Death of a Ladies' Man

Louis Armstrong was a fan of Guy Lombardo, for reasons that passeth understanding-- but there was an elderly producer who said one of the most profound things he learned was that professional musicians have much wider tastes than their fans.
Most of my friends have open ears-- Pat Relf pushed Danger Mouse and Gnarls Barkley on me, her daughters found Louis Jordan before I did, I keep nudghing them about the composer Yoko Kanno... Still, I've resolved to post more music this year, if only to shake my more calcitrant friends-- the ones with mullets and restored Barracudas-- loose from the music they're used to.

Ah the man she wanted all her life was hanging by a thread
"I never even knew how much I wanted you," she said.
His muscles they were numbered and his style was obsolete.
"O baby, I have come too late." She knelt beside his feet.
"I'll never see a face like yours in years of men to come
I'll never see such arms again in wrestling or in love."
And all his virtues burning in the smoky Holocaust
She took unto herself most everything her lover lost
Now the master of this landscape he was standing at the view
with a sparrow of St. Francis that he was preaching to...

Now you might think I'd start with my own version of musical comfort food, Fats Waller or Gordon Lightfoot, but no, it's been a dark lonely weekend with biting cold outside and soul-wrenching weather inside, Jimmy Cliff and Bob Marley ain't cheering me up, and damnit, if this is the Dark Night of the Soul come back for a visit (and yes, it stinks after three days) then this is the night (you win, Doris) for the patron saint of disappointment, Leonard Cohen:

First "Suzanne" (with the best understanding of Jesus on this cross this side of Alan Moore's Promethea), some lyrics from "Death of a Ladies' Man" because it's that kind of a day, and finally Jeff Buckley's and K.D. Laing's covers of "Hallelujah". Aristotle tells us this pity and fear is supposed to bring catharsis, cut the poisoned right out of us, but god-damn.

Now I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty and the moonlight overthrew you
She tied you
To a kitchen chair
She broke your throne, and she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Baby I have been here before
I know this room, I've walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you.
I've seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

There was a time you let me know
What's really going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?
And remember when I moved in you
The holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

You say I took the name in vain
I don't even know the name
But if I did, well really, what's it to you?
There's a blaze of light
In every word
It doesn't matter which you heard
The holy or the broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

I did my best, it wasn't much
I couldn't feel, so I tried to touch
I've told the truth, I didn't come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I'll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah

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