REFLECTIONS ON seeing leonard cohen PERFORM IN MONTREAL ON JUNE 23, 2008

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Tickets for this Leonard Cohen concert were very expensive. I paid $180 for this ticket. Because I’m a music critic, it’s tax deductible. Also, I thought I’d sell a review to someone, but in the end no one wanted a review. Sitting in the Salle Wilfrid-Pelletier, I think about what I would write if I were reviewing this for Rolling Stone or Pitchfork. “He seems at once smaller and larger than his songs. And, while I never need to hear ‘Democracy’ or ‘Boogie Street’ again, because they were terrible, I also never again need to hear ‘Who by Fire’ or ‘Sisters of Mercy,’ because they were beautiful.”

“Malgré les prix gonflés,” Leonard says, wryly, “j’espère que vous n’êtes pas déçus.” Despite the inflated prices, I hope you are not disappointed. While Leonard is playing “I’m Your Man,” I do some math. If the concert is three hours long, that’s just $60 an hour. Or $15 for 15 minutes. Which is about the same price as a taxi. Or laser tag. This concert is far, far, far better than riding a taxi or playing laser tag. Leonard, I am not disappointed.

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