Video: Leonard Cohen On Being Labeled A “Boring Old Drone Who Should Go The Fuck Back To Canada” – Oakland Dec 6, 2010

Leonard Cohen Defends Self, Canada Against 40 Year Old Slur, Name Checks Joni, Neil, & Gordy

In this brief video from the Oakland show, where the Dec 6, 2010 Leonard Cohen Concert ended only hours ago [at time of original Dec 7, 2010 posting], Leonard Cohen recalls a reviewer in the 1970s at the Isle Of Wight Festival who said

Leonard Cohen is a boring old drone who should go the fuck back to Canada where he belongs.1

As he did in the December 2, 2010 Vancouver show, Cohen goes on to explain he was “doubly hurt” by this characterization – i.e., not only was he personally insulted but the critic apparently meant to imply that “Canada was the place for boring old drones.” Cohen then asks rhetorically,” What about Joni Mitchell, Neil Young, Gordy [Gordon] Lightfoot?”

Finally, Cohen closes this reflection with the philosophical observation that “a lot of wine has passed under the bridge since then.”

Note: This Tour was not the first time Leonard Cohen mentioned the “boring old drone” passage. He also brought it up in a taped 1978 interview available at Must-hear 1976 Leonard Cohen Glasgow Interview: Poems Vs Songs, His Withdrawn Novel, Janis Joplin In LA, Album Titles, & The Perfect Ass

Leonard Cohen – Intro To Anthem
Oakland: Dec 6, 2010
Video from arlenedick15


  1. According to Nadel’s biography of Cohen, it was a review of Cohen’s 1970 Isle of Wight performance in Melody Maker that stated, “Leonard Cohen is an old bore who should just return to Canada which he never should have left to begin with!” and Ricki Farr, a concert official at the Isle Of Wight Festival who objected to Cohen’s fee, who said “Leonard Cohen lays on this trippy thing about love and peace and all that crap. I think Leonard Cohen’s a boring old crone and he’s overpaid. I think he should go back to Canada.” (Ira Bruce Nadel, Various Positions: A Life of Leonard Cohen, p 178) []

Video: Leonard Cohen Sings "So Long Marianne" With Marianne In Audience – Langesund 2009

Marianne At Lonard Cohen’s Langesund Show

This is not a video with great production values. As the cameraperson notes, “Sorry for the all the drunk people singing.” But how could anyone who knows anything about Leonard Cohen pass up the chance to watch him sing “So Long Marianne” to a concert audience that includes Marianne herself?1

Leonard Cohen – So Long Marianne
Langesund: July 16, 2009

Note: Originally posted Jul 19, 2009 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric


  1. Basic information about Leonard Cohen and his relationship with Marianne can be found at Leonard Cohen – The Literary Years. []

Best 2009 Leonard Cohen Istanbul Concert Videos: Suzanne & Chelsea Hotel #2


Live From Istanbul

These videos from the August 6, 2009 Leonard Cohen Istanbul Concert are among the best from that performance.

Leonard Cohen – Suzanne
Istanbul: August6, 2009
Video from halitkivanc

Leonard Cohen – Chelsea Hotel #2
Istanbul: August6, 2009
Video from halitkivanc

Note: Originally posted Oct 15, 2009 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Best Of 2008-2010 Leonard Cohen Tour: 2010 Helsinki Concert Video & Photos

The 2010 Helsinki Concert Photos

Maarten Massa’s photos of Leonard Cohen and, especially, the band members and backup singers from the August 10, 2010 Helsinki concert are among the best taken during the entire 2008-2010 tour. In addition to the shots displayed in this post, many other photos from the Helsinki show can be found at Leonard Cohen in Helsinki – Aug 10 2010: Part 1 and Part 2.

Video: Leonard Cohen – I Tried To Leave You + Thank You To Jarkko

That the final song of the August 10, 2010 Leonard Cohen Helsinki Concert was “I Tried To Leave You” was hardly a surprise. Nor were the solo performances by the band members and backup singers unexpected.

Unique to the Helsinki show, however, were Leonard Cohen’s words of appreciation, following the completion of “I Tried To Leave You,” for the role Jarkko Arjatsalo and his website,, played in keeping Cohen’s songs alive when his “voice wasn’t heard very often in very many places.”

Leonard Cohen – I Tried To Leave You
Helsinki: Aug 10, 2010
Video from itriedtoleaveyou

Note: Originally posted July 5, 2012 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Best Of 2008-2010 Leonard Cohen World Tour: Who By Fire – Fredericton 2008

Fredericton Playhouse – Fredericton, New Brunswick

In The Beginning Was Fredericton

On May 11, 2008, Leonard Cohen inaugurated his 2008-2010 World Tour (although no one knew it would be a three year tour then) at The Playhouse in Fredericton, NB, a venue which, according to Wikipedia, had a capacity of 709 (469 orchestra seats and 240 balcony seats).

I urge viewers to read the best of the Fredericton concert reviews, Leonard Cohen wows Fredericton by Wilifred Langmaid  (Daily Gleaner, May 13, 2008), which can be found at LeonardCohenForum. My own comments on this piece, originally posted at the site on May 13, 2008, follow:

Wilifred Langmaid  provides a comprehensive, interesting review of Cohen’s performance at the Fredericton Playhouse. Other than some forgivable hometown self-congratulation, the piece is thoughtful, knowledgeable, and includes details not listed elsewhere. A must-read for hard core Cohen fans.

Leonard Cohen – Who By Fire
Fredericton – May 11, 2008


Credit Due Department: Photo by Rbcb – Own work, CC by 3.0. via Wikipedia. Originally posted July 29, 2012 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Best Of 2008-2010 Leonard Cohen Tour: Closing Time At Weybridge Video & Pix

Where’s That Famous Blue Raincoat When You Need It?

The photo atop this post showing the deluge of rain falling on Leonard Cohen (who is on an ostensibly sheltered stage while the audience is unprotected from the skies) has become indelibly identified with Leonard Cohen’s wet, wonderful Weybridge show.

The photographer, dorsetbays, who took the shots on this page and generously shared them here, summarizes the setting:

Leonard Cohen put on an amazing concert at the Mercedes Benz Arena, Surrey on 11 July 2009. The weather was atrocious, heavy rain and gale force winds, but the atmosphere was electric.

Leonard Cohen – Closing Time
Weybridge: July 11, 2009

“Closing Time” is an important and beloved Leonard Cohen song, and there will certainly be more than one performance of “Closing Time” in this The Best Of Tour series. This energetic rendition, however,  delivered near the end of a 3+ hour concert held concurrently with a rainstorm surely qualifies for this distinction.

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