Sunday, August 22, 2010

李歐納·柯恩: 我們先佔領曼克頓 / Leonard Cohen: First we take Manhattan

This article is dedicated to a great Canadian writer and musician, Leonard Cohen. I would also like to share with you one of his great songs "First We Take Manhattan"

Wikipedia: "... 李歐納·柯恩(1934年9月21日-),生於魁北克蒙特利爾西峰(Westmount),是加拿大一位著名詩人、小說家、創作歌手。1956年,柯恩於蒙特利爾發行了他的第一本詩集,並於1963年發行了第一本小說。他的作品經常描寫對宗教的探討、孤獨、性以及人與人之間複雜的關係。

柯恩最早的歌曲(大多收錄於1967年的專輯《李歐納·柯恩的歌》中)深受歐洲民謠的影響。1970年代,柯恩的音樂融入了流行、歌舞、世界音樂的元素。1980年代,柯恩的聲音由較高亢的男中音轉變至男中低音、男低音等較低沉的音域,歌曲並加入了電子合成器及女背景合音作為伴奏。

柯恩的歌是許多歌手爭相翻唱的作品,他並獲選成為加拿大音樂名人堂以及加拿大創作名人堂的成員,同時也獲頒國際平民最高榮譽「加拿大勳章」。2008年3月10日,柯恩獲選進入美國搖滾名人堂時,盧·里德形容柯恩是「最崇高、最具影響力的創作人」。..."

FWTM: "... First We Take Mahattan, a song written by Leonard Cohen, was originally recorded by Jennifer Warnes on her 1987 album Famous Blue Raincoat, which consisted entirely of songs written or co-written by Cohen ... The song refers to the "naivety and narcissism" of the West German Red Army Faction, "...designer terrorism by celebrity terrorists, as much about radical chic as about real politics." ... Leonard Cohen's own quasi-synthpop version of the song (with additional verses) was released in 1988 as the first track on his album I'm Your Man. Cohen's then girlfriend, Dominique Isserman, shot a black and white promotional video for Cohen's version of "First We Take Manhattan". On his 1988 tour, instead of the original, Euro-disco-influenced arrangement of both his and Warnes' studio versions, Cohen introduced the new, funk-influenced arrangement, suggested by his backing singers Perla Batalla and Julie Christensen. He continued to perform song this way in 1993, 2008 and 2009 tours. Cohen's studio recording plays over the closing credits of the 2009 film Watchmen..."




(If you like better sound quality, please click the YouTube audio recording below)



Lyrics to Leonard Cohen's "First We Take Manhattan" (LP Version) / R.E.M.
Christmas Single 1998 (1998)


They sentenced me to twenty years of boredom
For trying to change the system from within
I'm coming now I'm coming to reward them
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I'm guided by a signal in the heavens
I'm guided by this birthmark on my skin
I'm guided by the beauty of our weapons
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I'd really like to live beside you, baby
I love your body and your spirit and your clothes
But you see that line there moving through the station
I told you I told you told you I was one of those

You loved me as a loser but now you worry that I just might win
You know the way to stop me but you don't have the discipline
How many nights I prayed for this: to let my work begin
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I don't like your fashion business, mister
I don't like these drugs that keep you thin
I don't like what happened to my sister
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

I'd really like to live beside you, baby
I love your body and your spirit and your clothes
But you see that line there moving through the station
I told you I told you told you I was one of those

And I thank you for those items that you sent me
The monkey and the plywood violin
I practiced every night now I'm ready
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

Remember me, I used to live for music
Remember me, I brought your groceries in
Well, it's Father's Day and everybody's wounded
First we take Manhattan, then we take Berlin

References:
* 維基百科: 李歐納·柯恩
* Wikipedia: First We Take Manhattan

2 comments:

wordwordword said...

Recently I am listening to his Live in London 2008 EVERYDAY!!!

He is touring in Europe now. His first stop was in fact in Sweden. I was literally grinding my teeth on the evening of Aug 12 when Leonard Cohen was playing in Gothenburg my town. How could i miss that.... sigh!

周游

Haricot 微豆 said...

周游:

Sorry to hear you missed Leonard Cohen's performance in Gothenburg !! I hope you will be able to watch his live performance some day.

ps: I "chased" Bob Dylan to Europe and watched him for the first time in Rome!!

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