“I remember reading a book by Gore Vidal, Myra Breckinridge or something, and thinking ‘This whole vision is taken from Beautiful Losers.'” Leonard Cohen

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Sometimes I see people’s work and think that they may have had their genesis in something I’ve done. Sometimes I read a novel that … of course you can get very paranoiac about that also, and think so-and-so’s copied my entire style. I remember reading a book by Gore Vidal, Myra Breckinridge or something, and thinking ‘This whole vision is taken from Beautiful Losers.’ But I don’t know, that might be quite mad. He might never have even seen the book.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Romance at the Broncoburger by Rob Mackie (New Musical Express: April 5, 1975). Photo by SusmartOwn work, CC BY-SA 3.0, Link

“You want to hear a guy’s story… when you hear Fats Domino singing, ‘I found my thrill on Blueberry Hill,’ whatever that’s about, I mean, it’s deep.” Leonard Cohen

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You want to hear a guy’s story, and if the guy’s really seen a few things, the story is quite interesting. Or even if he comes to the point where he wants to sing about the moon in June, there’s something in his voice … when you hear Fats Domino singing, ‘I found my thrill on Blueberry Hill,’ whatever that’s about, I mean, it’s deep.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Leonard Cohen’s Nervous Breakthrough by Mark Rowland, Musician, July 1988.

“In the case of Eminem and some of the other rappers, the lyrics are impressive. I think it’s great. I studied and was formed in this tradition that honored the ancient idea of music being declaimed or chanted… to a rhythmic background.” Leonard Cohen

From Cohen on Wry by Michael Krugman (Flaunt: Oct 2001). Photo by DoD News Features141111-D-DB155-046, Public Domain, Link

“Phil [Spector] had a lot of guns all over the place. You’d always be tripping over bullets that had fallen out of guns.” Leonard Cohen

Embed from Getty Images

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Phil [Spector] had a lot of guns all over the place. You’d always be tripping over bullets that had fallen out of guns. Once I challenged one of Phil’s bodyguards to draw on me. It got that tense. My state of mind was only slightly less demented that Spector’s at the time.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Having Lunch With Leonard Cohen by Jon Wilde, Sabotage Times. Dec 3, 2015 (the quote itself is taken from a 1988 interview).

“Bob Dylan, that commie” Leonard Cohen’s Joke Gets Him Disinvited From 1992 Dylan Tribute

Why were you not part of the concert in homage to Dylan [the 1992 Bob Dylan 30th Anniversary concert at Madison Square Garden]?

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I think I was invited, but I made a joke. Don Ienner, who’s the president of Columbia, mentioned this concert to me and I made a joke. He said that there would be a Dylan tribute. I said, ‘Bob Dylan, that commie. He singlehandedly destroyed society.’ I said, ‘My daughter wrote on the edge of her book: ‘Your sons and your daughters are beyond your control.’ Thanks a lot, Bob.’ And I don’t know if they thought I was serious or not. Then, I was never asked again.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Excerpt from The Future by Alberto Manzano. El Europeo: Spring 1993.

Leonard Cohen On Attending Alberta Hunter’s Show When She Was 83: “When she said, ‘G-d bless you’ at the end, you felt deeply nourished and protected against the vicissitudes.”

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I remember going to the Village to listen to Alberta Hunter when she was 83. She’d quit working for 40 years to be a nurse in Harlem. She came back to singing at the age of 80. I went down to every set she sang in this particular place where she was playing for a week. And when she said, ‘G-d bless you’ at the end, you felt deeply nourished and protected against the vicissitudes.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Maverick Spirit: Leonard Cohen by Jim O’Brien. B-Side Magazine: August/September 1993.

“I like to wake up alone, and she likes to be alone. We are both impossibly solitudinous people.” Leonard Cohen Explains Why He & Anjani Have Separate Bedrooms (2007)

From He Has Tried in His Way to Be Free by Sarah Hampson (Lion’s Roar: Nov 1, 2007). Photo by Dominique BOILE.

“If I knew where the good songs came from, I’d go there more often. And I guess [Bob Dylan] feels the same way.” Leonard Cohen (1992)

2Leonard Cohen Interview with Serge Simonart (1992). Photo by Pete Purnell.

The Cohen-Dylan Interface

All posts about Leonard Cohen’s & Bob Dylan’s opinions of each other, their meetings, and comparisons by others can be found at