“It’s in what they call a slum, not a fashionable slum like Greenwich Village.” Leonard Cohen Talks About “Our House In Montreal”

How do you live now? What style and mode of luxury do you allow yourself?

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It would be hard to describe our house1 in Montréal without seeming that I was being pretentious, on the side of modesty. We live in an extremely small house… [The neighborhood] is one I always liked. It’s in the East End of town, on a Portuguese working class street. Our house is about the size of this room, I would say. There are one and a half levels. It’s very crowded, and I’ve just given my studio over to the babies. I’ll have to get a little apartment across the street. It’s really a beautiful place, and we have a garden. But you should come up and see it. It’s like living in the country in the middle of the city. It’s in what they call a slum, not a fashionable slum like Greenwich Village. But now there’s another writer on the street… [The neighborhood is] safe, that’s the thing. Like the little child Adam runs on the street and goes into the neighbors’ houses. The doors are open, and the children come into our house. You know, if you can stand that sort of thing, it’s extremely nice… I’ve always lived like that. My own personal style of living has changed very very little. I don’t know what I would do otherwise, what would one do?quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From Leonard Cohen Looks at Himself by Danny Fields. Soho Weekly News, Vol. 1, #9. Dec 5, 1974.

Resources: Leonard Cohen’s Montreal: The best articles about Leonard Cohen’s Montreal homes and haunts as well as videos and a list of pertinent landmarks

Credit Due Department: This outstanding interview was discovered and contributed by Jugurtha Harchaoui. Photo taken by and posted with the permission of Lilian Graziani.
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  1. “Our” refers to Leonard and Suzanne Elrod along with their children, Adam & Lorca []

“What suits me is a more modest style than generally could be discovered in a first class hotel where so much is based on the good graces of the people around you being purchased” Leonard Cohen

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Leonard Cohen’s room at the Chelsea Hotel

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Someone said ‘If riches assist thee acquire riches, if poverty assist thee seek poverty.’ There are many styles of life, I don’t think one is better than another, it’s just that what suits me is a more modest style than generally could be discovered in a first class hotel where so much is based on the good graces of the people around you being purchased.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From “Complexities And Mr. Cohen” by Billy Walker (Sounds, March 4, 1972). Found at LeonardCohenFiles.  Photo of Leonard Cohen’s room by Mel Joss. Originally posted at Dec 10, 2014 DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric.

“I love hotels to which, at 4 AM, you can bring along a midget, a bear & 4 ladies, drag them to your room & no one cares” Leonard Cohen On The Chelsea Hotel

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[The Chelsea] is one of those hotels that have everything that I love so well about hotels. I love hotels to which, at four a.m., you can bring along a midget, a bear and four ladies, drag them to your room and no one cares about it at all.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

Blogging From the Hotel Chelsea by Jem Carlson (Gothamist: Apr 12, 2006). Photo by Historystuff2 (Own work) [CC BY 3.0], via Wikimedia Commons

Leonard Cohen On His Preference For Voluptuous Furnishings

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voluptuous-room

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I find the simple life voluptuous. I like … a good chair and a good table.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

From 2006 NRK interview: Leonard Cohen On His Poems, Zen, Hallelujah, His 6 Good Songs, Money, America, And The Squirrel

Credit Due Department: A&M Records promotional photo by Dennis Keeley

Note: Originally posted May 20, 2011 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric