Skip to content

rock nyc’s Tenth Year Anniversary Celebration: Leonard Cohen by the numbers last night at radio City Music Hall

Leonard Cohen, 2009


(Controversy arrives at rock nyc’s doorsteps, as we post the only pan of Leonard Cohen’s last act! It got picked up by a Leonard Cohen Forum who nearly killed the wee little website after I added insult to injury by calling him a tenor. This was the first truly HUGE story we had, and as we got 100s of comments it gave me the mistaken impression I might be onto something here here -IL

Earlier this year I went to see Van Morrison perform “Astral Weeks” twice, once at MSG and once and four days later at the Beacon. The MSG set was excellent, glad to have seen it. The Beacon Theater was electrifying -mid way through the second set Morrison took off and everybody knew it, the band, us, him: he had reached that place even the greats don’t always get to (Funnily enough I saw Maroon 5 do the same thing a coupla years ago so it can happen to any one).

But it is tough to do when you have bleed all improvisation from your set. Even if you’re one of the master as Leonard Cohen certainly is.

This is New York, Cohen. Don’t tell the same jokes that are all over “Live In London”. Don’t throw “New York” in the middle of “Hallelujiah” (and don’t kill the rhymes -you wrote em, sing em). Don’t wait for the applause when you sing “First We’ll Take Manhattan”…. in a word, don’t go on automatic, we’re NYC, we know when you’re faking it.

Having said that, if you’re gonna see a guy not bringing his “A” game, this is the guy to see. The material is for the most part sheer brilliance and while it’s true he has always had a tenor voice this cracked tenor voice is not the same as the recorded voice and in many ways it suits the songs much better; the band is great; the back up singers brilliant and he is as charming as an aging roue can possibly be.

The three hour set is long, the songs are all too long, and the intermission interminable.

But with all those caveats Leonard Cohen is (Canada’s) national treasure and if you get the chance….

Plus I dissed the “Live In London” awhile ago and i take it back entirely. It’s a very, very good live album and I recommend it.

Leave a Comment


Support Let Me Help Inc by shopping at

Irradiance at the Pyramids: Daisy Jopling and Wust El Balad Along With Friends In Kundalini, Friday, November 4th, Reviewed

By Iman Lababedi | March 23, 2023 |

Daisy converted the Pyramids

Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – September 1985 (Volume 17, Number 4)

By Steve Crawford | March 23, 2023 |

Rock ‘n’ roll is dead. We’re just dancin’ on its grave

Brief Encounters: New Album Releases 3-17-23 – 3-23-22

By Iman Lababedi | March 23, 2023 |

a coming of age for modern Arabic pop and not Arabic Sahara garage

Back in 2009 We Went To The Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame Museum New York Annex Here Is Our Report (Before Its Abrupt Closure!!)

By Iman Lababedi | March 23, 2023 |

kids picking out songs on guitars and discovering they too can do it

Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – August 1985 (Volume 17, Number 3)

By Steve Crawford | March 22, 2023 |

squirming around on her back like she’d just received a double dose of injectable pig wormer

Money, Money, Money: Buying Tickets In 2023

By Iman Lababedi | March 22, 2023 |

one of the worst endings to a major concert

Sharon Van Etten At The Troubadour, Sunday March 19th 2023

By Alyson Camus | March 22, 2023 |

“I always dreamed of playing the Troubadour”

Single by Single review Of Paul McCartney’s The 7″Singles Box Reviewed

By Iman Lababedi | March 21, 2023 |

a master of melody and less so a master of genre

Creem – America’s Only Rock ‘n’ Roll Magazine, Reviewed Issue By Issue – July 1985 (Volume 17, Number 2)

By Steve Crawford | March 21, 2023 |

Bill Holdship’s piece on Prince is excellent

Daisy Jopling And A Night At The Pyramids… In New York: THIS SATURDAY…

By admin | March 21, 2023 |

a recreation

Scroll To Top