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Leonard Cohen

Date de naissance: 21. septembre 1934
Date de décès: 7. novembre 2016

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Leonard Cohen, né le 21 septembre 1934 à Westmount, Montréal et mort le 7 novembre 2016,, à Los Angeles , est un auteur-compositeur-interprète, musicien, poète, romancier et peintre canadien.

Son premier recueil de poésies paraît à Montréal en 1956 et son premier roman en 1963.

Les premières chansons de Leonard Cohen sont ancrées dans la musique folk, et chantées avec une voix grave. Dans les années 1970, ses influences se multiplient : musique pop, de cabaret et du monde. Depuis les années 1980, il chante accompagné de synthétiseurs et de choristes.

Dans tous ses travaux, Leonard Cohen reprend souvent les mêmes thèmes : l'amour-passion, la religion, la solitude, la sexualité et la complexité des relations interpersonnelles. Leonard Cohen assume sa dépression chronique depuis longtemps et ne se l'est jamais cachée ni ne l'a jamais cachée, allant jusqu'à en parler aux journalistes rassemblés à l'occasion de la conférence de presse sur son album Old Ideas.

La poésie et les chansons de Leonard Cohen ont influencé de nombreux auteurs-compositeurs-interprètes et on compte plus de 1 500 reprises de ses chansons. Cohen est introduit au Panthéon de la musique canadienne en 1991, au Panthéon des Auteurs et Compositeurs canadiens en 2006, au Rock and Roll Hall of Fame en 2008. Il est un Compagnon de l'Ordre du Canada depuis 2003 et Grand Officier de l'Ordre national du Québec depuis 2008, les plus hautes distinctions décernées respectivement par le gouvernement du Canada et le gouvernement du Québec.

Son œuvre poétique a été récompensée par le Prix Prince des Asturies des Lettres 2011.

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Citations Leonard Cohen

„O you've seen that man before
his golden arm dispatching cards
but now it's rusted from the elbow to the finger“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: O you've seen that man before his golden arm dispatching cards but now it's rusted from the elbow to the finger And he wants to trade the game he plays for shelter "The Stranger Song" Alludes to the dealer in Nelson Algren's 1949 novel The Man with the Golden Arm.

„I am so often accused of gloominess and melancholy. And I think I'm probably the most cheerful man around. I don't consider myself a pessimist at all. I think of a pessimist as someone who is waiting for it to rain. And I feel completely soaked to the skin.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: I am so often accused of gloominess and melancholy. And I think I'm probably the most cheerful man around. I don't consider myself a pessimist at all. I think of a pessimist as someone who is waiting for it to rain. And I feel completely soaked to the skin. … I think those descriptions of me are quite inappropriate to the gravity of the predicament that faces us all. I've always been free from hope. It's never been one of my great solaces. I feel that more and more we're invited to make ourselves strong and cheerful..... I think that it was Ben Jonson who said, I have studied all the theologies and all the philosophies, but cheerfulness keeps breaking through. As quoted in "The Joking Troubadour of Gloom" in The Daily Telegraph (26 April 1993) http://www.webheights.net/speakingcohen/feb93.htm

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„I was tumbled up with them
In formless circumstance.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: All busy in the sunlight The flecks did float and dance, And I was tumbled up with them In formless circumstance. "Love Itself"

„Although only one man may be receiving the favors of a woman, all men in her presence are warmed.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: Although only one man may be receiving the favors of a woman, all men in her presence are warmed. That's the great Generosity of women and the great generosity of the Creator who worked it out is that there are no unilateral agreements on sexuality. Spoken in "Ladies and Gentlemen, Leonard Cohen" (1965)

„It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love. Contact with this energy results in the exercise of a kind of balance in the chaos of existence. A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory. He rides the drifts like an escaped ski. His course is the caress of the hill. His track is a drawing of the snow in a moment of its particular arrangement with wind and rock. Something in him so loves the world that he gives himself to the laws of gravity and chance. Far from flying with the angels, he traces with the fidelity of a seismograph needle the state of the solid bloody landscape. His house is dangerous and finite, but he is at home in the world. He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love. Beautiful Losers (1966)

„You who build these altars now
to sacrifice these children,
you must not do it anymore.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: You who build these altars now to sacrifice these children, you must not do it anymore. A scheme is not a vision and you never have been tempted by a demon or a god. "Story of Isaac"

„When it all comes down to dust I will kill you if I must, I will help you if I can.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: When it all comes down to dust I will kill you if I must, I will help you if I can. When it all comes down to dust I will help you if I must, I will kill you if I can. "Story of Isaac"

„I don't know which side is anybody on any more. I don't really care. There is a moment when we have to transcend the side we're on and understand that we are creatures of a higher order.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: I don't know which side is anybody on any more. I don't really care. There is a moment when we have to transcend the side we're on and understand that we are creatures of a higher order. That doesn't mean that I don't wish you courage in your struggle. There is on both sides of the struggle men of good will. That is important to remember. On both sides of the struggle, some struggling for freedom, some struggling for safety and solemn testimony of that unbroken faith which binds generations one to another I sing this song, "If It Be Your Will" Introducing "If It Be Your Will"

„And you won't make me jealous if I hear that they sweetened your night:
We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: When I left they were sleeping, I hope you run into them soon. Don't turn on the lights, you can read their address by the moon. And you won't make me jealous if I hear that they sweetened your night: We weren't lovers like that and besides it would still be all right. "Sisters of Mercy"

„What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: What is a saint? A saint is someone who has achieved a remote human possibility. It is impossible to say what that possibility is. I think it has something to do with the energy of love. Contact with this energy results in the exercise of a kind of balance in the chaos of existence. A saint does not dissolve the chaos; if he did the world would have changed long ago. I do not think that a saint dissolves the chaos even for himself, for there is something arrogant and warlike in the notion of a man setting the universe in order. It is a kind of balance that is his glory. He rides the drifts like an escaped ski. His course is the caress of the hill. His track is a drawing of the snow in a moment of its particular arrangement with wind and rock. Something in him so loves the world that he gives himself to the laws of gravity and chance. Far from flying with the angels, he traces with the fidelity of a seismograph needle the state of the solid bloody landscape. His house is dangerous and finite, but he is at home in the world. He can love the shape of human beings, the fine and twisted shapes of the heart. It is good to have among us such men, such balancing monsters of love. Beautiful Losers (1966)

„I'm crazy for love but
I'm not coming on.
I'm just paying my rent everyday
In the Tower Of Song.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: My friends are gone and My hair is grey. I ache in the places where I used to play. And I'm crazy for love but I'm not coming on. I'm just paying my rent everyday In the Tower Of Song. "Tower Of Song"

„Goodbye old friend. Endless love, see you down the road.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: Well Marianne it's come to this time when we are really so old and our bodies are falling apart and I think I will follow you very soon. Know that I am so close behind you that if you stretch out your hand, I think you can reach mine. … And you know that I've always loved you for your beauty and your wisdom, but I don't need to say anything more about that because you know all about that. But now, I just want to wish you a very good journey. Goodbye old friend. Endless love, see you down the road. "Leonard Cohen Penned Letter to 'So Long, Marianne' Muse Before Her Death" by Daniel Kreps, in Rolling Stone (7 August 2016) http://www.rollingstone.com/music/news/leonard-cohen-pens-final-letter-to-so-long-marianne-muse-w433144

„But let's not talk of love or chains and things we can't untie,
your eyes are soft with sorrow,
Hey, that's no way to say goodbye.“

—  Leonard Cohen
Context: I loved you in the morning, our kisses deep and warm, Your hair upon the pillow like a sleepy golden storm, Yes many loved before us, I know that we are not new, In city and in forest they smiled like me and you, But let's not talk of love or chains and things we can't untie, your eyes are soft with sorrow, Hey, that's no way to say goodbye. "Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye" · Duet with Judy Collins on Soundstage (January 1976) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IVJImYNGqwk

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