Where to start?

General discussion about Leonard Cohen's songs and albums
waltzwithme
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Joined: Tue Apr 30, 2013 1:02 am

Where to start?

Postby waltzwithme » Thu May 02, 2013 12:52 am

Hello good people of the forum.

Now, as a 46 yr old guy who loves listening to many genres of music, I have an admission to make ... as I sit here, I can honestly say I cannot think of a single Leonard Cohen song/track. Maybe I would recognise some of I heard them. But, maybe I wouldn't.

Now, here's the thing ... Something tells me that I would like his music - I am reliably informed I will. So, I wish to buy some cds. Just 3 or 4 to start with.

So, out of what is no doubt a huge back catalogue, I wonder if folk would be kind enough to recommend an album or two, and give a little detail of the content of the album and why they feel it would be a good one to start with?

Hoping you can help a total Leonard Cohen novice :)
Jessie & Cecil
HelenOE
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Re: Where to start?

Postby HelenOE » Thu May 02, 2013 4:16 am

I'm a really new fan too; I'd suggest you start with either the Essential Leonard Cohen (a 2-CD set, and I understand that Leonard Cohen chose the tracks himself) or the Live in London CD (also 2 discs). Lots of overlap on the tracks, it's just a question of whether you want the original studio recordings or the snapshot of how the songs are being performed live these days. I think they're both unbelievably good. Then maybe pick up the original albums that contain the songs that particularly strike you on the compilations?

And you DO know "Suzanne." You DO know "Hallelujah." But there's plenty more where that came from.
MaryB
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Re: Where to start?

Postby MaryB » Thu May 02, 2013 6:57 am

waltzwithme,

This topic may be of some help to you viewtopic.php?f=5&t=14018
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waltzwithme
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Re: Where to start?

Postby waltzwithme » Thu May 02, 2013 10:46 pm

Helen - Hi and thanks for your reply. I think I'd prefer to start with original studio recordings, and then work my way from there. Thanks for the suggestion of Essential Leonard Cohen, that seems to be a popular choice going by Mary's link. I think I will be getting that one, but would like some original non-compilation albums too. A good idea of yours to pick out that which I prefer on the compilation cd and go from there. Ah, Hallelujah, of course. However, Suzanne rings no bells whatsoever! :oops: (Maybe a brief trip to youtube beckons on that one).

Mary - thanks for that link - plenty of food for thought there :)
Jessie & Cecil
rags and feathers
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Location: Scotland

Re: Where to start?

Postby rags and feathers » Fri May 03, 2013 1:27 am

waltzwithme wrote:Helen - Hi and thanks for your reply. I think I'd prefer to start with original studio recordings, and then work my way from there. Thanks for the suggestion of Essential Leonard Cohen, that seems to be a popular choice going by Mary's link. I think I will be getting that one, but would like some original non-compilation albums too. A good idea of yours to pick out that which I prefer on the compilation cd and go from there. Ah, Hallelujah, of course. However, Suzanne rings no bells whatsoever! :oops: (Maybe a brief trip to youtube beckons on that one).

Mary - thanks for that link - plenty of food for thought there :)
Never heard it no? I'm sure you have... :D Here is some of it - 'Suzanne takes you down to her place near the river... and she feeds you tea and oranges that come all the way from China... and she leads you to the river, she is wearing RAGS AND FEATHERS... and she shows you where to look, among the garbage and the flowers, there are heroes in the seaweed, there are children in the morning, they are leaning out for love, and they will lean that way forever, while Suzanne holds the mirror and you want to travel with her and you want to travel blind, and you know that you can trust her, for she's touched your perfect body with her mind' :)
John Etherington
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Re: Where to start?

Postby John Etherington » Fri May 03, 2013 5:08 pm

Hi rags and feathers,

Despite what I said in the other thread, I would suggest you buy this first!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Complete-Studio ... en+box+set

All of the studio albums (except "Old Ideas") remastered for £21.79, at the time of writing.

All good things, John E
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margaret
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Location: UK

Re: Where to start?

Postby margaret » Fri May 03, 2013 8:40 pm

An absolute bargain! I'm tempted to buy the box set myself even though I have most of the albums already. :)
rags and feathers
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Location: Scotland

Re: Where to start?

Postby rags and feathers » Sat May 04, 2013 12:21 am

John Etherington wrote:Hi rags and feathers,

Despite what I said in the other thread, I would suggest you buy this first!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Complete-Studio ... en+box+set

All of the studio albums (except "Old Ideas") remastered for £21.79, at the time of writing.

All good things, John E
Hi John, it wasn't actually me asking for the help on where to start - it was 'waltzwithme' asking. I was just quoting some of the lyrics of Suzanne to waltzwithme - but I have to say, that is indeed a fantastic bargain! :)
waltzwithme
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Re: Where to start?

Postby waltzwithme » Sat May 04, 2013 1:11 am

Ah rags and feathers, what lovely lyrics, thank you :)

And John, that's an impressive find, thanks. Too good a bargain to miss to be honest. Purchase being made as I type ... :)
Jessie & Cecil
harald
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Location: Munich, Germany

Re: Where to start?

Postby harald » Sat May 04, 2013 10:09 am

John Etherington wrote:Hi rags and feathers,

Despite what I said in the other thread, I would suggest you buy this first!

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Complete-Studio ... en+box+set

All of the studio albums (except "Old Ideas") remastered for £21.79, at the time of writing.

All good things, John E
Thanks, dear John, for that.
I haven´t been aware of this collection.

I´d like to hear your advice, if you don´t mind.
I have got all original studio albums on cd.
Do you thinks it´s worthwile to still buy this box?

Best
Harald
1979 Kassel / 1980 Munich / 2008 Munich, Hamburg / 2009 Cologne, Antwerp, Lisbon, Budapest, Barcelona / 2010 Salzburg, Florence, Marseille, Stuttgart, Bratislava / 2012 Ghent, Berlin, Verona, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon / 2013 Paris, Mannheim, Rome, Prague, Pula, Zuerich, Amsterdam
2011 Haiger / 2014 Dublin / 2015 Hydra, Viladrau / 2016 Amsterdam / 2017 Hydra, Balaton / 2019 Yorkshire
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lizzytysh
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Re: Where to start?

Postby lizzytysh » Sat May 04, 2013 5:21 pm

I have The Essential [remastered] and don't care for the effect of the remastering. It creates a homogenous effect. I love what feels like the original integrity of each individual song on the initial studio recordings.
"Be yourself. Everyone else is already taken."
~ Oscar Wilde
John Etherington
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Re: Where to start?

Postby John Etherington » Sat May 04, 2013 9:59 pm

Hi Harald

I haven't got round to buying the "Complete Studio Collection" myself yet, but I hear that (depending on the quality of your music system) there is a noticeable improvement. If you've got twenty-odd quid to spare, it has to be a worthwhile investment...even as a back-up to your original disks. For newcomers, I would say it's a must.

All the best, John E
harald
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Location: Munich, Germany

Re: Where to start?

Postby harald » Sun May 19, 2013 2:58 pm

Thank you, dear John and Lizzy!

And, welcome waltzwithme,
I´d start listening with the first album Songs of Leonard Cohen
and if you are really interested
you could read Silvie Simmons´ biography and listen to the albums when they are mentioned in the book. You get interesting background to the albums.
1979 Kassel / 1980 Munich / 2008 Munich, Hamburg / 2009 Cologne, Antwerp, Lisbon, Budapest, Barcelona / 2010 Salzburg, Florence, Marseille, Stuttgart, Bratislava / 2012 Ghent, Berlin, Verona, Barcelona, Madrid, Lisbon / 2013 Paris, Mannheim, Rome, Prague, Pula, Zuerich, Amsterdam
2011 Haiger / 2014 Dublin / 2015 Hydra, Viladrau / 2016 Amsterdam / 2017 Hydra, Balaton / 2019 Yorkshire

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