Featuring Jennifer Warnes, Suzanne Vega, Aaron Neville & Moses Znaimer
Linda Sturgess alerts us that the video of Leonard Cohen’s complete induction into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, including the introduction by Moses Znaimer, the tribute performances by Jennifer Warnes (Joan of Arc), Suzanne Vega (Who By Fire), and Aaron Neville (Bird on the Wire) and, of course, Leonard’s acceptance speech, is now online.
Leonard Cohen’s acceptance speech includes numerous moments of graciousness and gratitude, sparkling wit, and exquisite phrasing. A couple of examples follow:
After saluting a bevy of Hall Of Fame members, including Hank Snow, Glenn Gould, The Diamonds, The Four Lads, Neil Young, The Band, Paul Anka, and Gordon Lightfoot, Cohen ends the list with Joni Mitchell and Maureen Forrester, going on to remark,
Two women of genius among all that exuberant, masculine prominence … It’s going to be hard to get a date in the Hall of Fame.
Commenting on the timing of this honor Cohen explains
If I had been given this attention when I was 26, it would have turned my head. At 36 it might have confirmed my flight on a rather morbid spiritual path. At 46 it would have rubbed my nose in my failing powers and have prompted a plotting of a getaway and an alibi. But at 56 — hell, I’m just hitting my stride and it doesn’t hurt at all.
Leonard’s speech without the introduction or tributes can be viewed at Video: Leonard Cohen’s Witty, Touching 1991 Canadian Music Hall of Fame Induction Speech
Leonard Cohen Inducted Into The Canadian Music Hall of Fame | Junos 1991