Leonard Cohen (& Rebecca De Mornay) At The 1993 Rock Am Ring Festival By Christof Graf

Introduction: Christof Graf has a long history of producing respected books, articles, photos, and online sites dealing with Leonard Cohen see Celebrating The 20th Anniversary Of Christof Graf’s Online Leonard Cohen Resources). And Christof has been a generous and valued contributor to this site.1 Now, Christof offers the story behind his photo of Leonard Cohen and Rebecca De Mornay, taken at the 1993 Rock Am Ring Festival.

I Remember You Well At The Rock Am Ring Festival

Leonard Cohen live at Germany`s biggest Rock Festival – 1993

On May 29, 1993, Leonard Cohen performed at the Rock am Ring Festival, Germany`s biggest Rock Festival, held at the Nürburgring Formula One Race Course. Because of the festival schedule, the set comprised only ten songs, beginning with Dance Me To The End Of Love and ending with Democracy.2 I was on stage taking photos.

Leonard`s gig in front of 50.000 people was amazing, but it was not his best fit with an audience. He played after Brian May of Queen and before Melissa Etheridge. On same weekend program were Led Zeppelin`s Robert Plant, Def Leppard, The Black Crowes, Danzig, Ugly Kid Joe and other heavy rock musicians. Because of the Festival’s rockesque atmosphere, Leonard was forced to play and sing somewhat louder and faster than usual. He did a great job, but it was clear that the audience had come for and preferred the heavy rock performers.

After my live shots, I was invited by Festival promoter Marek Lieberberg to join Leonard Cohen backstage. That was when I took the shot him with Rebecca De Mornay, who accompanied Leonard on most of that European Tour. During his Rock Am Ring gig, she was on stage and I saw her at each concert of the 1993 Germany Tour, which I covered. I published the account, first as newspaper-articles and, in 1996, in the book “Leonard Cohen – Un Hommage – A Leonard Cohen Tour Documentation in Germany 1993.”

After Leonard left the stage about 6.30 p.m. he was relaxing backstage with Rebecca when: the late Michael Hutchence from Australian rock band INXS joined Leonard in conversation. I took also a shot of that moment. In the background was Melissa Etheridge, who told me in an interview years later that she “did not dare to disturb that holy moment.” After 15 minutes of talk, coffee, and cigarettes, Mr. Hutchence left to prepare for his show that evening.

The same time the next day, Led Zeppelin founder Robert Plant was backstage looking for Leonard Cohen. He was quite disappointed, when he discovered that “the great Leonard Cohen,: as he called him, one of his favorite singer-songwriters, had performed the day before. .

Photo Key For Image Atop This Post
From Top To Down & Left To Right:

  • Cozy Powell (Drummer for Brian May Band)
  • Christof Graf On Stage Photographing Leonard Cohen
  • Leonard Cohen
  • Melissa Etheridge
  • Leonard Cohen On Keyboards
  • Julie Christensen, Leonard Cohen, & Perla Batalla
  • Leonard Cohen (Fish Eye Lens)
  • Rock am Ring Promoter Marek Lieberberg (left) backstage with Rebecca De Mornay, Leonard Cohen and Michael Hutchence (INXS)

Source: Der Cohenpedia – Christof Graf`s Leonard Cohen Blog. All photos: Christof Graf.

Note: The story about the entire Festival, including Leonard`s show, is published in my 2015 book: Rock am Ring – 30 Jahre sind nicht genug: Alle Bands, alle Skandale, alle Fotos.


  1. See, for example, Christof Graf’s Multi-Media Walk Through The Montreal MAC Leonard Cohen Exhibition With Curator John Zeppetelli and Montreal After – Celebrating Leonard Cohen On The Eve Of The First Anniversary Of His Passing By Christof Graf []
  2. The full setlist follows:
    Dance Me to the End of Love
    The Future
    Ain’t No Cure for Love
    Bird on the Wire
    Everybody Knows
    First We Take Manhattan
    Sisters of Mercy
    There Is a War
    Democracy []

“I’d never been around playing concerts for crowds that were that quiet. You could hear, maybe not a pin, but a 10-penny nail roll across the balcony.” Charlie Daniels On Playing In The 1970 Leonard Cohen Tour

Daniels, Cohen Formed Unique Bond by Jeffrey Ougler (Ifpress: Sept 9, 2010)

Charlie Daniels played fiddle on the 1970 Leonard Cohen Tour and played bass on the Songs From A Room (1969) and Songs Of Love And Hate (1971) albums.

“I remember her there, sitting in front of a mirror, saying ‘Leonard, why don’t you try this?’ I said, ‘Listen, I don’t need that stuff.'” Leonard Cohen Performs Chelsea Hotel #2 – Copenhagen 1985

Leonard Cohen – Chelsea Hotel #2
Copenhagen: February 9, 1985
Video from messalina79

Chelsea Hotel #2 is one of the six songs from the February 9, 1985 concert in Copenhagen, Denmark that were broadcast on Danish TV.1 Backing Cohen are Anjani Thomas (vocals and Keyboards), John Crowder (bass), Ron Getman, & Mitch Watkins (guitar), Richard Crooks (drums).

While the visual elements of this video are suboptimal, the audio is quite good. Leonard’s introduction is especially interesting.

Originally posted Jan 6, 2011 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

  1. Diamonds In The Mine []

“I wrote these songs to myself and to women several years ago and it is a curious thing to be trapped in that original effort, because here I wanted to tell one person one thing and now I am in the situation where I must repeat them like some parrot chained to his stand, night after night.” Leonard Cohen (1972)

It is not just the observance and the documentation and the record of a few museum songs. After all I wrote these songs to myself and to women several years ago and it is a curious thing to be trapped in that original effort, because here I wanted to tell one person one thing and now I am in the situation where I must repeat them like some parrot chained to his stand, night after night.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


From Bird On A Wire documentary (1974). This photo was taken by and posted with permission of Lars Sandblom.

Signs Of Leonard Cohen: Detroit Fox Theatre Marquee 2012

A conveniently pre-labeled “Signs Of Leonard Cohen” shot of the Fox marquee (Thanks, Joey)The marquee of the Detroit Fox Theatre promoting the Nov 26, 2012 Leonard Cohen concert at that venue.

Credit Due Department: This conveniently pre-labeled “Signs Of Leonard Cohen” photo was shot by Joseph Carenza III (Thanks, Joey)

Originally posted Nov 27, 2012 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Lost 1972 Leonard Cohen Interview Found


Back in Dec 2013, Peter Torbijn from the Netherlands discovered an interview with Leonard Cohen that took place in London at the beginning of the 1972 Europe tour. The interview, translated from English into Dutch, was published  in the March 29, 1972 edition of OOR, the Dutch music newspaper. An internet search and a survey of several Cohen experts disclosed no references to the original interview in English, let alone the article itself. In the belief that an English to Dutch to English translation of the article would be better than no English version of the article, Peter, with the help of his wife Marion and his son Lennard, translated the article from Dutch into English to make it accessible for this site’s readers. I provided final editing into vernacular English. The product of that effort can be found at Lost 1972 Leonard Cohen Interview Restored “I get letters from people who say my songs helped them through the night…That is exactly why they were written.”

A little less than five years later, Gordana Stupar has discovered the original article: The Cohen Songs You’ll Never Hear, by Roy Hollingworth, Melody Maker, March 5, 1972.

Gordana also provided her transcription of the first page of the article. Feel free to compare and contrast this original version with the previously posted double-translation.

The Cohen Songs You’ll Never Hear
By Roy Hollingworth
Melody MakerL March 5, 1972

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