Secret co-writer of "Chelsea Hotel"?

General discussion about Leonard Cohen's songs and albums
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Kjelling
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Post by Kjelling » Sat Dec 03, 2005 3:03 am

Tchocolatl: In a 1994 radio interview with the BBC, Cohen said he regretted his indiscretion towards Janis Joplin. He may have mentioned it at other times as well.

You can read the whole interview at http://webheights.net/speakingcohen/bbctrans.htm.
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lizzytysh
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Post by lizzytysh » Sat Dec 03, 2005 5:53 am

No...but if someone took the artist' hand and guided the brush strokes and daubed on the paint...then the "artist" would be beholden to sign the painting with both names.

I have no idea from where you're getting such an involved scenario stuck in your head. The involvement above far exceeds this situation. My analogy remains.

I think you've made a good point with your analogy, John.
John,

You analogy is not what Ron said happened. It's what Leonard said happened. One chord change. Ron said they co-wrote the song on an 8-hour plane trip. If you spent 8-hours with Neil Young writing a song I'm betting you would think you deserved co-credit too.

YdF ~ I guess this would mean that John chooses to believe Leonard rather than Ron.

In case you haven't thought it through, YdF, "writing a song on an 8-hour plane trip" is not the same as "spending 8 hours writing a song on a plane trip." In those days, my guess would be they were enroute from/to home or a gig, from/to a gig. Probably pretty tired, as equipment and hotels and rushing go, and they probably slept quite a bit, as many people on 8-hour plane trips do. That doesn't meant that at some point Leonard didn't take out his guitar and say, "Hey, Ron, listen to this and tell me what you think."

I think John is right that "It seems like Ron has some other deeper hurt feelings surrounding LC, perhaps more than this issue" ~ and, this is what's being used for it. Either that, or I'm thinking a headline could read, "Cornelius Tries to Co-opt Cohen's Chelsea" ~ perhaps, after it became known, Ron thought, "Hey, I remember Leonard going over that song with me ~ and I suggested a chord change :idea: ," and then, determinedly, tried to capitalize on that. It would certainly appear that it became better known than those others on the list. Wonder how that could be :idea: :wink: . As far as I'm concerned, it could've been a chord change and an actual word, as well, and it still wouldn't constitute a co-write. If so, well, there are some poets around here who need to be adding my and others' names to their poems.
< * Intellectual property ~ sorry, no deal ~ and be sure to spell my name right, too, thank you * >

ForYourSmile ~ The concert situation you've described is another, perfectly good illustration of the 'sharing around' of Leonard's music, including improvisation, without making it 'everybody's' song.

[P.S. To those who want to speak of/talk about me, feel free to use my name ~ that's what it's there for :D . The euphemistic references are ~ your own favourite word, Kush ~ boring :wink: . Shhhhh, though ~ don't tell any of your comrades that :wink: .]

Since, in the majority of your time here, Kush, other artists measure up as superior to Leonard, in your mind; at least now, in your mind, your being here will make more sense :idea: ?

~ Lizzy
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lightning
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Post by lightning » Sat Dec 03, 2005 7:36 am

Ah for the days when the author of music was Anonymous tho' the music was polyphonous.
LaurieAK
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Post by LaurieAK » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:37 am

~~queen elizabeth wrote:
P.S. To those who want to speak of/talk about me, feel free to use my name ~ that's what it's there for . The euphemistic references are ~ your own favourite word, Kush ~ boring . Shhhhh, though ~ don't tell any of your comrades that .
Yeah, Elizabeth, you have just about every non-worshipper (of yourself) pushed out of the nest....just a couple more shoves...argghhh, and your there. How many folks is that now over the years you have pushed out?

If anyone is a saint around here, it is Jarkko.

Laurie

p.s. I have NO idea Kush's real intentions in what he wrote. I am responding to Qe's attack on him and his "comrades."
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Post by Anne » Sat Dec 03, 2005 12:58 pm

Tchocolatl: In a 1994 radio interview with the BBC, Cohen said he regretted his indiscretion towards Janis Joplin. He may have mentioned it at other times as well.
Kjell, I think I remember him discussing this again in the I'm your man film.
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lizzytysh
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Post by lizzytysh » Sat Dec 03, 2005 1:51 pm

:lol: Good Morning, Laurie. I just got up, but so nice to see you here, again, this morning ~ again. Girl of her word.
p.s. I have NO idea Kush's real intentions in what he wrote. I am responding to Qe's attack on him and his "comrades."

Of course you don't :wink: ~ I came across your birth certificate the other day and it really does say "Yesterday." Stay right on top of those attacks, though. You're doing a great job :wink: . Unless, of course, you're speaking multilaterally. Then, "Whoops, watch your step there! Sorry ~ too late. You just fell back in that ditch, Girl." Some have selective hearing, some selective sight, and some have both. I wouldn't know on the hearing, without meeting, but I can confirm on your sight :wink: .

Ohhhhh ~ Laurie ~ Yes, Girl of her word ~ Tie me to my kitchen chair, close my mouth, cut my hair. Your wish ~ not my command.
[In that one phrase, it actually should be ~ broke my throne, but I'm going with what I kept insisting to Leonard when we co-wrote that thing; I said, "Leonard, I'm telling you, someone's going to use it against me, if you leave it like that." But he insisted. His song ~ you know how that goes.]***** Anyway, perhaps, if you were more 'interesting', Kush [and whomever] would have more reason to stay :idea: . I see you're still busy digging that ditch, though. It's about that phrase "boring as hell."

*****[Disclaimer ~ just in case someone new here were to take this bracketed segment, that precedes the asterisks, seriously ~ I've met Leonard, but I do not know Leonard personally. I know what I know of him through a multitude of comments made by a wide variety of people, in person, in print, and on cd/DVD/film, who do or have known him. I am not seeking to get my name on the copyright of "Hallelujah," for ideas I suggested that may have ended up in the song's final version. Rebecca de Mornay was around during that time, in fact. I've never heard her complain regarding not being deemed co-writer, and I know she gave Leonard input, as well. However, my own kitchen scene and Leonard's rejection of my idea on the throne was a rather perfect segue for my following suggestion.]

If you care, though, we're talking about this allegation, which I and some others in this thread consider false, regarding Ron Cornelius and Leonard regarding Leonard's song, Chelsea Hotel #2. Join in with anything you consider relevant. < * no, no need to wash up. just get that chunk of dirt out of your eye, so you can see better. the rest of your face and hands are fine, a little dirt never hurt anyone. we understand your diligence * >

You're right on Jarkko's being a saint in these parts. Allowing you, and a couple others, to troll as you do. Still, he knows I can handle it; and he stays out of these matters, if at all possible. It's only when people have gotten threatening, or really vile, toward another, personally, that it's really been an issue. So, don't worry. He won't be putting you out. He'll simply continue doing his excellent work on his quintessential site.

*******************************
Personally this probably makes LC a far more appealing and well-rounded individual to me. The super saintly saccharine sweetly soporific St. Leonard myth perpetrated on this website by Leonard Cohen "appreciators" is frankly boring as hell.
Bob Dylan is a far more interesting personality to me simply because his flaws are so obvious.
Kush ~ I was thinking you were one of those always saying you didn't care at all, about the artist's life, just the music you heard from your album, your cd. Still, Dylan, is far more interesting to you because of his so obvious flaws, and Leonard is now far more appealing and well-rounded individual to you. I guess I got you mixed up with somebody else :wink: . I'd have thought that you might have found Leonard appealing and interesting through his songs and words alone. I guess it's just us soporific ones who consider other aspects, that we admit to, anyway....well, until we find something to, perhaps, bring him down a notch, to where we can consider him more appealing or interesting. But, I'd swear you were one of those 'music only' guys. Regardless, there's still a difference, between personal faults and false allegations.


" . . . super saintly saccharine sweetly soporific . . . 'appreciators'" ~ It's a tough job, Kush, but somebody's gotta do it, to keep guys and gals like you looking so good. Can you get with Laurie on that to explain your 'real intentions' ~ she keeps missing beats, and it's very important to her that she do a good job. She's trying to do two jobs at once ~ ditch digging and attack control, and she's having a hard time keeping up. Missing things left and right. Thanks. For my own purposes, now, isn't that Bob guy the one who wrote "Forever Young" :wink: ? I, personally, find that interesting :wink: .

~ Lizzy
[I don't think I need to change my name just yet ~ unless, maybe, to Goo-Goo Lizzy :wink: ]
Last edited by lizzytysh on Sat Dec 03, 2005 11:59 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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lizzytysh
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Post by lizzytysh » Sat Dec 03, 2005 2:23 pm

Yes, Kjelling and Anne, from the interviews I've seen, Leonard definitely isn't proud of the writing of that song. Still, he owns up to the responsibility in having written it and, in essence, apologizes to Janis.

Perhaps, Ron went for that one because he figured Leonard wouldn't miss it :wink: ; or being such a great friend, he was willing to try to help shoulder the blame for its lyrics, so made his grandiose claim on Leonard's behalf. What a guy. It really wasn't necessary for him to try to say that what Leonard already had was "dumb," though. If you're going to make false claims, you've gotta put more effort into their being credible.

I can tell you exactly what would change my mind on all this. If Leonard said it was true.

I wonder if the copyright of "Chelsea Hotel #2" had been registered in both their names, which song would've gotten more play, " . . . #2" or Leonard's uncontested "Chelsea Hotel." I know I couldn't even figure out what this "Chelsea Hotel #2" thing was all about, way back when, here! We talked about it for awhile. Even if Leonard, in the interest of regaining an apparently lost friend, wanted to placate Ron and his hurt feelings by adding his name to the copyright, I doubt there's going to be a stash of cash waiting on him. Ron might want to stay out of the stock market. Maybe it's 'the principle' ~ Ron took something "dumb" and made it whole :roll: , and wants credit :wink: . Ooookay, Ron.

My stronger sense would be that he wants his name forever linked with Leonard Cohen's, though...the image of their being busy at work throughout this entire flight, where there were no others aboard of any interest, and Leonard sequestered his normally-solitary self when writing songs, with Ron away from everyone else, to spend 8 hours onboard getting this damn song whipped into shape.

~ Lizzy
Last edited by lizzytysh on Sat Dec 03, 2005 2:42 pm, edited 1 time in total.
jurica
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Post by jurica » Sat Dec 03, 2005 2:36 pm

Kush wrote:I don't know whether R Cornelius is rightfully credited or not and I s'pose we'll never know the real story or who is more at fault.
and neither do any of the rest of us including the ones who are 100% on LCs or 100% on Cornelius' side. that's why i never commented on any of it before.

what i wish to comment is:
Kush wrote:The super saintly saccharine sweetly soporific St. Leonard myth perpetrated on this website by Leonard Cohen "appreciators" is frankly boring as hell.
it's well known in sociology and political sciences that masses dislike perfect individuals (JFK gained more public backup after his first mistakes, for example), but i think that this standpoint is very wrong.

shouldn't we at least TRY not to be jealous of people who are 'perfect saints', and at least PRETEND to like tham for the fact that they are? i mean: should we crucify every saint that comes by just because he's not human enough for our tastes?
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lizzytysh
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Post by lizzytysh » Sat Dec 03, 2005 3:30 pm

Hi Lightning ~

I agree with this, too ~
Ah for the days when the author of music was Anonymous tho' the music was polyphonous.
It also reminds me of Joni's singing for free on the streets of Paris ~ unfettered and alive.

Hi Jurica ~

I've also seen the jealousy aspect with men in regard to Leonard. You may recall our having delved into that a bit here, a long time ago. I've seen it in my personal life, as well. Who wants to be [even implicitly] 'compared' ~ better to make them, somehow, 'less than,' and then you can feel better about yourself. [As though there were any real comparisons going on, anyway :roll: .]


Love,
Lizzy
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Post by Young dr. Freud » Sat Dec 03, 2005 6:49 pm

Yes, Kjelling and Anne, from the interviews I've seen, Leonard definitely isn't proud of the writing of that song. Still, he owns up to the responsibility in having written it and, in essence, apologizes to Janis.
Oh bull. He's very proud of it. In every concert...Leonard just had to rehash the melodramtic history of the song...so much for the fake "I really shouldn't have mentioned her name" garbage.
My stronger sense would be that he wants his name forever linked with Leonard Cohen's, though...the image of their being busy at work throughout this entire flight, where there were no others aboard of any interest, and Leonard sequestered his normally-solitary self when writing songs, with Ron away from everyone else, to spend 8 hours onboard getting this damn song whipped into shape.
I don't think darling Leonard would approve of your slandering Ron Cornelius this way. (He probably just wishes you would drop it.) By the way, please address a possible reason for Leonard to have paid him the $8,000.00 dollars if all it was was one chord change. Oh, wait, I forgot, Leonard didn't know about the "legal" thing.
shouldn't we at least TRY not to be jealous of people who are 'perfect saints', and at least PRETEND to like tham for the fact that they are? i mean: should we crucify every saint that comes by just because he's not human enough for our tastes?
Jurica...please tell me you're not buying into this St. Leonard nonsense. It's ridiculous. The man is flawed...deeply. Enjoy his music but don't get caught up in the adulation frenzy on this board.


YdF
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Kush
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Post by Kush » Sat Dec 03, 2005 6:52 pm

Hi Jurica,
Its not about that at all. Its more about having a more complete picture of an individual who has contributed much in his field. That makes it more real for me as opposed to idolatry.
But its yesterdays post and today is a new day.
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~greg
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Post by ~greg » Sat Dec 03, 2005 9:10 pm

Young dr. Freud wrote: By the way, please address a possible reason for Leonard to have paid him the $8,000.00 dollars if all it was was one chord change.
YdF
"He [ Ron Cornelius ] hired a music attorney and was paid $8500 for not pursuing the case."
It was a settlement. For a pittance. To not pursue.

But why?

A reason Ron gave that I read somewhere was that he was hard up
- he needed the bread.

(Apparently had just enough to hire a attorney.)

Now I think that Cohen by birth was a prodigal son, an easy touch.
Most people like that try to be become hard. But do not succeed.
They remain susceptible to any sad enough story.

So Ron needed money.
And he was too proud to beg.

And Cohen was too sensitive to just give it to him.

Cohen could only give it to him under the fiction
that it was in return for something.


And what exactly was that?


Nashville session players are already paid for what they do for musicians.

Read this:
Dylan recorded another version in 1970 for his Self Portrait album.
This time, he used experienced session players in Nashville, Tennessee.
Ron Cornelius played guitar on the album and told us about the session:
"You're not reading manuscripts. In Nashville the players are booked because
of what they can create right now, not what's written on a piece of paper.
Everybody's creating their part as the tape is rolling.

- http://www.songfacts.com/detail.php?id=2737&
Helping out with chord changes is simply their job description.

But Ron says he did more than that - he says he "co-wrote" the song.

If he'd contributed any of the lyrics he would certainly have said so.
So we have to assume that he only helped out with the music.

Certainly one chord change does not constitute co-writing the music.


But I don't think it matters if he'd given massive input into the
music of the song. That was simply his job as a session player.
Formally or informally, he was already paid for doing exactly that.


At what moment did he decide he'd co-written the song?
Did he mention it as they stepped off the plane?

He'd have a case in that case.

As it is he lost the case. At least in the U.S.
And the BMI rights apparently were simply not challenged.

Going by the precedent of the $8500 settlement, I think
Cohen, were he mean enough to challenge it, would probably win.
It's pretty clear that he was screwed quite a bit more
royally recently by his secretary, and he didn't even
want to challenge that until he had to.


----------

I certainly don't think Cohen is a saint.
Far from it.


In fact, being far from it is the subject of much
of his work. And it's exactly what I like him best for.

I like him that he tries to live his life as deliberately
as he can. Above all I like his honesty about being
far from succeeding at doing so.

But being conscious of our baser motives is the first
if often repeated step towards rising above them.
And I think the steps are worth taking. I think success
is trivial - boring - in comparison to taking the steps.


The greatest saints were all great sinners.
Augustine to mention just one.
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tomsakic
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Post by tomsakic » Sat Dec 03, 2005 10:58 pm

Kush wrote:But there have been other instances (Who By Fire, Alexandra Leaving come to mind immediately) where the full credit is not disclosed on the album...yeah you can talk endlessly about internet sites and concerts etc etc where he reveals the true source but the real record is in the album that is there for posterity. So there may be something to it I have no idea...
"Who By Fire" is only based at similar lyrics patter sang in synagogue, as Lightning showed us a year ago posting the text here on the board. I can wrote the song based in lyrical pattern on "Our Father" and that doesn't need to be credited to "God-Tom Sakic", doesn't it? At least Metallica didn't credited its famous song based on a childrens' prayer to guardian angel to "God-Metallica".

"Take This Waltz" was credited "(Leonard Cohen)"on tracklist of I'm Your Man album, but inside it said "lyrics based on a poem by Federico Garcia Lorca" - while this credits were displayed immediately on disc itself and covers of later albums (More Best Of). In The Essential it's been credited to "Leonard Cohen-Federico Garcia Lorca".

Why "Alexandra Leaving" wasn'tnoted as "lyrics based on a poem by Konstantin Kavafis" is pure mistake - Leonard did announced that, and I remember him asnwering to this forum or on Sony's chat (was it Dem's question?) that by someone's mistake that wasn't printed in Ten New Songs' booklet. Anyhow, knowing the original and the song, in difference to "Take This Waltz" which was translation/adaptation, this was only based on poem's imagery and motifs, or better said, a tribute to Kavafy's poem, so "Cohen-Robinson" credit in The Essential is more likely than "Cohen-Kavafy-Robinson". And the 2nd one is'nt correct, as "The Guests" aren't credited to Rumi-Cohen or whatever, nor "Ballad of the Absent Mare" need to be credited as "Ten Bulls Hearding Pictures-Cohen"; it would be actuallyridiculous from the point of poetical inspiration, trbiutes etc. Cohen in any case always mentioned and thanked to the poets who inspired him, in the boklet. I can note that Dylan always used traditional folk songs as musical patterns, from Harry Smith's Anthology of American Music and on, mostly not mentioning it in bookletsor credits (that's why some people attacked him for stealing), not mentioning the man who sent him a song on a tape in 1990s, to see it appear on next Dylan album.
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peter danielsen
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Post by peter danielsen » Sat Dec 03, 2005 11:06 pm

Well said greg, especially concerning the saint-topic. And most of us here know also of the text from BL where the definition of a saint is printed.

Peter
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Post by Young dr. Freud » Sat Dec 03, 2005 11:16 pm

Now I think that Cohen by birth was a prodigal son, an easy touch.
Most people like that try to be become hard. But do not succeed.
They remain susceptible to any sad enough story.

So Ron needed money.
And he was too proud to beg.

And Cohen was too sensitive to just give it to him.

Cohen could only give it to him under the fiction
that it was in return for something.

Ahem....

I didn't know about the legal stuff.
So, Greg... that blows your touching little scenario right out of the water doesn't it?
But I don't think it matters if he'd given massive input into the
music of the song.
I think "massive input" matters plenty.
As it is he lost the case. At least in the U.S.
How could he lose a case that didn't go to court. He got paid to take a hike.
At what moment did he decide he'd co-written the song?


Probably about the time Leonard told the band members it was co-written.

YdF
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