Concert to honour singer Leonard Cohen was one of his dying wishes, says son


A concert to mark the first anniversary of singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen's death will take place in Montreal next month in what his son has described as one of his dying wishes.

“My father left me with a list of instructions before he passed,” Adam Cohen said. “ ‘Put me in a pine box next to my mother and father. Have a small memorial for close friends and family in Los Angeles…and if you want a public event, do it in Montreal’."

Tower of Song: A Memorial Tribute to Leonard Cohen, will feature a number of stars paying homage to the Canadian singer and poet who died on November 7 2016, aged 82, including Adam Cohen himslef, k d lang and Elvis Costello.

Judaism was always important to Cohen and featured heavily in his music, from his famous Hallelujah, which was covered repeatedly in recent years, to his last album, You Want It Darker, which made use of words from the Kaddish in the chorus of the title song.

"I have a deep tribal instinct," he told David Remnick, editor of the New Yorker magazine, in his last interview. "I grew up in a synagogue that my ancestors built. I sat in the third row. My family was decent. They were good people. They were handshake people."

The concert is part of a week of events honouring Cohen in Montreal, including an exhibition “Leonard Cohen: A Crack in Everything” at the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal, displaying works inspired by the themes of Cohen's writing.


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