From Jennifer Warnes Sings "Way Down Deep" To Leonard Cohen Recites "A Thousand Kisses Deep"

jenn-lenn

The Alpha And Omega (So Far) Of “A Thousand Kisses Deep”

As is true of many Leonard Cohen songs, “A Thousand Kisses Deep” has a complex history. Tom Sakic and I thought it would be interesting to present the earliest performed precursor of this song  juxtaposed with the most recent version.

The result is a video with Jennifer Warnes singing the gorgeous but routinely overlooked “Way Down Deep” (by Jennifer Warnes, Leonard Cohen, and Amy Latelevision) from her 1992 album, The Hunter, followed by Leonard Cohen’s July 20, 2009 recitation of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” in Dublin.

Between these end points, “A Thousand Kisses Deep” – both the song and the poem, both in print and as performed – has undergone changes in specific lyrics and the addition, subtraction, and rearrangement of stanzas.

The closest we have to a definitive manuscript of all verses is dated September 21, 1998 and is available online at Blackening Pages: A Thousand Kisses Deep.1 From that point on, the versions are combinations and permutations of these verses with occasional changes in lines and phrases.

The Video: Jennifer Warnes’ “Way Down Deep” To Leonard Cohen’s “A Thousand Kisses Deep”

Despite being romantics at heart, neither Tom nor I planned this as a Valentine’s Day commemoration – but, just as sure as there ain’t no cure for love, it is a suitable treat for those with a Cohenesque perspective.

Video from DrHGuy

Bonus: Leonard Cohen’s 1996 “A Thousand Kisses Deep”

This video clip is from Armelle Brusq’s movie, “Leonard Cohen Spring 96,”2 shot at the Mt Baldy Zen Center.

Leonard Cohen – A Thousand Kisses Deep
1996 Demo
Video from a1000kissesdeep (aka Tom Sakic)

Credit Due Department: The photo atop this post is a gift from Jennifer Warnes.

Note: Originally posted Feb 12, 2010 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
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  1. Leonard Cohen’s 1996 demo from Armelle Brusq’s movie at Mt Baldy referenced at at Blackening Pages: A Thousand Kisses Deep is also available on YouTube and can be viewed below in the embedded player near the end of this post. []
  2. See Superb Video Of Leonard Cohen At Mt Baldy Zen Center – Armelle Brusq’s 1996 Film Now Online []

Video: Leonard Cohen’s Resonant Recitation Of A Thousand Kisses Deep – Dublin 2009

1000dub

I’m good at love, I’m good at hate
It’s in between I freeze
Been working out, but its too late
It’s been too late for years
But you look good, you really do
The pride of Boogie Street,
Somebody must have died for you
A thousand kisses deep

 The Dublin concerts have been among the most significant and memorable of Leonard Cohen’s World Tour, marked by performances such as Cohen’s quintessential July 20, 2009 rendition of “So Long Marianne.”

Despite suffering through what seems to be one of those summer colds he keeps warning us about in the blessings that close each show, Cohen’s recitation of “A Thousand Kisses Deep” from that same July 20, 2009 concert is especially resonant and moving.

Leonard Cohen – A Thousand Kisses Deep
O2 Dublin: 20 July 2009
Video from Dinosboss

Note: Originally posted July 22, 2009 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Best Videos Of 2013 Leonard Cohen Tour: A Thousand Kisses Deep – Brussels

1000k

quoteup2
You came to me this morning
And you handled me like meat
You’d have to be a man to know
How good that feels, how sweet
My mirrored twin, my next of kin
I’d know you in my sleep
And who but you would take me in
A thousand kisses deep
quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen – A Thousand Kisses Deep
Brussels: June 30, 2013
Video by MaartenLC (Maarten Massa)

 

Best 2013 Leonard Cohen Videos: Cohencentric.com is featuring selections from the current Best Of 2013 Leonard Cohen Tour Video Setlist, which comprises the best available video of each of the songs performed during the 2013 Leonard Cohen Old Ideas World Tour

Best Videos Of 2012 Leonard Cohen Tour: A Thousand Kisses Deep – Brooklyn

kissesdeep
You came to me this morning
And you handled me like meat
You’d have to be a man to know
How good that feels, how sweet
My mirrored twin, my next of kin
I’d know you in my sleep
And who but you would take me in
A thousand kisses deep

Best 2012 Leonard Cohen Videos: Cohencentric.com features selections from the Best Of 2012 Leonard Cohen Tour Video Setlist, which comprises the best available video of each of the songs performed during the 2012 Leonard Cohen World Tour.

Leonard Cohen – A Thousand Kisses Deep
Brooklyn: Dec 20, 2012
Video by Wirebirds

Video: Leonard Cohen’s “That’s What I Heard You Say” Featured In Dramatic Sony Two Worlds Ad

2world

Two Worlds Vs A Thousand Kisses

According  to Leonard Cohen’s official website, he “is featured in a new Sony commercial in which he recites a specially written verse called ‘That’s What I Heard You Say.'” The commercial itself is called “Two Worlds.”  The “specially written verse” is another modest adaptation of A Thousand Kisses Deep (see lyrics below), a poem that Cohen has reformulated numerous times as a song and, during the 2008-2010 Leonard Cohen World Tour, as a recitation (and it was not uncommon for performances during that Tour to feature differing lyrics).

In addition to the interest generated by any new lyrical contribution, albeit a variation of a previous work, from Leonard Cohen,  this performance also holds potential significance because

1. It is one of those relatively few instances in which Cohen’s works are used in an advertisement

2. The commercial is for Sony, one division of which, Sony Music Entertainment,1 is Leonard Cohen’s record label.2 As is true of many artists and the record labels, the relationship between Leonard Cohen and Sony/CBS/BMG/Columbia/etc has sometimes been rocky. While one cooperative venture doth not a rapprochement make, it is nonetheless notable that the ad is featured not only on LeonardCohen.com but also his official Facebook page and the Cohen-sanctioned LeonardCohenFiles.

There is even (or inevitably) a Making of the film documentary.

Sony Two Worlds – Featuring Leonard Cohen

Lyrics: Two Worlds Ad

Continue Reading →

  1. Those who have been Cohen fans for some time can be forgiven if they experience corporation confusion at this point.  On November 17, 1987, the Sony Corporation of America acquired CBS Records, which hosted many performers, including Leonard Cohen. CBS Inc., now CBS Corporation, retained the rights to the CBS name for music recordings but granted Sony a temporary license to use the CBS name. Sony renamed the record company Sony Music Entertainment (SME) on January 1, 1991. Cohen’s work also operated under the BMG aegis for some time; his own publishing company, Stranger Music, was, for example, purchased by Sony BMG. In August 2004, Sony entered into a 50-50 joint venture with Bertelsmann by merging Sony Music and Bertelsmann Music Group (BMG) to form Sony BMG Music Entertainment. Sony Corporation of America and Bertelsmann announced on August 5, 2008 that Sony agreed to acquire Bertelsmann’s 50% stake in Sony BMG. Sony completed its acquisition of Bertelsmann’s 50% stake in the companies’ joint venture on October 1, 2008. The company, once again named Sony Music Entertainment Inc. (SME), became a wholly owned subsidiary of Sony Corporation through its US subsidiary Sony Corporation of America. Got that? (This material was gathered from a number of sources but the basic Sony mergers and acquisitions  information can be found at Wikipedia.) []
  2. Sony Music Entertainment is also the current record label of Adam Cohen and Anjani Thomas. []

Video: From Jennifer Warnes’ Way Down Deep To Leonard Cohen’s A Thousand Kisses Deep

8As is true of many Leonard Cohen songs, “A Thousand Kisses Deep” has a complex history. Tom Sakic and I thought it would be interesting to present the earliest performed precursor of this song juxtaposed with the most recent version [at the time of the original 2010 posting].

The result is a striking video that opens with Jennifer Warnes singing the gorgeous but inexplicably overlooked Way Down Deep (credited to Jennifer Warnes, Leonard Cohen, and Amy Latelevision) from her 1992 album, The Hunter, which is followed by Leonard Cohen’s July 20, 2009 recitation of A Thousand Kisses Deep in Dublin. Between these end points, A Thousand Kisses Deep – both the song and the poem, both in print and as performed – has undergone changes in specific lyrics and the addition, subtraction, and rearrangement of stanzas.

The closest we have to a definitive manuscript of all verses is dated September 21, 1998 and is available online at Blackening Pages: A Thousand Kisses Deep. From that point on, the versions are combinations and permutations of these verses with occasional changes in lines and phrases.

From Way Down Deep By Jennifer Warnes To A Thousand Kisses Deep By Leonard Cohen
Video by Allan Showalter

 

Tom Sakic charts the development of A Thousand Kisses Deep:

1992 – Warnes’ “Way Down Deep”
1996 – documentary “Leonard Cohen Spring 96” by Armelle Brusq
1997 – video interview “Beautiful Losers” (ARTE)
1998 – radio interview KCRW
1998 – on Blackening Pages
2001 – “Ten New Songs” – song
2006 – “Book of Longing” early draft sent to publishers, printed as two songs (A Thousand Kisses Deep /album version/ and Still Into That)
2006 – Book of Longing – all verses combined into two parts, 1 and 2 (album version)
2008-2009 some late extra verses, recited during World Tour, and variations
2009 – Recitation with N.L. (Live in London) – recitation of Part 1 (variation)
2011 – Sony Two Worlds Ad
2013 – Recitation w/ N.L. (Live In Dublin)

Note: This material originally posted Feb 12, 2010 and July 24, 2011 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric