CONCERT REPORT: New York, Feb 19 at the Beacon

USA and Canada (April 1 - June 4, 2009). Special concert for fans in NYC (February 19). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
da2008
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby da2008 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:08 pm

Relate wrote:I attended the show last Thursday - what an evening! But I am surprised that no-one has mentioned the fiasco at the beginning of the show. Lots of people were still taking their seats *5* songs into the performace, there was confusion all around and the sound of walkie-talkies as the ushers tried to sort out the mess. At one point an usher even tapped me on the shoulder, interrupting my enjoyment of a song, to ask what my seat number was. It was utter chaos, and ruined a good portion of the first half of the show. Did the box office release some last minute unsold tickets or something? It was a fantastic show, but something went seriously wrong at the beginning.
where you in the front balcony? i saw one usher ask every person in about third or second row balcony to show her their tickets well into the set. i kind of laughed to be honest - this was absolutely absurd. well, at least you didn't have a promenade of let's call them "late-comers" in front of your face for 30 minutes like i did. i was really mad, but it's all water under the bridge now. crazy people...
da2008
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby da2008 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:10 pm

i was also kind of rooting for leonard to shine through all this bedlam. believe me, there was definitely something in it...
Relate
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby Relate » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:20 pm

I was sitting near the back of the orchestra seats. I lost count of the amount of times I had to stand up to allow latecomers down the line to find their seats (which often turned out to be the wrong ones which meant standing up again to let them back out!) I thought the O2 had been bad for latecomers meandering along the aisles, but it was nothing compared to the chaos that reigned at the beginning of the Beacon gig. Ridiculous considering the capacity of the former is somewhere in the region of 18,000 seats compared to a mere 2,500 at the Beacon!

But of course, Leonard did shine through :D
da2008
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby da2008 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:29 pm

orchestra seats? well then, i thought it was only an issue up in the balcony. I was sitting in the aisle and the moment leonard got on stage there were probably about 100 people standing in front of me blocking my view completely. not a good beginning :lol: i also had some really drunk dude sitting nearby waving his hands and dancing like a maniac during "Take This Waltz". that was rather interesting...

but you know, all good memories somehow - i had an amazing time!! i'd go through all this pain again just to relive the moment...
Relate
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby Relate » Tue Feb 24, 2009 6:38 pm

strange, I also had some weird guy dancing, arms flailing, during Take this Waltz. Same song, different maniac!

Glad you enjoyed the show, it was fabulous wasn't it? And we were lucky to have seats at all judging by the queue for returns outside. That's the first time I have been literally harrassed by a tout trying to buy my ticket! :D
da2008
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby da2008 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 7:14 pm

Where there any tickets actually released on the day of the show?
Relate
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby Relate » Tue Feb 24, 2009 7:26 pm

not entirely sure, I heard someone at the box office telling a guy that there was a 50/50 chance of tickets being available later on. He was first in the returns queue and I later saw him inside. I just wondered if that had been the reason why there were so many late arrivals during the first half.
da2008
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby da2008 » Tue Feb 24, 2009 7:30 pm

i'm pretty sure scalpers were dropping their prices so some people got in. just wondering about the theatre itself. i need this in case i don't get any rcmh tickets next saturday...
grannypoe
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Re: Beacon Theatre Youtube links

Postby grannypoe » Wed Feb 25, 2009 2:35 am

Thanks IrishAl for these great videos--especially loved "In My Secret Life"
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jarkko
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby jarkko » Wed Feb 25, 2009 3:10 am

http://www.spin.com/articles/leonard-co ... w-15-years

It Happened Last Night
Leonard Cohen Plays First U.S. Show in 15 Years

The 74-year-old "Hallelujah" songwriter returns to New York City for a three-hour set packed with vitality and grace.
By William Goodman 02.20.09 2:03 PM

By the end of his first U.S. show in more than 15 years, Leonard Cohen proved that not only is he still the king of cool, but even at 74 years old, he's also king of the live performance.

The venerated musician/novelist/poet, best known for the songs "Hallelujah" and "Suzanne," filled New York City's Beacon Theatre Thursday night with a dazzling three-hour show that included six encores and more than a dozen standing ovations. Outside, fans were offering upwards of $700 for a single balcony ticket.

Fronting a nine-piece band, Cohen touched on his entire catalogue. And he did so with a refreshing "cheerfulness," as he put it, that "kept breaking through" the darkness of his well documented battle with depression. Cohen's upbeat demeanor only added to the poignancy of his carefully wrought lyrics of isolation and lost love.

He spryly crossed the stage on tunes like "Everybody Knows," dramatically dropping to one knee and tipping his black fedora (which matched his Dick Tracy-style suit) to signal a solo from Barcelona-based guitarist Javier Mas, whose work -- especially on 1974's "Who By Fire" -- was the show's second star.

On "Chelsea Hotel," the Montreal-born Cohen flashed a suave smirk, garnering laughs and woops with his sexual lyrics about getting "head on the unmade bed."

His low groan was an ever-present highlight of the night. On "Suzanne," a tribute to an artistic lover from his '67 debut, the combination of Cohen's early folk songwriting and seductive vocal phrasing provided a truly transcendent moment. And on "Hallelujah," a true American classic that has been covered by hundreds of artists from Jeff Buckley to American Idol's Jason Castro, Cohen's persona was at its most powerful as he kneeled before the audience in song and prayer.

But Cohen wasn't the night's only star. Each band member was a virtuoso in their own right, combining their individual mastery into a seductive fusion of jazz, cabaret and blues. Cohen reminded the audience of their prowess, introducing each -- including his longtime musical collaborator and life partner Sharon Robinson, who sang lead on "Boogie Street" -- with titles like "architect of arpeggio" or "master of direction."

"I hear hard times are coming -- it'll be worse than Y2K," Cohen cracked at one point, bringing the crowd to laughter. But his financial woes are no joke: Cohen is touring in part because his former manager, Kelley Lynch, misappropriated millions from his retirement, while he was holed up in a SoCal Buddhist sanctuary for five years. Cohen was subsequently rewarded $9.5 million by a Los Angeles court, but has so far been unable to collect.

If his finances are the reason he's emerged from retirement for a just-announced U.S. tour (see complete dates here), all 2,800 fans at the sold-out show last night owe Lynch a drink. Cohen is not to be missed -- his show is a mesmerizing testament to his legend.

Setlist:
"Dance Me To The End of Love"
"The Future"
"Ain’t No Cure For Love"
"Bird on the Wire"
"Everybody Knows"
"In My Secret Life"
"Who By Fire"
"Chelsea Hotel"
"Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye"
"Sisters of Mercy"
"Anthem"

Second set:
"Tower of Song"
"Suzanne"
"The Gypsy's Wife"
"The Partisan"
"Boogie Street"
"Hallelujah"
"I'm Your Man"
Poem / "Thousand Kisses Deep"
"Take This Waltz"

Encore:
"So Long Marianne"
"First We Take Manhattan"
"Famous Blue Raincoat"
"If It Be Your Will" "Democracy"
"I Tried To Leave You"
"Whither Thou Goest"
1988, 1993: Helsinki||2008: Manchester|Oslo|London O2|Berlin|Helsinki|London RAH|| 2009: New York Beacon|Berlin|Venice|Barcelona|Las Vegas|San José||2010: Salzburg|Helsinki|Gent|Bratislava|Las Vegas|| 2012: Gent|Helsinki|Verona|| 2013: New York|Pula|Oslo|||
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jarkko
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby jarkko » Wed Feb 25, 2009 3:14 am

http://blogcritics.org/archives/2009/02/24/015249.php
Concert Review: Leonard Cohen at the Beacon Theatre, NYC, 2/19/09
Written by Donald Gibson
Published February 24, 2009

Conceit or modesty aside, even the most accomplished and prolific songwriters could seldom attest to having created a genuine masterpiece. Leonard Cohen is of the rare few who can, of course, but last Thursday night at the Beacon Theatre it was abundantly clear that he could lay claim to far more than one.

Taking the stage for his first American concert in fifteen years, Cohen received a reverent welcome by the sold-out audience, its applause overlapping the opening bars of “Dance Me To The End of Love.” Dressed to the nines in a dark suit with bolo tie and fedora, the 74-year-old bard cut a distinguished figure, his sophic disposition tempered by a laconic, often self-mocking sense of humor.

What Cohen imparted most, though, was a selfless commitment to his songs. After a mirthful trip through “The Future” — during which he pirouetted as the ominous “white man dancin’” — and having pled his case on “Ain’t No Cure For Love,” he dropped to his knees at the start of “Bird On The Wire,” turning out a truly stunning rendition that soon saw him singing at full stride. Likewise, he enlivened an avalanche of imagery and delicate melodies on “Chelsea Hotel No. 2” and “Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye,” his rich voice at times recalling the lissome timbre of his younger days.

The esteem to which Cohen paid his compositions extended to his superb 9-piece band. Each time a musician soloed — as when guitarist Javier Mas played a gorgeous, flamenco-styled prelude to “Who By Fire?” — or when a background vocalist assumed a leading role — as did long-time collaborator Sharon Robinson on a soulful version of “Boogie Street” — Cohen stood aside in deference, his hat held to his chest, his face betraying an appreciative smile.

The ultimate pleasure and privilege, however, lay in listening to Cohen. With the conviction of one who’d labored more in composing these works than most others could’ve otherwise endured, he stepped into each song — from the understated grandeur of “The Gypsy’s Wife” and “Famous Blue Raincoat” to the synthesized thrust of “First We Take Manhattan” — and rendered each one with rich perception. He recited “A Thousand Kisses Deep” as written in Book of Longing (as opposed to singing the version from Ten New Songs), drawing out evocative lines and phrases in cadenced tones. And at his most transcendent, Cohen surrendered “Suzanne” and “Hallelujah” to those fortunate enough to have attended — to those who knew they’d witnessed something very special. Now, everybody knows.
1988, 1993: Helsinki||2008: Manchester|Oslo|London O2|Berlin|Helsinki|London RAH|| 2009: New York Beacon|Berlin|Venice|Barcelona|Las Vegas|San José||2010: Salzburg|Helsinki|Gent|Bratislava|Las Vegas|| 2012: Gent|Helsinki|Verona|| 2013: New York|Pula|Oslo|||
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lizzytysh
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby lizzytysh » Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:03 am

Throughout, his most important instrument -- that rumbling, god-like thunder cloud of a voice -- seemed all but unchanged, perhaps only the slightest bit raspier after all these years (though that could have been the slightly underworked PA system; heaven knows you'd need to rock subwoofers the size of submarines to recreate all the brown notes Cohen can hit).
Haha ~ I loved this comment... from whichever of the reviews I've had the pleasure of reading tonight. So many gratifying words of truth.

***************************************************************************************************************

Paul Ostermayer's blog review/reflection/thank you to Leonard is what I want to return to, however, with deep appreciation. Thank you, Paul, for pointing us to some of the historical dynamics of Leonard's music. In all our time here over the years, this is the first 'review' by someone who isn't writing just from the outside-in, but from the inside-out... not just as a musician observing, but as a musician who's been a part of it all... not just a perspective from today or recent years, but from all those many years ago... not just as an admirer, but as a band member and a friend. Someone who really truly knew Leonard when...

Paul, your perspective is a unique and rich brocade of fibers we know nothing of... thank you for sharing your analysis, your insights, and your memories. Thank you for your tribute to Leonard.


Love,
Lizzy
Last edited by lizzytysh on Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:28 am, edited 1 time in total.
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mwaldman
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Re: New York, February 19, 2009 - Beacon Theatre Show

Postby mwaldman » Wed Feb 25, 2009 6:23 am

Finally back home after the NYC concert and a trip to Canada for my mother-in-law's 100th birthday party. 1710 miles of driving over 5 days - well worth it for two very special events.

What can I say about the concert that hasn't already been said? I had the pleasure of also seeing LC in Toronto on June 6 and am glad that I attended both. Seeing Leonard Cohen live is the best concert experience of my life, eclipsing some very memorable concerts by Dylan and others in Newport in the 60's (yes, I know, I'm showing my age). There were seven songs in the NYC setlist that were not on the Toronto setlist for June 6, so between the two shows I've been fortunate to hear all of the selections included so far in the tour. Leoanrd appeared relaxed and happy, and, as usual, gave 150 percent of himself to the audience, as did the band. Many standing ovations. A feeling of reverence as the audience watched and heard a great artist plumb the depths of his life's work and continue to bring new interpretations to them; his work stands the test of time. He has reclaimed Hallelujah as his own. I am especially drawn to Anthem - it has become my favourite Leonard Cohen song. I feel blessed that I have been able to see him live in concert twice.

The pre-show reception was an enjoyable experience. Got to meet a number of forum members there and to enjoy Lorca's photographs. I was also fortunate to be able to chat with Roscoe Beck, the Webb sisters, and Sharon Robinson at the reception. They all were being very gracious with their time. Didn't even think about taking pictures (not very good at it anyways) - too busy just enjoying the conversation. The post concert meet-up was a lot of fun too. Got to meet more forum members there, and my wife and I spent several hours in enjoyable conversation with them. Didn't get to meet everyone at the O'Hurley's (it was crowded to say the least), but hopefully will get to meet more of you at other Leonard Cohen events.

Mike
"If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing badly."
~ G.K. Chesterton
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lizzytysh
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Re: Beacon Theatre Youtube links

Postby lizzytysh » Wed Feb 25, 2009 8:28 pm

I'm really looking forward to watching all of these, Al. Thank you ~ in advance ~ ESPECIALLY for A Thousand Kisses Deep. I have been wanting so much to have a videotape of Leonard's recitation of this recitation/poem/song. My appreciation on this knows no bounds. Thank you.


~ Lizzy
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
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Wimmer
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Re: Beacon Theatre Youtube links

Postby Wimmer » Wed Feb 25, 2009 10:52 pm

Hi IrishAl!

Thanks for the posting, for this great videos from the concert. there are wonderfull and I like this songs so much.
Marina :D :D :D

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