Leonard Cohen … I was a HUGE Elvis fan and just like John Lennon, Cohen remembers when he first heard Elvis Presley
“I was relieved that all the stuff we’d been feeling for so long found expression in Presley and in rock in general, I was playing his records all the time to friends when they’d come over. I’d say, ‘This guy is a great singer’ – and they thought this was some kind of inverse snobbery. But it wasn’t… Presley had that special kind of voice which makes your heart go out to a singer… I have plans to sing an Elvis song on stage soon. … I was a huge fan of Elvis! I was in town until today and bought a compilation LP of the man…
You may soon hear me sing Don’t and Are You Lonesome Tonight – but not at the plate. My voice is too deep. 20,000 cigarettes have led my tone of voice three to four notches down too far”…. Leonard Cohen
Leonard Norman Cohen Born September 21, 1934 Died November 7, 2016 was a Canadian singer, songwriter, musician, poet, novelist and painter. His work explored religion, politics, isolation and personal relationships. Cohen was inducted into both the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame as well as the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He was a Companion of the Order of Canada, the nation’s highest civilian honor.
“Hallelujah” was first released on Cohen’s studio album Various Positions in 1984, and he sang it during his Europe tour in 1985. The song had limited initial success but found greater popularity through a 1991 cover by John Cale, which formed the basis for a later cover by Jeff Buckley. “Hallelujah” has been performed by almost 200 artists in various languages.
In a New York Times review the song, noting that “Cohen spent years struggling with his song “Halleluja” which eventually became one of the most “often-performed songs in American musical history.