What’s the greatest challenge of [being Leonard Cohen’s musical director & bassist]? Roscoe Beck: “Remaining vigilant! No matter how many times we may have played a particular song, anything about that song could change, at any time—and probably will!”

Roscoe Beck and Leonard Cohen

What’s the greatest challenge of the gig [serving as musical director and bassist for Leonard Cohen] for you?

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Remaining vigilant! No matter how many times we may have played a particular song, anything about that song could change, at any time—and probably will! Remaining focused and in the moment is always important, but on this gig, it is absolutely essential. Another challenge is singing background vocals. In the role of bassist I’m usually comfortable and confident, so onstage I often focus more on the challenge of my vocal parts, doing my best to ensure they’re in pitch and blending well. Overall, if my performance never stands out in a particularly obvious way, I’m probably doing my job well.quotedown2

Roscoe Beck

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From Roscoe Beck: Words and Music with Leonard Cohen by Chris Jisi. BassPlayer: July 1, 2013. The entire article, an intriguing read, can be accessed at the link. Photo atop post by Maarten Massa. Second photo by Mandy MacLeod. Thanks to Linda Sturgess, who alerted me to this article.