Beloved singer-songwriter Leonard Cohen has died at the age of 82.
He passed away Monday, Nov. 7, we’ve learned, after his family made the announcement on his Facebook page on Nov. 10. Cohen is widely considered one of the most influential artists of recent decades. His voice is instantly recognizable, and perhaps most memorable are his haunting, powerful lyrics.
One of his most well-known songs, “Hallelujah,” shot to fame when troubled musician Jeff Buckley covered musician John Cale’s version of Cohen’s song, and again when Rufus Wainwright covered it for the movie “Shrek.” Cohen’s original version is incredible and definitely worth a listen:
As Rolling Stone reports, Cohen was working right up until he passed away. He was writing lyrics up until his very last moments, according to his daughter. How fitting for a poet of his stature and skill to be writing music even as he knew the end was near.
Cohen’s loss will be greatly felt by the music industry, an industry which many critics say no longer puts emphasis on true lyricism and poetry. Music greats such as Carole King, Bette Midler, k.d. lang and more are mourning his loss and sharing their thoughts about his impressive talent on social media.
Leonard Cohen has died. Another magical voice stilled.
— Bette Midler (@BetteMidler) November 11, 2016
R.I.P. Leonard Cohen
— Carole King (@Carole_King) November 11, 2016
Even the younger generation of artists and musicians say that Cohen’s work has inspired them and that his loss is a devastating one:
A spirit and soul beyond compare.
— Justin Timberlake (@jtimberlake) November 11, 2016
RIP Leonard Cohen. Thank you for you dedication to music, & writing one of my favorite songs to sing “Hallelujah”. https://t.co/JsTjNmmarC
— Jennifer Hudson (@IAMJHUD) November 11, 2016
Beautiful tributes are being shared by comedians and other artists as well:
A timely exit by the brilliant Leonard Cohen, one can only take so much sadness.He made melancholy nearly seem joyous. He will be missed.
— Lewis Black (@TheLewisBlack) November 11, 2016
Like Dylan, Leonard Cohen was a great Jewish sage; but with more love, less anger. He was compassionate amidst the bleakness. Thank you, Len
— Robyn Hitchcock (@RobynHitchcock) November 11, 2016
Others are pointing out that Cohen’s beautiful words on peace, inclusion and unity have never been more important, especially in today’s acrimonious political climate. In this time of uncertainty and change, his poetry is speaking words of peace and gentleness to so many:
— Global Citizen (@GlblCtzn) November 11, 2016
RIP Leonard Cohen. Ugh. It feels pointed, this death. It’s making us remember songs like Come Healing which is a good one for these days
— Sarah Silverman (@SarahKSilverman) November 11, 2016
Here is “Suzanne,” one of Cohen’s most popular songs. Give it a listen! RIP Leonard Cohen, you will be sorely missed but your beautiful words and music will live on.