Leonard Cohen is the MAN!

Discussion in 'Other Music archive (read-only)' started by Sal Kramer, Mar 21, 2013.

  1. Sal Kramer

    Sal Kramer Member

    May 7, 2006
    Leonard Cohen played a show in Tampa the other night. The man is 78 years old, and performed a three and a half hour show! This is part of a 31 date tour. No postponements, cancellations or drama on the tour either. Amazing!!! :thumb:
  2. BrummieBoy

    BrummieBoy BrummieBoy

    Jul 23, 2012
    Leonard Cohen is not the "MAN", neither is Morrissey. But both are in bed with "The Man".


    A thoughtful and engaging review, which helps mitigate some of the disappointment I feel about having to 'let Leonard go' after all these years.

    From the overt corporate horror of AEG's agenda becoming visible at The 02 Arena in '08, to his "silent one" over events at Mount Baldy, to Hop Farm, to the 're-scheduling' of Verona, Leeds and London: enough is finally enough. Whilst my box seats at the Royal Albert Hall in 2008 were part of a night so sublime that I stopped going to concerts for the next 4 years to avoid having to compare other dross with that 'peak experience': the cognitive dissonance of compartmentalising how I feel about his music from how I feel about the rapacious greed of his corporate sponsors can no longer be held in balance.

    Like Morrissey, but for different reasons, I find myself trying to deny or minimise the evidence of cult thinking, cult behaviour, and sometimes covert or overt contempt for The Audience. The 'fans' who infest these entertainers are not to blame: they are suffering from a mass mental delusion of 'fame', but so are the 'stars' who enable this disorder. I have experienced some of my most rewarding mental and emotional states through Leonard and Morrissey ,and Sparklehorse's Mark Linkous who, like Cobain, 'betrayed' me by self-murder. R.I.P. They are the only artist/entertainers/capitalist music entrepreneurs I have ever travelled the country for (and Prodijig, but that's Dance).

    It's time to soberly reflect on how the Boomers destroyed Music Recording and Live Performance, whether by being co-conspirators with Big Music or Big Live Event corporations. I see greed, laziness, and a sloppy entitlement agenda informed by both shrill accountants and an entirely redundant ideology of The Outsider, parlayed ruthlessly for profit. It's very difficult to have a 'conversation' online about any of these 'entertainers' as their myrmidons immediately rise in angry delusion to defend the indefensible, as some sort of self-appointed Praetorian Guard for the Caesars of pop culture.

    When "The Telegraph" compares a Leonard Cohen concert to visiting the Sistine Chapel, I am moved both by the inappropriateness of the comparison given Cohen is a Buddhist/Jewish/Agnostic, whatevs. I am revulsed by the smug, consumerised cultural tourism agenda which informs the risible analogy and I am forced to conclude that this 'return' has indeed been motivated as much by Money as Art, if not more. It's not acceptable for these entertainers to contract out the ethical dilemmas of ticket prices, corporate greed over parking, refreshment and ablution facilities, re-schedulings and cancellations, the entire P.R banalities of 'fan' sites and 'fan' journalist sham 'interviews'.

    This whole panoply of exploitation needs to be called out for what it is: A Cult. A cult of exhausted Boomer and pseudo Punk/Post-Punk 'rebel yell' memes which are nothing more than an endless ker-ching of the till. I know that Leonard is a delightful, gracious person as surely as I know Morrissey is an insufferably rude bore by default. They both, like all the other 'stars' enable and sustain an utterly vile hierarchical model of The Stage over The Audience, The Star over The Fan, The Corporation over The Community. Prince is challenging with his Jehovah-dom and his bizarre, pointless funk jams which he imagines every 'fan' should pay attention to, rather than LOL!-fest if they are ever unfortunate enough to be exposed to any more of that crap, but he only charged £31.21 for his O2 arena residency, and didn't trash the shows with noodling jams.

    Poor Michael Jackson, the ultimate 'Star' casualty destroyed himself by trying to compete with Prince for the upper echelons of Mount Olympus. The only people on my radar addressing all this are Grimes and The Knife. And The Knife's "Shaking The Habitual" certainly did raise and crystalise my thinking on all this even as they too allowed the sale of poor sight-line tickets at full face value. Just like people have complained about at LC in Leeds and elsewhere. I'm 'sharing' this widely, not to start an endless debate, as it's too upsetting for me, but to mark 'for Posterity' why I took my cue from Salinger, not any 'pop star' and why I have reluctantly concluded that it is not possible to begin cultivating an Audience ethically without destroying my physical health through touring, and my mental and emotional equilibrium through having to tolerate all this crap.

    For those disappointed by that decision, there's an enormous reservoir of cultural products to sustain us. Salinger's secret works will be presented. The last thing the world needs is another middle-aged 'pop genius', even though it would be amusing to arrive just as the party is winding down to be hailed as "Bigger than "Elvis Jackson Cohen Morrissey Madonna" and so on and so forth. I'd rather just listen to the real incandescent 'shooting stars' like Nick Drake, Allan Toussaint, and the entire constellations of utter beauty that is Tamla, Stax, "Northern Soul", "Irish Funk Soul Rebels" and the reggae explosion. I don't know if it's because they died, but I don't include Bob Marley or John Lennon in any of this gentle fulmination. Both are the real deal, with the tiresome attempt by 'Macca' to re-label compositions "McCartney-Lennon" the final insult that drove me away before the backing tape karaoke fiasco of the Olympic ceremony made me laugh so much I wet myself. Anyone reading this whose buttons are pressed, don't bother being upset. Enjoy yourself, it's later than you think.

    Thanks to all those corporate capitalist entertainers for some good stuff over the years, but as the 'factors of production' collapse with cheap home recording, and the live music experience is destroyed by 'pay to play', 'convenience charges' and £10 to park a car: it's time for me to box up all those CDs and give them to Oxfam, just like I gave 3000 books and DVDs away once I unravelled the scam of The Author and The Auteur.

    To Leonard, I would say a genuine "thank you" and "goodbye". To Morrissey, I would say "You're a bit of a prat". No doubt the myrmidons will censor this communique as from a 'troll' or as 'disrespectful', put it through the Grammar mincer, before trying to eradicate it from their shrine-sites and from their subconscious minds: all of which is pleasing to consider. But most who read it know that some, if not all of what I say is true, and that it's over: unless or until someone finds a way to chart an ethical path through this minefield. Jane Siberry and Sol Seppy point the way. Both appear to have consciously rejected the "star maker machinery behind the popular song". So have I. So has the arts-collective spanning from Birmingham to Dublin to Bristol to London, of which I am a part.

    I can't imagine why any serious Artist would tolerate or propagate the restrictions and delusionality of Fame. But then, I'm not an Artist and would never agree to any such designation. I'm just another BrummieBoy who walked away from 'the greatest show on earth'. Last night. And other nights. And finally, I think I'm free of the memeplex of modern 'culture'.

    With every good wish.
    Yours, in Jubilo!
    Last edited: Sep 9, 2013
  3. CrystalGeezer

    CrystalGeezer My secret's my enzyme.

    Aug 10, 2007
    Azusa Adjacent
    Last edited by a moderator: May 15, 2016

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