Leonard Cohen

From New World Encyclopedia

Leonard Cohen
Cohen in Venice, 1988
Cohen in Venice, 1988
Background information
Born September 21 1934(1934-09-21)
Origin Westmount, Quebec, Canada
Died November 7 2016 (aged 82)
Los Angeles, California,
Genre(s) Folk, Rock music
Occupation(s) Singer-songwriter, musician, poet, novelist
Instrument(s) Vocals, guitar, keyboards
Years active 1954–2016
Label(s) Columbia

Leonard Norman Cohen CC GOQ (September 21, 1934 - November 7, 2016) was a Canadian singer-songwriter, poet, and novelist. His artistry is grounded in the relationship between the sensual body and the human spirit, connecting his Jewish heritage to years of Zen meditation. Themes commonly explored throughout his work include faith and mortality, isolation and depression, betrayal and redemption, social and political conflict, and sexual and romantic love, desire, regret, and loss.

Cohen won two Grammy Awards and was awarded a Lifetime Achievement Award in 2010. He was inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame, the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was invested as a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation's highest civilian honor. In 2011 he received one of the Prince of Asturias Awards for literature and the ninth Glenn Gould Prize.

His songs, particularly the hauntingly beautiful "Hallelujah," have been recorded by hundreds of artists, and continue to evoke deep emotional, intellectual, and spiritual responses in those who listen to them. He was the poet of "brokenness," but he had the ability to turn pain into beauty, an invaluable gift to a world which is broken in so many ways.


Early life

Leonard Norman Cohen (in Hebrew: Eliezer ben Nisan ha'Cohen) was born into an Orthodox Jewish family in Westmount, Quebec, on September 21, 1934. His Lithuanian mother, Marsha ("Masha") Klonitsky (1905–1978), emigrated to Canada in 1927; she was the daughter of Talmudic writer and rabbi Solomon Klonitsky-Kline. His paternal grandfather, whose family had moved from Poland to Canada, was Canadian Jewish Congress founding president Lyon Cohen. His parents gave him the Hebrew name Eliezer, which means "God is my help."[1] His father, clothing store owner Nathan Bernard Cohen (1891–1944), died when Cohen was nine years old. The family attended Congregation Shaar Hashomayim, to which Cohen retained connections for the rest of his life. On the topic of being a kohen, he said in 1967, "I had a very Messianic childhood. I was told I was a descendant of Aaron, the high priest."[2]

Cohen attended Roslyn Elementary School and completed grades seven through nine at Herzliah High School, where his literary mentor (and later inspiration) Irving Layton taught. He then transferred in 1948 to Westmount High School, where he studied music and poetry. He became especially interested in the poetry of Federico García Lorca.[3] He involved himself actively beyond Westmount's curriculum in photography, on the yearbook staff, as a cheerleader, in the arts and current events clubs, and even served as president of the Students' Council while heavily involved in the school's theatre program. During that time, he taught himself to play the acoustic guitar and formed a country–folk group that he called the Buckskin Boys. After a young Spanish guitar player taught him "a few chords and some flamenco," he switched to a classical guitar.[3]

He attributed his love of music to his mother, who sang songs around the house: "I know that those changes, those melodies, touched me very much. She would sing with us when I took my guitar to a restaurant with some friends; my mother would come, and we'd often sing all night."[2]

Cohen frequented Montreal's Saint Laurent Boulevard for fun. He would read his poetry at assorted nearby clubs. When he left Westmount, he purchased a place on Saint-Laurent Boulevard in the previously working-class neighborhood of Little Portugal. In that period and place, he wrote the lyrics to some of his most famous songs.[4]

Relationships and children

In September 1960, Cohen bought a house on the Greek island of Hydra with $1,500 that he had inherited from his grandmother.[1] Cohen lived there with Marianne Ihlen, with whom he was in a relationship for most of the 1960s.[5] The song "So Long, Marianne" was written to and about her.

In 2016, Ihlen died of leukemia three months and nine days before Cohen. His farewell letter to her was read at her funeral, often misquoted by the media and others as "... our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon. Know that I am so close behind you that if you stretch out your hand, I think you can reach mine."[5] This widely circulated version is based on an inaccurate verbal recollection by Ihlen's friend, Jan Christian Mollestad. The letter (actually an email), obtained through the Leonard Cohen estate, reads:

Dearest Marianne,

I’m just a little behind you, close enough to take your hand. This old body has given up, just as yours has too, and the eviction notice is on its way any day now.

I’ve never forgotten your love and your beauty. But you know that. I don’t have to say any more. Safe travels old friend. See you down the road. Love and gratitude. Leonard[6]

Commemorative plaque (2009) at New York's Chelsea Hotel, where Cohen had stayed in 1968

In the spring of 1968, Cohen had a brief relationship with musician Janis Joplin while staying at the Chelsea Hotel. His song "Chelsea Hotel No. 2" references this relationship, and Cohen later regretted his indiscretion in revealing it was about that night with Joplin.[7] Cohen also had a brief relationship with Canadian singer-songwriter Joni Mitchell, after which they remained friends.[8]

In the 1970s, Cohen was in a relationship with artist Suzanne Elrod. She took the cover photograph for Live Songs and is pictured on the cover of the Death of a Ladies' Man. She also inspired the "Dark Lady" of Cohen's book Death of a Lady's Man (1978). However she is not the subject of one of his best-known songs, "Suzanne," which refers to Suzanne Verdal, the former wife of a friend, the Québécois sculptor Armand Vaillancourt.[9]

Cohen and Elrod's relationship produced two children: a son, Adam (b. 1972) who became a singer-songwriter, and a daughter, Lorca (b. 1974), named after poet Federico García Lorca, who became a photographer. They separated in 1979.

Cohen was in a relationship with French photographer Dominique Issermann in the 1980s. They worked together on several occasions: she shot his first two music videos for the songs "Dance Me to the End of Love" and "First We Take Manhattan" and her photographs were used for the covers of his 1993 book Stranger Music and his album More Best of Leonard Cohen and for the inside booklet of I'm Your Man (1988), which he also dedicated to her.

In the 1990s, Cohen was romantically linked to actress Rebecca De Mornay.[10] De Mornay co-produced Cohen's 1992 album The Future, which is also dedicated to her with an inscription that quotes Rebecca's coming to the well from the Book of Genesis chapter 24 and giving drink to Eliezer's camels, after he prayed for guidance.


Cohen died on November 7, 2016, at the age of 82 at his home in Los Angeles. According to his manager, Cohen's death was the result of a fall at his home that evening, and he subsequently died in his sleep. His death was announced on November 10, the same day as his funeral, which was held in Montreal.[11]

As was his wish, Cohen was laid to rest with a Jewish rite, in a simple pine casket, in a family plot in the Congregation Shaar Hashomayim cemetery on Mount Royal.[12]

Poetry and novels

In the 1950s, while a student at McGill University, Cohen was president of the McGill Debating Union and won the Chester MacNaghten Literary Competition for the poems "Sparrows" and "Thoughts of a Landsman."[1] His literary influences during this time included William Butler Yeats, Irving Layton (who taught political science at McGill and became both Cohen's mentor and his friend),[3] Walt Whitman, Federico García Lorca, and Henry Miller.[13] His first published book of poetry, Let Us Compare Mythologies (1956), contained poems written largely when Cohen was between the ages of 15 and 20, and Cohen dedicated the book to his late father.[3]

Cohen graduated in 1955 with a B.A. degree. He then spent a term in the McGill Faculty of Law and then a year (1956–1957) at the Columbia University School of General Studies. Cohen described his graduate school experience as "passion without flesh, love without climax."[3] Consequently, he left New York and returned to Montreal in 1957, working various odd jobs and focusing on the writing of fiction and poetry, including the poems for his next book, The Spice-Box of Earth (1961), which was the first book that Cohen published through the Canadian publishing company McClelland & Stewart.

His father's will provided him with a modest trust income sufficient to allow him to pursue his literary ambitions for the time, and The Spice-Box of Earth was successful in helping to expand the audience for Cohen's poetry, helping him reach out to the poetry scene in Canada, outside the confines of McGill University. The book also helped Cohen gain critical recognition as an important new voice in Canadian poetry. One of Cohen's biographers, Ira Nadel, stated that "reaction to the finished book was enthusiastic and admiring...." The critic Robert Weaver found it powerful and declared that Cohen was 'probably the best young poet in English Canada right now.'"[3]

Cohen continued to write poetry and fiction throughout the 1960s and preferred to live in quasi-reclusive circumstances after he bought a house on the Greek island Hydra. While living and writing on Hydra, Cohen published the poetry collection Flowers for Hitler (1964), and the novel The Favourite Game (1963), an autobiographical Bildungsroman about a young man who discovers his identity through writing.

The 1966 novel Beautiful Losers received a good deal of attention from the Canadian press and stirred up controversy because of a number of sexually graphic passages. However, the Boston Globe stated: "James Joyce is not dead. He is living in Montreal under the name of Cohen."[3] In 1966 Cohen also published Parasites of Heaven, a book of poems.

Subsequently, Cohen published less, concentrating more on recording songs. In 1978, he published his first book of poetry in many years, Death of a Lady's Man (not to be confused with the album he released the previous year, the similarly titled Death of a Ladies' Man). It was not until 1984 that Cohen published his next book of poems, Book of Mercy, which won him the Canadian Authors Association Literary Award for Poetry. The book contains 50 prose-poems, influenced by the Hebrew Bible and Zen writings. Cohen himself referred to the pieces as "prayers."[1] In 1993 Cohen published Stranger Music: Selected Poems and Songs, and in 2006, after 10 years of delays, additions, and rewritings, Book of Longing, dedicated to the poet Irving Layton.[14]

In 2011, Cohen was awarded the Prince of Asturias Award for literature.[15] His poetry collection The Flame, which he had been working on at the time of his death, appeared posthumously in 2018.

Recording career

Cohen did not begin his music career until 1967, after spending time as a poet and novelist during the 1950s and early 1960s. His first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen (1967), was followed by three more albums of folk music: Songs from a Room (1969), Songs of Love and Hate (1971) and New Skin for the Old Ceremony (1974). His 1977 record Death of a Ladies' Man, co-written and produced by Phil Spector, was a move away from Cohen's previous minimalist sound.

In 1979, Cohen returned with the more traditional Recent Songs, which blended his acoustic style with jazz, East Asian, and Mediterranean influences. Cohen's most famous song, "Hallelujah," was released on his seventh album, Various Positions (1984). I'm Your Man in 1988 marked Cohen's turn to synthesized productions. In 1992, Cohen released its follow-up, The Future, which had dark lyrics and references to political and social unrest.

Cohen returned to music in 2001 with the release of Ten New Songs, a major hit in Canada and Europe. His eleventh album, Dear Heather, followed in 2004. Following a successful string of tours between 2008 and 2013, he released three albums in the final years of his life: Old Ideas (2012), Popular Problems (2014), and You Want It Darker (2016), the last of which was released three weeks before his death. His posthumous, fifteenth, and final studio album Thanks for the Dance, was released in November 2019.

1960s and 1970s

His song "Suzanne" became a hit for Judy Collins (who subsequently recorded a number of Cohen's other songs), and was for many years his most recorded song. Collins first introduced him to television audiences during one of her shows in 1966, where they performed duets of his songs.[16]

Collins recalls that when she first met him, he said he could not sing or play the guitar, nor did he think "Suzanne" was even a song:

I said, [a mutual friend] says you've written some songs. Do you want to come by tomorrow and sing them? He came by the next day and he said to me, 'I can't sing and I can't play the guitar, and I don't know if this is a song.' And then he played me Suzanne. In '67, when the song was very, very big. … I said Leonard, you must come with me to this big fundraiser I'm doing. It was a big show; Jimi Hendrix was on it. He'd never sung [in front of a large audience] before then. He got out on stage and started singing. Everybody was going crazy - they loved it. And they stopped about halfway through, and walked off the stage. Everybody went nuts. ... And they demanded that he come back. And I demanded; I said, 'I'll go out with you.' So we went out, and we sang it. And of course, that was the beginning.[17]

After performing at a few folk festivals, he came to the attention of Columbia Records producer John Hammond, who signed Cohen to a record deal.[5] Cohen's first album was Songs of Leonard Cohen, which was released in the US in late 1967 to generally dismissive reviews, but became a favorite in the UK on its release in early 1968, where it spent over a year on the album charts, as well as a cult favorite in the US. Several of the songs on that first album were recorded by other popular folk artists, including James Taylor and Judy Collins. Cohen followed up that first album with Songs from a Room (1969, featuring the often-recorded "Bird on the Wire") and Songs of Love and Hate (1971).

In 1971, film director Robert Altman featured the songs "The Stranger Song," "Winter Lady," and "Sisters of Mercy," originally recorded for Songs of Leonard Cohen, in McCabe & Mrs. Miller. The film is now considered a masterpiece by some critics who also note that the songs are integral to the film. Scott Tobias wrote in 2014 that "The film is unimaginable to me without the Cohen songs, which function as these mournful interstitials that unify the entire movie."[18]

In 1970, Cohen toured for the first time, in the United States, Canada, and Europe, and appeared at the Isle of Wight Festival. In 1972 he toured again in Europe and Israel. Both tours were represented on the Live Songs LP. Leonard Cohen Live at the Isle of Wight 1970, released in 2009.

In 1973, when Egypt and Syria attacked Israel on Yom Kippur, Cohen arrived in Israel. He had no guitar, and intended to volunteer in some kibbutz for the harvest, though he had no solid plan. He was spotted in a Tel Aviv Pinati Café by Israeli musicians Oshik Levi, Matti Caspi, and Ilana Rovina, who offered him to go together to Sinai to sing for Israeli soldiers.[19] Cohen played his most-known songs to the troops: "Suzanne," "So Long Marianne," "Bird on the Wire," and his new song he called "Lover Lover Lover."[20] The singer was popular in Israel even though only a year earlier he had publicly voiced pro-Arab political views. His comment:

I am joining my brothers fighting in the desert. I don’t care if their war is just or not. I know only that war is cruel, that it leaves bones, blood and ugly stains on the holy soil. ... A Jew remains a Jew. Now it’s war and there’s no need for explanations. My name is Cohen, no? [21]

In Sinai, Cohen was introduced to the Major General Ariel Sharon, future Prime Minister of Israel.[21] Cohen later described the improvised concerts:

We would just drop into little places, like a rocket site and they would shine their flashlights at us and we would sing a few songs. Or they would give us a jeep and we would go down the road towards the front and wherever we saw a few soldiers waiting for a helicopter or something like that we would sing a few songs. And maybe back at the airbase we would do a little concert, maybe with amplifiers. It was very informal, and you know, very intense.[21]

In 1973, Columbia Records released Cohen's first concert album, Live Songs. Then beginning around 1974, Cohen's collaboration with pianist and arranger John Lissauer created a live sound praised by the critics. They toured together in 1974 in Europe, the USA and Canada in late 1974 and early 1975, in support of Cohen's album New Skin for the Old Ceremony which contained songs inspired by the war in Israel. In late 1975 Cohen and Lissauer performed a short series of shows in the US and Canada with a new band, in support of Cohen's Best Of release.

In 1976, Cohen embarked on a new major European tour with a new band and changes in his sound and arrangements, again, in support of his The Best of Leonard Cohen release (in Europe retitled as Greatest Hits). After the European tour of 1976, Cohen again attempted a new change in his style and arrangements: his new 1977 record, Death of a Ladies' Man was co-written and produced by Phil Spector. One year later, in 1978, Cohen published a volume of poetry with the subtly revised title, Death of a Lady's Man.

In 1979, Cohen returned with the more traditional Recent Songs, which blended his acoustic style with jazz and East Asian and Mediterranean influences. Beginning with this record, Cohen began to co-produce his albums. Produced by Cohen and Henry Lewy (Joni Mitchell's sound engineer), Recent Songs included performances by Passenger, who brought a flavor of the American Southwest.[22]

During the 1970s, Cohen toured twice with Jennifer Warnes as a backup singer (1972 and 1979). Warnes would become a fixture on Cohen's future albums, receiving full co-vocals credit on Cohen's 1984 album Various Positions (although the record was released under Cohen's name, the inside credits say "Vocals by Leonard Cohen and Jennifer Warnes"). In 1987 she recorded an album of Cohen songs, Famous Blue Raincoat.[23]


Cohen in 1988

In the early 1980s, Cohen co-wrote (with Lewis Furey) the rock musical film Night Magic starring Carole Laure and Nick Mancuso. Lissauer produced Cohen's next record Various Positions, which was released in December 1984 (and in January and February 1985 in various European countries). Cohen supported the release of the album with his biggest tour to date, in Europe and Australia, and with his first tour in Canada and the United States since 1975.

Anjani Thomas, who would become Cohen's partner, and a regular member of Cohen's recording team, joined his touring band. The band performed at the Montreux Jazz Festival, and the Roskilde Festival. They also gave a series of highly emotional and politically controversial concerts in Poland, which had been under martial law just two years before, and performed the song "The Partisan," regarded as the hymn of the Polish Solidarity movement.[24]

In 1987, Jennifer Warnes's tribute album Famous Blue Raincoat helped restore Cohen's career in the US. The following year he released I'm Your Man. The album, self-produced by Cohen, was promoted by black-and-white video shot by Dominique Issermann at the beach of Normandy. Cohen supported the record with a series of television interviews and an extensive tour of Europe, Canada, and the US. Many shows were broadcast on European and US television and radio stations, while Cohen performed for the first time in his career on PBS's Austin City Limits show.[25] The tour gave the basic structure to typical Cohen's three-hour, two-act concert, which he used in his tours in 1993, 2008–2010, and 2012.


Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" was first released on Cohen's studio album Various Positions in 1984. More than 200 artists have covered this song since then, although it had limited initial success while Cohen spent years working to get it right.[26] Cohen is said to have claimed to have written at least 150 draft verses, a claim substantiated by his notebooks containing manifold revisions and additions, and by contemporary interviews.[27]

It was the cover by Jeff Buckley, based on a reinterpretation by John Cale, that brought the song into the cultural fore. Cale's version was used in the 2001 animated film, Shrek, although a version performed by Rufus Wainwright was used on the film’s official soundtrack.[28]

Hallelujah has been the subject of a BBC Radio documentary and featured in the soundtracks of numerous films and television programs. It is the subject of the 2012 book The Holy or the Broken by Alan Light, who follows the improbable journey of “Hallelujah” to become an international anthem for human triumph and tragedy.[29] Janet Maslin's review of The Holy or the Broken note that Cohen spent years struggling with the song, which eventually became "one of the most haunting, mutable and oft-performed songs in American musical history."[30]

As New York Times movie reviewer A.O. Scott wrote, "Hallelujah is one of those rare songs that survives its banalization with at least some of its sublimity intact."[31] "Hallelujah," in which the spiritual and the carnal are so deeply entwined, is one song that fulfills Cohen comment, made long before his life’s end: “I feel I have a huge posthumous career in front of me.” [27]


The album track "Everybody Knows" from I'm Your Man and "If It Be Your Will" in the 1990 film Pump Up the Volume helped expose Cohen's music to a wider audience. In 1992, Cohen released The Future, which urges (often in terms of biblical prophecy) perseverance, reformation, and hope in the face of grim prospects. Three tracks from the album – "Waiting for the Miracle," "The Future" and "Anthem" – were featured in the movie Natural Born Killers, which also promoted Cohen's work to a new generation of US listeners.

As with I'm Your Man, the lyrics on The Future were dark, and made references to political and social unrest. The title track is reportedly a response to the 1992 Los Angeles riots. Cohen promoted the album with two music videos, for "Closing Time" and "The Future," and supported the release with the major tour through Europe, United States and Canada, with the same band as in his 1988 tour, including a second appearance on PBS's Austin City Limits.

In 1993, Cohen also published his book of selected poems and songs, Stranger Music: Selected Poems and Songs, on which he had worked since 1989. It includes a number of new poems from the late 1980s and early 1990s and major revision of his 1978 book Death of a Lady's Man.[32]

In 1994, Cohen retreated to the Mt. Baldy Zen Center near Los Angeles, beginning what became five years of seclusion at the center.[23] In 1996, Cohen was ordained as a Rinzai Zen Buddhist monk and took the Dharma name Jikan, meaning "silence." He served as personal assistant to Kyozan Joshu Sasaki Roshi.

Although there was a public impression that Cohen would not resume recording or publishing, he returned to Los Angeles in May 1999. He began to contribute regularly to The Leonard Cohen Files fan website, emailing new poems and drawings from Book of Longing and early versions of new songs, like "A Thousand Kisses Deep." The section of The Leonard Cohen Files with Cohen's online writings has been titled "The Blackening Pages."[33]


After two years of production, Cohen returned to music in 2001 with the release of Ten New Songs, featuring a major influence from producer and co-composer Sharon Robinson. The album was a major hit for Cohen in Canada and Europe, and he supported it with the hit single "In My Secret Life" and accompanying video shot by Floria Sigismondi. The album won him four Canadian Juno Awards in 2002: Best Artist, Best Songwriter, Best Pop Album, and Best Video ("In My Secret Life"). And the following year he was invested with Canada's highest civilian honour, the Companion of the Order of Canada.[3]

In October 2004, Cohen released Dear Heather, largely a musical collaboration with jazz chanteuse Anjani Thomas, although Sharon Robinson returned to collaborate on three tracks (including a duet). As light as the previous album was dark, Dear Heather reflects Cohen's own change of mood – he said in a number of interviews that his depression had lifted in recent years, which he attributed to Zen Buddhism. Blue Alert, an album of songs co-written by Anjani and Cohen, was released in 2006 to positive reviews.

Before embarking on his 2008–2010 world tour, and without finishing the new album that had been in work since 2006, Cohen contributed a few tracks to other artists' albums – a new version of his own "Tower of Song" was performed by him, Anjani Thomas, and U2 in the 2006 tribute film Leonard Cohen I'm Your Man.[34] In 2007 he recited "The Sound of Silence" on the album Tribute to Paul Simon: Take Me to the Mardi Gras and "The Jungle Line" by Joni Mitchell, accompanied by Herbie Hancock on piano, on Hancock's Grammy-winning album River: The Joni Letters.

Lawsuits and financial troubles

In late 2005, Cohen's daughter Lorca began to suspect his longtime manager, Kelley Lynch, of financial impropriety. Cohen discovered that most of the money in his accounts was gone, including money from his retirement accounts and charitable trust funds. This had begun as early as 1996, when Lynch started selling Cohen's music publishing rights, despite the fact that Cohen had had no financial incentive to do so. According to Cohen biographer Sylvie Simmons, Lynch "took care of Leonard's business affairs ... [She was] not simply his manager but a close friend, almost part of the family."[1]

In 2005, Cohen was under new management and sued Lynch, alleging that she had misappropriated over US$5 million from Cohen's retirement fund. Cohen was sued in turn by other former business associates. Although he won the lawsuit against Lynch it was considered unlikely that he would collect the awarded amount. Suits against Cohen were later dismissed.

In March 2012, Lynch was arrested in Los Angeles for "violating a permanent protective order that forbade her from contacting Leonard, which she had ignored repeatedly. On April 13, the jury found her guilty on all charges. On April 18 she was sentenced to eighteen months in prison and five years probation."[1] Cohen told that court, "It gives me no pleasure to see my onetime friend shackled to a chair in a court of law, her considerable gifts bent to the services of darkness, deceit, and revenge. It is my prayer that Ms. Lynch will take refuge in the wisdom of her religion, that a spirit of understanding will convert her heart from hatred to remorse, from anger to kindness, from the deadly intoxication of revenge to the lowly practices of self-reform."[35]

World tours

Cohen at Edinburgh Castle, July 2008
Cohen at Festival Internacional de Benicàssim, July 2008
Cohen at the Arena in Geneva, October 2008

To recoup the money his ex-manager had stolen, in 2008 Cohen embarked on his first world tour in 15 years. He said that being "forced to go back on the road to repair the fortunes of my family and myself ... [was] a most fortunate happenstance because I was able to connect ... with living musicians. And I think it warmed some part of my heart that had taken on a chill."[36]

The tour began on May 11 in Fredericton, New Brunswick, and was extended until late 2010. The schedule of the first leg in mid-2008 encompassed Canada and Europe, including performances at The Big Chill, the Montreal Jazz Festival, and on the Pyramid Stage at the 2008 Glastonbury Festival on June 29, 2008. His appearance at Glastonbury was hailed by many as the highlight of the festival, and his performance of "Hallelujah" as the sun set received a rapturous reception and a lengthy ovation from a packed Pyramid Stage field.[37] He also played two shows in London's O2 Arena.

In Dublin, Cohen was the first performer to play an open-air concert at IMMA (Royal Hospital Kilmainham) ground, performing there on June 13, 14 and 15, 2008. In 2009, the performances were awarded Ireland's Meteor Music Award as the best international performance of the year.

In September, October and November 2008, Cohen toured Europe, including stops in Austria, Ireland, Poland, Romania, Italy, Germany, France and Scandinavia. In March 2009, Cohen released Live in London, recorded in July 2008 at London's O2 Arena.

Cohen in McLaren Vale, South Australia, January 2009

The third leg of Cohen's World Tour 2008–2009 encompassed New Zealand and Australia from January 20 to February 10, 2009. In January 2009, The Pacific Tour first came to New Zealand, where the audience of 12,000 responded with five standing ovations. The Sydney Entertainment Centre show on January 28 sold out rapidly, which motivated promoters to announce a second show at the venue. The first performance was well-received, and the audience of 12,000 responded with five standing ovations. In response to hearing about the devastation to the Yarra Valley region of Victoria in Australia, Cohen donated $200,000 to the Victorian Bushfire Appeal in support of those affected by the extensive Black Saturday bushfires that razed the area just weeks after his performance at the Rochford Winery in the A Day on the Green concert.[38]

On February 19, 2009, Cohen played his first American concert in 15 years at the Beacon Theatre in New York City. The show, showcased as the special performance for fans, Leonard Cohen Forum members and press, was the only show in the whole three-year tour that was broadcast on the radio (NPR) and available as a free podcast. The North American Tour of 2009 opened on April 1, and included the performance at the Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival on Friday, April 17, 2009, in front of one of the largest outdoor theatre crowds in the history of the festival. His performance of Hallelujah was widely regarded as one of the highlights of the festival, thus repeating the major success of the 2008 Glastonbury appearance.

In July 2009, Cohen started his marathon European tour, his third in two years. The itinerary mostly included sport arenas and open air Summer festivals in Germany, UK, France, Spain, Ireland (the show at O2 in Dublin won him the second Meteor Music Award in a row), but also performances in Serbia in the Belgrade Arena, in the Czech Republic, Hungary, Turkey, and again in Romania. On September 21, his 75th birthday, he performed in Barcelona. The show, last in Europe in 2009 and rumored to be the last European concert ever, attracted many international fans, who lit the green candles honoring Cohen's birthday, leading Cohen to give a special speech of thanks for the fans and the Leonard Cohen Forum.

The last concert of this leg was held in Tel Aviv, Israel, on September 24 at Ramat Gan Stadium. The event was surrounded by public discussion due to a cultural boycott of Israel proposed by a number of musicians. Nevertheless, tickets for the Tel Aviv concert, Cohen's first performance in Israel since 1980, sold out in less than 24 hours. It was announced that the proceeds from the sale of the 47,000 tickets would go into a charitable fund in partnership with Amnesty International and would be used by Israeli and Palestinian peace groups. However, Amnesty International withdrew support from the fund, the funds were donated instead to charities such as a center for special needs children in Ramallah and the Parents Circle-Family Forum, an organization that brings together IDF veterans and former Palestinian gunmen.[39]

The sixth leg of the 2008–2009 world tour went again to the US, with 15 shows. On September 14, 2010, Sony Music released a live CD/DVD album, Songs from the Road, showcasing Cohen's 2008 and 2009 live performances. The previous year, Cohen's performance at the 1970 Isle of Wight Music Festival was released as a CD/DVD combo.

Officially billed as the "World Tour 2010," this tour started on July 25, 2010, in Arena Zagreb, Croatia, and continued with stops in Austria, Belgium, Germany, Scandinavia, and Ireland, where on July 31, 2010, Cohen performed at Lissadell House in County Sligo. It was Cohen's eighth Irish concert in just two years after a hiatus of more than 20 years. On August 12, Cohen played the 200th show of the tour in Scandinavium, Gothenburg, Sweden. The third leg of the 2010 tour started on October 28 in New Zealand and continued in Australia.


Cohen at King's Garden, Odense, Denmark, August 17, 2013

In 2011, Cohen's poetical output was represented in a selection Poems and Songs edited by Robert Faggen.[40] The collection included a selection from all Cohen's books, based on his 1993 books of selected works, Stranger Music, and as well from Book of Longing, with addition of six new song lyrics. A biography, I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen, written by Sylvie Simmons, was published in October 2012. The book is the second major biography of Cohen (Ira Nadel's 1996 biography Various Positions was the first).

Old Ideas

Leonard Cohen's 12th studio album, Old Ideas, was released worldwide on January 31, 2012, and it soon became the highest-charting album of his entire career, reaching No. 1 positions in Canada, Norway, Finland, Netherlands, Spain, Belgium, Poland, Hungary, Czech Republic, Croatia, New Zealand, and top ten positions in United States, Australia, France, Portugal, UK, Austria, Denmark, Sweden, Ireland, Germany, and Switzerland.

The album received uniformly positive reviews: Old Ideas, his 12th studio album, was recorded after a triumphant world tour that had Cohen performing three-hour shows night after night — no mean feat for a man in his late 70s. It throbs with that life, its verses rife with zingers and painful confessions, and its music sounds more richly varied than anything Cohen has done in years.[41]

At a record release party for the album in January 2012, Cohen spoke with The New York Times reporter Jon Pareles who stated that "mortality was very much on his mind and in his songs [on this album]." Pareles goes to characterize the album as "an autumnal album, musing on memories and final reckonings, but it also has a gleam in its eye. It grapples once again with topics Mr. Cohen has pondered throughout his career: love, desire, faith, betrayal, redemption. Some of the diction is biblical; some is drily sardonic."[42]

2012–2013 World Tour

Cohen in 2013

On August 12, 2012, Cohen embarked on a new European tour in support of Old Ideas, adding a violinist to his 2008–2010 tour band, now nicknamed Unified Heart Touring Band, and following the same three-hour set list structure as in 2008–2012 tour, with the addition of a number of songs from Old Ideas. The European leg ended on October 7, 2012, after concerts in Belgium, Ireland (Royal Hospital), France (Olympia in Paris), England (Wembley Arena in London), Spain, Portugal, Germany, Italy (Arena in Verona), Croatia (Arena in Pula), Denmark, Sweden, Norway, Finland, Romania and Turkey.

The second leg took place in the US and Canada in November and December, with 56 shows altogether on both legs. Cohen returned to North America in the spring of 2013 with concerts in the United States and Canada. A summer tour of Europe happened shortly afterwards. Cohen then toured Australia and New Zealand in November and December 2013. His final concert was performed at the Vector Arena in Auckland.

Final albums

Cohen released his 13th album, Popular Problems, on September 24, 2014. Cohen's 14th and final album, You Want It Darker, was released on October 21, 2016. Cohen's son Adam Cohen has a production credit on the album.

On February 23, 2017, Cohen's son and his final album collaborator Sammy Slabbinck released a special, posthumous tribute video set to the album track "Traveling Light," featuring never before seen archival footage of Cohen from his career. The title track was awarded a Grammy Award for Best Rock Performance in January 2018.

Before his death, Cohen had begun working on a new album with his son Adam. The album, titled Thanks for the Dance, was released on November 22, 2019.


It is a beautiful thing for us to be so deeply interested in each other. You have to write about something. Women stand for the objective world for a man, and they stand for the thing that you're not. And that's what you always reach for in a song.
——Leonard Cohen, 1979[43]

Cohen's artistry is grounded in the careful examination of how the body and the soul interact, famously philosophical, connecting his Jewish heritage to years of Zen meditation. Themes commonly explored throughout his work include faith and mortality, isolation and depression, betrayal and redemption, social and political conflict, and sexual and romantic love, desire, regret, and loss. Themes of political and social justice recur in Cohen's work, especially in later albums.

War is an enduring theme of Cohen's work that—in his earlier songs and early life—he approached ambivalently. Challenged in 1974 over his serious demeanor in concerts and the military salutes he ended them with, Cohen remarked, "I sing serious songs, and I'm serious onstage because I couldn't do it any other way ... I don't consider myself a civilian. I consider myself a soldier, and that's the way soldiers salute."[44]

Deeply moved by encounters with Israeli and Arab soldiers, he left the country to write "Lover Lover Lover." This song has been interpreted as a personal renunciation of armed conflict, and ends with the hope his song will serve a listener as "a shield against the enemy." Asked which side he supported in the Arab-Israeli conflict, Cohen responded:

I don't want to speak of wars or sides ... Personal process is one thing, it's blood, it's the identification one feels with their roots and their origins. The militarism I practice as a person and a writer is another thing. ... I don't wish to speak about war.[44]

Cohen commented on his writing process:

For me, the process is really more like a bear stumbling into a beehive or a honey cache: I’m stumbling right into it and getting stuck, and it’s delicious and it’s horrible and I’m in it and it’s not very graceful and it’s very awkward and it’s very painful, and yet there’s something inevitable about it.[45]

Religious beliefs and practices

Cohen was described as a Sabbath-observant Jew in an article in The New York Times, although that never stopped him from studying other religions and walks of life:

Mr. Cohen keeps the Sabbath even while on tour and performed for Israeli troops during the 1973 Arab-Israeli war. So how does he square that faith with his continued practice of Zen? 'Allen Ginsberg asked me the same question many years ago,' he said. 'Well, for one thing, in the tradition of Zen that I've practiced, there is no prayerful worship and there is no affirmation of a deity. So theologically there is no challenge to any Jewish belief.'"[23]

Speaking about his religion in a 2007 interview for BBC Radio 4's Front Row (partially re-broadcast on November 11, 2016), Cohen said:

My friend Brian Johnson said of me that I'd never met a religion I didn't like. That's why I've tried to correct that impression [that I was looking for another religion besides Judaism] because I very much feel part of that tradition and I practice that and my children practice it, so that was never in question. The investigations that I've done into other spiritual systems have certainly illuminated and enriched my understanding of my own tradition.[46]

Cohen had a brief phase around 1970 of being interested in a variety of world views, which he later described as "from the Communist party to the Republican Party" and "from Scientology to delusions of me as the High Priest rebuilding the Temple."[47]

Beginning in the late 1970s, Cohen was associated with Buddhist monk and rōshi (venerable teacher) Kyozan Joshu Sasaki, regularly visiting him at Mount Baldy Zen Center and serving him as personal assistant during Cohen's period of reclusion at Mount Baldy monastery in the 1990s. He was ordained a Rinzai Buddhist monk in 1996. Sasaki appears as a regular motif or addressee in Cohen's poetry, especially in his Book of Longing, and took part in a 1997 documentary about Cohen's monastery years, Leonard Cohen: Spring 1996.[48]

Cohen had positive things to say about Jesus:

I'm very fond of Jesus Christ. He may be the most beautiful guy who walked the face of this earth. Any guy who says 'Blessed are the poor. Blessed are the meek' has got to be a figure of unparalleled generosity and insight and madness ... A man who declared himself to stand among the thieves, the prostitutes and the homeless. His position cannot be comprehended. It is an inhuman generosity. A generosity that would overthrow the world if it was embraced because nothing would weather that compassion. I'm not trying to alter the Jewish view of Jesus Christ. But to me, in spite of what I know about the history of legal Christianity, the figure of the man has touched me.[49]


     Over a musical career that spanned nearly five decades, Mr. Cohen wrote songs that addressed—in spare language that could be both oblique and telling—themes of love and faith, despair and exaltation, solitude and connection, war and politics.[50]

     It's inevitable that Mr. Cohen will be remembered above all for his lyrics. They are terse and acrobatic, scriptural and bawdy, vividly descriptive and enduringly ambiguous, never far from either a riddle or a punch line.[51]
New York Times obituary, November 10, 2016, and
"An Appraisal," The New York Times, November 11, 2016

Leonard Cohen began his career as a singer-songwriter in the 1960s when he was already older than most of his contemporary musicians, and his career outlasted most of them. Always elegantly attired in a suit, and unsure of his ability to sing in front of an audience, Cohen was an unlikely popular hero for the searching and often confused youth. Yet his success is legendary, and his songs continue to captivate people world wide.

Critic Bruce Eder assessed Cohen's overall career in popular music:

One of the most fascinating and enigmatic ... singer-songwriters of the late '60s, Leonard Cohen retained an audience across six 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 continued to work in 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.[52]

Bob Dylan himself was an admirer, describing Cohen as the 'number one' songwriter of their time (Dylan described himself as 'number zero'):

When people talk about Leonard, they fail to mention his melodies, which to me, along with his lyrics, are his greatest genius. ... Even the counterpoint lines—they give a celestial character & melodic lift to his songs. ... no one else comes close to this in modern music. ... I like all of Leonard's songs, early or late. ... they make you think & feel. I like some of his later songs even better than his early ones. Yet there's a simplicity to his early ones that I like, too. ... He's very much a descendant of Irving Berlin. ... Both of them just hear melodies that most of us can only strive for. ... Both Leonard & Berlin are incredibly crafty. Leonard particularly uses chord progressions that are classical in shape. He is a much more savvy musician than you'd think.[5]

New York Times critic A.O. Scott wrote that "Cohen wasn't one to offer comfort. His gift as a songwriter and performer was rather to provide commentary and companionship amid the gloom, offering a wry, openhearted perspective on the puzzles of the human condition."[31] Dan Geller and Dayna Goldfine, creators of the 2022 documentary film Hallelujah: Leonard Cohen, A Journey, A Song, acknowledged that Cohen was initially perceived as a "monster of gloom"; but Goldfine described Cohen as "one of the funniest guys ever" with "a very droll, dry wit,"[53] and Geller remarked, "Almost everything (Cohen) said came out with a twinkle in his eye."[54]

Susan Cain, author of Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole (2022), said that humorous references to Cohen as the "Poet Laureate of Pessimism" miss the point that Cohen was one of those artists who had the "ability to transform pain into beauty."[55] Cain dedicated the book "In memory of Leonard Cohen," quoting lyrics from Cohen's song "Anthem" (1992): "There is a crack, a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in."[56]

Upon Cohen's death, tributes were paid by numerous stars and political figures, including Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau who said, "No other artist’s music felt or sounded like Leonard Cohen’s. Yet his work resonated across generations. Canada and the world will miss him.” [57] Hundreds of fans held a musical vigil outside Cohen's home in Montreal.[58]

Two tribute murals were created in the city the following summer. Artist Kevin Ledo painted a nine-story portrait of him near Cohen's home on Montreal's Plateau Mont-Royal, and a 20-story fedora-clad likeness on Crescent Street, commissioned by the city of Montreal and the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts with Montreal artist Gene Pendon and L.A. artist El Mac, has dominated the city's downtown.

On November 6, 2017, the eve of the first anniversary of Cohen's death, the Cohen family organized a memorial concert titled "Tower of Song" at the Bell Centre in Montreal. Fans and artists from all over the globe came together for an evening of spoken word and song that included performances by k.d. lang, Elvis Costello, Feist, Adam Cohen, Patrick Watson, Sting, Damien Rice, Courtney Love, The Lumineers, Lana Del Rey, and more.[59]


Leonard Cohen released a total of 35 albums (including 1 released posthumously) and 55 singles/EPs.[60]

His studio albums released on Columbia Records:

  • Songs of Leonard Cohen (1967)
  • Songs from a Room (1969)
  • Songs of Love and Hate (1971)
  • New Skin for the Old Ceremony (1974)
  • Death of a Ladies' Man (1977)
  • Recent Songs (1979)
  • Various Positions (1984)
  • I'm Your Man (1988)
  • The Future (1992)
  • Ten New Songs (2001)
  • Dear Heather (2004)
  • Old Ideas (2012)
  • Popular Problems (2014)
  • You Want It Darker (2016)
  • Thanks for the Dance (2019) (posthumous)


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 Sylvie Simmons, I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen (McClelland & Stewart, 2012, ISBN 978-0771080401).
  2. 2.0 2.1 Michael Posner, Leonard Cohen, Untold Stories: The Early Years (Simon & Schuster, 2020, ISBN 978-1982152628).
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 Ira B. Nadel, Various Position: A Life of Leonard Cohen (University of Texas Press, 2007 (original 1996), ISBN 978-0292717329).
  4. Christine Langlois, First We Take the Main Reader's Digest (August 21, 2009). Retrieved January 4, 2024.
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 David Remnick, Leonard Cohen Makes It Darker The New Yorker (October 10, 2016). Retrieved January 4, 2024.
  6. Simon Sebag Montefiore, Written in History: Letters that Changed the World (Orion Publishing Group, 2018, ISBN 978-1474609180).
  7. Jordan Runtagh, How Leonard Cohen Met Janis Joplin: Inside Legendary Chelsea Hotel Encounter Rolling Stone (November 14, 2016). Retrieved January 4, 2024.
  8. Tom Taylor, How the brief romance of Joni Mitchell and Leonard Cohen defied expectation Far Out (April 15, 2021). Retrieved January 4, 2024.
  9. Kate Saunders, The Story of Suzanne BBC Radio 4 (June 1998). Retrieved January 5, 2024.
  10. Alex Heigl, Rebecca de Mornay Remembers Ex-Fiancé Leonard Cohen: 'There Was No One Like Him, and There Never Will Be' People (November 11, 2016). Retrieved January 5, 2024.
  11. Claire Phipps, Leonard Cohen died after fall at his Los Angeles home The Guardian (November 16, 2016). Retrieved January 5, 2024.
  12. Allan Woods and Ellen Brait, Leonard Cohen buried quietly on Thursday in Montreal Toronto Star (November 11, 2016). Retrieved January 5, 2024.
  13. Marco Adria, Music of Our Times: Eight Canadian Singer-Songwriters (Toronto: Lorimer, 1990, ISBN 1550283170).
  14. Leonard Cohen, Book of Longing (Ecco, 2007 (original 2006), ISBN 978-0061125614).
  15. Princess of Asturias Award for Literature: Laureates The Princess of Asturias Foundation. Retrieved January 8, 2024.
  16. Judy Collins, Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music (Crown Archetype, 2011, ISBN 978-0307717344).
  17. Josh O'Kane, Mark Medley, and Brad Wheeler, Closing Time: The Canadian arts community remembers Leonard Cohen The Globe and Mail (November 11, 2016). Retrieved January 8, 2024.
  18. Keith Phipps and Scott Tobias, McCabe & Mrs. Miller: profound pessimism and Leonard Cohen kindness The Dissolve (September 30, 2014). Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  19. Leonard Cohen in Israel ANU Museum of the Jewish People. Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  20. Matti Friedman, Leonard Cohen’s Songs of the Yom Kippur War Table (May 4, 2022). Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 Shai Ben-Ari, When Leonard Cohen Met Ariel Sharon in the Sinai Desert The National Library of Israel (October 4, 2018). Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  22. William Ruhlmann, Recent Songs AllMusic. Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  23. 23.0 23.1 23.2 Larry Rohter, On the Road, for Reasons Practical and Spiritual The New York Times (February 24, 2009). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  24. Daniel Wyszogrodzki, Leonard Cohen in Warsaw (1985) Leonard Cohen Files. Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  25. 1988 - Europe Leonard Cohen Files. Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  26. Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah, from Justin Timberlake to Shrek BBC News (November 11, 2016). Retrieved January 9, 2024.
  27. 27.0 27.1 Bernard Zuel, Why Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah endures 56 years since it was written The Sydney Morning Herald (July 11, 2022). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  28. Jon Dekel, How John Cale recorded the definitive version of ‘Hallelujah’ CBC Music (December 8, 2016). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  29. Alan Light, The Holy or the Broken (Atria, 2012, ISBN 978-1451657845).
  30. Janet Maslin, Time Passes, but a Song's Time Doesn't The New York Times (December 9, 2012). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  31. 31.0 31.1 A.O. Scott, 'Hallelujah' Review: From Leonard Cohen to Cale to Buckley to Shrek The New York Times (June 30, 2022). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  32. Leonard Cohen, Death of a Lady's Man: A Collection of Poetry and Prose (André Deutsch, 2011 (original 1978), ISBN 978-0233003009).
  33. Blackening Pages Leonard Cohen Files. Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  34. Stephen Holden, 'Leonard Cohen: I'm Your Man': A Documentary Song of Praise The New York Times (June 21, 2006). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  35. Liel Leibovitz, A Broken Hallelujah : Rock and Roll, Redemption, and the Life of Leonard Cohen (W. W. Norton & Company, 2014, ISBN 978-0393082050).
  36. Esther Addley, Leonard Cohen's poetic thanks as former manager and lover is jailed for harassment The Guardian (April 19, 2012). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  37. Glastonbury says 'Hallelujah' to Leonard Cohen NME (June 29, 2008). Retrieved January 12, 2024.
  38. Rosie Swash, Leonard Cohen donates £90,000 to Australian bushfire victims The Guardian (February 10, 2009). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  39. Elan Miller, Amnesty yanks support for Cohen's peace concert The Jerusalem Post (August 23, 2009). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  40. Leonard Cohen, Robert Faggen (ed.), Poems and Songs (Everyman's Library, 2011, ISBN 978-0307595836).
  41. Ann Powers, First Listen: Leonard Cohen, 'Old Ideas' NPR (January 22, 2012). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  42. Jon Pareles, Final Reckonings, a Tuneful Fedora and Forgiveness The New York Times (January 29, 2012). Retrieved January 11, 2024.
  43. Derek Mead, Cohen’s poetry and music were an inspiration to so many Back Beat (June 20, 2019). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  44. 44.0 44.1 Jordi Sierra I Fabra, Interview with Leonard Cohen, 1974 Retrieved January 10, 2024
  45. Pico Iyer, Listening to Leonard Cohen Utne Reader (November 1, 1998). Retrieved January 8, 2024.
  46. Joe Taysom, Watch the fascinating Buddhist documentary narrated by Leonard Cohen Far Out (May 6, 2020). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  47. Jeff Burger (ed.), Leonard Cohen on Leonard Cohen: Interviews and Encounters (Chicago Review Press, 2014, ISBN 978-1613747582).
  48. Leonard Cohen: Spring 1996 IMDb. Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  49. Jim Devlin (ed.), Leonard Cohen: In His Own Words (Omnibus Pr & Schirmer Trade Books, 1998, ISBN 0711968780).
  50. Larry Rohter, Leonard Cohen, Epic and Enigmatic Songwriter, Is Dead at 82 The New York Times (November 10, 2016). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  51. Jon Pareles, An Appraisal: Leonard Cohen, Master of Meanings and Incantatory Verse The New York Times (November 11, 2016). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  52. Bruce Eder, Leonard Cohen: Biography AllMusic. Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  53. Nicolas Rapold, Trying to Capture the Life and Lyrics of That Wry Sage Leonard Cohen The New York Times (July 1, 2022). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  54. Rob LeDonne, 'More than a song': the enduring power of Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah The Guardian (June 29, 2022). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  55. Carlett Spike, Susan Cain ’89 on the Undiscovered Value of Bittersweet Thinking Princeton Alumni Weekly (April 2022). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  56. Susan Cain, Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole (Crown, 2022, ISBN 978-0451499783).
  57. Oliver Gettell, Leonard Cohen dead: Celebrities react on social media Entertainment Weekly (November 10, 2016). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  58. Fans hold sing-along vigil for Leonard Cohen outside his Montreal home CBC News (November 12, 2016). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  59. Gloria Henriquez, Leonard Cohen honoured in Montreal one year after his death Global New (November 9, 2017). Retrieved January 10, 2024.
  60. Leonard Cohen Releases Discogs. Retrieved January 3, 2024.

ISBN links support NWE through referral fees

  • Adria, Marco. Music of Our Times: Eight Canadian Singer-Songwriters. Toronto: Lorimer, 1990. ISBN 1550283170
  • Burger, Jeff (ed.). Leonard Cohen on Leonard Cohen: Interviews and Encounters. Chicago Review Press, 2014. ISBN 978-1613747582
  • Cain, Susan. Bittersweet: How Sorrow and Longing Make Us Whole. Crown, 2022. ISBN 978-0451499783
  • Cohen, Leonard. Death of a Lady's Man: A Collection of Poetry and Prose. André Deutsch, 2011 (original 1978). ISBN 978-0233003009
  • Cohen, Leonard. Book of Longing. Ecco, 2007 (original 2006). ISBN 978-0061125614
  • Cohen, Leonard, Robert Faggen (ed.). Poems and Songs. Everyman's Library, 2011. ISBN 978-0307595836
  • Collins, Judy. Sweet Judy Blue Eyes: My Life in Music. Crown Archetype, 2011. ISBN 978-0307717344
  • Devlin, Jim (ed.). Leonard Cohen: In His Own Words. Omnibus Pr & Schirmer Trade Books, 1998. ISBN 0711968780
  • Leibovitz, Liel. A Broken Hallelujah : Rock and Roll, Redemption, and the Life of Leonard Cohen. W. W. Norton & Company, 2014. ISBN 978-0393082050
  • Montefiore, Simon Sebag. Written in History: Letters that Changed the World. Orion Publishing Group, 2018. ISBN 978-1474609180
  • Nadel, Ira B. Various Positions: A Life of Leonard Cohen. University of Texas Press, 2007 (original 1996). ISBN 978-0292717329
  • Posner, Michael. Leonard Cohen, Untold Stories: The Early Years. Simon & Schuster, 2020. ISBN 978-1982152628
  • Simmons, Sylvie. I'm Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen. McClelland & Stewart, 2012. ISBN 978-0771080401

External links

All links retrieved January 11, 2024.


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