Sunday, March 1, 2009

Leonard Cohen a Montrealer to the end.

I heard about Cohen years ago and because he lives in Montreal which is just north of here. And of all his songs Chelsea Hotel is my favorite, a little risque'and maybe not suitable for playing at work. I believe what draws me to him is his reputation for non conformity.

I lifted this bio from Pandora.
One of the most fascinating and enigmatic -- if not the most successful -- singer/songwriters of the late '60s, Leonard Cohen has retained an audience across four decades of music-making interrupted by various digressions into personal and creative exploration, all of which have only added to the mystique surrounding him. Second only to Bob Dylan (and perhaps Paul Simon), he commands the attention of critics and younger musicians more firmly than any other musical figure from the 1960s who is still working at the outset of the 21st century, which is all the more remarkable an achievement for someone who didn't even aspire to a musical career until he was in his thirties. Cohen was born in 1934, a year before Elvis Presley or Ronnie Hawkins, and his background -- personal, social, and intellectual -- couldn't have been more different from those of any rock stars of any generation; nor can he be easily compared even with any members of the generation of folksingers who came of age in the 1960s. Though he knew some country music and played it a bit as a boy, he didn't start performing on even a semi-regular basis, much less recording, until after he had already written several books -- and as an established novelist and poet, his literary accomplishments far exceed those of Bob Dylan or most anyone else who one cares to mention in music, at least this side of operatic librettists such as Hugo Von Hoffmanstahl or Stefan Zweig, figures from another musical and cultural world.

1 comment:

Small Pines said...

Hey - I've been inside that hotel many times! I see it all the time. (Not for long, though.) The roster of creative geniuses that stayed and/or lived there is amazing.