Leonard Cohen Talks About Finding “A Song That I Can Sing”

To find a song that I can sing, to engage my interest, to penetrate my boredom with myself and my disinterest in my own opinions, to penetrate those barriers, the song has to speak to me with a certain urgency.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

From a 1992 interview with Leonard Cohen published in Songwriters on Songwriting by Paul Zollo. Da Capo Press: 1997. Originally posted August 22, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen Alludes To Dylan Song In “Democracy”

There is a line in Democracy that referred specifically to the Dylan song ‘Everybody is Broken.’ The line is ‘The singer says it’s broken and the painter says it’s gray.’quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Paul Zollo, Songwriters on Songwriting, Da Capo Press, 2003.

The Cohen-Dylan Interface

All posts about Leonard Cohen’s & Bob Dylan’s opinions of each other, their meetings, and comparisons by others can be found at

“All of my writing has guitars behind it, even the novels” Leonard Cohen

jgreenSo, that’s why Leonard had this guy
carrying his guitar everywhere

From “Some were songs first”: K. Murphy and G. Gross, “Leonard Cohen,” New York Times: April 13, 1969. Photo by Judy Green. Originally posted April 11, 2011 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen On The Evolution Of “First We Take Manhattan”

If the lyric [of First We Take Manhattan] was set to something more solemn or ponderous it would have bored me to death. If it didn’t have that kind of techno-pop counter-point the song would collapse. But these things aren’t done from a point of view of strategies. They just evolve. Like that song grew out of one called ‘In Old Berlin’, half of which went off to become ‘Dance Me To The End Of Love.’ And to get to where it is I had to go through five notebooks of maybe 50 verses, just slowly scratching away. I don’t have any strategies, even in my private life. Any I had collapsed years ago. It’s my music as much as any other music is.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From Read Leonard Cohen’s exclusive interview with Hot Press from 1988 by Joe Jackson (Hot Press: 11 Nov 2016)

Also see Leonard Cohen Credits Jeff Fisher For Rescue Of “First We Take Manhattan”

Leonard Cohen On His Embracement Of Poetry & His Shift To Pop Music

I was completely hooked on the stuff [poetry] as a kid. I loved it when I first came across it. When something was said in a certain kind of way it seemed to embrace the cosmos. It’s not just my heart, but every heart was involved, and the loneliness was dissolved, and you felt that you were this aching creature in the midst of an aching cosmos, and the ache was okay. Not only was it okay, but it was the way that you embraced the sun and the moon. I went into pop music. I felt like that’s where I could manifest it. Just on the page wasn’t going to do it for me because I wanted to live it.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


Jewish Book News Interview With Leonard Cohen by Arthur Kurzweil and Pamela Roth: 1994. Originally posted July 26, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric