Kevin Pashuk en beBee in English, Music / Música Chief Information Officer - Appleby College/ beBee Brand Ambassador • Appleby College and beBee 11/11/2016 · 1 min de lectura · 3,3K

It's a cold, and it's a broken Hallelujah

It's a cold, and it's a broken Hallelujah

I heard today that Leonard Cohen passed away.

You may have never been a fan, but I'll bet you are a fan of someone influenced by his poetry and music. 

Leonard Cohen was 82 years old, and lived a hard life, which he wrote about using turns and phrases that anchored themselves in your soul.

His gravelly voice was several octaves lower than most, and he truly was a poet rather than a musician, but even his music had a simplistic elegance that buttressed the poetry.

The news hit me harder than most news I hear.

So I felt I needed to take a moment and reflect on why 

Back when I was a tubby teen, trying hard to find my identity and purpose in life, I decided to learn guitar.

In the school I attended, there was this kid, Doug Green, who was two years ahead of me and talented beyond his years. He became my aspirational model.

During a talent show, this Doug came onstage with just an acoustic guitar. This was a surprise because of these four lads from Liverpool, this was a time of four piece rock and roll bands. 

'Folk' music wasn't cool.

Doug started a simple finger picking pattern, and began to sing...

"Suzanne takes me down, to her place by the river..."

... and I was captivated.

Here is Leonard singing it years ago.

It's a cold, and it's a broken Hallelujah

It was my first experience with Leonard Cohen's music, and it certainly wasn't my last.

But this simple song opened my mind to a world beyond childhood.. to a world of love, and loss, and hope, and to look 'amid the garbage and the flowers'.  

He had a lot of garbage in his life.  He trusted many, and had that trust broken several times.

In the intro to the video above, he described how he lost the rights to the song 'Suzanne' when a 'friend' had him sign a paper saying 'trust me'...   

Later in life, when he thought he could retire, he discovered his business manager had stolen all of his money through the years, and Cohen had to go back on the road performing just to earn enough to survive.

Cohen seem to combine the dark and mystical side of life with real people.  


Today my Spotify is serving up a playlist of his music.

I'm not an emotional person, but a tear might well up when it gets to one particular song.

Here it is...

It's a cold, and it's a broken Hallelujah

Goodbye Mr. Cohen...

Praveen Raj Gullepalli 13/11/2016 · #32

Was truly sad to hear this dear Kev! It was your buzz ( a beautiful tribute) that broke this news to me while on travel the past few days. Am sure your generation heard him more and from up close but when I heard him for the first time decades ago, I was hypnotised by his voice, words and the low-key conversational narrative pitch. Bird On A Wire...the haunting chorus of So Long Marianne and the vivid aching visuals it evokes...I heard so many versions of Hallelujah and of course nothing matches the original in the raw feel and texture and simplicity. (The most recent version I heard was of Johnny Gioeli - a great rock voice Hardline / Crush40 / Axel Rudi Pell) belting it out high-powered high! And the way Gioeli modifies the DO YOU into DO YA kind of blends in well (do give it an ear when you would). So Long dear Len! Thank you for some unforgettable music. May you rest in Everlasting Peace.

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Ben Pinto 13/11/2016 · #31

Perhaps the only musician to truly bridge the gaps of generations without any use of sensationalism!

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Jim Murray 13/11/2016 · #30

That's was nice, Kev. I haven't written a goodbye to Mr Cohen. Now I don't have to. You said it.

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Renée 🐝 Cormier 13/11/2016 · #29

He was very special, indeed. I knew him as a poet before I ever knew him as a song writer, but I love his music. The lyrics are always so powerful, sexual and beautiful. Thanks for writing this post, Kevin, and including the videos.

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Javier 🐝 beBee 12/11/2016 · #28

Great tribute. An unique man. TALENT TALENT TALENT ... we are lucky we can still listen to him again and again !

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Javier 🐝 beBee 12/11/2016 · #27

Amazing connection with Spain Leonard Cohen -

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Don 🐝 Kerr 12/11/2016 · #26

My favourite Cohen poem which seems apt at this point:
With Annie gone
Whose eyes to compare
With the morning sun?
Not that I did compare.
But I do
Now that she's gone

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Robert Cormack 12/11/2016 · #25

A friend of mine interviewed him back in the seventies. Cohen was in an apartment with very small rooms, so he had very small furniture. My friend asked him why, and Cohen said "It's the way I feel right now." Nice piece @Kevin Pashuk

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