“I never try to baffle or mystify [with my songs] although I can understand that with the habit of literal reading that is taught in schools it is sometimes difficult to enjoy the work.” Leonard Cohen

From Have You Heard The One About Lenny In The Sandwich Bar? by Andrew Tyler. Disc: September 2, 1972. Originally posted October 14, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“I understand what the blues is now… It’s just talking to your baby.” Leonard Cohen After Stevie Ray Vaughan Performance

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Roscoe [Beck] and I took Leonard to hear Stevie [Ray Vaughan] one night at the Hollywood Bowl, and Leonard was silent for a good half-hour after the show. We were walking in silence to the car. And finally Leonard said: ‘I understand what the blues is now.’ I said, ‘What is it you understand?’ And he said: ‘It’s just talking to your baby.’ In other words: It’s intimate. It’s as close to the truth as possible.quotedown2

Jennifer Warnes

 

Let’s Go To The Well by Brad Buchholz (Austin American-Statesman: 2002). Accessed at Jennifer Warnes website. Photo by Paul Lannuier. Originally posted July 18, 2010 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“I was able to turn to art, and in the making of art find solace and strength” Leonard Cohen

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It isn’t that in my life I had some inner vision that I’ve been trying to present. I just had the appetite to work. I think the appetite for activity was much more urgent than the realization of any search or vision. I felt that this was my work, and that it was the only work I could do. This sounds like the most hackneyed nineteenth-century platitude, but in the midst of my own tiny personal troubles, I was able to turn to art, or whatever you want to call it. I was able to turn to art, and in the making of art find solace and strength. I mean, this sounds terrible, but I turned to the thing I knew how to do and I made some songs out of it. And in the making of those songs, much of the pain in my life was dissolved, from time to time. And that is one of the things that I see that art does, is that it heals.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Leonard Cohen Interviewed by Mikal Gilmore, 2001. Accessed at Stories Done: Writings on the 1960s and Its Discontents by Mikal Gilmore (Free Press: 2008)

“Culture’s always been violent, and it is something we find very entertaining. Not only does it reflect our social reality, but it also reflects our psychic reality.” Leonard Cohen

Anjelica Huston: Do you think [distracting us from our internal panic] is what the present trend in extremely violent films and music is about?

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I think culture’s always been violent, and it is something we find very entertaining. Not only does it reflect our social reality, but it also reflects our psychic reality. We actually lead very violent, passionate lives and I think that we’re hungry for insights into this condition. That’s why we get all that stuff on television. It’s really where we are, really what we are. Probably all cultures, certainly Western culture, always have been violent. At the very center of our culture is a crucified man, a tortured man hanging on a cross of wood. You have an image of violence at the very center of our spiritual investigation. Suffering, violent suffering, seems to be something that corresponds with something that we experience. But maybe the culture is [particularly] shabby now. Maybe it’s because I’m over sixty, that I can feel that about everything.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Leonard Cohen Interviewed by Anjelica Huston. Interview magazine: November, 1995. Accessed at Remembering Leonard Cohen by Anjelica Huston (Interview: Nov 11, 2016). Photography Dana Lixenberg. Content originally posted May 16, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“That’s what a poem does at all times. It dissolves all poetry before it and after it.” Leonard Cohen on Culture, Grunge, & Poetic Tradition

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I [often] feel I want to annihilate the entire cultural landscape. When I hear the word ‘grunge,’ I want to reach for my revolver, for example. Because ‘grunge’ was already there before the term arose. In fact, that’s what a poem does at all times. It dissolves all poetry before it and after it. It is also solidly linked in an unbroken chain with all that has come before it and all that is to come after.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

From Maverick Spirit: Leonard Cohen by Jim O’Brien. B-Side Magazine: August/September 1993. Originally posted Jan 12, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric