Leonard Cohen has been popping up a lot on Cover Me as of late. First it was the Old Ideas with New Friends series of covers, which you can listen to here, and then Bill Callahan played “Marianne” for The Songs of Leonard Cohen Covered, which is available here. Now, in what’s titled The Cohen Variations, pianist Simone Dinnerstein has recorded a piece, as composed by Daniel Felsenfeld, covering Cohen’s “Suzanne” in perhaps the most unique way imaginable.
In a recent interview with NPR, Dinnerstein explained why she opted to leave out the lyrics of “Suzanne.” Simply put, she is “not a very word-oriented person.” So that begs the question – why cover a Leonard Cohen song? His poetry is powerfully evocative, and it’s difficult to imagine why anyone would cover “Suzanne” and disregard the lyrics. But Dinnerstein hears something beyond the words. Her piece is challenging, however it leaves behind mystery, and maybe it’ll inspire you to hear beyond the words as well.
Check out more from Simone at her website.