From At Lunch With Leonard Cohen;Philosophical Songwriter On A Wire by Jon Pareles. New York Times: October 11, 1995
Note: Originally posted October 16, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
It’s hard to say who my musical hero is – it always changed each year. Before Slint, when I was in Maurice, it was Glenn Danzig. During the early part of Slint it was Steve Albini. But one constant has been Leonard Cohen. He’s one of those guys that I still admire. It’s not just his songwriting I find inspiring, it’s his whole life – he’s like Hemingway or something. It’s not just the poetry, the words, or even the songwriting – it’s also the way he conducts his life. The fact he left everything to be a Renzai Buddhist monk for years and years. I find that really inspiring.
Thanks for the many chuckles, Allan, and the sometimes embarrassing reminders of past follies. Deeply appreciate your efforts on my behalf. Brilliant work. Better than Drudge. Gratitude and warm regards to you and The Duchess.
Since Cohencentric came online March 7, 2015, it has published over 6000 posts chock-full of information, photos, videos, animations, audio recordings, musicological and philosophical discussions, and even the occasional joke. That’s an average of 5-6 posts added to the site each day, 365 days a year. Not so shabby. And in just these three years, Cohencentric has accumulated 3.9 million hits (aka unique views). Definitely not too shabby.
As long-time readers know, Cohencentric.com is the phoenix version of 1HeckOfAGuy.com. The first 1HeckOfAGuy.com post went online 12 years ago – March 3, 2006. The early posts (for example, the second entry, A Heck Of A [Warm-Up] Guy) focused on my life and interests.. For those keeping score, the first mention of Leonard Cohen at the 1HeckOfAGuy URL was the July 6, 2006 entry, “Do I Have To Dance All Night” – The Best Leonard Cohen Song You’ve (Probably) Never Heard, and posts about him, Anjani, Lorca, Adam, and the rest of the gang were for some time only occasional occurrences. That site closed, for all practical purposes, in mid-February 2015.1 More information about 1HeckOfAGuy.com is available here.
I had indicated that this post would include a discussion of changes coming to Cohencentric but belatedly realized that this celebratory entry was not an auspicious occasion for such an issue, so that announcement will be published later.
Why the hell did you shave off all your hair for the “Live” LP album?
Life just got to be too much for me at that time. I just couldn’t handle anything at all – so I went to a monastery to live. And I guess I just went over the wall.
Life On The Ledge With Leonard Cohen by Jon Marlowe. The Miami News: Nov 9, 1977.
Cars Of Leonard Cohen is a series of posts about actual automobiles owned by or associated with Leonard Cohen, metaphorical cars he employed in his songs, and his thoughts about cars. All posts in this series will be collected at Cars Of Leonard Cohen when they go online.
I suspect the jeep in these photos with Leonard Cohen is the one he purchased for use during his sojourn in Franklin, Tennessee in the early 1970s:
I moved there [Franklin Tennessee]. I had a house, a jeep, a carbine, a pair of cowboy boots, a girlfriend. … A typewriter, a guitar. Everything I needed1
The vehicle in the shots with Leonard Cohen resembles the DJ series “postal jeep” (pictured directly above) that was used by the USPS. DJ’s were also, however, employed by the military and were sold to individuals.
The Jeep DJ (also known as the Dispatcher) was a two-wheel-drive variant of the four-wheel drive CJ series. Production started in 1955 by Willys, which was renamed Kaiser Jeep in 1963. In 1970, American Motors (AMC) purchased Kaiser’s money-losing Jeep operations and established AM General, a wholly owned subsidiary that built the DJ through 1983.2
The DJ series was largely recycled using leftover jeep body styles and existing technology, making these jeeps inexpensive delivery vehicles. It came with either a column shift or floor shift three-speed Borg Warner T-96 manual transmission, which was the first since the CJ-2A to have a column shift. The DJ models were offered with many different body options including a soft top, hard top, or a full van body. The DJ could also come in right-hand drive for postal delivery use.,, DJ-A thru DJ-M became the Postal/Dispatch Jeep for most of America. Rural areas still used the Jeeps through 1984… Although rare, there are reportedly still Postal Jeeps in service today in a few areas.3
Photo Credit: Arnaud Maggs / Library and Archives Canada, R7959-3101.