Closing Time

Album: The Future (1992)
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Songfacts®:

  • "Closing Time" starts off as an euphoric track about a wild party.

    The fiddler fiddles something so sublime
    All the women tear their blouses off
    And the men they dance on the polka-dots


    As the song goes on, the scene evolves from the closing of the bar, to the concluding of a relationship, to the end of life.

    I loved you when our love was blessed
    and I love you now there's nothing left
    but sorrow and a sense of overtime
    And I missed you since the place got wrecked
    and I just don't care what happens next
    Looks like freedom but it feels like death
    it's something in between, I guess
    It's closing time
  • Cohen based "Closing Time" on a violin sample that came with a Casio keyboard. "When he first started recording it, the sample was slowed down," engineer Leanne Unger told Uncut magazine. "It was very moody, with six string bass, very vibey. I loved it."

    She added: "He came in for next weekend and said, 'It's all wrong, I'm starting over.' I was like, 'Noooooo!' Devastated. He brought it back in a week later and it was uptempo, jumping, and he had a giant hit with it in Canada. So what do I know?"
  • The song peaked at #70 in Canada. It was Cohen's second-biggest hit in his native country after "Hallelujah."
  • The music video, directed by Curtis Wehrfritz, won the Juno Award for Best Music Video in 1993.

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