Wednesday, January 31, 2018
It's been years since I've watched the Grammy's and Sunday evening was not an exception even though a Canadian, Alessia Cara, won the best new artist award.
Another Canadian won the best old artist award, or the best artist in heaven award, if you like. Improbably, Leonard Cohen and the cantor and choir of his Montreal synagogue got a Grammy for best rock performance. Not bad for a guy in his eighties who's been dead for more than a year.
Jeffrey Salkin is an American rabbi who is a smart and witty writer of books and the blog Martini Judaism – for those who want to be shaken and stirred. After the Grammy's Salkin noted that Cohen's song You Want It Darker is, to the best of his knowledge, the first with Hebrew lyrics to receive the award. While Cohen throws in some Christian imagery and practiced Buddhist meditation his final album returns to his Jewish upbringing in Montreal. There tends to be a fair amount of God-gratitude sloshed around at award shows, but Salkin's take on this song is worth reading, so, why don't you? Enjoy!