Leonard Cohen RIP


That news just in – IOW 1970 and also Pompey Guildhall, a gig Oscar enjoyed hugely.


Author: pompeypop

University lecturer, longtime local musician and recently historian of popular music - especially in and around Portsmouth. My blog is entirely about that topic

19 thoughts on “Leonard Cohen RIP

  1. “Everybody knows the war is over
    Everybody knows the good guys lost
    Everybody knows the fight was fixed
    The poor stay poor, the rich get rich
    That’s how it goes
    Everybody knows”

    How timely…

  2. It’s such sad news. I heard it in the early hours of this morning and felt quite numbed. He was a great favourite of mine and will be sadly missed. I last saw him at the O2 a couple of years ago and he was still sensational. RIP LEONARD X

  3. A fitting epitaph to Mr Cohen…..great bit of political comment ,and very relative https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VEDSRP3yNPo From ‘Democracy ‘ rest easy in poets corner Mr C….

  4. I’m trying to recall where I first heard him. Was he on those Rock Machine albums? maybe on John Peel’s “Top Gear”? I saw him at the IOW but cannot recall the performance so maybe I was asleep (around 4am I think)

  5. Dave, he was on ‘the rock machine turns you on,,….cbs sampler from around ’69. L C track was ‘bird on a wire’ certainly the first time i heard him …….i haven’t got said album but can remember the following being on it…. cant be so bad ‘ by the Moby Grape………fresh carbage by Spirit …….dolphins smile was the featured Byrds track , i remember that particularly as a Byrds freak, and thought it not a particularly great choice . Pretty sure Elmer Gantrys Velvet Opera were another featured band , but the memory bank stops with them!

  6. whoops just seen phil f’s reply…….pretty sure i’m right on the other tracks!!

  7. My wife,who first introduced me to his music way back,woke me in the night to tell me the news . I’ve got some vinyl and v.h.s. tapes to dig out. It must be wonderful to have your music as the background to people’s lives! Not everyone though. I worked at Wadhams in the 80’s. we had a tape player in the rest room which could be diverted to speakers in the spray booths. My friend Trevor and I listened to various genres ,but what upset a couple of sprayer was our fondness for “soft” music-dowop and Leonard Cohen in particular. While these settled down to heavy metal while they were spraying I swapped their tape for one of mine. As Jazz Police filled the spray booth,the door flew open and one of the chaps,nicknamed “lard ass” swapped the tapes back and chucked mine in a tub of thinners. The great man would probably have liked it!

  8. LC ON CBS ‘SAMPLERS’……………..All three in my vinyl stash………..turns you on /I love you and fill your head with rock……seems that cbs records had a place on all three for MrCohen……Rock Machine I Love You……last track side 1….Hey that’s no way to say goodbye
    Fill your head with rock……..track 2 side 3……..You know who I am

    Anybody want to take a bit of time on this rubbish day to come up with what they reckon might be the best ‘sampler’ album…… Rock Machine was good ,but I’d like to possibly nominate Island records..’Bumpers’

  9. This is good little documentary – I first saw this some years ago, although I don’t remember it being in 1988 I thought it was in the last ten to fifteen years. https://youtu.be/zqcT5ckJvLs

    One of the earliest memories of hearing anything of Leonard Cohen was Fairport Convention playing “Suzanne” at the Guidhall, when Judy Dyble was about to leave the group and they introduced Sandy Denny as her replacement – I believe she sang only a couple of numbers with them. I know everyone was well impressed.

    I’m pretty sure round about the same time “Mad” Bert had the first Leonard Cohen LP and I would have heard it there – confirmation from Mr Laker would be appreciated. I know we listened to most new things round there – The Doors, The Seeds, HP Lovecraft etc, etc.


    • Cheers Lenny. That Fairport gig was The Dance of Words in May 1968 – only the second time Sandy Denny played with Fairport. I have fond memories of that night, although had forgotten Judy Dyble was there too. Only went to Bert’s a couple of times, but always good value.

  10. ANOTHER GREAT MUSIC ICON DEPARTS OUR WORLD…………………Fallen from the ‘tightrope’……..Leon Russell ..one of the mad dogs with the Englishman………..thanks for the Delta Lady………..R I P musicman…

  11. Pretty sure we first heard of Leonard Cohen on the Judy Collins albums ‘In My Life’ (released 1966 which included both ‘Suzanne’ and ‘Dress Rehearsal Rag’) and ‘Wildlfowers’ (1967, with ‘Sisters of Mercy’ and ‘That’s No Way to Say Goodbye’).
    We used to listen to these a lot at Bert’s Sunday afternoon sessions.
    Leonard Cohen’s first album wasn’t released until December, ’67.

    • Thanks Gray, yes of course, it was through those Judy Collins albums that we first heard Leonard Cohen songs – round at Bert’s Sunday afternoon sessions, along with an early foray into wine drinking – bottles of Graves I believe. How sophisticated was that? Ha!


  12. Plus the occasional ‘smokey joe’ – I remember Mad Bert being so out of it that he ran leaping into the bath fully clothed, before re- emerging covered in shaving foam – he wasn’t called ‘Mad’ Bert for nothing…..

  13. Lovely stories of ‘Bert’ (Chris Burton?). I knew him only a little and only went there a couple of times a bit later than this, but his collection (and collecting reputation) was formidable. I do remember those early Judy Collins albums – Martin Richman bought them.

    Those were the days of the gradual but continual changes – for example from the wonderful Mod/Action/Soul Motown days – indeed just prior to Mighty Baby the Action themselves started covering stuff by bands like the Byrds. Back then, everything changed so rapidly, these days it seems that in some respects at least Mod has become uniform and fixed, so it looks like Mod but misses the essential spirit of invention and imagination

    • Plus (replying to myself) there was John Peel on ‘Big L’. I have a CD of his last show which ran five hours in August 1967 and boy was there some stuff on that: J Airplane, Tim Buckley, Misunderstood, Velvet U/gd, Big Bother & HC, CJ & the Fish, Moby Grape, the Captain, the Dead, the Mothers, Blues Project, Zodiac, John’s Children etc

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