Leonard Love, Down Under-Style

Leonard Love, Down Under-Style

Posted 30 Dec 2016

Australia loved Leonard Cohen, so it’s kind of surprising that more Australian artists haven’t covered his songs. There have been a few of course - Nick Cave, Jimmy Barnes... So let’s pay tribute, on behalf of all of us down under who loved the man, with some of our best Leonard Cohen covers.

Nick Cave probably has done the most of any major artist – four at least – but there have been at least a couple of other artists - Canberra-via-Melbourne artist Mikelangelo and Sydney’s three-time ARIA winning Monsieur Camembert - who have recorded whole collections of Cohen’s material. A few artists with Nick Cave connections, including the Blackeyed Susans, former Bad Seed Hugo Race and the Triffids’ David McComb have also recorded Cohen songs, and most recently Paul Kelly & Charlie Owen (neither of whom are far removed from Cave’s inner circle) have included "Bird On A Wire" on their new duo album Death’s Dateless Night.

"Bird On A Wire" is perhaps the favourite Cohen song of Australian artists. In addition to Kelly & Owen version, the short-lived supergroup Friends, fronted by the great Leo De Castro, performed it way back in ’73 at Sunbury, and Jimmy Barnes and Troy Cassar-Daly recorded it in 2005. Barnsey’s old mate Don Walker did it too, with Tex Don & Charlie (‘Charlie’ being Paul Kelly’s mate Charlie Owen in case you missed it) in 1995, a year after the Blackeyed Susans cut a great Rob Snarski-sung version (neither of these two are available online by the looks if it unfortunately).

Enjoy. Oh, and if you know of any other Australian Cohen covers, please let us know!

Friends – Bird On A Wire

Nick Cave – Suzanne

Paul Kelly & Charlie Owen – Bird On A Wire

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Tower Of Song

Jimmy Barnes & Troy Cassar-Daly - Bird On A Wire

Blackeyed Susans (with David McComb singing) - Memories

Mikelangelo - Dance Me To The End of Love

Nick Cave – I’m Your Man

Hugo Race – A Thousand Kisses Deep

David McComb & Adam Peters - Don't Go Home With Your Hard-On

Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds – Avalanche

Wes Carr’s Buffalo Tales - Take This Waltz

Monsieur Camembert – Hallelujah

- DL

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