Leonard Cohen Doffs His Hat, Sharon Robinson Waves: 2008 Lucca Soundcheck Video

lsoundcThere is nothing extraordinary about this video of Leonard Cohen’s soundcheck before the 2008 Lucca show, but I always enjoy seeing the backup singers and the band in mufti (OK, I guess that technically, Leonard is in civilian clothes as well , but how do you tell his concert costume from his everyday outfit?), and I am taken by Leonard responding, in the midst of solving some issue with the sound system, to fans applauding the abruptly ended song by doffing his hat and smiling at the crowd — an event followed a moment later by Sharon flashing her own winsome smile and waving.  Consider my cockles warmed.

Leonard Cohen – Dance Me To The End Of Love
Lucca Soundcheck: July 27, 2008
Video by Todd Rongstad

Leonard Cohen On Being Asked About The “Burning Violin” In Dance Me To The End Of Love

Dance me to your beauty
with a burning violin

Interviewer: What about the “burning violin” in “Dance Me To The End Of Love” ….

quoteup2
Although I don’t think anyone needs to know what gave me that image, there were these little orchestras the Germans put together in concentration camps. They played while people were being incinerated or gassed. If you want to read the song from that point of view, it becomes something quite different.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Note: Also see Leonard Cohen Reveals Death Camps As Origin Of “Dance Me To The End Of Love”

From Leonard Cohen: The Profits Of Doom by Steve Turner, Q (UK), April 1988.

Outstanding Video: Leonard Cohen Performs Dance Me To The End Of Love – Zurich 2013

dancezuricjDance me to your beauty with a burning violin
Dance me through the panic till I’m gathered safely in
Touch me with your naked hand or touch me with your glove
Dance me to the end of love

Leonard Cohen – Dance Me To The End Of Love
Zurich: August 24, 2013
Video: albertnoonan

Note: Originally posted Aug 26, 2013 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen Video Of The Day: Dance Me To The End Of Love + Interview – Australian TV 1985

singing1

Leonard Cohen Sings, Explains Origins Of Dance Me To The End Of Love

This video offers not only an outstanding performance of Dance Me To The End Of Love but also a six minute interview, which, thanks to the host’s miscues, offers key explanations of the origins of  Dance Me To The End Of Love and the distinction between Suzanne who  feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China and Suzanne who is the mother of Leonard Cohen’s children.

iinterview

Cohen1 sets off laughter as he deadpans his way through corrections.

talking

In response to the host observing that the film clip (from Dominique Issermann’s Dance Me To The End Of Love video) was shot in a “mental hospital,” Cohen points out

No, it was just an ordinary hospital where people get sick and die

And when Mr Walsh notes that Cohen “attracts” emotions like moroseness and sadness, the Canadian singer-songwriter opines

That’s what they say … My friends think I’m a barrel of laughs.

fullbandThe screenshots, including views of Mitch Watkins, who also played in the 2012 Tour, and Anjani Thomas, are a  wonderful bonus.

anjani-mitch

Leonard Cohen –  Dance Me To The End Of Love
Mike Walsh Show – Australian TV: 20 May 1985
Video uploaded by a1000kissesdeep

Note: Originally posted Feb 22, 2013 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
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  1. Note that Mr Cohen sports slicked back hair, a dark suit, plaid shirt, and cowboy boots.  Do not try this at home unless you, like Leonard Cohen, are a professional dapper dresser. []

“In the sweaty, passionate, filthy embrace [of sexual ecstasy], in all of its delicious and time-dissolving power, in the midst of that embrace there is no difference, no separation between the spiritual and the profane.” Leonard Cohen


Pico Iyer: ‘Dance Me To The End of Love’ implies the dissolving of time in the moment of sexual ecstasy. To what extent do you make a distinction between the sexual and the spiritual when it comes to absolute?

quoteup2
In the sweaty, passionate, filthy embrace, in all of its delicious and time-dissolving power, in the midst of that embrace there is no difference, no separation between the spiritual and the profane. But it’s reached through the profane rather than through the spiritual, at least in my canon. That is the portal, that is the door into the whole affair. In that moment there is no separation, there is no spirit and flesh, there’s no conflict, there never was. It’s dissolved.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Leonard Cohen:  Several Lifetimes Already by Pico Iyer (Shambhala Sun, September, 1998). Update: No longer online. Originally posted Nov 26, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric