CONCERT REPORTS: Sydney, January 28 and 29

New Zealand and Australia (January 20 - February 10, 2009). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
dce
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Re: Sydney January 29

Postby dce » Fri Jan 30, 2009 1:38 am

BTW: I was particularly *unimpressed* by the guy in the audience near me that ... while very enthusiastic was clearly also extremely inebriated.

I figure someone should tell him that to give a standing ovation ... you've got to be able to stand :-)


dce
(For most of November 2010, I followed Leonard and the band as they toured around Australia and New Zealand. You can read about my wanderings on the blog I created to collect them all in one place: http://lcdownunder2010.wordpress.com/)
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Mikeaus
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Re: Sydney Concerts

Postby Mikeaus » Fri Jan 30, 2009 2:13 am

Mary, there were a plethora of thought and words which did not escape. We would have needed months to get all of those out. However my most important words did flow when I thanked him for his contribution to my life and to the world. I am still smiling and the memory of that wonderful moment will live with us forever.
Sydney & Bowral 2009. Lissadell Sligo July 2010 (what a night!). Sydney & Hanging Rock November 2010. Bimbadgen Winery, Hunter Valley, Nov 2013. Sydney Opera House, Dec 2013.
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Re: Sydney Concerts

Postby ladydi » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:22 am

Hi Mikeaus,

Thank you so very very much for sharing your moments with us. The photo of you and your lovely wife with Leonard is so beautiful! You both look fabulous and Leonard is positively beaming. Obviously he was happy to have met up with you. What a serendipitous encounter! I think possibly several thousand of us would have liked to be in your shoes! :D

So lovely. Thank you again.

Diana
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Re: Sydney Concerts

Postby MaryB » Fri Jan 30, 2009 5:37 am

Mikeaus wrote:Mary, there were a plethora of thought and words which did not escape. We would have needed months to get all of those out. However my most important words did flow when I thanked him for his contribution to my life and to the world. I am still smiling and the memory of that wonderful moment will live with us forever.
Mikeaus,
I think that is all most of us could hope for :D . Well done!
Kindest regards,
Mary
1993 Detroit 2008 Kitchener June 2-Hamilton June 3 & 4-Vienna Sept 24 & 25-London RAH Nov 17 2009 NYC Feb 19-Grand Prairie Apr 3-Phoenix Apr 5-Columbia May 11-Red Rocks Jun 4-Barcelona Sept 21-Columbus Oct 27-Las Vegas Nov 12-San Jose Nov 13 2010 Sligo Jul 31 & Aug 1-LV Dec 10 & 11 2012 Paris Sept 30-London Dec 11-Boston Dec 16 2013 Louisville Mar 30-Amsterdam Sept 20
NickShears
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Re: Sydney Concerts

Postby NickShears » Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:27 am

Mike, that's a wonderful photo and accompanying story. Thanks for sharing it. I hope the photo will be hanging on your wall alongside your painting!

Nick
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Mikeaus
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Re: Sydney Concerts

Postby Mikeaus » Fri Jan 30, 2009 8:11 am

Spot on Nick.

The photo has been sent to the printers to be placed on canvas and framed and will hang proudly beside Leonard's Grecian Woman (my avitar). I still haven't come down to earth!
Sydney & Bowral 2009. Lissadell Sligo July 2010 (what a night!). Sydney & Hanging Rock November 2010. Bimbadgen Winery, Hunter Valley, Nov 2013. Sydney Opera House, Dec 2013.
Shockvalue
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Sydney Show Comparisons

Postby Shockvalue » Fri Jan 30, 2009 11:32 am

canuck wrote:What a terrific show tonight, I think it was better than last night.

The crowd seemed a lot more into it tonight,and the band was on fire. Leonard seemed to be in even better voice (if that's possible) than the night before.

At the end he introduced Rob Hallett (American Promoter) so maybe they were all on their best behaviour for the boss :)

Two nights in a row with Leonard and the band. What a treat.
I also went the 2 nights in a row(and the Hunter Valley coming up!). Similar seats 6 rows from the stage. I probably saw some aspects a little differently.
I actually thought he looked a bit tired on Thursday and his interaction with his band somewhat less spontaneous, especially in the first part. The second part was more like the previous night. On the Wednesday night I thought Lenny looked ridicuously youthfull and energetic for a man of 74!! and I thought ..God I can but just aspire... :!: :!: :!:
I thought the Wednesday audience were a bit more reactive(first bookers - so more enthusiasts I guess) - but its all relative , on both nights the concert was superb and Lenny and his band moved us all. I did like the little differences from night to night. I loved the story he told the first night about he and his spiritual teacher out drinking and the "excuse me for not dying" line. And on Thursday night the thankyou for keeping his music alive "all these years".

The sound quality was brilliant every word, note and nuance audible.

I've got to admit that the photographers were a bit annoying particularly the videoers - they seem to be so task absorbed they forget that the illuminated screen can be distracting to others nearby. Security seemed to "crack down" a bit the second night - maybe because the first nighters were so indulgent with what seemed to be a leniency toward taking photos.
Just a word about Paul Kelly - if we had to have a support there would not have been a better person. He split his vineyard set over the 2 nights( largely new material). I think he repeated only one song.
I was secretly hoping he would do "Every F***in City" - but I thought no...it may not quite fit, although on second thought maybe it might have :razz:
He did seem to pick the songs with more poetic "depth".

Anyway we "floated" home both nights well "satisfied".
David

"Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack, a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in."
L. Cohen
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Andrew (Darby)
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby Andrew (Darby) » Fri Jan 30, 2009 3:48 pm

Mikeaus,

It's lovely to share your joy: what an amazing set of circumstances that allowed you to meet the man - how wonderful for you both & what a superb photo to cherish! 8)

I'm now looking forward to the Hunter Valley and Brisbane concerts! :D

Cheers,
Andrew :)
Last edited by Andrew (Darby) on Fri Jan 30, 2009 10:34 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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I only sing the tunes
The sadness of the seasons
The madness of the moons'
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Irene Teresa
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Re: Sydney January 29

Postby Irene Teresa » Fri Jan 30, 2009 4:08 pm

canuck wrote:What a terrific show tonight, I think it was better than last night.

He also added "Sisters of Mercy" and replaced "Democracy" with "Closing Time" (one of my personal favourites).

The crowd seemed a lot more into it tonight,and the band was on fire. Leonard seemed to be in even better voice (if that's possible) than the night before.

At the end he introduced Rob Hallett (American Promoter) so maybe they were all on their best behaviour for the boss :) told us about the dvd etc and that yes Leonard was tired.

Two nights in a row with Leonard and the band. What a treat.
met Rob after the show. very charming man. he was joking about being onstage LOL .he said he was the tour PRODUCER! Also was chatting to the charming Katie Noonon whove Ive met a few times and who is wonderful..and two other waiting for LC to come out. but he came out door two and drove away we all were ok with it but alos said ' very sneaky' through our laughter. xxx

Thanks for sharing about your Pic Mike. Ive know the hotel that hes been staying and was sorely tempted to hang out there ( whichb I sumtimes do anyway for tea etc ) but resisted So glad you met him and it all went lovely,.
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby Fontana » Fri Jan 30, 2009 6:09 pm

Review, Leonard Cohen, Sydney Entertainment Centre
By Kathy McCabe

January 29, 2009 12:00am

EVERYONE should be Leonard Cohen when they grow up.

They would skip about their day, as the 74-year-old Canadian songwriter and poet did each time he went on and offstage at the Sydney Entertainment Centre on Wednesday night.

They would be able to drop to one knee to serenade their guitarist or the front row of the crowd with ease; regular Buddhist meditation has been kind to his joints.

If you were Leonard Cohen when you were 70, thousands would hang on your every crooned and spoken word rather than dismissing such wisdom born of a life lived large just because you were old.

You would be surrounded by those whose talents not only enhanced your songs but which made you stop, hold your Fedora to your chest and marvel that human beings can conjure such magic.

And, if you were Leonard Cohen, you would be adored.

The years melted away for the old and no doubt the young were inspired to aspire to such a future as Cohen and his nine-piece ensemble played such modern classics as Everybody Knows, Hallelujah, Suzanne, Bird On The Wire and I'm Your Man.

Ovations abounded - some prompted by the house lightsbut mostly by his brilliance. It's funny how when the house lights come on, an audience tends to have the Pavlovian response of rising to their feet.

He was funny, real funny. When referencing the fact his last world tour - which did not make Australia - was 15 years ago, Cohen said: ``I was 60, just a kid with a crazy dream''.

Cohen then went on to say that in the intervening years, he had also studied philosophies and religions ``but cheerfulness kept breaking through''.

It was a rare concert, one that you could hear every note being plucked and sung, every beat, every chord struck.

But it was transcendent because Cohen proved to be that singular artist who can make a hall of more than 10,000 people feel like a loungeroom gathering of old friends.

Source:http://www.news.com.au/dailytelegraph/s ... 27,00.html
canuck
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby canuck » Sat Jan 31, 2009 6:16 am

Gentleman's triumph on the Hallelujah trail

Richard Jinman Arts Editor
January 31, 2009

"OH MY God," gasped the 30-something woman in the white dress. "I'm in love with a 74-year old man."

She was not alone. As the audience spilled out of Leonard Cohen's show at the Sydney Entertainment Centre on Wednesday night, there were many such declarations of love from people with eyes reddened by tears.

Among those paying tribute to the Canadian poet and songwriter yesterday was "Cheryl" - aka the former Democrats leader Cheryl Kernot - who rang ABC 702 to say how profoundly Cohen had moved her.

It was a common sentiment. The concerts - which continue this weekend at vineyards in the Hunter Valley and Bowral - are a sensation: giant communions led by the world's grooviest pensioner. A man forced back onto the concert circuit by the dastardly misappropriation of his retirement fund; a man who still manages to radiate a kind of cosmic munificence.

But why does the author of Suzanne and Famous Blue Raincoat have such power? Sure, the songs are brilliant, the voice is in surprisingly good nick and the band are tight. But when did you last cry at a Rod Stewart concert?

Cohen is not only the author of pop's great secular hymn, Hallelujah, he creates an aura of religiosity. Intoning a line such as "There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in," one feels oneself in the presence of someone who, if he has not actually reached enlightenment, has at least glimpsed its outer suburbs.

Michael Gudinski, the tour promoter, calls him "a reluctant rock star". He has not made any excessive demands in terms of hotel suites or tour riders, although he has chartered a plane to ferry himself and the band from New Zealand and interstate.

Cohen's only major demand is superlative sound quality at his performances. He attends every sound-check, staying for several hours to ensure the mix is perfect.

Although a small group of his fans believe Cohen is an astral traveller, the Canadian will use a conventional tour bus to head for the Hunter Valley today. It is unlikely there will be any groupies or rowdy behaviour up the back.

"He keeps to himself and hasn't done any interviews for the tour," said Gudinski. "The backstage atmosphere is quiet and refined. That is the way he wants it … there is none of the usual yahooing."

This story was found at: http://www.smh.com.au/articles/2009/01/ ... 21962.html
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mirka
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby mirka » Sat Jan 31, 2009 9:53 am

I'm sooo happy to hear that the magic continues ... :D
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dce
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby dce » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:15 pm

I know it's now several days since the two LC concerts at the Sydney Entertainment Centre, but I have a few moments, so thought I would transcribe some of my notes on these two shows.


SYDNEY: JANUARY 28 SHOW

The first Sydney show (as I have briefly mentioned in a previous post) was a fantastic performance, well received by a very warm audience. Because of the venue (and maybe because of the audience) the atmosphere was more one of cultured and civilized respect than the type of raw over-the-top adoration that I saw at some of the winery shows. But there is no doubting that the crowd was incredibly enthusiastic, and the sight of three or four standing ovations which brought the packed Ent Centre crowd to their feet -- that was very special. Since the house lights were brought up for each of these, there should be some good photos or videos -- maybe these moments may even make it to LC's DVD :-)

Specific moments and occurences that made the Jan 28th performance unique:

1. For whatever reason, the version of Chelsea Hotel was really excellent on this night, and the crowd was exceptionally swept up in the feeling of the song. After one of the lines about Janis preferring handsome men, there was a huge applause which caused LC to pause ... which was a little interesting, since it was the middle of a bar. But LC and the band stepped right back into the song and everything sounded great.

2. At the beginning of set 2, in the intro to Tower of Song, LC told the story about how his teacher (Roshi) once made a remark on turning 97 which was basically "sorry for not dying". LC said that he felt like that sometimes. As is sometime the case, LC's keyboard solo was rewarded with an applause, to which he responded my holding up his right hand and saying "... one hand!"

3. The line in Hallelujah was localized to "I didn't come all this way to Sydney to fool you"

4. In Boogie Street, part way through the song, I'm fairly sure I heard some static or other glitches in Sharon's mike -- which is a bit of a shame, since she pretty much sings that as a solo. She made it all the way through very professionally though.

5. I Tried To Leave You: as always, everyone got a nice solo -- Dino had got some bit applause earlier for his various solo, so he seemed to want to see how far he could take it. His solo at this show was (initially) one note ... then he put up his hand seeking the audience's applause. After the joke was obvious, he went on to play a proper solo. Also, in Rafael's solo he blew a kiss to the drum-kit-cam and attempted the difficult maneuver of throwing one brush into the air and catching it. I'd have to say that on this night ... it wasn't to be.


SYDNEY: JANUARY 29 SHOW

While this was still a great concert, I would have to say that the overall experience of this show is a fair bit below the magnificence of the previous night (and all subsequent performances). There were IMHO two factors that contributed ... firstly I think that LC's voice did seem a bit weaker for this performance. The normal routine seems to be to leave a day between concerts for the performers to refresh themselves. Originally, when there was only ONE Sydney show, this would have been the case. But when the second show was added after the sell-out, this rest day evaporated. But, I'd have to say that this factor was by far the smallest contributor to the second Sydney show seeming (to me at least) less magical: by FAR the greater factor was the crowd. Put simply, the audience reaction between the first and second Sydney shows could not have been more opposite -- where the first night's crowd were very obviously enthusiastic and warm, the second audience seemed (from where I was close to the front) to be only somewhat interested in the show. Before I get criticized ... there were clearly one or two obvious exceptions, people who were giving huge cheers and standing ovations, but to me it seemed that there weren't many of these folk (and most of them are probably on this forum :-). I'd have to concur with one of the previous posters who conjectured that maybe all the really die-hard fans had already bought their tickets to the Jan 28th show before it sold out ...

Specific moments and occurences that made the Jan 29th performance unique:

1. This show had the first change of set list for Australian shows: Sisters of Mercy subbed for Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye and Closing Time subbed for Democracy.

2. I'm sure it's nothing particular to this show, but this was the first night I noticed the somewhat elaborate assortment of drinks that Sharon and the Webb sisters have with them on stage. On this night, it seemed to me that each had three drinks: a tall glass of water, a smaller glass of something amber-ish coloured, and either a mug or a white cup.

3. At the beginning of Anthem, when LC talked about how lucky he felt to be in such a peaceful country, a woman called out from the crowd "then stay here!". LC couldn't hear but, after calling out a few more times, Sharon relayed the message. LC said "ok".

4. At the beginning of Tower of Song, when LC said "you won't have seen one of these down here, it's kinda sophisticated", someone yelled out "Bullshit!" Gotta love drunken audience members.

5. The "Don't every stop" routine at the end of Tower of Song was (like the nights before) more of a meditation, speaking specifically to the singers "I know we have a concert to play ... "

6. There was a slight mishap at the end of the "doo dum dum" section of Tower of Song: one of the Webb Sisters (I think it was Hattie) missed the cue to stop; so we got an extra "doo dum" before she realized. She looked very embarassed ... but interestingly, LC made this the subject of a joke the next time they performed (in the Hunter Valley).

7. During the middle section of The Partisan when he's not playing, Dino did a bit of a martial march.

8. I Tried To Leave You was missing the second verse -- it felt a little hurried, like LC wanted to wrap up the show. Rafael did, however, manage to finally pull of his trick of throwing a drumstick and catching it!
(For most of November 2010, I followed Leonard and the band as they toured around Australia and New Zealand. You can read about my wanderings on the blog I created to collect them all in one place: http://lcdownunder2010.wordpress.com/)
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Irene Teresa
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby Irene Teresa » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:43 pm

wonderful extensive 'notes' thank you for all those reminders.

Rob did tell us after the show that Leonard was Tired that night.Yet the people who attended this night only still say its the best concert they've been too.
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Irene Teresa
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Re: Sydney, Jan 28 & 29

Postby Irene Teresa » Mon Feb 02, 2009 5:46 pm

My son has the bit where the lady calls out stay here . its not good visual quality but happy to upload it.


Another reason was- they didnt turn up the house lights after almost every song which did add to long extra applause and ovations -

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