Leonard Cohen Performs Passing Through Featuring Leonard Cohen On Hand Whistle – Bonn 1980

This previously unavailable recording offers not only an outstanding version of Passing Through but also a previously undocumented instance of Leonard Cohen performing on the hand whistle. (Note that the seminal article on the topic, Leonard Cohen Hand Whistling Compendium, does not include Passing Through as one of the songs on which Leonard employed this instrument. To assure accuracy, I consulted with the preeminent authority in the field, Maarten Massa, who concurred with my assessment.) The hand whistle segment begins about 2:45.

Leonard Cohen – Passing Through
Bonn: Nov 4, 1980

The 1980 Leonard Cohen Bonn Concert Recording

As far as I can determine, no recording of the Nov 4, 1980 Leonard Cohen concert at the Beethovenhalle in Bonn, Germany has been available online – until now. A tape of one hour of the show has emerged, thanks to the generosity of a friend from Bonn, who recorded this song and 11 others with the permission of Leonard Cohen and his sound engineer. (The other songs from this concert have been posted or will be posted soon; all recordings from this show are collected at .)

The supporting musicians for the 1980 Tour follow:

  • Sharon Robinson – vocals
  • Roscoe Beck – bass guitar
  • John Bilezikjian – oud, mandolin
  • Bill Ginn – keyboards
  • Raffi Hakopian – violin
  • Steve Meador – drums
  • Paul Ostermayer – wind
  • Mitch Watkins – electric guitar

Credit Due Department: Photo of Leonard Cohen by Pete Purnell.