Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

News about Leonard Cohen and his work, press, radio & TV programs etc.
John Etherington
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by John Etherington » Thu Dec 18, 2008 10:58 pm

New campaign: Keep Leonard free from the Top Twenty...it hasn't meant anything since the late 60s/early 70s. Let Leonard be acknowledged for his greatness instead of having to resort to hype. Don't make it harder for yourself, if he does more live concerts.

That's all I've got to say! John E
Andrew McGeever
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by Andrew McGeever » Fri Dec 19, 2008 1:10 am

In reply to John,
it hasn't meant anything since the late 60s/early 70s.(sic)
Excuse me, but the top twenty meant a lot in the 50's: in fact the last time three versions of the same song to make the top twenty was in 1955.
The song was "Unchained Melody", and Jimmy Young's version hit no.1
Ten years later, The Righteous Brothers made no.1 with their own version.
I recall Leonard reciting "My Poor Top Ten" (that was a long time ago!), and I guess he may be on the verge of Brit chart domination....for a while.... 8)

Andrew.

P.S. In terms of Brit-type popularity and marketability, Leonard has the added media advantages of being stylish and sexy..... 8)
This Leonard Cohen phenonemon could last for.......months :?:
gingermop
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by gingermop » Fri Dec 19, 2008 1:33 am

John Etherington wrote:New campaign: Keep Leonard free from the Top Twenty...it hasn't meant anything since the late 60s/early 70s. Let Leonard be acknowledged for his greatness instead of having to resort to hype. Don't make it harder for yourself, if he does more live concerts.

That's all I've got to say! John E
Not meant anything since 60's/70's? Ah John, I hope you followed the chart through the 80's, 90's and 00's to make that comparison! ;-)

Leonard can be acknowledged for greatness and be in the chart at the same time. The two are not usually synonymous but sometimes, it happens.

G
UrPal
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by UrPal » Fri Dec 19, 2008 1:43 am

John Etherington wrote: Let Leonard be acknowledged for his greatness instead of having to resort to hype. Don't make it harder for yourself, if he does more live concerts.
Christmas is a time for giving, so give a little...

I've just been watching a BBC Omnibus TV special on Louis Armstrong. At about the midpoint of the programme there's a section about Dave Brubeck recording with Armstrong in the fifties. Brubeck recalls in interview that in one song Louis Armstrong got teary eyed and emotional whilst singing the lines "God told Man you are really free". The programme then edits in the relevant closing segment of the recorded song. Just before Armstrong sings the third and final repeat of the relevant phrase the backing singers quietly intone "hallelujah" in a phrasing that if repeated on a loop would sound very like the chorus of lenny's song! Less than two minutes later in the programme a different song is featured with Armstrong prominently singing "hallelujah", again in a similar phrasing to the way Lenny done it.

Since lenny's always been a bit of a jazzer it got me wondering to what extent he might have been consciously or subconsciously influenced by past listenings to Louis?

As I was writing this Louis has been performing Lenny's favourite poetry in the background - that is, Armstrong's version of Blueberry Hill. The moon stood still....
John Etherington
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by John Etherington » Fri Dec 19, 2008 2:36 am

Andrew McGeever said "the top twenty meant a lot in the 50's". No disgreement there...in fact, I've no doubt it meant everything!
I love the Righteous Brothers stuff by the way.

Urpal - Interesting you make the Louis Armstrong connection (even though I don't know the song) because I've just made a similar association. Does anyone else detect a similarity between the intro/backing music of "Hallelujah" (most evident on the "Cohen Live" and original John Cale versions) and the intro/backing to Elvis Presley's "Can't Help Falling in Love" (a song that Leonard has sung in concert). Elvis song was the first pop song that I fell in love with (aged ten and a half) in January 1962. There's a link on:

http://www.imeem.com/wo2csmchan/music/7 ... g_in_love/

All good things, John E
ladydi
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by ladydi » Fri Dec 19, 2008 5:09 am

Hi John...

A quick diversion from Hallelujah but one of your comments brought back a long lost memory. It was January 1962...I was a 17 year old nursing student in Phoenix stranded at the Grand Canyon in a snowstorm. No buses, no planes. A limo driver for someone (?) was returning to Phoenix empty and took pity on me. As we drove through the high plains in the blinding snow, with ghostly images of the ponderosa pines, I heard for the first time "Can't Help Falling in Love". And for 40 some odd years, every time I hear that song I am transported back in time. Thanks for the trip!

Diana
John Etherington
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by John Etherington » Fri Dec 19, 2008 9:07 am

Hi Di,

Thanks for the story. There's a bit of a contrast there, considering the song comes from the "Blue Hawaii"movie, which conjurs images of golden sands and grass skirts! Amazing that only five years after that, Leonard appeared on the music scene.

Returning to "Hallelujah", does anyone remember when Leonard sung the "Baby I've been here before..." verses in concert? I suspect it was in 1988, as I was definitely familiar with all of the sung verses by the time that John Cale released his version in 1991.

All good things, John E
UrPal
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by UrPal » Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:51 am

Interesting observation about the melodic similarity with Can't Help Falling In Love there, John. A song I have fond memories of too & I know what you mean.

Thinking about it more the word Hallelujah has a "musical" quality when spoken that makes it difficult not to sing in a certain direction. So Handel & earlier writers originated the form & provide its cultural association with elation. Cohen's song taps into that but provides a modern personalised context.

To demonstrate what I mean here is a cover version of the Velvet Underground's Beginning To See The Light that transforms itself into Cohen's Hallelujah at the end ;-)
John Etherington
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by John Etherington » Fri Dec 19, 2008 12:00 pm

Hi UrPal,

Thanks for the link to The Triffids "BTSTL"...I hadn't heard that particular curiousity. Meanwhile, it occurred to me the other day that maybe classical enthusiasts would be feverishly downloading the excerpt from "The Messiah" so that Handel gets his dues!

All the best, John E
UrPal
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by UrPal » Fri Dec 19, 2008 5:42 pm

Here is quite a good blog entry about Hallelujah which might have been posted before:

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/neil_mccor ... hallelujah

Cohen's own understanding of the meaning of his song is provided:
"Finally there's no conflict between things, finally everything is reconciled but not where we live. This world is full of conflicts and full of things that cannot be reconciled but there are moments when we can transcend the dualistic system and reconcile and embrace the whole mess and that's what I mean by 'Hallelujah'. That regardless of what the impossibility of the situation is, there is a moment when you open your mouth and you throw open your arms and you embrace the thing and you just say 'Hallelujah! Blessed is the name.' And you can't reconcile it in any other way except in that position of total surrender, total affirmation.

"That's what it's all about. It says that none of this - you're not going to be able to work this thing out - you're not going to be able to set* - this realm does not admit to revolution - there's no solution to this mess. The only moment that you can live here comfortably in these absolutely irreconcilable conflicts is in this moment when you embrace it all and you say 'Look, I don't understand a f***ing thing at all - Hallelujah!' That's the only moment that we live here fully as human beings."
*I assume this is meant to read "settle".

Hallelujah!
laughinlen
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by laughinlen » Fri Dec 19, 2008 6:47 pm

Here is a link to a UK newspaper article......the world has gone mad......at last
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz/ar ... r-one.html
stephencharlton
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by stephencharlton » Fri Dec 19, 2008 7:57 pm

Leonard's recording of Hallelujah was played on Radio 2 Steve Wright show this pm. Radio 2 has a massive audience, ? 5 million+ i'm told, so good to hear on national radio ! :D
2008 Manchester
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Hylton
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by Hylton » Fri Dec 19, 2008 9:08 pm

Finally the recognition for dearest Leonard...

I don't care whether it's the "hype" of top twenty charts or whatever,if it destroys the myth of
the "prophet of doom" and gets people to listen to his words and music, rather than the "hype",
I'm happy.. for LC, his future wealth and health, and the people who are there for him I think this is really good
(we've got to learn to share him after all these years!!!!)

We were right and "they" were wrong.

Love and best wishes to you all.
honeyrose
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by honeyrose » Fri Dec 19, 2008 10:56 pm

well as I already have an Amazon account I downloaded the MP3 version from there (69p).

Honeyrose
stargazer61
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Re: Campaign: Get Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah in the UK charts!

Post by stargazer61 » Fri Dec 19, 2008 11:45 pm

Hi Honeyrose,

Amazon doesn't count towards the charts. Try Play.com or HMV. If it's any consolation I did the same thing,too!
1970 IOW
2008 Birmingham
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2012 Paris.The Hop Farm.
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