Leonard Cohen Returns, And This Time It’s Personal

Lucas Jensen | January 14, 2009 11:00 am

In news that only the hardest-hearted among us (ahem, Superineficaz) will be grumpy about, Canadian songwriter and former Buddhist monk Leonard Cohen will play his first United States show in 15 years at New York’s Beacon Theater on Feb. 19. That place has a capacity of 2,800, and I’m making the ballsiest prediction of my life here: it’s gonna be a sellout. Tickets go on sale this Friday. But there’s a dark side to all of this.

Cohen didn’t just get the touring bug and decide to hit the road again. Nope. He was bilked out of $5 million by former lover and manager Kelley Lynch, who sounds like the kind of succubus that might turn up in a Leonard Cohen song. He won a $9.5 million settlement against her, and, surprise!, he’s had trouble collecting on that debt.

In college, we used to while away the hours making up fake Leonard Cohen stories based on the awesome stories he wrote in the liner notes of his Best Of…: “I am in the wrong. I am with the wrong woman.”

“It was a muggy Wednesday, as Wednesdays usually are. She sat next to me in a Sudanese flophouse, scraping the mud, blonde hair, and blood from her boots. Mascara ran a river down her face. Last night was a blur, but Tuesday nights usually are.”

It’s fun and easy! My friend, gorjus, of PrettyFakes.com, made a comic strip called “Ask Leonard Cohen” that still makes me laugh, years later.Leonard Cohen to play first U.S. show in 15 years [Reuters]