“I was never any good at that kind of hard work that’s involved with socializing.” Leonard Cohen

I remember walking into a club called Max’s Kansas City that I’d heard was the place where everybody went — I didn’t know anybody in New York—and I remember lingering by the bar, I was never good at that kind of hard work that’s involved with socializing, and a young man came over to me and said, ‘You’re Leonard Cohen, you wrote Beautiful Losers,’ which nobody had read, it only sold a few copies in America. And it was Lou Reed. He brought me over to a table full of luminaries – Andy Warhol, Nico. I was suddenly sitting at this table with the great spirits of the time.


Leonard Cohen


DrHGuy Note: While this is an account of Leonard Cohen meeting Lou Reed, Andy Warhol, and Nico in 1966, I’m most taken with Leonard’s comment on his own difficulties with “socializing.” His admission is congruent with this observation by Kezban Özcan, Leonard’s personal assistant (see Kezban Özcan – Personal Assistant To Leonard Cohen – Talks About The Man & Her Job):

Q: What would most surprise his fans?
KO: Probably his shyness, or at least that was what has surprised me at the beginning.

Q: Could you give an example of Leonard Cohen’s shyness?
KO: You would expect someone like him to be accustomed to reactions he gets from his fans. While his response is, of course. always genuine, at the same time, it isn’t, I don’t think, easy for him to respond to compliments because of his shyness.

Quotation from I’m Your Man: The Life of Leonard Cohen by Sylvie Simmons. Ecco: 2012. Photo by Eugene McLaughlin.

I am republishing selected posts from my former Leonard Cohen site, Cohencentric, here on AllanShowalter.com (these posts can be found at Leonard Cohen). This entry was originally posted Mar 22, 2018.

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