Song: ‘Chelsea Hotel No. 2’- Leonard Cohen
It’s not hard to realize the sad brilliance of this song. Without over romanticizing, Cohen
holds up a trembling, expired glass to toast a tender, fading memory of what once was.
Lyrics about ugly musicians seem aptly spoken, almost prophetic, as today we are
relentlessy force fed prefab pop stars and auto tuned “indie” boy bands. I didn’t live in
the sixties, not even close, and yet I feel like I know exactly what he’s talking about. His
voice is perfectly droopy and, as he talks to the dead, it’s as if he barely drags through
life himself. By the end of the song, it seems that he doesn’t even bother to sip his own
toasted wine, but wearily abandons the chipped crystal and walks the other way.
– Bryan John Appleby
Bryan John Appleby is an exceptional songwriter from Seattle, WA who released what was easily my favorite album of 2011, Fire On The Vine. He and his band are currently gearing up for a tour of the West Coast with Lemolo, which a) again makes me wish I lived out West and b) is one of those incredible tours you should be willing to drive multiple hours to see if necessary. Bryan John Appleby is, quite simply, one of my favorite artists making music today .
‘Artists as Fans’ is an ongoing series that features artists writing about songs that they personally love and connect with. You can find previous entries here.