If I didn’t have your love to make it real

First we take Manhattan, then…

So Long Marianne

I’m your Man
Everybody knows

Dance me to the end of love
“Dance Me to the End Of Love”…it’s curious how songs begin because the origin of the song, every song, has a kind of grain or seed that somebody hands you or the world hands you and that’s why the process is so mysterious about writing a song. But that came from just hearing or reading or knowing that in the death camps, beside the crematoria…a string quartet[1] was pressed into performance while this horror was going on…they would be playing classical music while their fellow prisoners were being killed and burnt. So, that music, “Dance me to your beauty with a burning violin”, meaning the beauty there of being the consummation of life, the end of this existence and of the passionate element in that consummation. But, it is the same language that we use for surrender to the beloved, so that the song – it’s not important that anybody knows the genesis of it, because if the language comes from that passionate resource, it will be able to embrace all passionate activity.

Bird on a wire
Cohen was the dark eminence among a small pantheon of extremely influential singer-songwriters to emerge in the Sixties and early Seventies. Only Bob Dylan exerted a more profound influence upon his generation, and perhaps only Paul Simon and fellow Canadian Joni Mitchell equaled him as a song poet.

Cohen’s haunting bass voice, nylon-stringed guitar patterns and Greek-chorus backing vocals shaped evocative songs that dealt with love and hate, sex and spirituality, war and peace, ecstasy and depression. He was also the rare artist of his generation to enjoy artistic success into his Eighties, releasing his final album, You Want It Darker, earlier this year. Rolling Stone

You want it darker

Cohen’s best-known song may well be “Hallelujah,” a majestic, meditative ballad infused with both religiosity and earthiness.
It was written for a 1984 album that his record company rejected as insufficiently commercial; it was popularized a decade later by Jeff Buckley.
Along with “Suzanne”, Hallelujah” is arguably Cohen’s most famous song. The original version is in 6/8 time, which evokes both waltz and gospel music. Written in the key of C major, the chord progression matches lyrics from the song: “goes like this, the fourth, the fifth, the minor fall, and the major lift”: C, F, G, A minor, F.[2] Cohen wrote around 80 draft verses for the tune, with one writing session at the Royalton Hotel in New York where he was reduced to sitting on the floor in his underwear, banging his head on the floor.The song contains several biblical references, most notably evoking the stories of Samson and traitorous Delilah from the Book of Judges (“she cut your hair”) as well as the adulterous King David and Bathsheba (“you saw her bathing on the roof, her beauty in the moonlight overthrew you”).Asked about the phenomenal success of the song in 2009, Cohen told the CBC Radio show Q:
‘I was happy that the song was being used. Of course, there was certain ironic and amusing sidebars because the record that it came from, which was called Various Positions, that record Sony wouldn’t put out. They didn’t think it was good enough…So there was a mild sense of revenge that arose in my heart. I was happy about it but it’s…I was just reading a review of a movie called Watchmen that uses it, and the reviewer said, “Can we please have a moratorium on ‘Hallelujah’ in movies and television shows?” And I kind of feel the same way…I think the song came out in ’83 or ’84, and the only person who seemed to recognize the song was Dylan. He was doing it in concert. Nobody else recognized the song till quite a long time later, I think.’leonard-cohen


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