Leonard Cohen will play the Chicago Theater next week for two sold out shows. This is the Canadian poet, novelist, and singer-songwriters first tour in 15 years. He also plans to tour major American and World cities including Paris, Berlin and Tel Aviv.
A serious bout of bad luck may have been responsible for Cohen’s decision to tour. Unknown to him, his former business manager stole and spent most of his life savings. While it’s a major bummer for Cohen, it’s pretty awesome for us. Impetus aside, I can’t wait to actually see this icon in the flesh.
Cohen published his first poetry works in 1956 and his first novel in 1963. In 1967 Cohen released his first album, Songs of Leonard Cohen, after a move to the US in order to pursue his songwriting and singing.
Cohen was inducted to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2008, with Lou Reed describing Cohen as the “highest and most influential echelon of songwriters.” His songs have been covered over 1000 times in different renditions. Jeff Buckley, REM, Pixies, Johnny Cash, Nick Cave and Willie Nelson have all recorded Cohen songs.
The show is said to be a collective of the artist’s stories and songs that span his career. The Decider had this to say about the show’s opening night in New York: “Cohen spent a lot of time singing on his knees, crouched down with his lanky shoulders drawn in and his hands holding the microphone with something like tranquil desperation; it wasn’t clear that Cohen even realized there were thousands of other people in the room with him … The whole show was a triumph for a kind of earned wisdom and slow, creeping staying-power that’s easy to forget the value of these days.”
He will be performing at the Chicago Theater on May 4 and May 5.