1. Hallelujah was first released in 1984 on Leonard Cohen’s album, Various Positions.
  2. Cohen once told Bob Dylan that it took him two years to write the song.
  3. Dylan himself has sung it live, and there are bootleg versions in circulation of his performance. It has also been sung by Bono and Bon Jovi.
  4. More than 100 versions of the song have been recorded.
  5. The best known is by Jeff Buckley, whose unadorned version was on his 1994 Grace album.
  6. Cohen has recorded two versions – the second one appeared on a live album in 1988 – with very different endings; one upbeat, one dark.
  7. Buckley’s version was used in the soundtrack to the American TV series, The OC.
  8. Other TV shows to have used the song include The West Wing, ER, Scrubs, and Holby City.
  9. The full version of the song has 15 verses.
  10. Cohen, a notorious perfectionist, is said to have originally written 80 verses.
  11. Cohen is set to earn £1 million in royalties from sales of singles by X-Factor winner Alexandra Burke.
  12. Burke’s version is the fastest selling download single in history.
  13. Former Velvet Underground member John Cale’s version was used in the film Shrek.
  14. The Shrek soundtrack album featured a version by Rufus Wainwright, who also sang it in the Leonard Cohen tribute film, I’m Your Man.
  15. Cohen was once asked why the song is so popular. “It’s got a good chorus,” he replied.
  16. It has become a mainstay of live shows by Cohen’s fellow Canadian singer-songwriter, kd lang.
  17. The English singer and songwriter Kathryn Williams once introduced her version of Hallelujah in a live show by saying, “I really, really, really want to shag Leonard Cohen.”
  18. The song is broadcast at 2am every Saturday night by the Israeli defence force’s radio channel.
  19. Hallelujah is a Hebrew word, meaning “praise Yah”.
  20. Cohen has said of the song’s meaning: “It explains that many kinds of hallelujahs do exist, and all the perfect and broken hallelujahs have equal value.”

20 facts about Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah – Telegraph

— Reposted from 2011

Bob Dylan

Saw Bob Dylan in Tulsa Sunday night at the historic Brady Theater — they say it’s haunted by Enrico Caruso.

Here’s what I posted 10 years ago, the other time I saw Dylan.

What possesses people to spend $60 or $100 on a concert ticket and leave before the encore? A couple of years ago, I noticed this phenomenon at a James Taylor concert. Hello, you folks that are streaming out, he hasn’t sung “Sweet Baby James” yet. Why would you come to see James Taylor if you don’t want to wait and hear “Sweet Baby James”?

Same thing last night with Bob Dylan. People leaving by the scores, while the rest of us are screaming and clapping to coax an encore. And what were the encore songs — “Like a Rolling Stone” and “All Along the Watchtower.”

Now I’m sorry, I know not everyone gets into it like I can, but seeing Bob Dylan perform “Like A Rolling Stone” has got to be the equivalent of seeing “Hamlet” or “King Lear” with Shakespeare in the cast. Great as it sounds, hard as it rocks, the moment transcends even the music.

But not for some, more intent on beating the traffic.

One can’t actually say Dylan sounded great — he’s never “sounded” great — but he sounded like Bob Dylan and the songs were great and the music rocked and that seemed to please most of us. It’s a testament to his staying power that he could open with the 2000 Oscar-winner “Things Have Changed” and follow it with a classic from 1964 “The Times They Are A Changin’.” It was all music, no chatter other than introducing the band, no playfulness, no recognition that it was the 45th anniversary (to the day) of his New York debut. Ever a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma. Ever a legend.

Albuquerque 2006 Set List

Things Have Changed
The Times They Are A-Changin’
Tweedle Dee and Tweedle Dum
To Ramona
Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again
Love Sick
I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight
Ballad of A Thin Man
I Don’t Believe You (She Acts Like We Never Have Met)
Cold Irons Bound
Lay Lady Lay
Cat’s in the Well

Like A Rolling Stone
All Along the Watchtower

Tulsa 2016 Set List

Things Have Changed
Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right
Highway 61 Revisited
It’s All Over Now, Baby Blue
High Water (For Charley Patton)
I Could Have Told You
Early Roman Kings
Love Sick
Tangled Up in Blue
Lonesome Day Blues
Make You Feel My Love
Pay in Blood
Desolation Row
Soon After Midnight
All or Nothing at All
Long and Wasted Years

Blowin’ in the Wind
Why Try to Change Me Now

The Last Day of September 2016

Angie Dickinson is 85 today.

Chances are Johnny Mathis is 81.

Greg Brady (Barry Williams) is 62.

Marion Cotillard is 41 today.

Die ZauberflöteThe Magic Flute — premiered in Vienna 225 years ago tonight; libretto by Emanuel Schikaneder, music by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. That night Mozart conducted the orchestra, Schikaneder played Papageno. Mozart died less than 10 weeks later at age 35.

James Dean was killed 61 years ago today at the junction of California Highways 41 and 46. He was 24.

NewMexiKen’s very own grandfather, John Louis Beyett, was born in Alvord, Wise County, Texas, 135 years ago today. He died before I was born, but I met his mother, my great-grandmother when I was 8-years-old. She was born in 1865 and was just 15 when my grandfather was born; the first of her nine children. She was 87 when I met her (and lived to be 93). It has always amazed me that I met an ancestor who was born the year Abraham Lincoln died.

It’s Fall in Albuquerque

In May the highest official temperature in Albuquerque was 87º.

In June the official high temperature in Albuquerque reached 90º or higher 27 out of 30 days. It got to 100º twice (actually 103º one of those two times). The average high was 93.3º.

In July the official high temperature in Albuquerque reached 90º or higher 29 out of 31 days. It got to 100º three times. The average high was 95.6º.

In August, so far, the official high temperature in Albuquerque has reached 90º or higher just six out of 25 days. 93º is the highest and 86.7º the average. Twice the high hasn’t even reached 80º.

At a mile above sea level the summer really is perfect. Warm but confined to 2-1/2 months!

Update September 5th: Hasn’t been 90° since August 15th.