Zitate von Leonard Cohen

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Leonard Cohen

Geburtstag: 21. September 1934
Todesdatum: 7. November 2016

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Leonard Norman Cohen [lɛnərd ˈkoʊən], CC, GOQ war ein kanadischer Singer-Songwriter, Schriftsteller, Dichter und Maler.

Nachdem Cohen sich in Kanada bereits mit Gedichten und Romanen einen Namen gemacht und mit dem Kultroman Beautiful Losers einen internationalen Bestseller gelandet hatte, veröffentlichte er 1967 sein erstes Album, Songs of Leonard Cohen. Die Platte mit melodisch einfachen Folksongs war kommerziell erfolgreich und leitete eine fast 50 Jahre andauernde Musikkarriere ein, unterbrochen von Phasen des Rückzugs. Während seines künstlerischen Wirkens von 1956 bis 2016 schrieb er zahlreiche Gedichtsammlungen, aber auch Romane und brachte unter anderem vierzehn Studioalben sowie einige Livealben und Kompilationen heraus. Sein letztes Album You Want It Darker erschien am 21. Oktober 2016, drei Wochen vor seinem Tod.

Seine melancholisch gefärbten, poetischen Songs wurden von zahlreichen Künstlern gecovert. Zu den bekanntesten zählen Suzanne, Famous Blue Raincoat, Bird on a Wire und So Long, Marianne zu Beginn seiner Karriere sowie in den 1980er Jahren First We Take Manhattan und Hallelujah. In seinem musikalischen Werk werden unter anderem Liebe, Religion, Tod und menschliches Leid thematisiert.

Cohen erhielt zahlreiche Preise und Auszeichnungen, darunter mehrere Juno Awards, den Order of Canada, den Ordre national du Québec sowie den Prinz-von-Asturien-Preis in der Sparte Literatur und 2015 den Preis der deutschen Schallplattenkritik im Bereich Pop, Rock und Jazz für sein Lebenswerk sowie posthum einen Grammy. 2006 wurde er in die Canadian Music Hall of Fame und 2010 in die Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame sowie 2008 in die Rock and Roll Hall of Fame aufgenommen.

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Zitate Leonard Cohen

„I am so often accused of gloominess and melancholy. And I think I'm probably the most cheerful man around. I don't consider myself a pessimist at all. I think of a pessimist as someone who is waiting for it to rain. And I feel completely soaked to the skin.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: I am so often accused of gloominess and melancholy. And I think I'm probably the most cheerful man around. I don't consider myself a pessimist at all. I think of a pessimist as someone who is waiting for it to rain. And I feel completely soaked to the skin. … I think those descriptions of me are quite inappropriate to the gravity of the predicament that faces us all. I've always been free from hope. It's never been one of my great solaces. I feel that more and more we're invited to make ourselves strong and cheerful..... I think that it was Ben Jonson who said, I have studied all the theologies and all the philosophies, but cheerfulness keeps breaking through. As quoted in "The Joking Troubadour of Gloom" in The Daily Telegraph (26 April 1993) http://www.webheights.net/speakingcohen/feb93.htm

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„There is a crack in everything.
That's how the light gets in.“

— Leonard Cohen, Selected Poems, 1956-1968
Context: Ring the bells that still can ring. Forget your perfect offering. There is a crack in everything. That's how the light gets in. "Anthem"

„Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river. You can hear the boats go by, You can spend the night beside her, And you know that she's half crazy But that's why you want to be there, And she feeds you tea and oranges That come all the way from China. And just when you mean to tell her That you have no love to give her Then she gets you on her wavelength And she lets the river answer That you've always been her lover. And you want to travel with her, And you want to travel blind, And you know that she will trust you, For you've touched her perfect body with your mind. "Suzanne" - Isle of Wight performance (1970) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n_56ep729TE - Live in London (2008) http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=snMOmHzgssk

„But let's not talk of love or chains and things we can't untie,
your eyes are soft with sorrow,
Hey, that's no way to say goodbye.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: I loved you in the morning, our kisses deep and warm, Your hair upon the pillow like a sleepy golden storm, Yes many loved before us, I know that we are not new, In city and in forest they smiled like me and you, But let's not talk of love or chains and things we can't untie, your eyes are soft with sorrow, Hey, that's no way to say goodbye. "Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye" · Duet with Judy Collins on Soundstage (January 1976) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVJImYNGqwk

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„But he himself was broken
Long before the sky would open
Forsaken, almost human
He sank beneath your wisdom like a stone“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: And Jesus was a sailor When he walked upon the water And he spent a long time watching From his lonely wooden tower And when he knew for certain Only drowning men could see him He said "All men will be sailors then Until the sea shall free them" But he himself was broken Long before the sky would open Forsaken, almost human He sank beneath your wisdom like a stone "Suzanne"

„I don't know which side is anybody on any more. I don't really care. There is a moment when we have to transcend the side we're on and understand that we are creatures of a higher order.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: I don't know which side is anybody on any more. I don't really care. There is a moment when we have to transcend the side we're on and understand that we are creatures of a higher order. That doesn't mean that I don't wish you courage in your struggle. There is on both sides of the struggle men of good will. That is important to remember. On both sides of the struggle, some struggling for freedom, some struggling for safety and solemn testimony of that unbroken faith which binds generations one to another I sing this song, "If It Be Your Will" Introducing "If It Be Your Will"

„What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love. Contact with this energy results in the exercise of a kind of balance in the chaos of existence. A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory. He rides the drifts like an escaped ski. His course is the caress of the hill. His track is a drawing of the snow in a moment of its particular arrangement with wind and rock. Something in him so loves the world that he gives himself to the laws of gravity and chance. Far from flying with the angels, he traces with the fidelity of a seismograph needle the state of the solid bloody landscape. His house is dangerous and finite, but he is at home in the world. He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love. Beautiful Losers (1966)

„A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love. Contact with this energy results in the exercise of a kind of balance in the chaos of existence. A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory. He rides the drifts like an escaped ski. His course is the caress of the hill. His track is a drawing of the snow in a moment of its particular arrangement with wind and rock. Something in him so loves the world that he gives himself to the laws of gravity and chance. Far from flying with the angels, he traces with the fidelity of a seismograph needle the state of the solid bloody landscape. His house is dangerous and finite, but he is at home in the world. He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love. Beautiful Losers (1966)

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„I would like to say to you, to the leaders of the left, and the leaders of the right, I sing... I sing for everyone. My song has no flag, my song has no party.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: I come from a country where we do not have the same struggles as you have. I respect your struggles. And it may surprise you, but I respect both sides of this struggle. It seems to be that in Europe there needs to be a left foot and a right foot to move forward. I wish that both feet move forward and the body moves towards its proper destiny. This is an intense country; the people are heroic, the spirit is independent. It is a difficult country to govern, it needs a strong government and a strong union. … I would like to say to you, to the leaders of the left, and the leaders of the right, I sing... I sing for everyone. My song has no flag, my song has no party. And I say the prayer, that we said in our synagogue, I say it for the leader of your union and the leader of your party. May the Lord put a spirit, a wisdom and understanding into the hearts of your leaders and into the hearts of all their counsellors. Introducing "Who by Fire"

„On that fundamental ground
Where love's unwilled, unleashed, unbound
And half the perfect world is found.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: The candles burned The moon went down The polished hill The milky town Transparent, weightless, luminous Uncovering the two of us On that fundamental ground Where love's unwilled, unleashed, unbound And half the perfect world is found. "Half the Perfect World" (2006) (co-written with Anjani)

„I know there is an eye that watches all of us. There is a judgment that weighs everything we do.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: I know there is an eye that watches all of us. There is a judgment that weighs everything we do. And before this great force, which is greater than any government I stand in awe and I kneel in respect and it is to this great judgment that I dedicate this next song, "Hallelujah". Introducing "Hallelujah"

„Well Marianne it's come to this time when we are really so old and our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon.“

— Leonard Cohen
Context: Well Marianne it's come to this time when we are really so old and 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. … And you know that I've always loved you for your beauty and your wisdom, but I don't need to say anything more about that because you know all about that. But now, I just want to wish you a very good journey. Goodbye old friend. Endless love, see you down the road. "Leonard Cohen Penned Letter to 'So Long, Marianne' Muse Before Her Death" by Daniel Kreps, in Rolling Stone (7 August 2016) http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/leonard-cohen-pens-final-letter-to-so-long-marianne-muse-w433144

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