Rate all of the Leonard Cohen Concerts you've seen.

General discussion about Leonard Cohen's songs and albums
afrothunder89
Posts: 2
Joined: Mon May 04, 2009 8:10 am

Rate all of the Leonard Cohen Concerts you've seen.

Postby afrothunder89 » Mon Mar 18, 2013 1:57 pm

I'm curious to hear everyones' reactions to the string of shows from the past 5 years. Leonard's band seems so concise that it's hard to imagine them giving a sub-par performance.. but I guess there will occasionally be off nights.. Do you think that the tour is getting better each passing year? Here are my concert notes.

1. May 3rd 2009, Orpheum Theatre, Minneapolis, MN 10/10
Wow. Just Wow. It was a day after my birthday so I was in great spirits. A very nice lady whom I'd met outside before the concert managed to scout for me inside the theater to ask me if I wanted to accompany her for the show (She had flown in from North Dakota and her friend had to back out last minute... she obviously didn't want this ticket to go to waste.. Besides, my original seat was right behind my ex-girlfriend from high school and her mother! So she saved me from that strange coincidence). It turned that the seat for the ticket was 4th row, dead center (!). I literally cried tears of joy when Leonard first came out, I had the biggest grin on my face thru out the whole show.. It was my first time seeing him and the band was so incredibly tight! Just pure magic. It was incredible to see all of the songs being performed live after having grown up with his music as a young boy.

I should mention that this wonderful lady didn't even take a single cent from me and even gave me the ticket stub as a souvenir. I couldn't believe my eyes when I got home to find out that the ticket was $450!!! .. Ever since that moment, I made up my mind that Leonard Cohen fans are the best people in the world. I wish I could remember her name, maybe she will see this post and respond.

2. September 12, 2012, Ulker Arena, Istanbul, Turkey 4/10
I'll be honest. This concert didn't have any of the magic of the show I'd seen in Minneapolis 3 years back. I was quite astonished as this show was something that i'd been very looking forward to.. To see Leonard in my home country! ..It just seemed like Leonard and the band were a bit fatigued as the energy level seemed bogged down and torpid. I suspected that after many years of touring, the band were finally putting themselves on auto-pilot mode. Maybe I'm wrong, but the group seemed a bit jet-lagged.

3. December 18, 2012, Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY 9/10
Bravo! I was skeptical about seeing him again after the Istanbul show but I'm glad I went to this! Picked up a floor ticket for $40 right before the show, and by the end of the concert, I managed to move all the way up to 2nd row :D (by the 2nd encore, so many people had left that a whole lot of seats were vacant! I can't believe people paying top dollar to see Cohen and not sticking around for the whole show). I never wanted the concert to end. The entire stadium was captivated. (Alexandra Leaving was out of this world).

I even got the setlist from the roadie. My face was :D amplified by 10.

So what are some of your concert experiences? Care to rank them in order?
John Etherington
Posts: 2580
Joined: Sat Sep 18, 2004 10:17 pm

Re: Rate all of the Leonard Cohen Concerts you've seen.

Postby John Etherington » Tue Mar 19, 2013 1:49 am

Okay, here goes! I've seen seven shows since the comeback, and sixteen in earlier years (I've been to at least one show at every U.K. tour ):

1. June 17th 2008, Manchester Opera House
The U.K. comeback gig, in the perfect setting...a small cosy theatre. I had a central seat in row J that miraculously popped-up after an hour plugging away at Ticketmaster. However, the night before the show, Ticketmaster released some great seats and I got an even better seat in row 2 (I managed to sell the other ticket outside at the very last minute). I remember saying to a friend in the interval "that was totally sublime!". I met up with some friends briefly in a pub before hand (Jim Devlin,Gina Waggott and Jef). We also went for a drink afterwards. They tell me that the following night was even better, but it's a subjective thing, so I wasn't bothered.

2. July 17th 2008, O2 Arena, London.
Best seat I ever got via Jarkko...four rows back in the centre block! Due to some problem on O2's part, those who booked later (of which I was one) got better seats than those who booked the day before. Another truly magnificent concert, as is evidenced by the DVD.

3. November 28th, 2008 The Brighton Centre
Furthest seat back I've ever had for Leonard (row L on the inner left hand aisle), but a superb concert and one that I thought might be my last, at the time. It pleased me to take a friend of mine who lives in Brighton since she had never seen Leonard before.

4. July 14th 2009, LIverpool
Hard to choose between these middle three concerts, as they were all fine shows. Nice gathering in the Travel Lodge bar beforehand. I was eleventh row centre for this. I sat next to a ten year old boy with his dad, but the child remained quiet throughout. It was great to visit Liverpool again (I went there in 2004 to see Arthur Lee and Love), and I visited The Cavern the following day, after picking up a local paper with a review of Leonard's concert.

5. September 9th, 2012 Wembley Arena
I had to rush back from an intensive working weekend at a conference centre near Cambridge, but I made it just in time since the start was delayed due to the thirty plus minutes queuing to collect tickets. It worked out to my advantage that the venue had been changed since I couldn't have made it otherwise. I got eighth row seats for myself and two friends who were recent converts to Leonard (we were four rows behind Graham and Mandy Webb). Excellent three hour concert, after all the stress.

6. July 11th 2009. Mercedes Benz Centre, Weybridge. My only open air Leonard concert (apart from the Isle of Wight, 1970) and it rained all day. I only went because a friend of mine was kind enough to buy me a ticket. She left early due to the weather, but I stuck it out to the end and thoroughly enjoyed the experience. This was the only time that I've seen Leonard with a support. However, I only caught the last two numbers of Suzanne Vega's set (Toms Diner and Luka) since we were sheltering from the rain beforehand, and enjoyed having a drink with Sue Merlyn.

7. November 17th 2008, Royal Albert Hall.
I was in the right hand stalls but close to the stage. This is the only Leonard concert where I've been at the side and the sound wasn't quite so good. Leonard seemed a little tired (not surprising after two O2s!) and the concert was slightly more lacklustre, as a result. Still good though, and it was nice to meet up with Felicity Buirski, beforehand.

All good things, John E

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