Leonard Cohen on his songs “being recorded and entered into the commercial games”


Do you feel commercialized when a million copies of your albums are sold?

quoteup2
That isn’t the problem, that feeling doesn’t happen at the time a million albums are sold, it happens afterwards, when I accept the fact that my songs are being recorded and entered into the commercial games. I feel neither guilty nor happy, but I could add that the system uses me as much as I use it, so we would have to speak in terms of collaboration. What concerns me is reaching the people, so I have to submit to the rules of the game, because this system is the only means I have to do what I have to do.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From 1974 Interview with Leonard Cohen by Jordi Sierra I Fabra. Published in Leonard Cohen by Alberto Manzano (1978). Originally posted Nov 25, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“My songs have to be lived from the inside. No one will be able to see anything in them, if they are on the outside…” Leonard Cohen

quoteup2
My songs have to be lived from the inside. No one will be able to see anything in them, if they are on the outside. The fact that people buy my albums or that people are interested in me means that there are many people inside these songs. We can’t talk about virtues, only about creating some relationships which people can then identify with.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

1974 Interview with Leonard Cohen by Jordi Sierra I Fabra. Published in Leonard Cohen by Alberto Manzano (1978). Originally posted Nov 22, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen On Why “I don’t see my music as a steady diet for anyone”

1974-tour2

Cohen has been criticised for putting the same kind of chords and melodies to a lot of different words. I asked him whether certain harmonies, music progressions prompted him to produce or whether he didn’t find, the music that important, just the words.

quoteup2
Well, I only know three or four chords [jokingly]. I’m very interested in the music, I love the music and most of the tunes, a lot of them have more than three or four chords. I know a lot of them have a certain similarity but my talent is very limited. You can only work within your own limitations and I’ve done that. I can certainly understand it if people get a touch of monotony. I think that if people are interested in certain kinds of musical experience they are eventually going to be disappointed, disappointed because they need other kinds of nourishment. I don’t see my music as a steady diet for anyone.

quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

 

From The Strange, Sad and Beautiful World of Leonard Cohen By Andrew Furnival. Petticoat: December 30, 1972. Image atop post from the 1974 Tour in Europe program; contributed by Dominique BOILE. Originally posted Oct 24, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Q: Which song do you wish you had written? Leonard Cohen: “If It Be Your Will.” And I wrote it.”

900px-Leonard_Cohen_2181
From “Q Questionnaire – Leonard Cohen” Q Magazine, September 1994. Photo by Rama – Own work, CC BY-SA 2.0 fr, via Wikipedia, Originally posted Jan 18, 2010 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Leonard Cohen Explains Why Bird On The Wire “Is So Important To Me”


quoteup2
The song [Bird On The Wire] is so important to me. It’s that one verse where I say that I swear by this song, and by all that I have done wrong, I’ll make it all up to thee. In that verse it’s a vow that I’ll try and redeem everything that’s gone wrong. I think I’ve made it too many times now, but I like to keep renewing it.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Cohen Regrets (1973) by Alastair Pirrie. Beat Patrol: December 30, 2008. [Originally written for the New Musical Express: March 10, 1973.] Originally posted Nov 19, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“There doesn’t seem to be any way to guarantee the poem…” Leonard Cohen On Poems


quoteup2
The fact that the lines don’t come to the end of the page does not guarantee the poem. And the fact that there is a highly urgent and irrefutable intention to be a poet also does not guarantee the poem. So there doesn’t seem to be any way to guarantee the poem, it seems to be the verdict of the people who read it, and this itself is not secure because each generation changes that verdict on what is poetry.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

Leonard Cohen: Pondering His Past and ‘The Future’ by Scott Crawford (Intermission, Stanford Daily: April 8, 1993). Image atop post is the back cover of Flowers For Hitler. Originally posted Oct 9, 2014 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric