If one can measure the success of a musician by the passion of his or her fans, then Leonard Cohen is one very, very successful musician. Entries in Audiofile's Cohen giveaway contest came from as far away as Greece and New Zealand and in forms ranging from songs to handwritten letters to original poetry. But the number and breadth of entries were less impressive than the great amount of care and thought that went into them. In 60 words or fewer, people used the occasion of explaining their favorite Leonard Cohen song to share details of their tragedies and successes, humorous anecdotes and personal revelations. They were all lovely to read, and everyone who submitted deserves a big thank-you.
OK, I know what you're thinking -- enough preamble, let's get to the winners. So without any further ado, Audiofile is happy to announce that Laurie Eckhout of Juneau, Alaska, has won an autographed copy of Cohen's poetry collection "Book of Longing" with her touching ode to Cohen's "Anthem," from his 1992 album, "The Future":
"2001: 'Anthem' came on the radio and someone who sounded like he meant it said, "There is a crack in everything." Those words shone through the crack of my personal devastation, having lost my son the year previous. It began my journey of listening to everything this wise man had to say; his brilliance became the light that got in."
The runner-up prize of remastered CD editions of Cohen's first three albums as well as Anjani's Cohen-produced "Blue Alert" goes to Judith Golding of Baltimore, Md. Golding chose the sardonic "Everybody Knows" as her personal favorite, and you can read her appropriately cynical adaptation below:
"Everybody knows the contest's hokey.
Everybody knows the prizes suck.
Everybody knows that the judges are rotten/ At least until you slip them a buck.
Everybody knows or they should surmise/ that your relative will win the prize.
That's how it goes, and everybody knows."
Once again, many thanks to everybody who entered. We hope to have more cool stuff to give away in the near future!
-- David Marchese