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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SONGS FROM THE BEGINNING
If anyone has the right to sing the songs of LEONARD COHEN it is Judy Collins, from the moment she introduced the shy singer-songwriter to the public eye in 1966 (and 1967 on record) the world of music was blessed. The have been two various artist 'tribute' albums (so far) to the 70 year old, and an excellent album by Jennifer Warnes (Famous Blue Raincoat). But Judy...
Published on 22 Sep 2004 by Mr. Sr Harrup

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Democracy or what?
This is a must have for Judy Collins fans. I bought this because I had got her wonderful album of Dylan covers and this is in the same territory. Not quite as successful as the Dylan cover album at getting inside Cohen's skin as it were, but a really nice collection. I'd give it as gift without any fear the recipient might think they'd been sold short!
Published on 24 Nov 2011 by PaleWriter


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34 of 34 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars SONGS FROM THE BEGINNING, 22 Sep 2004
By 
Mr. Sr Harrup "nehpetsrh" (London) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
If anyone has the right to sing the songs of LEONARD COHEN it is Judy Collins, from the moment she introduced the shy singer-songwriter to the public eye in 1966 (and 1967 on record) the world of music was blessed. The have been two various artist 'tribute' albums (so far) to the 70 year old, and an excellent album by Jennifer Warnes (Famous Blue Raincoat). But Judy Collins' interpretations of his music stand out from the crowd. Ok, from a personal viewpoint, some song don't quite gel such as the county setting of 'Bird on the Wire', but their are so many other superb renditions that the odd 'miss' doesn't matter. Now buy this album and wallow in the beauty of 'Susanne' 'Sisters of Mercy' and 'Famous Blue Raincoat' in particular. Thank you Judy Collins for bringing us Leonard Cohen, thank you for bringing us these songs.
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12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars His first interpreter, 4 Oct 2006
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Pieter Uys "Toypom" (Johannesburg) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
This tribute album contains previously released tracks from 1966 to 1999 plus new recordings: Democracy, A Thousand Kisses Deep and Night Comes On. The old material is drawn from her albums In My Life (1966), Wildflowers (1967), Who Knows Where The Time Goes (1968), Living (1971), Bread & Roses (1976) and Live At Wolf Trap 1999.

The blend of the old and the new is a definite plus, as it ensures variety in the arrangements and instrumental mix. For example, the title track with its marching beat, piano and keyboards is followed by the lovely acoustic guitar textures of Suzanne, whilst Hey That's No Way To Say Goodbye is quite atmospheric with its enchanting flute.

In my opinion, the songs Dress Rehearsal Rag and Priests do not work so well, but they've never been amongst my favourite Cohen compositions. Her version of Night Comes On is a real masterpiece, as is this elegant rendition of Sisters Of Mercy with its intricate instrumentation.

Just like Emmylou Harris slightly altered the lyrics of Dylan's Every Grain Of Sand on her Wrecking Ball album, Collins tweaks a word or two in her version of Story Of Isaac, a song with a very pertinent message for our time. Probably to reflect their personal beliefs in both cases. The song is embellished with beautiful organ and harpsichord.

Bird On A Wire has a distinct country flavour with full instrumentation including pedal steel guitar. In contrast, Famous Blue Raincoat gets an intimate treatment with sparse acoustic guitar. Produced by Arif Mardin, Take This Longing has a delicate recorder flute in the mix, whilst three backing vocalists assist on Joan Of Arc. The album concludes with a live version of the evocative Song Of Bernadette, co-written by Jennifer Warnes.

The CD booklet contains Judy's account of her meeting with Leonard and his enduring influence on her career. Amongst the black and white pictures there is one of them performing together onstage. There is also a dedication from LC and the complete lyrics of Democracy.

As far as LC tribute albums go, Democracy is a huge success. I also recommend Famous Blue Raincoat by Jennifer Warnes and I'm Your Fan with its great variety of contributors. The one titled Tower Of Song is not quite as memorable as the aforementioned although it does contain a gem or two.
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19 of 20 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Pure Magic, 17 Jun 2005
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Derek Rogerson (Plymouth UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
Having been a Leonard Cohen fan since the 60s and I have a mulitude of cover versions. This CD is the very best and is an absolte delight, her rendition of Night Comes On,track 7, is absolute magic. Jennfer Warnes Famous Blue raincoat was great but this surpasses even that. I lock it in the safe when I go away!!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Democracy or what?, 24 Nov 2011
This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
This is a must have for Judy Collins fans. I bought this because I had got her wonderful album of Dylan covers and this is in the same territory. Not quite as successful as the Dylan cover album at getting inside Cohen's skin as it were, but a really nice collection. I'd give it as gift without any fear the recipient might think they'd been sold short!
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5.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT, 1 Feb 2014
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Moonshine. "Spara Fugle" (Ireland) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
Fantastic renditions of the master's songs by the brilliant Judy. She has picked great songs and given them a new slant. A must for any Leonard Cohen fans. A beautiful, charming masterpiece.
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6 of 9 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Disappointing!, 16 July 2007
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
Judy Collins has a fine voice and Leonard Cohen writes brilliant songs, but for me this combination just doesn't work at all.

It is 'easy listening' - fine if that's what you want - but not what I look for in Cohen's songs, which need some bite to work - Judy makes them alltogether too pretty.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Five Stars, 26 July 2014
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This review is from: Sings Leonard Cohen: Democracy (Audio CD)
As moving as the originals, moreso in some cases.
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