Joys Of The Leonard Cohen Soundcheck: The Private Leonard Cohen Concert

From left to right: Leonard Cohen, Duchess aka Penny Showalter, DrHGuy aka Allan Showalter


Soundchecks: The Other Leonard Cohen Tour

Attending a Leonard Cohen soundcheck1 is enlightening, instructive, and inspiring, but most of all, it’s fun.

Joys Of The Leonard Cohen Soundcheck: The Private Leonard Cohen Concert

When the venue is indoors, the entire audience (if there is an audience at all) at a Leonard Cohen soundcheck often comprises only one or two people. Such is the case in the photo atop this post, taken at the Oct 31, 2012 Leonard Cohen Austin Soundcheck. The only occupied seats in the auditorium of Bass Concert Hall are those two in the right lower corner on which Duchess & I were perched. Two observations from that and similar events follow:

  1. If you bring a romantic interest as a guest to a Leonard Cohen soundcheck for which you are the only civilians and you don’t get lucky after the show, you should reassess your relationship with that guest.
  2. If you note, while attending a Leonard Cohen soundcheck, that at some point you do not feel bedazzled, just sit quietly – you have died and there is no reason to disturb your companion.

In her show, “Wishful Drinking,” Carrie Fisher explains that the song “She Moves On” written by her ex-husband, Paul Simon, is about her; she then advises the audience that

If you ever get a chance to have Paul Simon write a song about you, I hope you’ll please say Yes.

In the same spirit, I offer the equally superfluous admonition:

If you ever get a chance to attend a Leonard Cohen soundcheck, I hope you’ll please say Yes.

Now, if you can get Paul Simon to write a song about you attending a Leonard Cohen soundcheck…

Credit Due Department: It was at the 2012 Austin soundcheck that I met Joey Carenza, whose duties as Road Manager of the Leonard Cohen Tour included shooting and posting photos of the Tour. I discovered that, prior to our meeting, Joey had serendipitously taken and posted a photo of the Oct 31, 2012 sound check (the image atop this post) that captured not only Leonard Cohen but also the Duchess and me as the entire audience. Photo by J.S. Carenza III.

I am republishing selected posts from my former Leonard Cohen site, Cohencentric, here on (these posts can be found at Leonard Cohen). This entry was originally posted This post was originally posted August 15, 2013 at, the earlier incarnation of Cohencentric.


  1. The technical definition of soundcheck from Wikipedia follows: A soundcheck is the preparation that takes place before a concert, speech, or similar performance, when the performer and the sound crew run through a small portion of the upcoming show on the venue’s sound system to make sure that the sound in the venue’s “Front Of House” and stage monitor sound systems is clear and at the right volume and tonal frequencies. []

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