My first encounter with a Leonard Cohen song was in October of 1982. I had invited a Polish exchange student to a party in my fraternity house room. He came with an acoustic guitar and played and sang Cohen’s “Suzanne,” a song from the 1967 album Songs of Leonard Cohen. It was my third year at Alliance College. I was struck by the sublime beauty of the song. I wanted to hear this man sing. At the time he was at a low point in his career, with very little audience beyond Europe, especially beyond Poland, where he was adored. So it was difficult to find an album in northwestern Pennsylvania. However, I was able to find his first two albums at the record store in the Eire mall.
When I got back to Cambridge Springs, the home of Alliance College, I ran up to my room and placed his first album on the turntable. What a disappointment: his voice was awful, monotonous and morose. Yet his lyrics had the literary sensibility of a well-schooled poet, which I later learned he was. I began listening to his first two albums daily for two years and drove everyone crazy at the fraternity house.
Cohen was my first teacher in the craft of poetry, which I learned by osmosis, not knowing at the time I would become a poet. I listened to him regularly for 20 years. I stopped in 2002 after having become awakened to the Jewish question. I came to the conclusion that his songs had become an addiction and should be listened to rarely, although I still considered him one of the greatest song writers since the 1960s, up there with Cat Stevens and Tom Waits.
I doubt Cohen cared about the future of white homelands, but was rather a quintessential Jew, who wrote and sang songs to make a living. Some say he’d even been a C.I.A. operative, having gone to Cuba during the 1959 Castro revolution. (http://henrymakow.com/2015/01/Leonard-Cohen-Illuminati-Jewish-agent.html)
Hereunder are some of his best songs: