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Leonard Cohen

We did not get a chance to see Leonard Cohen live, but I have listened to him for a long time. I bought Songs of Leonard Cohen a couple of years after it was released.

One of the songs on the album was Sisters of Mercy, which Cohen wrote here in Edmonton. As he told the story, he sat in his hotel room, looking out the window, and below he saw nuns walking to and from their convent. He determined they belonged to the Sisters of Mercy and wrote this song.

Leonard Cohen also wrote Hallelujah. My favourite version is by kd lang, another Canadian artist. We have many songs from various stages of her career.

Kathy and I have attended concerts by kd lang (another great Canadian artist) and her version is spell-binding. She has a pure voice and sings with so much power I have goose bumps.

About ivonprefontaine

I completed a PhD at Gonzaga University in Spokane, WA. Previously, I taught for 20 years and taught for 15 years in a wonderful hybrid school. My dissertation topic and research were how certain teachers experience becoming who teachers. In teaching and leanring, I am a boundary-crosser who understands moving ahead is a leap of faith. Teaching is a calling and vocation to express who I am as a person. Currently, I am waiting and listening to what calls me next. I am an educator, phenomenologist, scholar, boundary-crosser, published poet, author, parent, grandparent, and spouse.

25 responses »

  1. Love KD. She’s fantastic and I also like her version best. 🙂 I’v been listening to her for ages. Amazing voice.

  2. KD Lang brings feeling into the 21st century. Moves me in an unencumbered way. Thank you Ivon for sharing both wonderful artists and poets. 🙏

  3. I hadn’t heard the Leonard Cohen song you’ve highlighted, Ivon – easy listening and mellow.
    As for KD Lang: What a remarkable rendition of this beautiful melody/song. Her breath control must be amongst the best in the world… An absolute delight.

    • I think the album it was on was published in 1968 and was his first as he transitioned from being a poet to sharing his lyrics musically. His early voice was rich.

      kd is a favourite of mine and has been for years as she transitioned from channeling Patsy Cline (her words), to jazz, and back to torch and twang country. I have seen her live several times over the years and she is a wonderful live performer.

  4. KD is terrific. I was lucky enough to see Leonard perform live a few years ago. One of my favorite concerts. Cheers!

    • I spoke to someone who saw Leonard live and they made similar comments. They said he interacted so well with the audience.

      kd is a great performer and has a different audience here, in Edmonton her hometown. than other places. I have seen her in both settings.

  5. Beautiful songs, and beautiful artists both. I was so lucky to see Cohen live twice – once in Victoria in about 92 when “The Future” came out, and then much later about 2012 in Vancouver … Fran and myself were there. He gave it his all for at least 3 hours, and I can only describe it as a religious experience. Apparently it took him a few years to write Hallelugh, unsure on which verses to include and always changing them. If you listen to Cohen’s recorded version compared KD Langs, they sing different verses. His book “Stranger Music” includes all 7 verses. I didn’t know the history behind the Sisters of Mercy. So many amazing songs by Cohen… indeed, music as prayer.

  6. Hallelujah is one of my favorite songs. I hadn’t heard KD Lang’s version before. Thank you for sharing, I really like it.

  7. Pingback: Leonard Cohen – muddled musings of a mangled mind

  8. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

  9. K d lang was my favorite rendition of this great, timeless piece, until I heard Pentatonix do it!!!


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