massey Hall, Toronto.

Note: Originally posted May 17, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: 1988 Leonard Cohen Interview With Matt Zimbel: I’m Your Man, Songwriting, European Popularity, Jennifer Warnes & More

From the YouTube description:

This is the raw footage of an interview I did with Leonard in 1988 in Toronto at the Four Seasons Hotel. for a BBC/ABC/CBC co-production documentary music show I co-hosted called “Wired”. The interview has never been seen in it’s full length before. At times it will require your patience as the tape was quite degraded and we have done our best to restore, but felt the content should rule and therefore there are some spotty moments. Since this is a television interview one must quickly note that while the subject looks timeless, the interviewer is clearly the victim of vintage 1980’s “hairdressing”, which was shortly thereafter considered a fashion crime.

Leonard is a master interview subject; present, measured, funny, philosophical. His vocabulary is striking, but not in a pretentious way; for example he might call a tour, “an enterprise” or an abandoned idea would “overthrown”, to get out of something, one might “extract “ themselves…He speaks slowly, allowing himself time… to… consider… what… to… say. next. It is a journalistic seduction – one starts to wait for the considered words of the poet with great anticipation. But unlike so many of the famous, his willingness to connect appears so genuine. During our interview I truly believed there was no place he would rather be than talking to me.

I bragged to my journalist friends, ‘oh man, wait until you hear the interview I did with Leonard, it was incredible, he was so charming, so engaged…no question this is the best interview I have ever heard him do”. “Really?” they would say, “he did a pretty great one on our show too”. “Yeah, right!” And then I would hear the interview on their show and it would be the same interview, just as warm, just as revealing, just as exclusive feeling… but not exclusive at all, God damn it.

Leonard Cohen & Sunglasses: Animation, Quote, Cover Art, & The 50 Shades Of Leonard Cohen Video

secglasses2No one looked more stylish, more hip, more polished in sunglasses than Leonard Cohen. This fact goes a long way toward explaining the popularity of the Shades of Leonard Cohen photo collection at the late, great DrHGuy.com site.

Heck, two of Leonard’s best albums featured cover art with him wearing darkened glasses.

That said, Leonard was willing to use sunglasses, one of his favorite accoutrements, as a negative metaphor, as in this excerpt from Le Cercle de Minuit – Michel Field, Interviewer. Broadcast by France 2: December 1992.

quoteup2
There is only light, although people don’t look at the light. Light is the basis of everything and we all are drowned by the light, but wearing sunglasses. It’s always light. It’s only light. Men invent the idea of shadow, of darkness.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Leonard wore off the shelf and prescription sunglasses. He wore them indoors, outdoors, at midday and after dark.  He donned shades onstage, in the street, in restaurants, and at home. He wore them with his formal attire (suit and fedora) and his casual wear (suit and cap).

The above gif, derived from the In My Secret Life official video, serves as lead-in for the Fifty Shades Of Leonard Cohen video, which somehow always cheers me up.  View more animated gifs at Leonard Cohen Animations

Fifty Shades Of Leonard Cohen
Video by Allan Showalter

Note: Originally posted November 15, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Semipro Video: Leonard Cohen Performs Dance Me To The End Of Love – Zagreb 2010

dancezahFrom the YouTube description:

This semi-pro recording was shot with one camera by RTL TV Croatia for their evening news, with the sound coming directly from the venue’s soundboard. Attendance of the show was 12,000 people (sold out). The concert was heralded by the local press as the best show in history of Croatia, and in December 2010 it was chosen as one of top five cultural events in Croatia in 2010 (the only event actually not by the Croats).

Leonard Cohen – Dance Me To The End Of Love
Zagreb: July 25, 2010
Video from a1000kissesdeep


Note: Originally posted Jul 25, 2011 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: “I always had this feeling that new things were beginning” Leonard Cohen CBC Interview – 1966


My choice for Best Of Show in the CBC archive of Leonard Cohen video interviews is On The Road To Singing Sensation, which was originally broadcast in conjunction with the publication of Cohen’s novel, “Beautiful Losers,” in 1966 on This Hour Has Seven Days.1

Beryl Fox – Interviewer

Cohen’s interviewer, Beryl Fox,  was a pioneer in investigative reporting and as an accomplished documentary filmmaker. While working for the CBC, she was known for her insightful and critical examinations of U.S. politics, the feminist movement, and racial conflicts. She was also a groundbreaking critic of the role of the U.S. in the Vietnam War.2 She continued making documentaries and, later, feature films after leaving the CBC in 1966.

The Interview

Accordingly, the interview is not a puff piece nor are her queries to Cohen softballs lobbed over the plate to make the star look good. The conversation is challenging, engaging, personal, and even edgy in a place or two.

In addition, there seems to be, especially on Ms Fox’s part, elements of sexual tension and flirtatiousness.3

Leonard Cohen exercises the poet’s prerogative of re-interpreting and manipulating her words and his own to distract and deflect. A trivial but nonetheless amusing example follows:

Leonard Cohen: I always had this feeling that new things were beginning, and I thought that I would change my name and get a tattoo.

Beryl Fox: Where?

Leonard Cohen: There’s this place on St. Lawrence Blvd.

The interviewer’s facial expression at that point is a bonus.

Cohen is provocative, claiming, for example, that Canada has no government and that any couple not in love should be divorced. Fox presses (at one point she asks how Cohen’s mother reacted to reviews calling his book pornographic) but does so politely and does not redirect her interviewee when he flares off on his tangent of choice.

It is rewarding viewing.

The Video

Note: Originally posted Feb 24, 2007 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

  1. This Hour Has Seven Days was a CBC Television newsmagazine inspired by the British satire series That Was The Week That Was. It was also controversial enough that after a two year run, it was taken off the air following the 1966 season. []
  2. The AV Trust Of Canada lauds her 1965 documentary, “The Mills of the Gods: Viet Nam,” in this excerpt:
    Beryl Fox’s The Mills of the Gods remains the quintessential example of Canadian documentary filmmaking. Fox takes us into the Vietnam War and allows us to see first hand the futility, sorrow and inhumanity at its core. Her theme of the conflict between people and ideologies is a universal and timeless one, told through haunting sound and visual images. Today, 34 years after it was first telecast, scenes of brutal civilian casualties, torture of POW’s, and gleeful napalm bombing still shock and outrage us. Contrasted with this horror are scenes from the everyday life of the Vietnamese peasantry, working in the fields, shopping in the market, going to school. Fox creates for the viewer a sense of tension and foreboding, ultimately borne out in images of death, destruction and bodybags on the nightly news. The Mills of the Gods transcends the banality of mass media images of war and still retains its extraordinary power and poignancy.
    A clip of the film is available at ~The Mills of the Gods: Viet Nam~ []
  3. Note: It does appear that on the date of the interview, either Ms Fox had the misfortune to experience a catastrophically bad hair day or a small mammal somehow landed on her head and took up residence there. The composite photo below provides a more balanced perspective on her appearance.

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