From Leonard Cohen By Pat Harbron. Beetle: December 1973. Photo taken by Sam Tata in Montreal, 1973 – from Library and Archives Canada. Originally posted Jan 10, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
A lot had to do with poverty. I mean I was writing books (two novels and four volumes of poetry) and they were being very well received … and that sort of thing, but I found it was very difficult to pay my grocery bill. I said, like it’s really happening. I’m starving. I’ve got beautiful reviews for all my books, and you know, I’m very well thought of in the tiny circles that know me, but like … I’m really starving. So then I started bringing some songs together. And it really changed my whole scene.
Note: Originally posted Jan 4, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
What can I do? I had to go to work. I have no money left. I’m not saying it’s bad; I have enough of an understanding of the way the world works to understand that these things happen.
A ‘Devastated’ Leonard Cohen by Katherine Macklem (Maclean’s: August 17, 2005). Originally posted February 1, 2009 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
I have no idea of what I can afford and what I can’t afford. Nobody seems to be able to tell me. Apparently, until you actually liquidate your estate, you can never be sure of how much money you have or don’t have. My manager always cautions on the side of frugality. Before I made any money I lived in a beautiful white house in Greece, with a charming companion. I had a suntan all the time, I swam every day, I had credit at the stores, the place was uncrowded, life was ideal. Now, at best, I stay in one and a half rooms at the Chelsea and air-conditioned hotels in other cities, and things seem to have gone down. It’s like it used to be.
From Leonard Cohen Looks at Himself by Danny Fields. Soho Weekly News, Vol. 1, #9. Dec 5, 1974.
Credit Due Department: This outstanding interview was discovered and contributed by Jugurtha Harchaoui.
How does it feel to have weathered 30 years in the business?
It’s a long time, my child. I’ve had a blessed kind of renown, though it waxes and wanes. I’ve been able to satisfy a principle I established for myself early in the game, which was that I wanted to get paid for my work, but I didn’t want to work for pay.
From Leonard Cohen by Neva Chonin (Rolling Stone: December 11, 1997). Originally posted Dec 26, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric
I did a tour of Poland before the solidarity government was established. I discovered that Poland was probably my largest audience in the world. Unfortunately, they paid me in zlotys, which were, as you know, not transferable. At times when my so-called career in the West almost evaporated in most places, there was always this following in Poland and Eastern Europe. I don’t know why. My great-grandfather came from Wylkowyski, which was part of Poland at the time. I was very pleased to be able to say that I came from Poland, although they really didn’t think of me as Polish.
Jewish Book News Interview With Leonard Cohen By Arthur Kurzweil And Pamela Roth: 1994. Poster contributed by jeremek. Photo of cash credit to piviso.com. Originally posted July 30, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric,