Must See Video: Full Version Of Leonard Cohen Appearance On 1992 Danish Talk Show

talkshowetLeonard Cohen was the only guest on S2E5 of the Danish talk show, Talkshowet (Dec 5, 1992).  Videos of this show of various lengths and quality have been intermittently available online but then disappear. Martin alerts us that the entire 1 hour, 5 minute episode in good resolution can be accessed – until February 8, 2017.

This is a must-see for Leonard Cohen fans.  Featured are

  • Leonard Cohen demonstrating how to make his Red Needles cocktail
  • A discussion of the myth of Leonard Cohen as ladies’ man
  • The differentiation of depression and seriousness
  • The necessity of destroying old versions of one’s self to make an album
  • Leonard Cohen on Miami Vice

One word of advice: don’t let the talk show host annoy you. Leonard takes him on stride; you can, too

If the above video player doesn’t work for you, you can view this video on its host site at DR-Talkshowet

Credit Due Department: Thanks to Jo Meul, who alerted me to this video appearing on YouTube.

Video: Leonard Cohen On Being A Jewish Writer, A Canadian & A Seeker Of G-D (1964)

Note: This is a companion piece of sorts to Video: Leonard Cohen Speaks About G-D Consciousness And Judaism (1964)

From the YouTube Description:

Leonard Cohen speaks about being a Canadian Jewish writer. His profound statements still resonate, today, 50 years later.  I have culled these comments from a recording of a seminar held at the Jewish Public Library of Montreal in June 1964. Cohen participated in a panel along with the great Canadian Jewish writers Melech Ravitch, Adele Wiseman and Ruth Wisse. It took place three years before Cohen’s 1967 transition from being a Canadian poet to an internationally known singer-songwriter. Also included are some of Cohen’s dialogue with the audience during the question and answer session.

Cohen had a life-long, passionate engagement with religious Judaism. It began with the hevruta (study pair) he had with his grandfather, an important rabbi and talmudist. In mid-life Cohen became renowned for his practice of Zen Bhuddism (a non theistic practice) and eventually became a bhuddist monk. But Cohen never stopped studying Torah or practicing mitzvoth that he found meaningful. Many of his best songs offer profound midrashim (homiletic interpretations) of Torah and apply them to the problems of life.

A strange coincidence : the women with a Yiddish accent who challenges Cohen during the Q&A is Hava Rosenfarb, a respected Yiddish novelist and holocaust survivor. Her then husband is the man with a Polish accent who questions Cohen’s belief that the Jewish people have a unique mission. This man was Dr. Henry Morgantaller, who a decade later would become a household name in Canada for his campaign to legalize abortion.

Credit Due Department: Thanks to Jo Meul, who first alerted me to this video

Hear Leonard Cohen Talk About Life In The Chelsea Hotel, His Depression, & Meeting Lou Reed


In these previews to the broadcast of Leonard Cohen’s never-been-released conversation with Bill Flanagan at Manhattan’s Chelsea Hotel in 2006, hear the Canadian singer-songwriter talk about his early career. The broadcast of the full interview airs Wednesday, Dec. 7 at 7 pm ET on SiriusXM VOLUME (Ch. 106). 

More information at Hear Bill Flanagan’s never-before-heard interview with Leonard Cohen

Life In The Chelsea Hotel


Leonard Cohen On Meeting Lou Reed

Leonard Cohen On His Depression

Credit Due Department: Photo by Historystuff2 (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Hear Leonard Cohen Talk About Book Of Mercy, Poetry, Prayer, The Soul In June 1984 Interview

From YouTube Description:

In June 1984 I sat with Leonard Cohen in his room at the top of Toronto’s Sutton Place Hotel where we talked about his newest collection Book of Mercy. I confessed an uneasiness about love poems because of how often other kinds of love beyond the romantic are overlooked or are treated in a puerile fashion. Not so one poem coming three months after my son’s birth…

Listen To Leonard Cohen Talk About Phases Of His Career, Elvis Presley, Ray Charles, Humor, Women, Greece, Sports … 1988

619px-Leonard_Cohen17bTopics include Leonard Cohen on

  • Touring
  • His love of Ray Charles’ music (“the best there is”)
  • His fascination with country music (and his part in the Buckskin Boys), flamenco guitar, cantorial music in synagogues, and Arabic music
  • His life in Greece
  • His “notable disasters in journalism,” including his interview with Glenn Gould
  • His attempted role as TV host based on his reputation as a “witty young poet.” (He was “wiped out” by guests who he saw as brighter and quicker, especially his first guest, a Borscht Belt comedian who wouldn’t let Leonard “get a word in edgewise.”)
  • Book of Mercy being written “when [his] back was against the wall]
  • His relationship with Roshi: “Cohen, I’ve known you 18 years. I never tried to give you my religion – just pour you saki”
  • Elvis Presley, who was “next to Ray Charles’ in the group of “impeccable America singers” (Leonard also notes that Presley’s movies were his personal “Seven stations of the cross”)
  • The public’s preference for an artist’s older material
  • Setting First We Take Manhattan “to a kind of Sergio Leone Clint Eastwood soundtrack”
  • Ain’t No Cure for Love as an especially poignant song
  • “I don’t know any men who aren’t interested in women.”
  • His family’s preference hat he go into law or the family business ad his leaving law school because of his “burning desire to be a writer.”
  • Montreal School Of Poetry
  • His contention that the “real energy today” is in sports, not music
  • His admiration of “Concierto de Aranjuez” by Joaquín Rodrigo and “Je ne regrette rien” By Edith Piaf
  • His self-characterization as “not good father but a loving father”
  • His homes in Greece, Montreal, and Las Angeles and his preference for residences in the “less prosperous parts of town” with white rooms and little on the walls.
  • Growing old

From YouTube Description:

Gill Pyrah talks on The Night is Young to Leonard Cohen, in London as part of his European tour. On his background in Canada and early careers in poetry, writing, journalism and TV interviewing and years spent in Greece; touring and his concert in London; views of him and his music; whether he is a ladies’ man; his children; his painting. His musical choices are edited out. This is pretty rare so be sure to snatch/keep and disseminate since you wont find it anywhere else. The 1988 Leonard Cohen talks about women drugs, women again, booze and music and poetry.


Credit Due Department: Photo atop post by Roland Godefroy – Own work, CC BY 3.0, via Wikipedia