Leonard Cohen’s Record Company And Other Scary Things
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Disappointed with the sales of Leonard Cohen’s first two albums, Songs of Leonard Cohen and Songs From a Room, his record label demanded that he produce a novelty LP tied to Halloween to increase his commercial appeal. His protests that issuing an album in this genre would be incongruent with his style were countered by the corporation’s argument that “no one is buying the poet turned singer-songwriter shtick.”
The result was Songs of Love and Halloween, a collection of tracks, including Nightmare On Boogie Street, Hey, That’s No Way To Say Trick Or Treat, Monster Mash Me To The End Of Love, Tacoma Trailer Park Murders, and Bates Motel #2, the recording company executives were to finally judge “too depressing for Halloween,” leading them to cancel distribution of the already pressed album.
Songs of Love and Hate, rather than Songs of Love And Halloween, eventually became the third Cohen album.
The songs themselves, with new titles and minor modifications of the lyrics, formed the nucleus of Cohen’s repertoire over the course of his career.
Songs of Love and Halloween – The Afterlife
Leonard Cohen and his record company have consistently denied the existence of Songs of Love and Halloween, but to this day, those passing by a certain Montreal warehouse near the harbor after sunset on October 31st report hearing a low-pitched, gravelly voice singing – or wailing – about the woman who “… cut off my head on the unmade bed”