Leonard Cohen: “I do what I do because …”


I don’t consider myself a great singer. I just play the guitar and interpret my lyrics. I do what I do because I have a need to do it, to express what I know, and to show people what I do.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen


1974 Interview with Leonard Cohen by Jordi Sierra I Fabra. Published in Leonard Cohen by Alberto Manzano (1978). Photo of Leonard Cohen performing in 1974 by Bernd Morlock. Originally posted Nov 21, 2013 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

The Marianne Variations: So Long, Marianne Composite Video – 7 Verses



Leonard Cohen’s Recurring Revisions Of So Long, Marianne

This is an unexpected but certainly welcomed addition to The Marianne Variations, a series of posts devoted to the major recurring variations of Leonard Cohen’s “So Long, Marianne” that significantly differ from the versions found on the Songs Of Leonard Cohen and Field Commander Cohen albums.  An introduction and links to all published posts in this series as well as the inclusion criteria and the original version of “So Long, Marianne” from the Songs Of Leonard Cohen album can be found at The Marianne Variations Summary Page.

Seven Verse Video Version Of So Long, Marianne

This composite video, constructed by AlanM5049 from three videos shot live by Albert Noonan (San Jose: 2009, Zagreb: 2010, Sligo: Aug 1, 2010), showcases all six verses from the the original studio version of So Long, Marianne plus one of the three other verses that have been performed in concert but not released on a recording.

1. Won’t you come over to the window, my little darling (SJ)
2. Oh, you know I really love to live with you (SJ)
3. Oh, we met when we were almost young (Sligo)
4. Oh, your letters say that you’re beside me now (Z)
5. Your eyes, how will I forget your eyes (SJ)
6. For now I need your hidden love (SJ)
7. Oh, you are really such a pretty one & play-out (Z)

The concept is skillfully executed with well-chosen source material and adroit editing. The result is both enlightening and entertaining.

Leonard Cohen – So Long, Marianne
San Jose: 2009, Zagreb: 2010, Sligo: Aug 1, 2010
Video composed by alanm5049
Original videos shot by albertnoonan

Note: Originally posted Aug 3, 2014 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

2012 Leonard Cohen Austin Soundcheck: Viva Cohen Identifies Guy Singing Light As The Breeze – “Papou”

Duchess and I (in foreground of above photo) had been paying homage at the soundcheck prior to the Oct 31, 2012 Leonard Cohen Austin concert for a few minutes when Kezban Özcan, Cohen’s assistant, and Viva Cohen, his 20 month old granddaughter, joined us.  Noticing the man in the suit and hat on stage, Viva began excitedly pointing at him, gleefully announcing to us,”Papou, Papou.”  This small commotion, in turn, caused the Grocer Of Despair to flash the broadest of smiles and wave happily – all without missing a beat as he continued his rehearsal of these lines:

it don’t matter how you worship
as long as you’re
down on your knees.
So I knelt there at the delta,
at the alpha and the omega,
at the cradle of the river and the seas.

Yep, I suspect the Papou version of “Light As The Breeze” is going to be stuck in my head for a while.

Note: The latest entry on the Leonard Cohen Nicknames List is

227. Papou1

Credit Due Department: Photo of DrHGuy & Duchess by  Kezban Özcan. Originally posted Nov 15, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric


  1. Viva Cohen, personal communication []

Video: Sylvie Simmons Reads From, Talks About Her Leonard Cohen Bio “I’m Your Man”

Sylvie Simmons appears on  the Oct 15, 2012 edition of the Manhattan Neighborhood Network “Revolting News,” reading the description of a young Leonard Cohen hypnotizing  the family maid from her biography of the Canadian singer-songwriter, talking about the individuals she interviewed for the book, and singing “Famous Blue Raincoat.”

Also included are

  • A show and tell with old photos of Leonard Cohen and his family (such as the shot of Leonard and his mother in the above screen capture)
  • A more complete listing of individuals from Leonard Cohen’s past Sylvie interviewed and the stories they told her
  • Anecdotes about Leonard Cohen featuring Bob Dylan  Rebecca De Mornay, and others
  • A discussion of Leonard Cohen’s habit of fasting
  • His mother’s advice to him
  • Cohen’s post-Mt Baldy experience with his Indian guru
  • Insight into Sylvie Simmons’ methodology into writing the biography (e.g., allowing interviewees to rescind any portions comments about which they were uncomfortable)

Video uploaded by


Comments From Original Post

  • Matthew John Davies Awesome. My copy is residing on the shelf waiting for that chance to indulge.
  • Scott
    Thanks Leonard for this wonderful video.Biography is quite interesting . I really enjoy it while i am reading it.
    Granger Whitelaw

Note: Originally posted Oct 19, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

“Clothes are magical, a magical procedure, they really change the way you are in a day…” Leonard Cohen On Clothing, Including That Old Raincoat Of His

Well, I find it very difficult to buy clothes. Because I’ve had that raincoat for ten or twelve years now, that’s my coat. I have one coat and one suit because, for one thing, I find it very difficult to buy clothes at a time like this. I somehow can’t reconcile it with my visions of a human benefactor. You know, to be buying clothes when people are in such bad shape elsewhere; so I wear out the old things I’ve got. Also, I can’t find any clothes that represent me. And clothes are magical, a magical procedure, they really change the way you are in a day. Any woman knows this, and men have discovered it now. I mean, clothes are important to us and until I can discover in some clearer way what I am to myself I’ll just keep on wearing my old clothes.quotedown2

Leonard Cohen

From an interview by Michael Harris that appeared in the journal Duel, Winter 1969. Originally posted April 20, 2010 at DrHGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Video: Sharon Robinson’s Impeccable Performance Of Alexandra Leaving – 2012 Leonard Cohen Ghent Concert

And you who were bewildered by a meaning
Whose code was broken, crucifix uncrossed
Say goodbye to Alexandra leaving
Then say goodbye to Alexandra lost

Sharon Robinson inevitably performs Alexandra Leaving, a song she and Leonard Cohen co-wrote, with overwhelming intensity and power. In this solo effort at the August 14, 2012 Ghent show, she outdoes herself.

Sharon Robinson – Alexandra Leaving
Ghent – Aug 14, 2012
Video by

Note: Originally posted Aug 19, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric

Backstage Video: Dancing With The (Unified Heart) Stars – 2012 Leonard Cohen Wembley Concert

Sublime Brit Charley Webb and Barcelona virtuoso Javier Mas spontaneously dancing to Moldovan Alex Bublitchi’s violin backstage at a Leonard Cohen concert – this is so cosmopolitan Cohenite-cool that the only possible enhancement would be the addition of Leonard Cohen himself cutting in (an event that, according to my calculations, would approach critical mass for charm and thus risk nuclear meltdown).

Posted Sept 9, 2012 by J.S. Carenza III with the caption: Javier Mas and Charley Webb have a quickspin around backstage. 


Note: Originally posted Sept 10, 2012 at 1HeckOfAGuy.com, a predecessor of Cohencentric