Dear Heather

Canada and Europe (May 11 - August 3, 2008). Concert reports, set lists, photos, media coverage, multimedia links, recollections...
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Dear Heather

Post by maurice » Thu Jul 17, 2008 4:05 pm

Why doesn't the setlist contain any songs from Dear Heather? No time to rehearse?
Lot of songs from I'm Your man and some from Ten New Songs. The concert in Amsterdam was one of the best shows I saw in my life, but it would also be nice to hear something from his latest cd.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by Dutt » Fri Jul 18, 2008 7:14 pm

I've been a fan of Leonard for 40 years, but I really struggle to listen to th 'Dear Heather' CD. Everything else I love and play ad nauseum, but I'm really glad none of the songs were included on this tour.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by rhona » Fri Jul 18, 2008 8:21 pm

Dutt wrote:I've been a fan of Leonard for 40 years, but I really struggle to listen to th 'Dear Heather' CD. Everything else I love and play ad nauseum, but I'm really glad none of the songs were included on this tour.

Strange - I felt the same. I love every single one of Leonard's CD's except for Dear Heather. I even love Death of a Ladies Man! I confess - I only listened to Dear Heather ONCE all the way through. The Future - great; and 10 New Songs is probably one of my favourites. I think it's close to flawless. Don't know why Dear Heather didn't press a single button...?
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by mnkyface » Sat Jul 19, 2008 12:20 am

The album is not a favorite of mine either, but I would have liked to hear him do Because Of. If nothing else, it would be fun to see/hear the female audience reaction to those lyrics in a concert setting. If I'm Your Man was any indication... the ladies were quite, er, exuberant at the Lyon concert. Because Of might have provided a similar outlet. The song has a nice pace for whooping and hollering during the pauses between verses, and yelling sweet nothings at him. :) If you're into that kind of thing.

As Leonard says "I'm old, but I'm still into that". :lol:
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by devadeborah » Sat Jul 19, 2008 3:50 am

Dear Heather is divine, like a meditation.Ive intro :lol: duced it to friends each of which were a bit suss and then they , like me, fall in love with its space and depth...yummmmm!
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by maurice » Sat Jul 19, 2008 1:28 pm

Dear Heather is an album that grows on you. It takes more time than his previous records. It's also very different than anything Cohen has done before. It's reminds of some Scott Walker records. I don't like all Cohen album (Recent Songs and Various Songs are weak efforts IMHO), but Dear Heather is really great. It just took some time.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by imaginary friend » Fri Aug 08, 2008 3:53 am

I agree with Maurice, DH does grow on you. I was listening to it this morning, all by myself, on a long car ride (the BEST way to listen to Leonard –  for me anyway)

I enjoy the way recitations are interspersed with songs; Leonard's speaking voice is as rich and delicious as his singing. And the words are very fine as well. Then I remembered that on the Tour, he chose to recite 'A Thousand Kisses Deep' instead of singing it, and it seemed so much more intimate.

I bet he includes some of DH in the 2009 tour. May he be energized and rejuvenated by all the love he's receiving on tour, and – I gotta say it – may he come to Vancouver in 2009 too!
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by dacq » Fri Aug 08, 2008 11:56 pm

It´s strange to see the differerent oppinions on the the different records. For myself I regard Dear Heather as a BIG step forward from Ten New Songs. Like some on the forum have said about DH, Ten New Songs just doesn´t press any button with me. I don´t like the sound, the arrangements or the production as a whole, which make the songs sound flat. It doesn´t mean it´sbad, It just doesn´t make any impression on me, whatsoever. Maurice says that Recent Songs and Various Positions in his oppinion are weak efforts. I have a feeling that Recent Songs is not not vey highly regarded, and I have never understood why. During a couple of years a long time ago I allways used to end the evenings with the second half of it. Some times I even tried to avoid it, but to no avail.

I guess this topic shows that there is no really bad album, just a matter of different taste?
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by maurice » Mon Aug 11, 2008 10:59 am

I don't think it is only a matter of taste. The problem with Dear Heather is that it's very different from Cohen's previous records and only reveals its beauty if you give it a try and listen long enough. There are only a few real songs. For the most Dear Heather is a tight collection of poems, thoughts, ambiance and different moods. It's a very spiritual record that simply grows on you.
I must honestly say that I listen a lot to such records that sound different every time you listen to them. I'm also a fan of Scott Walker, Incredible String Band and such music. I also like Dear Heather because it shows that Cohen is still trying to create something new and really exciting. Maybe this record was some kind of bridge to work with Philip Glass.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by st theresa » Tue Aug 12, 2008 4:20 pm

Hi all
I have wondered whether this cd might appeal more to people of a certain age and history of being Leonard fans.
Certainly for myself I found a lot of nostalgia in some of the songs--appropriate for someone entering his 8th decade. It made me laugh and cry. But like you Maurice I was delighted that Leonard keeps reinventing himself as he grows. It gives someone in their 6th decade some hope that all is not finished. As for Ten New Songs, also mentioned in this thread, the spiritual connection for me the first time I heard it was profound. --
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by pronek » Tue Aug 19, 2008 5:38 am

I agree that Dear Heather is a difficult album, but for me the whole album is redeemed by the astonishing last song, "The Faith." (I don't count "Tennessee Waltz" which seems almost tacked on.) I can see why, when the album came out, some critics considered it a swan song. "The Faith" has elements from all aspects of Leonard's career, the use of the band from the Recent Songs era (who don't appear anywhere else on the album), and the way Leonard disappears from the final verse like a ghost is overwhelming in its poignancy to me. I really can't listen to this song too much because it makes me cry every time, which doesn't happen often or easily for me. When dwelling on morbid night thoughts this is the song I think I would want played at my funeral, whenever that may be, time itself unwound.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by anneporter » Sat Feb 14, 2009 2:38 pm

pronek wrote: I think I would want [THe Faith} played at my funeral, whenever that may be, time itself unwound.
I think I will add The Faith to my list of Cohen songs to be played at my funeral, along with The Ballad of the Absent Mare and Anthem.
Dear Heather has very slowly seeped into my soul. I confess, I made fun of the song Dear Heather when it first came out, and barely played the album. This year, one by one, the songs have been surfacing in my head, leading me to play them over and over. This month, it is The Faith. Last month, it was Villanelle for our Time.

I still don't listen to Dear Heather,itself, though. And being an old-time country music fan, I quite like The Tennessee Waltz.
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by Mollydog » Mon Feb 16, 2009 10:24 pm

pronek wrote: "The Faith" has elements from all aspects of Leonard's career, the use of the band from the Recent Songs era (who don't appear anywhere else on the album)
I love this track too and played it quite obsessively when I first bought Dear Heather. I found this information a while ago on Wikipedia and it answered my question as to why the band from Recent Songs appears on this track:

"Three outtakes are known, "The Faith", "Misty Blue" (by Bobby Montgomery), and "Do I Have to Dance All Night", the latter being a studio recording of a live song released as single in 1976. Cohen wanted to include "Misty Blue"/"Do I Have to Dance All Night" as a free bonus single with the LP, but Columbia rejected the idea. Cohen's 2004 song "The Faith" is based on the same folk tune as "Un Canadien errant" (which was covered on Recent Songs), and Cohen's collaborator Anjani admitted in a 2005 interview (Old Ideas: Notes on Dear Heather) that he used an out-taked alternate 1979 track for "Un Canadien errant", adding new vocal line with completely new lyrics, for his 2004 album Dear Heather."
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Re: Dear Heather

Post by tomsakic » Tue Feb 17, 2009 11:27 am

Closed circle: Wikipedia is quoting this Forum 8) ["Old Ideas" is compilation of fans' discussion about every song from DH made here on this Forum, in Dear Heather section, while Anjani gave interview for, sub-site of this place (in a way, child of The Leonard Cohen Files & & Co.) - Tom
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