Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

General discussion about Leonard Cohen's songs and albums
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B4real
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby B4real » Mon May 01, 2017 8:55 am

Ah Vickie,
In days of yore there simply wasn't any internet and books and face to face were the only way to learn about anything! From early childhood I loved my local library and that was where I discovered so much about Leonard - his poems and songs as well as those early bio books. The librarian had to order all them in especially for me! Over the years I read all the available books in Australia on him!

About Sylvie leaving material out of her book, I generally said that tongue in cheek! But I have read or heard somewhere that she said some of the things he or others told her weren’t for general publication! I reckon it’s probably similar stuff (if they knew it) that all the other authors maybe left out as well! And in the long run, it’s probably better that way.

Those books or authors I mentioned at the beginning of my last post on the previous page are all worth a read but Sylvie’s is definitely the most up to date. I haven’t read the older ones for a long time. In the last few years I have bought and read a few of the newer ones but most of them to me seem to have a lot of repetition. For something different as a visual artist and an LC concert goer I could relate to Sharon Robinson’s photographic book that I bought in Dec 2014. It’s not the usual biography; it’s a visual journey of the last world tour from 2008 to 2013 called On Tour With Leonard Cohen. At the start of the book Leonard says, “She has an eye as fine as her ear…” Lots of great pictorial memories from those last years or it could be an insight for those who couldn’t be there at that time. They say don’t be sad it’s over, just be glad that it happened and I am. In a comforting way, time is elastic. But I regress now.

Back to the albums –
The Recent Songs album is a definite favourite of mine and I prefer it to the next one in order Various Positions even though I like it too. Being really stringent my favourite songs from VP are Night Comes On, Hallelujah and If It Be Your Will. And as 4 says, Dance Me To The End Of Love creates a new meaning to it because of the last long world tour!

From the same year as Recent Songs in 1979 comes a live album released in 2001. Needless to say, it is for sure another absolute favourite of mine:

Field Commander Cohen tour of (1979) 2001
01. Field Commander Cohen 4:25
02. The Window 5:51 (violin solo by Raffi Hakopian)
03. The Smokey Life 5:34 (duet with Jennifer Warnes)
04. The Gypsy’s Wife 5:20 (violin solo by Raffi Hakopian)
05. Lover, Lover, Lover 6:31 (includes two long oud solos by John Bilezikjian)
06. Hey, That’s No Way To Say Goodbye 4:04 (violin solo by Raffi Hakopian)
07. The Stranger Song 4:55
08. The Guests 6:05 (violin solo by Raffi Hakopian)
09. Memories 4:38 (sax solo by Paul Ostermayer)
10. Why Don’t You Try 3:43 (duet with Sharon Robinson, solo by Paul Ostermayer)
11. Bird On The Wire 5:10 (guitar solo by Mitch Watkins)
12. So Long, Marianne 6:44

You could say it wouldn’t really be out of order to listen to it now :)
Be for real. Free yourself to find the real Self ~~ Me
Happiness is like learning the violin, the more you practice it the more it comes to you ~~ Me
Without the heart, there can be no understanding between the hand and the mind ~~ Gore Vidal
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vlcoats
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby vlcoats » Mon May 01, 2017 4:09 pm

Thank you B4! I have ordered the biographies "Prophet of the Heart" as well as "Various Positions".

I too have loved "Recent Songs" admittedly more than "Various Positions", most especially "The Window" and "Ballad of the Absent Mare". I haven't heard very much about "I'm Your Man", which is the next CD on my list, but I heard a later version of the song "I'm Your Man" on a Sirius XM special right after Leonard passed. We happened to be on a road trip to Montana at the time, and that special is one of the things that prompted me to at last start this journey. It was sang when he was much older, in that whispered almost-speaking voice, and I was taken by the lyrics. I haven't heard it since, so I am curious for the original.

The live album "Field Commander Cohen" sounds great, especially with Raffi Hakopian on there! I will look forward to getting to that one. I plan to listen to the rest of the studio albums while also reading biographies and then go back for everything else (live albums, videos, poetry, novels, etc) while continuing to read the bios.

Thanks for your thoughts!
Vickie
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby its4inthemorning » Mon May 01, 2017 8:41 pm

Vickie, I hope you don't mind, I am sending you a PM, it relates to something I do not want to post here.

4
2010 DECEMBER 10 - CAESARS COLOSSEUM, LAS VEGAS / 2012 SEPTEMBER 28 - L'OLYMPIA, PARIS
2012 OCTOBER 3 - PALAU SANT JORDI, BARCELONA / 2012 DECEMBER 13 - K-ROCK CENTRE, KINGSTON
2013 APRIL 6 - RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL, NEW YORK CITY / 2013 JULY 9 - PIAZZA NAPOLEONE, LUCCA
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby vlcoats » Mon May 01, 2017 9:39 pm

Got it and replied. THANKS!
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby its4inthemorning » Wed May 03, 2017 12:14 am

Vickie, here is a 2013 concert soundcheck video you may enjoy:

https://youtu.be/0km8qEcUJtA

Maybe going back on tour in his late 70s was not something Leonard had planned on, but he sure seems like he's having a good time.

4
2010 DECEMBER 10 - CAESARS COLOSSEUM, LAS VEGAS / 2012 SEPTEMBER 28 - L'OLYMPIA, PARIS
2012 OCTOBER 3 - PALAU SANT JORDI, BARCELONA / 2012 DECEMBER 13 - K-ROCK CENTRE, KINGSTON
2013 APRIL 6 - RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL, NEW YORK CITY / 2013 JULY 9 - PIAZZA NAPOLEONE, LUCCA
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby B4real » Wed May 03, 2017 1:25 pm

4, I always love the songs (Alex's violin of course) and everyone's casual attire from that soundcheck!

Seeing as I’m Your Man is the next album in line I thought those who didn’t know this might be interested. He wasn’t the first to officially release the first two songs on this album! They are First We Take Manhattan and Ain’t No Cure For Love and were actually introduced to the public at least a year earlier on another official album Famous Blue Raincoat sung by Jennifer Warnes and produced by Roscoe Beck. It has been said by LC and others that through her dedication, belief and perseverance (it took 7 years of constant rejection) of his songs when he was out of the public eye in America for some time that she and this album was responsible for his “resurgence”. In fact, it was listening to Jennifer’s wonderful album when I first heard those two songs.

Six of the eight songs from I’m Your Man album were sung live here at TV KVCR Austin City Limits recorded on Halloween night Oct 31st 1988 and broadcast in 1989. This is considered LC’s first major TV performance in America and is a milestone for him. Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XpjaHqvrz0g
Be for real. Free yourself to find the real Self ~~ Me
Happiness is like learning the violin, the more you practice it the more it comes to you ~~ Me
Without the heart, there can be no understanding between the hand and the mind ~~ Gore Vidal
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vlcoats
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby vlcoats » Wed May 03, 2017 4:13 pm

4-
I LOVED the soundcheck. When I first heard "Dance Me to the End of Love" it wasn't an immediate favorite but has since grown on me and I find myself humming it around the library. It has a very catchy melody. It reminds of something that would fit in perfectly on a Godfather soundtrack. I loved seeing how he communicated without words to everyone during the soundcheck, the backup singers especially. I also love how their voices are a perfect foil for his on this video. Sometimes on the studio albums I have wished that the backup singers were less obtrusive.
Thank you for sharing the video!!

B4- I had heard about Jennifer Warnes in Sylvie's book and am anxious to start "I'm Your Man". I did hear a couple of the songs from Warnes' album during the Sirius XM special on Leonard after his death. I often wish I could hear that special again because I had missed so much of it as I lost reception through tall trees and mountains, but the portions I did hear held me spellbound from Spokane to Missoula that day. I plan to search it out after I have heard all of his studio albums.

I am going to give "Various Positions" one more play and then it is on to number 8! After I have heard the songs on the album, I will definitely watch the link you shared with us B4!

Thanks everyone!
Vickie
its4inthemorning
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby its4inthemorning » Wed May 03, 2017 5:18 pm

4 to B4,

Thanks for the Austin City link, I had not seen it before. It cost me an unplanned hour of my day, but I am not complaining!
2010 DECEMBER 10 - CAESARS COLOSSEUM, LAS VEGAS / 2012 SEPTEMBER 28 - L'OLYMPIA, PARIS
2012 OCTOBER 3 - PALAU SANT JORDI, BARCELONA / 2012 DECEMBER 13 - K-ROCK CENTRE, KINGSTON
2013 APRIL 6 - RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL, NEW YORK CITY / 2013 JULY 9 - PIAZZA NAPOLEONE, LUCCA
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby B4real » Thu May 04, 2017 6:49 am

My pleasure to be of service to you all 8)
.... B4 to 4 ....and that's a big 10-4 ;-)
Be for real. Free yourself to find the real Self ~~ Me
Happiness is like learning the violin, the more you practice it the more it comes to you ~~ Me
Without the heart, there can be no understanding between the hand and the mind ~~ Gore Vidal
its4inthemorning
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby its4inthemorning » Thu May 04, 2017 4:30 pm

Amazon just delivered a NEW Leonard Cohen album. It's titled Recent Songs, have any of you heard it?

B4, were you at Lucca, or was your comment on the sound check based on seeing the video?

4
2010 DECEMBER 10 - CAESARS COLOSSEUM, LAS VEGAS / 2012 SEPTEMBER 28 - L'OLYMPIA, PARIS
2012 OCTOBER 3 - PALAU SANT JORDI, BARCELONA / 2012 DECEMBER 13 - K-ROCK CENTRE, KINGSTON
2013 APRIL 6 - RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL, NEW YORK CITY / 2013 JULY 9 - PIAZZA NAPOLEONE, LUCCA
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby vlcoats » Thu May 04, 2017 4:40 pm

its4inthemorning wrote:
Thu May 04, 2017 4:30 pm
Amazon just delivered a NEW Leonard Cohen album. It's titled Recent Songs, have any of you heard it?
Oh yes! I I'm quite the expert on that album so please let me know if you have any questions! ;-) Ha I know most of it is not at all new to you! But I am listening to "I'm Your Man" for the first time on my way to work, so we will both have something 'new' to hear today!
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby B4real » Fri May 05, 2017 3:09 am

Hi 4, unfortunately I wasn’t at Lucca, I was referring to both the soundcheck videos and that I understood how you felt about that unplanned hour of your day. I couldn’t help making a numerical pun on our shared number 4 about it!
Glad to see you are also enjoying your “new” album ;-)

I love the casualness of the soundchecks and you never know what will happen!
Here’s a spontaneous Happy Birthday to Mitch for the 1st August from Pula 2013.
If you look closely you can see a coatless Leonard serenading Mitch with his mouth harp :)

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FXbSQuHD3dI

Thank you Maarten for the video!
Be for real. Free yourself to find the real Self ~~ Me
Happiness is like learning the violin, the more you practice it the more it comes to you ~~ Me
Without the heart, there can be no understanding between the hand and the mind ~~ Gore Vidal
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby B4real » Fri May 05, 2017 7:44 am

Vickie, and others who are silently reading your journey (feel free to join in :) ) I thought we could recap visually on LC’s songs thus far by the way of a classic video documentary on the BBC in 1988. It’s called Songs From The Life Of Leonard Cohen and for those who haven’t seen it yet the footage features clips, interviews and some songs from his 1988 I’m Your Man Tour.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zqcT5ckJvLs

Below is a track listing and which album the original song came from:

First We Take Manhattan...........I’m Your Man 1988
Suzanne..............................Songs of LC 1967
Chelsea Hotel # 2...................New Skin For The Old Ceremony 1974
Take This Waltz .....................I’m Your Man 1988
Hallelujah ...........................Various Positions 1985
Who By Fire..........................New Skin For The Old Ceremony 1974
Bird On A Wire.......................Songs From a Room 1969
Red River Valley......................written by James Kerrigan (LC spontaneously plays mouth organ at Hydra)
........................................(he sang this at 3 known concerts and 1 soundcheck from 1975-85)
So Long Marianne....................Songs of LC 1967 (with a different verse)
Famous Blue Raincoat...............Songs of Love and Hate 1971 (rehearsal)
The Partisan..........................Songs From a Room 1969
Joan Of Arc...........................Songs of Love and Hate 1971
Ain’t No Cure For Love..............I’m Your Man 1988
Tower Of Song........................I’m Your Man 1988
Dance Me To The End Of Love......Various Positions 1985

I hope everyone enjoys it!

btw.... I simply must add that since I started posting here and hopefully helping Vickie and others learn more about LC "Along the way...." :) I have found that personally it has been most therapeutic for me dealing with his loss. I think it's true when they say that the giver gets more than the receiver! Either way, (literally and visually as above) there will always be a light in the window.
Be for real. Free yourself to find the real Self ~~ Me
Happiness is like learning the violin, the more you practice it the more it comes to you ~~ Me
Without the heart, there can be no understanding between the hand and the mind ~~ Gore Vidal
its4inthemorning
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby its4inthemorning » Fri May 05, 2017 10:08 pm

A bit of humor on a rainy day.

I was always truly amazed that Leonard could remember all the lyrics without using any sort of teleprompter given that (a) he wrote so many songs and poems; (b) there were often additional lyrics/verses that were omitted in the final versions, but which might have still been lurking in his brain; and (c) he had attained the age at which we all start to become forgetful.

Here is a video from a 2010 concert in Wiesbaden in which Leonard commits the unthinkable--he forgets the second line of So Long, Marianne. Note that after the songs resumes and he sings "you make me forget so very much," the audience appreciates the appropriateness of that line. Unfortunately the video quality is poor in that we see him on the concert screen rather than on the stage, but that is the only version I find on youtube.

https://youtu.be/wym-_SlAA-w

Enjoy.

4
2010 DECEMBER 10 - CAESARS COLOSSEUM, LAS VEGAS / 2012 SEPTEMBER 28 - L'OLYMPIA, PARIS
2012 OCTOBER 3 - PALAU SANT JORDI, BARCELONA / 2012 DECEMBER 13 - K-ROCK CENTRE, KINGSTON
2013 APRIL 6 - RADIO CITY MUSIC HALL, NEW YORK CITY / 2013 JULY 9 - PIAZZA NAPOLEONE, LUCCA
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vlcoats
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Re: Along the way ... Discovering Leonard's Albums. continued...

Postby vlcoats » Sat May 06, 2017 6:41 am

First off........ I LOVE "I'm Your Man" very much! It is so weird to be going through all these years of his career in such a short time. So many changes to absorb. I was worried that I wouldn't love it, because I had the impression from somewhere along the line that it wasn't as good as "Various Positions", but for me it is much better. I love his deep voice and his sense of humor. I loved "Everybody Knows" for his sly dark lyrics "Everybody knows you've been discreet...but there were so many people you just had to meet...without your clothes...and everybody knows". So perfect! And then of course what woman could be immune to "I'm Your Man"? Although I have to say in all honesty as much I love him, I'm not so sure if he would have been easy to have a romantic relationship with. His honesty must have broken many hearts. However, I would have given anything to be his friend. "Tower of Song" is a favorite too, and I can see now why so many people quote it when they speak of him. But my absolute favorite on this album is "Take This Waltz"... hands down. At this point, I don't even know why, but I was immediately filled with goosebumps when I heard it. I need to listen to this album more to find out why. The only song that I had a "what the heck?" reaction to was "Jazz Police". On a whole, this album was everything I was hoping and more!
B4real wrote:
Fri May 05, 2017 7:44 am
I thought we could recap visually on LC’s songs thus far by the way of a classic video documentary on the BBC in 1988. It’s called Songs From The Life Of Leonard Cohen and for those who haven’t seen it yet the footage features clips, interviews and some songs from his 1988 I’m Your Man Tour.
Oh B4, you don't know how much I would love to watch this. Beyond the fact that I would love to see all of these songs at the stage in his career that I am currently on, the song "Red River Valley" is very special to me. I didn't know Leonard ever performed it. It is one of the earliest songs I remember my father singing on long car trips between Canada and Oregon. Does anyone know if this documentary is on DVD? I Googled it but didn't see it. Unfortunately, we live in a very rural area where the only internet is satellite internet and we aren't able to stream anything beyond a song or two. I will watch it a song at a time if I have to but would much rather see it in its entirety.
B4real wrote:btw.... I simply must add that since I started posting here and hopefully helping Vickie and others learn more about LC "Along the way...." :) I have found that personally it has been most therapeutic for me dealing with his loss. I think it's true when they say that the giver gets more than the receiver! Either way, (literally and visually as above) there will always be a light in the window.
I am so happy to hear this. I imagine this has been very hard for all of you that have followed him and have known his music all this time. From what I have seen in my limited exposure, he bared himself in his songs and poetry and worked so very hard to give what he did. If you you love him, I am sure you got that.

Thanks again everyone for sharing him with me, even if you are just reading and not responding. You are all special just because you get him.
Vickie

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