It's hard to think of another artist who cares so little for or about pop music yet who has changed it, and influenced its practitioners, so profoundly as Leonard Cohen. One of the most original, compelling, and covered songwriters of the rock era, Leonard Cohen has slowly transitioned from a singer of elegantly spare folk dirges to a whisky-voiced smooth talker on elegantly spare electro-acoustic percolations. From the beginning, the smartly tailored Montreal native has seemed like an outsider and an elder statesman in the music world. A teenage flirtation with the beatnik jazz/folk scene led Cohen to a highly successful (but oddly forgotten) career as a countercultural poet and fiction writer. At the same time, singers started taking notice of Cohen's bohemian (but decidedly non-youth revolution) tunes and his most heralded composition, "Suzanne" was widely known before he even had a recording contract. In 1968, his striking debut album Songs of Leonard Cohen showcased "Suzanne" and nine other of his world-weary and bleak, yet highly romantic songs. The album wasn't a huge success but -- as with the Velvet Underground's debut record or Van Morrison's Astral Weeks -- a new cadre... See More
Leonard Cohen Concert Films
Live at Isle of Wright 1970
Runtime: 1 hr 4 minNearly 40 summers ago on August 31, 1970, 35-year-old Leonard Cohen was awakened at 2 a.m. from a nap in his trailer and brought onstage to perform with his band at the third annual Isle Of Wight music festival. The audience of 600,000 was in a fiery and frenzied mood, after turning the festival into a political arena, trampling the fences, setting fire to structures and equipment- and stoked by the most incendiary performance of Jimi Hendrix's career. As Cohen followed Hendrix's set, onlookers (and fellow festival headliners) Joan Baez, Kris Kristofferson, Judy Collins and others stood sidestage in awe as the Canadian Folk singer/songwriter and poet/novelist quietly tamed the crowd.
Live in Dublin
Runtime: 3 hr 26 minLeonard Cohen - Live in Dublin documents a peak performance from the musician's monumental sold out 2012-2013 world tour. Live in Dublin recreates the deep emotional connection that audiences felt so powerfully and critics universally praised with five star reviews during Cohen’s most recent tour.
Live in London
Runtime: 2 hr 37 minFor over four decades, Leonard Cohen has been one of the most important and influential songwriters of our time, a figure whose body of work achieves greater depths of mystery and meaning as time goes on. His songs have set a virtually unmatched standard in their seriousness and range. Sex, spirituality, religion, power - he has relentlessly examined the largest issues in human lives, always with a full appreciation of how elusive answers can be to the vexing questions he raises. But those questions, and the journey he has traveled in seeking to address them, are the ever-shifting substance of his work, as well as the reasons why his songs never lose their overwhelming emotional force. Documentaries, awards, tribute albums and the ongoing march of artists eager to record his songs all acknowledge the peerless contribution Cohen has made to what one of his titles aptly calls "The Tower of Song."
In 2008 Leonard Cohen embarked on his first tour in 15 years. Quickly recognized as musical folklore in the making, 29 of the original dates sold out almost immediately, leaving fans and critics alike hailing the show as a once in a lifetime experience. By popular demand, the Canadian/UK tour was extended and by the end of that year it had reached 84 markets worldwide, selling more than 700,000 tickets. The Live In London release fully captures and recreates the extraordinary show from that tour that earned Cohen more than 80 five-star reviews for his performances.
Songs from the Road
Runtime: 1 hr 12 minThis release presents live performances from celebrated songwriter Leonard Cohen culled from various stops on a 2008 world tour that saw him playing to his largest audiences in years.
Leonard Cohen Top Tracks
Live at Soundstage
Runtime: 56 minLucinda Williams is widely considered to be one of America's best singer/songwriters working today. An artist who completely defies categorization, her honest lyrics are often compared to fine poetry as she sings her narrative tales of Southern Gothic and heart-wrenching songs of love, heartbreak and desire. On this episode of Soundstage, Lucinda and her band perform favorites from her catalogue, as well as tunes from her newest album: World Without Tears.
Classic Album: Transformers
Runtime: 50 minThis episode of the CLASSIC ALBUMS series takes a track-by-track look at the making of the record with both Reed and his engineer Ken Scott poring over the original multi-tracks for the album. Additionally, there is archival footage of the Velvet Underground, an interview with the Eurythmics' Dave Stewart and a discussion with bassist Herbie Flowers about the origins of the famous bassline for "Walk on the Wild Side."
The Concert In Central Park
Simon & Garfunkel
Runtime: 1 hr 27 minWhat started as a suggestion for Paul Simon to play a concert in New York's Central Park blossomed, on September 19, 1981, as a full-blown Simon and Garfunkel reunion after an 11-year hiatus, and now proves a priceless snapshot of two of America's greatest folk-rock performers. (It's also the rightful bookend to Simon and Garfunkel's acoustic Live from New York City, 1967.)
Performed with a who's-who of East Coast session aces before a record-setting crowd of half a million fans, The Concert in Central Park finds its stars just shy of their 40th birthdays and very much in their primes, their voices sweet and pure and their playing relaxed, perfectly in tune and in synch. The show features a mix of S&G and solo Simon tunes, including all the songs that appear on the CD, with the addition of a reprise of "Late in the Evening" and the first live performance of Simon's "The Late Great Johnny Ace." This is classic material from start to finish, 87 minutes of unmitigated beauty.
A Woman of Heart and Mind
Runtime: 1 hr 32 minJoni Mitchell's career has been guided by an artistic integrity that i an example to all. Crossing musical boundaries with scorn, she has generated critical acclaim whichever route she chooses to follow. From bands like Crosby Stills Nash and Young covering her early work through to working with be-bop legend Charles Mingus, to her most recent and still as highly acclaimed work; 'Woman of Heart And Mind' documents the incredible achievements and influence that Joni Mitchel has had against all the odds in this ever more conformist world. With over 40 archive musical excerpts and interviews with collaborators including David Crosby, James Taylor and Herbie Hancock, plus archive and contemporary interviews with Joni herself, this documentary tells for the first time the full remarkable story of a performer and songwriter which clearly justifies her iconic status.
No Direction Home
Runtime: 5 hr 59 minHe is one of the most influential, inspiration and ground-breaking musicians of our time. Now, Academy Award™ winning director Martin Scorsese (Goodfellas, 1990) brings us the extraordinary story of Bob Dylan’s journey from his roots in Minnesota, to his early days in the coffee houses of Greenwich Village, to his tumultuous ascent to pop stardom in 1966. Joan Baez, Allen Ginsberg and others share their thoughts and feelings about the young singer who would change popular music forever. With never-before-seen footage, exclusive interviews, and rare concert performances, it’s the definitive portrait fans the world over have been anticipating for decades: the untold story of a living American legend. This anniversary edition contains previously unreleased interviews with the director, Liam Clancy and Dave Van Ronk as well the unedited Apothecary Scene from his historical 1966 tour of the U.K., never released until now.
How Sweet The Sound
Runtime: 1 hr 24 minThis film, Joan Baez How Sweet the Sound, examines Joan's history as a recording artist and performer as well as her remarkable journey as the conscience of a generation. Featuring interviews with David Crosby, Bob Dylan, Rev. Jesse Jackson, Roger McGuinn, and others, plus conversation between Joan and ex-husband David Harris. Archival material includes footage of Baez's visit to N. Vietnam, Martin Luther King Jr. outside a California prison, where he visited Joan, and never-before-seen film of Joan as a teenager performing at Club 47 in Cambridge. Extras include conversations with Baez & Dar Williams, Bill Fegan & Bishop Ernest, Vaclav Havel, and Steve Earle.
Under African Skies
Runtime: 2 hr 2 minUnder African Skies tells the story behind the incredible journey, history and evolution of Paul Simon’s Graceland, and explores the cultural and political climate of South Africa 25 years ago. The film follows Simon as he returns once again to South Africa, and remembers and reconnects with the people, places and music that inspired him many years ago. With the compelling perceptions of anti-apartheid activists and music legends such as Quincy Jones, Harry Belafonte, Sir Paul McCartney, and David Byrne, Under African Skies is both a buoyant chronicle of unparalleled artistic achievement and a profound rumination on the role of the artist in society.
Live In Hollywood
Runtime: 56 minMARIANNE FAITHFULL, one of the iconic figures of 1960s music, has sustained a successful and highly acclaimed career for 40 years. Her distinctive voice and passionate songwriting have ensured that her fan base has remained intensely loyal and that she has continued to attract new devotees. This concert was recorded in Hollywood in Spring 2005. It features tracks from her most recent album, 2004's Before The Poison, along with hits such as Ballad Of Lucy Jordan and As Tears Go By, and classic tracks like Sister Morphine and Broken English.
Behind Prison Walls
Runtime: 50 minThe late Man in Black headlines this 1976 televised concert, shot inside the Tennessee State Prison and featuring post-hippie chanteuse Linda Ronstadt, country picker Roy Clark, and, rather incongruously, tuxedo-ed comedian Foster Brooks, whose '70s drunk act was often funny on, say, Dean Martin's Celebrity Roast, but seems a little wrong for an audience of felons.
Ronstadt is surely appreciated for her short skirt and sweet pop-blues (her "Love Has No Pride" nears epic intensity), and Clark's showmanship works with kitsch like "Orange Blossom Special." But it's Cash's "Sunday Morning Coming Down," Folsom Prison Blues," and famously bloody "Boy Named Sue" that resonate most powerfully with his, uh, captive audience. There's a touch of condescension toward the prisoners in some stage patter and song choices: Sure, Ronstadt had a hit with "Desperado" at the time, but here it sounds like she's wagging her finger at the crowd.
2000 Days on Earth
Runtime: 1 hr 37 min20,000 Days On Earth is an inventive, lyrical ode to creativity and an intimate examination of the artistic process of musician and cultural icon Nick Cave. In their debut feature directors Iain Forsyth & Jane Pollard fuse drama and documentary, weaving a staged day in Cave’s life with never-before-seen verité observation of his creative cycle. It features those who have affected his life, including wry tales from the road shared with his regular collaborator, the multi-instrumentalist Warren Ellis; actor and friend Ray Winstone; and Kylie Minogue, who shared a duet with Cave in the breakout hit "Where the Wild Roses Grow." These voices from the past revisit Cave in daydream-like scenes as he sits behind the wheel driving through his adopted hometown of Brighton, England. Neither a music documentary nor a concert film, 20,000 Days On Earth still contains electrifying performances. Audiences see a song grow from the tiniest of ideas to an epic performance at Sydney Opera House. Cave also opens up to a psychoanalyst as he discusses how his early years continue to inform his work, and journeys through his memories via mementos from his personal archive. This category-defying film pushes the form into new territory, exploring universal themes about artistry, and celebrating the transformative power of the creative spirit.
Live at the Island 50 Festival
Runtime: 1 hr 11 minFor decades, his has been the voice that has carried us through the darkness. One of the most influential and successful singer-songwriters of the last 40 years, Yusuf has provided the perfect salve for a troubled worlda beautifully nuanced, warm voice shielding us against harsh, turbulent times bringing songs of truth and hope.
Runtime: 1 hr 30 minIn 1995, Bruce decided to invite the then-disbanded E Street Band back into the studio to record new songs for his upcoming Greatest Hits album. This documentary captures the recording sessions, the live video shoot for “Murder Incorporated,” and priceless insights into the band’s relationships with each other at the time.
Dream Of Life
Runtime: 1 hr 49 minEleven years in the making, Patti Smith: Dream of Life is a unique and intimate portrait of the renowned singer, songwriter, poet and activist. Patti Smith’s music, poetry, and politics are fearless, funny, raw, and original. A beautiful collage of images, memories and performances illuminate the complexities, and captures the essence, of this distinctive, legendary icon. The film follows Patti Smith’s punk-icon roots in the 70s through the trials of daily life and untimely deaths that have formed her life and art. Smith tells the story of her early days in New York City and the people that are dearest to her including her late husband Fred Sonic Smith, Allen Ginsburg, Robert Mapplethorpe, and others, her family, and the political causes for which she so deeply struggled.