Adam Cohen Confesses He Is Son Of Beloved Singer-Songwriter Leonard Cohen
I was born like this, I had no choice
- From Tower Of Song by Leonard Cohen
The theme of Adam Cohen’s promotional campaign for his new album, Like A Man, can be summarized as “Adam Cohen comes out as Leonard Cohen’s son.” As Adam notes in the introduction to his own website:
‘Like A Man is steeped in my recognizing that I am in the family business. Despite my efforts to carve out a different identity, really I belong to a long line of people who have embraced their father’s business. And to have my father pronounce that I have world-class love songs on my record — Like A Man and What Other Guy — is a deeply gratifying compliment.’
This theme is executed – for the most part – in a straightforward and self-effacing manner. These excerpts from Everybody Knows The Dice Are Loaded by Rebecca Eckler (Maclean’s, October 6, 2011) are typical:
Cohen talks about growing up with the elder Cohen and the lifestyle he witnessed. “I saw the magnificence of it and the reaction of men and women to him and the adulation,” he admits. “So there really was no decision involved.” In early October, Cohen is releasing his fourth album, Like a Man, the first that pays homage to his famous father—the same tone, lyrical style and voice, something he always fought against. “I was enamoured with the idea that I could forge my own way. And family, friends and institutions bolstered this.”
“My father is a fusion of elegance and humour. The unlikely combination of eloquence and effortless casualness. He has charisma without audacity. He’s the consummate gentleman.”
“I was disillusioned because I had been given great opportunities and not made the best of them.” He’s happy, he says, now that he can exonerate himself of the “folly of the wayward Cohen son.” Then there was “the wonderful and triumphant return to the stage of my father, which was incredibly inspiring.” He finally decided to take a risk.
So does his four-year-old son have the music virus? Apparently. Still, “I’ve thought about coming home with a stethoscope around my neck as a decoy,” says Cohen.
Clue – The Leonard Cohen Legacy Version
The fun for Leonard Cohen fans, however, lies in finding the moderately more subtle clues in the ads, promotions, and interviews that link Adam Cohen to his father Leonard Cohen.
Cohen-watchers can hardly help but notice that photos of Cassius, Adam Cohen’s son and Leonard Cohen’s grandson, have begun to appear with some regularity. These are, of course, legacy invocations of the most primal sort, especially when all three generations of Cohen men are shown, as is the case in the shot featured in yesterday’s post, Adam Cohen On The Legacy Of Leonard Cohen.
Even when Cassius is pictured with just his father or grandfather, the linkage is clear. But, just in case, Maclean’s helpfully includes a trademark Leonard Cohen fedora in the photo of Adam and Cassius (see image atop post) accompanying the same article already excerpted. [DrHGuy has even more helpfully circled the pertinent headgear in red.]
The Where’s Leonard? clues in the promotional video for Adam Cohen’s album alone were sufficient to comprise a full post: Leonard Cohen References In Adam Cohen’s “Like A Man” Promotional Video.
And how about the songs themselves? Well, listen to Adam Cohen sing the line from “Sweet Dominique,” a track on the new album, that is cued to begin at the when the “start” button is hit.
Hmmm- “… so many kisses deep.” How many kisses deep might that be? 37? 225? 922? 999? Getting warmer?
There are other linkages to Leonard Cohen but you get the idea.
The Adam – Son Of Leonard – Cohen Campaign Problem
Now, make no mistake. DrHGuy is hardly criticizing the Like A Man marketing theme.
First of all, truth to be told, DrHGuy is a bit of a Leonard Cohen fan and fond of Adam Cohen’s music as well.
And it seems logical, in fact, that emphasizing the connection between Leonard and Adam Cohen could increase sales of Adam’s new album.
Heck, if nothing else, this strategy has earned Adam Cohen the post before you now.
No, DrHGuy, convinced that nothing succeeds like excess, is concerned only that those running the campaign may be missing opportunities to evoke the elder Cohen. So, based on years of experience in solving Highlights Magazine Hidden Pictures puzzles, DrHGuy offers this modestly reworked Like A Man album cover to Adam Cohen gratis as an example of the potential currently left unexploited.
Credit Due Department: Photograph atop this post originally taken by Roman Cho for Maclean’s. Hat circling by DrHGuy.