Saturday, February 13, 2010

I can't get enough of 'Hallelujah'

Last night's Olympic opening ceremony had many beautiful moments, including the flying boy and some of the native dancing. But what had me on the edge of my chair was k.d. lang's rendition of Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah." It's a beautiful, haunting song-- not one I would expect to hear at an opening ceremony, by the way--and she really sold it. Last night's performance cannot be found on the internet, but YouTube has dozens of versions of the song including several by lang. There is a lovely, pure version in which she is backed by a single piano, but this one, at an awards show in 2007, comes closest to her Olympic performance.

9 comments:

Far Side of Fifty said...

I was also in awe of her rendition, so heartfelt and pure of voice. I am not a music critic by a long shot..but I did really like this piece..thanks for sharing it:)

Respectfully Yours said...

Thank you for sharing this amazing video. Absolutely amazing. Gave me chills.

Tracie said...

That is such a beautiful song. She did a great job.

Far Side of Fifty said...

It seems that kd lang is a tad controversial.. I don't put much stock in it..I figure God will sort it all out eventually.
I found the words I thought you might enjoy them as I did:)

"Hallelujah"

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
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
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

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah

Blissed-Out Grandma said...

Thanks for posting the lyrics. I have liked Leonard Cohen's music for years, although some of it is too dark or too mystical for me. This one has a lot of Old Testament references, along with themes of love and music. Despite a history of depression, he has said he meant this song to express a basic celebration of life. At 75, he has been touring a lot, but he also has health issues. I'm glad they had k.d. sing it rather than him.

gayle said...

If I have heard this song...I don't remember...but I loved hearing it today and reading the lyrics!! Thank you both!!

Colleen said...

The first time I heard this song was in the first Shrek movie, and I've been a fan ever since. I particularly enjoyed Justin Timberlake's version, which he performed for the Hope for Haiti Now concert last month. I haven't yet caught k.d. lang's performance at the Opening Ceremonies (which is still on my DVR queue) but I look forward to watching it.

Penny (AKA Krista) said...

I love her version of this song too... more than Cohen's actually!

Peg said...

Don't know how I missed this entry, but I was fortunate enough to see Cohen in Denver last June. Quite the performer, still. KD Lang is high in my book, as is a new (relatively) CD by Shirley Bassey called "The Performance." On YouTube, you can see her rendition of "After The Rain." Fabulous.
Peg

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