Thank you Alan for the "off topic" subject regarding Commander Cohen (although no subject regarding Leonard is off topic) I shared it with Dave and he laughed because he listens to comedians on his work commute, and one of them (Patton Oswalt) has said that "a sudden and inexplicable interest in World War II is a warning sign that a man is getting older" He knows that I have loved WWII since I was a teenager, so whenever he finds further proof of Patton Oswalt's theory in me, he teases me that I am just an old man.
Jean Fournel wrote:B4real, may I suggest comparing two lines instead of only one?
Joan of Arc, lines 3 and 4, the habitual text versus "Can't Forget".
When I read this, I compared the lyrics on the liner of SOLA to the lyrics on the liner of Can’t Forget, but they show lines 3 and 4 as identical. I couldn’t figure out why you picked those lines to compare,when they were obviously the same. So I followed your link and read your post regarding the mountains and the waters, but that didn’t clarify things at all. In fact, I confess it confused me more. So, I reread B4’s original suggestion regarding this topic:
And as I'm writing this a thought is that we could look at changes to a specific song from its inception to its last live performance - musically, words and delivery. And looking at Vickie's post above, even just the most favourite line from it and try to keep to one only, ha! Just a 'passing through' thought or two.
After reading that, I thought maybe Jean was talking about the delivery
of the lines, not the lyrics themselves. So I listened to both versions. Only then did I hear that the lyrics were indeed not the same! The liner notes didn't have the correct lyrics for what was on Don't Forget CD!! I am thinking B4 might have pointed out that they were different on the Can’t Forget version and I forgot. She is the lyric person in our group.
Anyway... the lyrics on SOLAH are:
“No moon to keep her armour bright,
No man to get her through this very smoky night.”
While the lyrics on Can’t Forget are:
“No man to keep her armour bright,
No moon to get her through this dark, this very smoky night.”
One could say "so what"...six of one, half dozen of another-- maybe Leonard just switched the words on a whim. But I always find it hard to believe that Leonard did anything regarding lyrics “on a whim”, and this particular change of lyrics really changes how Joan is perceived regarding whether she needed a man or not. In the SOLAH version, she appears to need one very much, as she can’t even find her way and is lost without one. In the Can’t Forget version, a man is helpful, but she doesn’t need him to find her way. In fact, apparently, she doesn’t really even need the moon, as she is “riding through the night” without one. I was just discussing this lyric change with Dave, and he agreed with the 2nd version. He said (pardon his French), “She’s Joan of Arc! She doesn’t need shit!” I had to agree with him.
As for which of the 2 versions I like best, I like the performance on SOLAH much better than the duet on Can’t Forget, but I like the lyrics better on Can’t Forget.
Regarding the post you linked us to Jean; it seems you agree that Joan doesn’t need the man to find her way any more than the lead mare needs a stallion to guide the herd. Right? At first I thought you were referring not to 2 versions of those lines, but to 3 (Before, During, and After), and I wondered if there was another version you were referring to, but then I decided the lines were just representing your own progression of thought in interpreting both versions of the lyrics. Is that right?
Live In Fredericton EP (2008) 2012
01. Dance Me To The End of Love
02. In My Secret Life
03. Heart With No Companion
04. Bird On The Wire
05. Who By Fire
The above is the only live album that we haven’t spoken about yet and it is a significant one.
I have just downloaded the MP3s of these songs off of some site that Dave found for me. They were free so who knows what kind of viruses I just downloaded along with them, LOL! I tried to buy them, but I could only find the vinyl version, and we don't have a turntable. Not that buying a turntable just to hear another version of Leonard Cohen songs that I already own, would be out of the scope of the length I would go to for my infatuation with Leonard. Thank you B4 for alerting me to this small live album. What a wonderful night that must of been in Fredericton for the fans that lived there! I love his voice in these songs. It sounds like he is smiling and treating each song with joy and respect.
Speaking of the lengths I would go to for Leonard, I am watching the approach of the tribute concert with a sense of excitement mixed with a sense of the surreal. You know how it is with any life altering occurrence, you always say to yourself, "If someone had told me a year ago that I would be....(insert whatever crazy thing you are about to find yourself doing), I would have never believed them." To think that less than a year ago, I didn't own even one of his songs! I know I have said this before, but thank you all here for helping me get to know his remarkable talent. I have learned so much, not only from you all, but from the man himself. I feel that I will continue to learn more even though he is gone. I especially want to thank 4 for responding when I first reached out for guidance. It would have been so easy, I am sure, to pass over my little post and wait for someone else, if anyone, to answer it.
I have just finished A Broken Hallelujah by Leil Leibovitz. It was well worth the read. I especially liked one of the passages where he spoke about the song "Who By Fire", which is on the Fredericton album. He pointed out that the lyrics, "Who shall I say is calling?" were not just Leonard being defiant. Leibovitz said, "He was channeling one of Judaism's core traditions, which held that despite their divine origin, God's decrees were not exempt from human scrutiny." I thought that was interesting. It is that tradition that attracted me most to Judaism to begin with. I bring up the book A Broken Hallelujah to ask if anyone has a suggestion for a biography I could read next? I will be reading Stranger Music and Beautiful Losers first, so I am in no rush, but I like to have something waiting.
Last of all, are there any suggestions/tips for me at my first Leonard event? Any ideas in how I should approach my time there, any suggestions on how to best absorb it all? I am open to it all. And Alan... please don't tell me to close my eyes all of the time... that might be dangerous! Just kidding. Actually, closing my eyes during some of the songs might be a good idea?
Sorry for the very long post... I have been stewing on stuff, and the upcoming trip to Montreal has me full of emotion.
PS- Not sure why they say "Pardon my French". Regarding my heritage, I am curious why. Does anyone know?