Friday, November 11, 2016
Friday Music: Suzanne
I first heard this song in 1968 by the folk rock band Spanky (Elaine McFarlane) and Our Gang on their album "Like to Get to Know You." It was a long time before I heard Leonard Cohen sing it himself.
The Our Gang recording was an interesting and more layered production, and it's always the one I think of when I think of the song (you always do that, don't you? remember the way you heard or saw something first), but in the end, it feels right to post Cohen singing it himself at the Isle of Wight, his first tour.
My favorite verse is the second one:
And Jesus was a sailor
When he walked upon the water
And he spent a long time watching
From his lonely wooden tower
And when he knew for certain
Only drowning men could see him
He said, "All men will be sailors then
Until the sea shall free them"
But he himself was broken
Long before the sky would open
Forsaken, almost human
He sank beneath your wisdom like a stone
And you want to travel with him
And you want to travel blind
And you think maybe you'll trust him
For he's touched your perfect body with his mind.
Cohen died this week at the age of 82. May he rest in peace and rise in glory.