“I’m very slow…” Leonard Cohen Talks About His Songwriting

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I’m very slow [writing songs]. It comes kind of by dribbles and drops. Some people are graced with a flow; some people are graced with something less than a flow. I’m one of those … The fact that my songs take a long time to write is no guarantee of their excellence.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Leonard Cohen Corrects Himself: ‘I Intend to Stick Around Until 120’ by Chris Willman (Billboard: Oct 14, 2016). Originally posted Oct 15, 2016 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“You’ve touched her perfect body with your mind” Leonard Cohen Performs Suzanne – San Jose 2012

Leonard Cohen – Suzanne
San Jose: Nov 7, 2012
Video by

And you want to travel with her, and you want to travel blind
And you think you maybe you’ll find her
For you’ve touched her perfect body with your mind

Originally posted Nov 9, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“[Hydra] is a good place to work because there’s no reason to delay it to the next day: there is no phone or even electricity. There is a real civilization, by which I mean hospitality, kindness in the streets, and people blessing children.” Leonard Cohen (1976)

Do you think that your stay in Greece will affect your work habit?

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I’m doing a lot of work there. It’s a good place to work because there’s no reason to delay it to the next day: there is no phone or even electricity. There is a real civilization, by which I mean hospitality, kindness in the streets, and people blessing children. I live in a small village – I know people who believe I own an island and a great palace, but the truth is the perfect opposite.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From ”En tunne vanhenevani lainkaan” – Leonard Cohen Soundissa 1976: The 2016 reprint of a June 1976 Leonard Cohen interview by Dougie Gordon. (Soundi: Nov 11, 2016). Via computer translation. Photo of Hydra by Marie-louise Guillard.

“After hearing KD Lang perform [Hallelujah] at the Canadian Songwriter’s Hall of Fame in 2006 we [Leonard Cohen & I] looked at each other and said, ‘Well, I think we can lay that song to rest now! It’s really been done to its ultimate blissful state of perfection.’” Anjani

After hearing KD Lang perform that song [Hallelujah] at the Canadian Songwriter’s Hall of Fame in 2006 we [Anjani Thomas & Leonard Cohen] looked at each other and said, “Well, I think we can lay that song to rest now! It’s really been done to its ultimate blissful state of perfection.” Anjani Thomas

Anjani Thomas, Leonard Cohen’s backup singer and romantic partner, quoted in “Interrupting Yr Broadcast: Anjani Thomas” by Alan Pedder (Wears the Trousers Magazine. 8 July 2008). Originally posted Dec 24, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“The writer is ambivalent by nature. That’s who we are… Our interest in things was never real. It wasn’t genuine, or wholehearted. We were mostly interested in life as material for the line, the verse, the story.” Leonard Cohen

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The writer is ambivalent by nature. That’s who we are… We’re ambivalent about everything… Our interest in things was never real. It wasn’t genuine, or wholehearted. We were mostly interested in life as material for the line, the verse, the story. Unfortunately, that didn’t keep us from running around like chickens with our heads cut off trying to feel a little better, looking for a buzz. Anything to escape the anguish.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Matters Of Vital Interest by Eric Lerner. A review of this book can be found at The Leonard Cohen Tell All Koan – Matters Of Vital Interest By Eric Lerner. Photo by Eric Lerner.

“If the crowd had applauded every time Leonard Cohen’s poetic eloquence was displayed, it would’ve meant a nonstop ovation.” 2012 Boston Concerts

Review

Several times during Leonard Cohen’s epic and enveloping show at the Citi Wang Theatre Saturday night, the legendary singer-songwriter would sing one of his famous, devastatingly precise couplets and the audience would break into applause. If the crowd had applauded every time Cohen’s poetic eloquence was displayed, it would’ve meant a nonstop ovation for almost the entirety of the 3-hour-plus performance. That might’ve been distracting but it would’ve been understandable given how deep his gift for expression runs and how impeccably it was brought to life by the man and his superb band.

From Leonard Cohen Makes It Memorable, Sarah Rodman’s review of the Dec 15, 2012 Leonard Cohen Boston Concert. Boston Globe: Dec 17, 2012.

Photos

The above backstage photos were taken by Joey Carenza.

Live Music Blog offers 47 photos taken by Stephen Atkinson at the Dec 15, 2012 Leonard Cohen Boston Concert. The entire gallery can be accessed at Photos: Leonard Cohen @ Wang Theatre, Boston, MA 12/15/12.

The Wang Theatre Marquee photo atop this post was taken by Avi Elkoni

Originally posted Dec 17, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric