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Leonard Cohen RIP: the song with Jennifer Warnes that will always be with me

Not an obituary - just a short, quick tribute ...

Very sad to hear of the death, albeit at 82, of Leonard Cohen.

Many of his songs made an impact on me, though I have never been a great fan of Hallelujah, less because of the song than because of what it has been turned into. Give me One of Us Must Know, Suzanne, So Long Marianne and Famous Blue Raincoat among many others.

But above all, I think this morning of Maid of Orleans and his super, haunting duet with Jennifer Warnes.

I learnt of his death from the Facebook page of another singer, Linda Thompson, who recalls fond memories of having tea with Leonard at his house. "He was so gracious, so welcoming," she wrote. "My condolences and love to his daughter Lorca, son Adam, and the grandkids."

Another of Linda's Facebook friends spoke regret of one of life's wasted opportunities; he'd given her his address as they smoked outside a small club where he was playing back in the 1970s and she hadn't taken up the obvious invitation.

I have no first-hand anecdotes beyond having strummed accompaniment to my friend Phil Steele's viable version of The Story of Isaac at a folk club in North Yorkshire decades ago. But I did always appreciate his work.

RIP a master poet and songmaker of contemporary folk.


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