Moving On

Album: Thanks for the Dance (2019)

Songfacts®:

  • Here, Leonard Cohen is addressing a former lover who "broke the heart and made it new." When he was recording the vocal with his son Adam, Leonard had just gotten news that Marianne Ihlen had passed away. (Marianne was the woman he met on the Greek island of Hydra and later immortalized on "So Long, Marianne"). Adam Cohen recalled to Apple Music:

    "In recording the vocals I really did feel like he was channeling and correcting lyrics to have the song be a postscript to 'So Long, Marianne.' It's something that we had discussed while we were recording and it informed my wanting to exaggerate the Mediterranean romance of the song."
  • Adam Cohen remembered the recording of the song to The Guardian. "There was," says Adam, "a feeling of communion in the room when he recited the lyrics, a kind of revisiting. We spent an hour or so, going over and over the words. It was as if we were trying to bring the Greek taverna back to life, and conjure the ghostly presence of a woman in the next room."
  • Spanish guitarist Javier Mas, who accompanied Leonard on stage for the last eight years of touring, played the Spanish nylon-string guitar on the track. Cohen also recruited a concert player by the name of Avi Avital to play the mandolin.

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