My first Leonard Cohen songs were heard on Judy Collins CD "In My Life" -- Suzanne, which was very pretty and Dress Rehearsal Rag, which was amazing. Thus, when "Songs of Leonard Cohen" came out I pounced on it. I believe it was December 1967, and I was 16.
Therefore, the first song I heard him sing was "Suzanne" which I knew, but after that I remember being blown away by the rest. "Sisters of Mercy" is still my all time favorite song of his. Meanwhile I was at a perfect age to listen to that record over and over again, both to set a gloomy teenage angst mood for myself so I could wallow, but also to try to unravel the mysterious lyrics and their meaning, which of course I never did until much later. Even today the new biography by Sylvie Simmons provide even more insights for me.
Anyway, there it is, 45 years of listening and loving Leonard, and using "Sisters of Mercey" and "Hey That's No Way to Say Goodbye" as lullabyes for my kids, who are now 34 and 32. I hooked my daughter on him and together we were at the Beacon in New York in 2009 for what was a mind-blowing concert.