CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Europe and Israel (July 1 - September 24, 2009). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
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CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by jarkko » Tue Sep 15, 2009 10:54 am

Did we have any members in Granada?
While waiting for their reports, here is a link to a report by the newspaper El Mundo ... 14347.html
The following google translation comes from Marie's concert reports!
Kneeling before Leonard Cohen
Elmundo - September 14, 2009 by Olav Alexander (Photo: Jesús G. Hinchado)
Suddenly, waking from a dream, opening his eyes and lead them anywhere. And there, his eyes scan the horizon still glassy. In it, Leonard Cohen. In Atarfe (Granada), at the foot of the first mountain snowfall in months.

It happened last night. Seven thousand devotees of religion 'coheina' disheartened by the cause. Jumping, singing, crying. Awakening from a long sleep, as often desired. From the first piece, 'Dance Me to the End of Love', the Canadian artist imposed his doctrine, tall and proud as an emperor of the great lyrics.

The concert, scheduled at 21.30 in the Plaza de Toros de Atarfe, began at ... 2130. Not a second too late. There was no time to lose the classic that began with the illustrious Jewish Zen no loophole for doubt left. It seemed as though Cohen was aware that the arena was cold and distant and may therefore decide to take the bull by the horns and singing to each spectator, with his legendary voice of tergal, just in the ear directly to my heart.

However, despite the first three classics interpreted by the Cohen-seventies the aforementioned 'Dance Me to the End of Love', 'The Future' and 'Bird on the wire'-the icy atmosphere of the night and a acoustic sound awful awakening did not end the audience, perhaps skeptical that this tall gentleman, well dressed and with an exquisite white hair crowned hat, outside the old Buddhist poet.

It was not until the next string of songs for souls is definitely heat up. At the moment the broken voice of Cohen elegant pirouettes danced in the atmosphere of Granada, the musicians are marking-six in all-who handled organs, drums, saxophones, keyboards, electric guitars and cellos with the same skill with which dominate children's yo-yos.

Then rang 'Tower of Song', 'Who by fire' or 'In My Secret Life', all clothed with the priceless voices of the chorus of women, so high level that even dignify Cohen himself. These are the sisters Charlie and Hattie and the Web black soul voice Sharon Robinson, acclaimed throughout by the crowd.

Like Javier Mas, Barcelona musician who, perhaps, drawn by the ghost of Master Morente, ventured into the land of genius from Granada to a guitar solo, life and death, very flamenco, gypsy very, very Andalusian. Cohen applauded, took off his hat and then halfway through the concert, presented with names and likeness to his group. It seemed like the typical patriarch who only speaks well of her grandchildren. Then disappeared from the stage as always angelic jumps before hitting the popular clamor.

A return of the rest, the poet of a thousand lives was all costumes imaginable. I played 'Suzanne', 'Tower of Song' or 'Hallelujah', plus other classic songs, like 'So Long, Marianne "and Democracy, which by dint of innovation and new techniques that Cohen had seemed versions of their own original songs. They perceive a touch of Arabic music that reveled in the sweetness of the good spirits and, of course, improved parts.

Then came the hour. We could not miss. The crowd, mostly mature, looked forward to the moment. In the land of Federico García Lorca, Cohen, confessed admirer of the poet from Granada, sang 'Take this waltz', adaptation of Lorca's poem "Little Viennese Waltz '. Since then, the solemn recital moved, inevitably, in an emotional communion holiday. The public in the stands and pulled to albero Cohen donned the costume.

"Thank you guys, never forget this night. It is an honor to play for you, "Cohen said toward the end of the dream. As the audience relished the historic 'Flirts we take Manhattan' and 'Closing Time', the wise poet nose rested his knees on the floor.

The sight of the everlasting myth softly blurred, and his figure appeared to be drawn with pencil on a white background and black. As the curtain of a concert as before falling, the crowd kneeled to dismiss Leonard Cohen, and genius figure.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by LizzieM » Tue Sep 15, 2009 12:38 pm

Yes Jarkko, there were a few of us there!
I'm just back to work after the weekend in Granada so I'll write review later today.
I've posted the setlist, as I remember it, in the setlist thread.
2008: Bournemouth, RAH. 2009: Minneapolis, Wetbridge, Granada. 2012: Wembley (Hop Farm). 2013: Brighton.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by JudasPriest » Tue Sep 15, 2009 2:37 pm

I was there. Primitive set up with sandy floor (it is a bullring after all), uncomfortable,loose,wooden chairs (reminded me of a school play in that regard), no screens and by far the most significant-SHOCKINGLY BAD SOUND. From row 13 on the main floor, the first half was pretty much a write off due to the sonic disaster that was unfolding. Real pity as Leonard looked fit and well and I suspect his singing was fine. My wife mentioned the sound to the sound desk man-"Do you see what I have to work with?" was the reply. We moved to the sound desk at the back for the second half and things did pick up (in relative terms). And then, the highlight....we (along with many other) marched up the front for the encores. No security, no rail and literally about three feet from the band. Amazing memories and I think we were listening to the stage speakers at that point because I could hear the lyrics and music pretty clearly. So overall, the night was rescued by the intoxicating visuals from Famous Blue Raincoat on. Made it all worth it in the end....
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by gibjoe » Tue Sep 15, 2009 2:54 pm

The venue was a disaster. Atarfe is not Granada, it is a small commuter town with 12,000 people about six miles out from Granada. The tickets were very expensive and a real effort to purchase for many of the locals. I do not understand the reasoning why this venue was built, but it only seems to handle about four or five concerts a year, the rest being bullfighting and other activities. The sound is poor, the seating uncomfortable and the bathroom and bar facilities rudimentary, to say the least. What this concert would have been like at the Alhambra is just something to dream about!

The sound, as has already been said, was terrible and that made the first half of the concert flat. But then something happened towards the middle of the second part of the concert and there was a sudden flood of goodwill and a connection between performers and audience. From then on emotions ran high and after Hallelujah no-one sat down for the duration of the concert and the encores.

The press reviews have been uniformly fantastic. I have one from the local rag which I will scan and post.

It was my 11th Leonard concert (nine of them last year!!!) and I'am afraid the last one....until the next tour!!!
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by LizzieM » Tue Sep 15, 2009 4:24 pm

The previous posts are correct I'm afraid, the sound was dreadful. I thought it was because I was to the side of the stage. But we were in Row 8 and it was difficult to make out the words, there was a consistant echo behind us about half a second after each word was sung. Luckily I've been to several concerts including the Albert Hall so I know that Leonard and the band are far better than they sounded in Atarfe. There was also a lot of talking during the songs and at one stage a very loud argument behind us during Lover Lover Lover that had to be sorted out by the bouncers.

Getting to and from the venue (by bus from Granada) certainly was an adventure but I just assumed that was because I attempted it without being able to speak Spanish. In our attempts to find out where the bus stopped in town, we were helped by a man called Carlos who lives in Atarfe and with some sign language and the details I had printed from the Atarfe website in Spanish and a bit of 'hope for the best' attitude we got there and back ok.

At least one Spanish TV company was there filming at the beginning and I also saw a front page photo of Leonard in the Granada paper on Monday.

As for the concert, we enjoyed it despite the sound quality and there was plenty of applause and enthusiasm from the crowd. Leonard's charisma shined through and all the band were smiling and engaged with the audience throughout.

Personally I was delighted to hear Lover Lover Lover but also, just to be in the same place as Leonard and all the other fantastic people on stage makes me happy and reminds me that we should all try to be as kind to everyone we meet as Leonard and his team are to every one of their audience.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by sturgess66 » Tue Sep 15, 2009 6:39 pm

Here is a blog from Kitty Sheppard, a new fan, who attended Leonard's show in Granada -
Monday, September 14, 2009

Leonard Cohen
Granada.jpg (14.68 KiB) Viewed 12665 times
Yesterday we had some very bad storms here in Granada; they began in the afternoon and washed most of the loose soil and rock down the hill and into the village. Mop up today has been somewhat hampered by further rain and hail but still in true Spanish style the biggest digger in the world was driven out to scrape all the mud away.

Thankfully we did get to the show last night. And oh and what a show. There were shades of the local shop window about it, in so much as the gritted bull ring complete with cloven hoof stamped marks combined with the containment of so many Spaniards gave the event more than a hint of over excited chaos. Several times I saw a swarthy man impersonating a matador for his lady, like they just couldn’t help it. Refreshments were served from the callejón which is the wooden structure that circles the arena and acts as the escape route, everybody seemed to love standing up on tip toes to reach a drink.

The evening was all very social to begin with particularly on the bullring floor and although there were allocated seats nobody seemed to be sitting in them. Groups stood around smoking (yes smoking, everybody smoked) and drinking and talking. Then suddenly without any warning the entire arena was sunk into darkness and complete pandemonium ensued. The band had started to come onto the stage, everyone is desperately trying to locate their seats which have moved, literally, they are none of them fastened down but with their numbers on the chairs themselves what is to stop you rearranging them! Remember this is Spain.

Well a sort of sitting down eventually happened. Then Leonard came on, a roar goes up and everyone is up, chars folding shut. The first ovation lasts forever. Your man wears a pin stripe suit and a rakish fedora, “it’s been a long time” he says. The first number is Dance with me, it is long and brilliantly arranged and as the sound guys get the feel of this bullring with 3,000 people right the music emerges beautifully.

The entire band was nothing short of flawless, spellbinding, and the venue was extraordinarily intimate. Leonard Cohen held us all in the palm of his hands with his beauty and his disarming humility. This was a true legend doing his magic for each of us, imploringly sensual and deeply spiritual. Everyone was rapt.

Discovering Leonard Cohen for the first time was a life-defining experience, and seeing him for the first time made it all perfect.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by dar » Tue Sep 15, 2009 7:46 pm

LizzieM it was great to see your account of the Granada gig. Sounds like the kind of venue I would have enjoyed. Primal energy, primitive locale, and pandemonium. My cup of tea. hehe

Thanks for the post. Hope all is well with you and yours. I think of you often and wish you the best.

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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by JudasPriest » Tue Sep 15, 2009 7:55 pm

One advantage of the primitive setting was the lack of security and in fact, there wasn't even a rail at the top- I mean, if anyone had been foolish enough to do it, there would have been no problem mounting the stage mid gig and making a complete t** out of yourself. Luckily, noone did but it was fantastc to feel that there was nothing between audience and artist.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by bkmccalla » Tue Sep 15, 2009 9:37 pm

"flirts we take manhattan" and "wise poet nose" and "angelic jumps before hitting the popular clamor"!

god, i love reading these translations!

all that aside, it is difficult for me to contemplate seeing leonard in a place where so much brutality takes and has taken place. i was supposed to be at this show and am glad i didn't make it. i didn't realize it was being held in a bullfighting ring even though i read the "de toros" and know spanish. am surprised frankly that leonard and robert would even consider performing in a place with such horrific karma. i would have been too upset to enjoy the show. i HATE bullfighting. the epitome of cruel and brutal. i shall now get down from the soapbox.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by Mabeanie1 » Tue Sep 15, 2009 11:38 pm

bkmccalla wrote: am surprised frankly that leonard and robert would even consider performing in a place with such horrific karma. i would have been too upset to enjoy the show. i HATE bullfighting. the epitome of cruel and brutal.
I couldn't agree more Bonnie but, in fact, a surprising number of concerts have taken place in bull rings or in arenas used for bullfighting. I did go to the show in Les Arenes in Nimes. It's a beautiful Roman arena which happes to also be used for los toros. Fortunately, it was hard to remember the other uses of the arena on that beautiful hot August night.

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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by goldstei » Wed Sep 16, 2009 1:22 am

continuing along this cheerful theme, they literally used to toss Christians to the lions in the Nimes arena. altho the whole bullfighting deal is a total turn-off to me also, at least in portugal they don't kill the bulls--i generally like spain a lot, but i think this reflects a somewhat gentler character of the portuguese people. listening to people speak portuguese is quite wonderful, because the language sounds so beautiful & poetic.

anyway, let's hope for the day when the lions lie down with the lambs, the humans with the bulls and--imagine!!--that even we humans can all live in peace with each other. dwight eisenhower once said, "sooner or later, people are going to get so fed up with wars that their governments are just going to have to give it to them." i like even better when george mcgovern once said: "i'm sick and tired of old men dreaming up wars that they then send young men off to die in."

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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by ladydi » Wed Sep 16, 2009 2:58 am

I can't help but think of Ferdinad the bull, who didn't want to fight but only smell the flowers! Several years ago a friend tried to entice us to Pamplona for the running of the bulls. At first I thought "oh, how Hemingwayesque" but then realized that the bulls were squished together all night in holding pens and were terrified. When the gates opened in the morning, of course they was a momentary sense of freedom. Later, most were killed in the afternoon.

No bullfights for me, and I think I would have difficulty being in a bullring....but that's a personal thing. As awful as it sounds, the deaths of the Christians in the Nimes arena was so many centuries ago that it wouldn't hit me as much as the blood of the bull that was needlessly killed yesterday. However, in all this I know it is only MY feelings. There are so many layers of cultural differences between us all and what may seem abhorrent to me, is perfectly natural to someone else.

Bob...I think I like Portugal's system better....
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by gibjoe » Wed Sep 16, 2009 2:01 pm

I'm afraid the bulls are killed in Portugal too, they just don't do it in the ring.
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by timinio » Wed Sep 16, 2009 8:03 pm

i live in spain,i dont like bullfighting..this is their country,you can have issues with every country that field comander cohen plays..his music..unites us all.leonard once said "I Have a curious notion that the nazis were toppled by music"..there is a crack in everything..thats how the light gets in !
Anyhow we found the new signs to direct us,ony the spanish would build a new arena and not tell you how to get there!.neverless..we were 20 metres from the 2 tour coaches..1 sequrity guard,2 hours before the show began.the back stage door opened..the band started to warm up...lover,lover.lover come back to me..goose bumps or what.The great man singing..just for Adele(my partner) and I.
There were about 95% spanish and the rest were Engish speaking,so it was going to be a curious mixure of cultures.yes ..from row 32 the sound was poor but Leonard could sing to me through 2 paper cups tied with string and i wouldnt complain!.The gig was simply awsome,a spiritual comradship engulfed the 2nd half of the show,where people stood..who had paid to sit down.A ghostly echo of people singing ..the Leonard paused ,smiled and took off his tiny hat to acknoledge his friends participation.The locals did go crazy for take this waltz,but also for "the partizan"..maybe because of the franco years?
kind regards Timinio
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Re: CONCERT REPORT: Granada, September 13

Post by bridger15 » Wed Sep 16, 2009 8:29 pm

bkmccalla wrote:brutality takes and has taken place.
Entering the ring on this topic of brutality in a concert venue,
I suppose you haven't attended many NHL Hockey games in hockey arenas. Sometimes the benches empty, there are 30 brawling men on the ice and there can be blood shed.
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