Legendary singer/songwriter Leonard Cohen has died, aged 82

Leonard Cohen has died at age 82.

The legendary singer/songwriter's label, Sony Music Canada confirmed his death on the singer's Facebook page today.

"It is with profound sorrow we report that legendary poet, songwriter and artist, Leonard Cohen has passed away," they wrote.

"We have lost one of music's most revered and prolific visionaries. A memorial will take place in Los Angeles at a later date. The family requests privacy during their time of grief."

A cause of death was not given.

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Leonard Cohen's last ever show was in New Zealand

The Canadian singer, songwriter, poet and novelist just released his latest album last month called You Want It Darker.

Kiwi music legend Neil Finn paid tribute to Cohen today as "a true visionary and a great inspiration".




Cohen toured New Zealand several times in the last decade, most recently in 2013, when he played three shows, in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch.

He earlier came to New Zealand in 2008 as part of his first tour in 15 years, which followed his financial ruin and a 2005 lawsuit. He also played here in 2010.

Reviewing what was to be his last ever concert, at Vector Arena in December 2013, the Herald's John Roughan described Cohen as an enchanting dark poet.

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"When he skipped on to the stage for the final concert of his third tour in five years, they rose in ovation before he had sung a note. Leonard Cohen, nearing 80, doffed his now-trademark hat, thanked them genuinely and rewarded them with more than three hours from his life's catalogue."

A concert of Cohen's words and music, to be performed by local eight-piece band Imperfect Offering, will be held at Tapac in Auckland's Western Springs tomorrow night.

The show, which was planned before Cohen's death, will feature vocalist Peter McMillan and musicians from classical, rock and jazz backgrounds.

His final concert in Auckland was mentioned in an incredible in-depth profile, published by The New Yorker last month, in which Cohen said he was "ready to die".

Author David Remnick noted that the last songs of what transpired to be Cohen's last show were all "exit songs" - If It Be Your Will, Closing Time, I Tried to Leave You and a cover of the Drifters' Save the Last Dance for Me.

"I am ready to die," Cohen told Remnick.

"I hope it's not too uncomfortable. That's about it for me."

- NZ Herald

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