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Songs Of

4.8 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews

Price: CDN$ 31.44
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58th Annual GRAMMY Awards
Discover this year's nominees on CD and Vinyl, including Album of the Year, Artist of the Year, Best New Artist of the Year, and more. Learn more


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Product Details

  • Audio CD (Jan. 1 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Label: Sony Music Canada Inc.
  • ASIN: B0000024TT
  • Other Editions: Audio CD  |  Audio Cassette  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars 45 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #194,884 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)
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1. Suzanne
2. Master Song
3. Winter Lady
4. The Stranger Song
5. Sisters Of Mercy
6. So Long, Marianne
7. Hey, That's No Way To Say Goodbye
8. Stories Of The Street
9. Teachers
10. One Of Us Cannot Be Wrong

Product Description

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Already established as a poet and novelist by the time of his 1968 debut, Leonard Cohen also proved himself to be a remarkable songwriter, if an acquired taste as a singer. The slow, dirge-like pace of many of the pieces only serves to highlight the lyrics, and the literate words of "Suzanne," "Sisters of Mercy," "Master Song," and others have withstood critical scrutiny for three decades. Relationships, and their aftermath, are the preoccupations of a record that has justifiably achieved classic status and influenced any number of performers, from Nick Cave to Tom Waits. John Simon's orchestrations help frame the pieces with loving, mournful strings. In its era, when music was electric and vibrant, it sounded completely out of step. But the passage of years has proved that, more than anything, Songs of Leonard Cohen is timeless. --Chris Nickson


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on April 13 2010
Format: LP Record
This is the legendary debut. The lilting poetry of Suzanne lures the listener into Cohen's world of spiritual and romantic yearning while introducing the essence of his sound: a deep monotone framed by sublime female backing vocals over simple but engaging melodies.

Master Song, Winter Lady and Stranger Song reinforce the desolate landscape although the melodies are less immediate. Cohen's genius shines brightly on the immortal Sisters Of Mercy, a strange mixture of the devotional and the sensual that must be one of the most beautiful musical poems in the English language.

This delicate gem is followed by the powerful and evocative So Long Marianne and the understated Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye, both masterpieces of words, melody and arrangement - the female vocals on Goodbye are especially impressive.

Stories of the Street appears as a poem in one of Cohen's 1960s poetry books: Selected Poems 1956-1968 and deals with a visit to Havana during or just after the revolution. Interesting fact: The line "some girls wander by mistake" from Teachers was later used as an album title by the goth band Sisters Of Mercy: Some Girls Wander By Mistake

One Us Cannot Be Wrong addresses the beloved in a series of strange images before moving on to melodic whistling and ending with bitter shouted la la lahs. For those interested in other artists' take on Cohen: Suzanne has been beautifully covered by inter alia Judy Collins
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By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on May 15 2007
Format: Audio CD
Cohen's timeless debut has been enhanced by the addition of 2 extra tracks. The lilting poetry of Suzanne lures the listener into his world of romantic despair while introducing the essence of his sound: a deep monotone framed by sublime female backing vocals over simple but engaging melodies.

Master Song, Winter Lady and Stranger Song reinforce the desolate landscape although the melodies are less immediate. Cohen's genius shines brightly on the immortal Sisters Of Mercy, a strange mixture of the spiritual and the sensual that must be one of the most beautiful musical poems in the English language.

This delicate gem is followed by the powerful and evocative So Long Marianne and the understated Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye, both masterpieces of words, melody and arrangement - the female vocals on Goodbye is especially impressive.

Stories of the Street appears as a poem in one of Cohen's 1960s poetry books: Selected Poems 1956-1968 and deals with a visit to Havana during of just after the revolution. Interesting fact: The line "some girls wander by mistake" from Teachers was later used as an album title by the goth band Sisters Of Mercy.

One Us Cannot Be Wrong addresses the beloved in a series of strange images before moving on to melodic whistling and ending with bitter shouted la la lahs. For those interested in other artists' take on Cohen: Suzanne has been beautifully covered by inter alia Judy Collins and Geoffrey Oryema, while Sting and the Chieftains' celtic version of Sisters Of Mercy is available on the Tower of Song: The Songs of Leonard Cohen tribute album.
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By Peter Uys HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on Oct. 22 2006
Format: Audio CD
The lilting poetry of Suzanne lures the listener into Leonard Cohen's world of romantic despair while introducing the essence of his sound: a deep monotone voice framed by sublime female backing vocals over simple but engaging melodies.

Master Song, Winter Lady and Stranger Song reinforce the desolate landscape although the melodies are less immediate. Cohen's genius shines brightly on the immortal Sisters Of Mercy, a strange mixture of the spiritual and the sensual that must be one of the most beautiful song-poems in the English language.

This delicate gem is followed by the poignant and evocative So Long Marianne and the understated Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye, both masterpieces of words, melody and arrangement - the female vocals on Goodbye is especially impressive. The music sounds as if it is divinely inspired.

I also recommend Democracy: Judy Collins Sings Leonard Cohen, to enjoy her beautiful interpretations of Suzanne, Sisters Of Mercy and Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye. She was the first to cover his songs. Famous Blue Raincoat by Jennifer Warnes is another sublime tribute album.
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Format: Audio CD
The first album of Leonard Cohen is his best. Moody, mysterious, dark, romantic, and spooky. Yes, spooky. Songs of Leonard Cohen are all of these and more. His deep nasal voice mixed with John Simon's light soundscapes is timeless. This is truly a classic recording that should be owned by any fan of music. This is not simply folk music. It is excellent poetry, beautifully arranged instrumentation, and simply haunting music.
What really draws me into Cohen's music is the way he uses biblical imagery to tell interesting stories. "Just some Joseph looking for a manger...", "And Jesus was a sailor when he walked upon the water..." As a Christian, I found this very intriguing, especially how his songs may or may not have anything to do with these references at all.
I have listened to other Cohen recordings, but this is Leonard in his purest form. This is not music to work out to, but if you are in the mood to relax or listen to something light that makes you think, this would be one of the top ten albums in that category.
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