Gwen Goes To Ghent, Gets Her Leonard Cohen Groove Back – 2012


Co-starring Mandy MacLeod, Adam Cohen, Sharon Robinson, Charley & Hattie Webb, Robert Kory, Neil Larsen, Javier Mas, Mitch Watkins, Rafael Gayol, Chris Bynum, Joey Carenza …

Once upon a time, in a land far away ….

No, that isn’t quite the right tone for this screenplay. The story of how Gwen Langford took Belgium, summarized from her own report, is less a fairy tale than the account of a crusade, a mission inspired by passion and carried out with unrelenting energy.

The story begins with the discovery by the two stalwarts pictured above, Gwen Langford and Mandy MacLeod, that the 2012 Leonard Cohen Old Ideas World Tour would begin in Ghent, which is no more than, oh, 700 miles or so from Gwen’s home base in Ireland. (The distance is actually an anticlimactic element of the plot; the last trip Gwen & Mandy took to a Cohen concert was a flight to Las Vegas – yep, the one in Nevada.)

And thus it came to pass that our intrepid pilgrim-warriors entered the walled city of Ghent with no more than the token resistance offered by airline and hotel bureaucracies, high prices, limited resources, and the heat.

The initial contact with Cohen forces took place at the first night’s fan meet-up at a bar close to the concert. Gwen & Mandy scored their first victories, bagging the spoils: photos and autographs from the Webb Sisters and Sharon Robinson.

Next, their intelligence networks having yielded the name of the hotel where the band and crew were in residence, Gwen and Mandy bivouacked there, living off the land. Subsisting largely on liberated rations of Kriek beer and enduring the rigors of institutional air conditioning, they identified, encountered, and successfully engaged with management staff as well as band and crew members, including (from left to right in the series of images below) Robert Kory, Neil Larsen, Javier Mas, Roscoe Beck, and Mitch Watkins.

Soon, however, it was necessary to journey to another fortress – Adam Cohen’s concert in Brussels. Here too, Gwen proved triumphant, Adam negotiating peace terms with hugs, kisses on the cheek as per diplomatic protocol, and photos. He finalized the treaty by signing a photo of himself and his father.


Of course, these were only preliminary skirmishes en route to the main objective – Field Commander Cohen himself. Upon contact, Cohen’s recognition of Gwen was immediate with hugs, autographs, and photos ensuing.

Displayed below are the emblems of victory.

Epilogue: Gwen & Mandy have since returned to their headquarters – but not just to live happily ever after. Instead, they are, of course, recouping in preparation for their next Cohen campaign.

Credit Due Department: The photo atop this post is by J.S. Carenza III. Photos of Gwen and the various members of Leonard Cohen’s troupe are by Mandy MacLeod. The photo of Leonard Cohen and the rose is by Gwen Langford.

Originally posted Sept 3, 2012 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: Leonard Cohen Performs The Gypsy’s Wife Featuring Javier Mas & Alex Bublitchi – London 2013

gyp1There is some intermittent shaky camera work but the picture is clear and the audio is good. Javier Mas opens the song with a solo, and a brilliant violin solo by Alex Bublitchi begins at 3:20


Leonard Cohen – The Gypsy’s Wife
London: Sept 15, 2013
Video: FrostbiteZ1

Note: Originally posted Sept 17, 2013 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

High Quality Video: Leonard Cohen Performs Lover, Lover, Lover Featuring Javier Mas – Bratislava 2009

lovrvrYes and lover, lover, lover
Lover, lover, lover, lover
Come back to me

Javier Mas takes the lead at the beginning of this song and plays an extended solo beginning at 3:33.


Leonard Cohen – Lover, Lover, Lover
Bratislava: August 28, 2009
Video by albertnoonan

Note: Originally posted Aug 31, 2009 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Exquisite Video: Leonard Cohen Performs The Gypsy’s Wife – Granada 2009


Featuring Javier Mas & Dino Soldo

And where, where is my Gypsy wife tonight?
Too early for the rainbow, too early for the dove
These are the final days, this is the darkness, this is the flood
And there is no man or woman who can’t be touched
But you who come between them will be judged
And where, where is my Gypsy wife tonight?

While the Granada concert has been criticized for poor acoustics and impaired view from any seats beyond the first few rows of the venue (a bull ring), and for the talking and shouting that persisted throughout the performance, it did produce this outstanding video of The Gypsy’s Wife. Worthy of special note is the distinctly atypical sounding of the gong by Rafael Gayol at the end of the song.

Leonard Cohen – The Gypsy’s Wife
Granada: Sept 13, 2009
Video by tsipouren

Originally posted Sept 20, 2009 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: Here’s The Pitch From Dino Soldo + Javier Mas Snubs Leonard Cohen – Langesund 2009


This video of Leonard Cohen performing So Long, Marianne offers two bits of stage business:

1. At the beginning of the video, Dino Soldo (on the far right) impersonates a baseball pitcher, adjusting his cap, focusing on the plate with a menacing stare, winding up, and then starting a pitching motion that transforms into finger snapping as Leonard Cohen comes onto the playing field.

2. At 1:30, Leonard Cohen moves next to Javier Mas to engage with him as a routine part of the song’s choreography. Javier, focused on his own performance, ignores his advances until Leonard gives up the effort, exchanging a “what are you gonna do” look with Dino.

Leonard Cohen – So Long Marianne
Wrightegaarden, Langesund (Norway): July 16, 2009
Video by A.C Moe

Credit Due Department: I am indebted to Linda Sturgess for pointing out Dino’s pitching sequence and to Esther Park, who described the (lack of) interaction between Leonard Cohen and Javier Mas.

Video: Leonard Cohen Performs Ain’t No Cure For Love – Chicago Rosemont 2009 + Photos

Leonard Cohen – Ain’t No Cure For Love
Rosemont, Oct 29, 2009
Video from albertnoonan

For more about the Leonard Cohen World Tour show at the Chicago Rosemont Theatre, see

Photos by Lisa Sweet.  Originally posted Nov 1, 2009 at, a predecessor of Cohencentric