Leonard Cohen Talks About Courtly Love Negatively Impacting His Work

I was attracted to that idea [courtly love] and it’s probably responsible for some atrocious work that I committed. We get hung up and fixated on ideas and sometimes they serve as coat hangers but you don’t really want to wear it with the hanger in it. So much of one’s work, I think, has got the hanger in it. In other words, you get hooked on an ideology or mythology, or a slogan or a position. And you kind of stiffen your work with it. That notion that there was a ritualized possibility between men and women that would get you over the obvious menacing and threatening and bewildering aspects of men and women together that a ritual, a courtly ritual could be invented or discerned or uncovered that would enable men and women to approach one another without the static that has reached deafening proportions today.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen, interviewed by Cindy Buissaillon for CBC Radio on August 26, 1995. Originally posted April 12, 2011 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Then We Take Trouville: Making Of The Leonard Cohen-Dominique Issermann First We Take Manhattan Music Video


Then We Take Trouville

This quirky, entertaining, little-seen video, featuring Joe Cocker’s cover of Leonard Cohen’s “First We Take Manhattan,” documents, as the YouTube description has it, “the making of the music video “First we take Manhattan then we take Berlin” of Leonard Cohen directed by Dominique Issermann in 1988.” It offers lots of shots of Leonard and Dominique Issermann producing a film in the rain.

Then We Take Trouville

The First We Take Manhattan Video

The final version of the video produced for First We Take Manhattan is embedded below.

Leonard Cohen – First We Take Manhattan

Credit Due Department: Thanks to Esther Parks, who alerted me to this video.

Note: Originally posted Aug 29, 2009 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

The Articulate Silence Of Leonard Cohen: Gift

By Leonard Cohen
From The Spice-Box of Earth

You tell me that silence
is nearer to peace than poems
but if for my gift
I brought you silence
(for I know silence)
you would say
This is not silence
this is another poem
and you would hand it back to me.

Silence is a concept Leonard Cohen often addressed. The Articulate Silence Of Leonard Cohen is a collection of posts comprising the poems, songs, quotations, and other works by Cohen focusing on the absence of sound.

Video: 1985 Backstage Banter Starring Anjani, Directed By Dominique Issermann – Leonard Cohen, Cameraman


Musical Of Backstage Lives Of Artists On Tour Opens Off-Broadway To Mixed Reviews

This teaser features Leonard Cohen as videographer, Anjani Thomas in pseudo-rant, and Dominique Issermann directing. An unrecognized (by me) cast member provides comic relief. The scene deteriorates when, in  a room full of musicians, no one knows the words to “Dominique.”

From German Documentary ‘Halleluja in Moll’ (1985)
Video from messalina79

An alternative version of “Dominique” follows:

Soeur Sourire Plays And Sings Dominique (1963)
Video from riccardobruero

Leonard Cohen on Sharon Robinson: “When we sing together, my voice contains no loneliness.”

Sharon Robinson & Leonard Cohen Caesar's Palace 2010

In very early times, I tried that  [releasing albums without many accompanying musicians]. But in the meantime, my music became much more complex. Furthermore, I would bore myself to death to be in the studio or on stage alone. Sharon Robinson, who has worked with me since 1979 as a backup singer and who produced the new album, has succeeded in cushioning the imperfections of my voice. When we sing together, my voice contains no loneliness.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

From The Happy Message of the Aged, Interview by Sven F. Goergens. (Translated by Marie Mazur, using translation software, with the aid of Adi Heindl): Focus: September 15, 2001. Originally posted Apr 17, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric