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The Necessity Of Knowing Leonard Cohen (And Bob Dylan)

18/11/2016 11:13
Luke MacGregor / Reuters

Music has a long history and it is not only good to know it, but also educative. Even some parts of it. People have so many things to do nowadays that their occupations are warding them off from anything else. If humans could spare some time to know history then this would propel their lives and therefore society forward. Leonard Cohen had important contributions to history of music as a singer and a songwriter.

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Photo Credit: Snapshot from Leonard Cohen's Famous Blue Raincoat (Leonard Cohen Vevo)

However, the majority of modern people don't acknowledge that, because they tend to follow contemporary artists. Fortunately, there are still those that like to research in depth music's masterpieces. Leonard Cohen has offered many of them, but, for the majority of youth, his work is unfathomable. It's good to adore Coldplay, Sia or Lady Gaga, yet at the same time humans have to discern how music was at the beginning and how it has evolved, regardless from how many years have passed since then. They must not be disinclined for it.

Leonard Cohen died just a few weeks after the news that Bob Dylan was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature. As both shared the title "songwriter," Leonard Cohen could have been in Bob Dylan's place. If Bob Dylan deserves the Nobel, then Leonard Cohen deserved it too. Their style is similar and their merit had been blossomed the same years, since the decade of 50s. Besides, the group of singers they represent had nothing highfalutin, which is a phenomenon of the 21st Century.

Leonard Cohen and Bob Dylan have inspired the new generations and inculcated their ideas to youngsters of their times. Their heritage and realm are priceless and have cultivated important values for the society so long as there are people who can take advantage of these values. If the Nobel Prize of Literature 2016 was decided right now by me, I would award it to both of them, in order to revere the music of past times as a whole and bring it to the limelight. I sense that Bob Dylan might devote his win to Leonard Cohen.

Despite the fact that death is a sad incident, it is powerful too. Its power influenced me, and I guess many other people, to get to know Leonard Cohen better. This enriched my knowledge in music, and hence in culture. I believe that what all people should do is to search for the history of any field of life they might be engaged in and be conscientious about it. In the era we live in, this seems to be a necessity. History teaches us how to go forwards in the right way. Death's one positive characteristic is that prompts us to remember and explore the past and that is what I did with Leonard Cohen.

Having been born in the late 80s, I didn't quite know who Leonard Cohen was. Learning about his death I was inherently abetted to search about him on the internet. I found out that I was aware of just two songs of his abundant collection (Hallelujah and Dance Me to the End of Love) and I felt empty. I might have listened to other songs of his as well, accidentally though. So I probably couldn't realize it at that time. Now, I know tens of Leonard Cohen songs and I am prouder of myself than I was before, plus more fulfilled and invigorated as a person.

His songs that I learned after his death (First We Take Manhattan, Democracy, So Long Marianne, Closing Time, In My Secret Life, Because Of, Famous Blue Raincoat, Come Healing) touched my heart and made me admire him. Leonard Cohen has a sensitiveness in his voice, something which stems from the fact that his voice is bass. His songs conceal a melancholy. His poetry is a thesaurus. Leonard Cohen is a thesaurus himself, available for every person to discover so long as this person has the map, the map in his soul. These people, with restless spirit, have to coalesce in order the great ones to be enlivened and greatness to be multiplied.

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