Field Commander Cohen: Tour of 1979

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Field Commander Cohen: Tour of 1979
Field Commander Cohen.jpg
Live album by
ReleasedFebruary 20, 2001 (copyrighted 2000)
RecordedDecember 4, 5, 6, 1979 at the Hammersmith Odeon, London and December 15, 1979 at the Dome Theatre, Brighton
GenreContemporary folk
Leonard Cohen chronology
More Best of Leonard Cohen
Field Commander Cohen: Tour of 1979
Ten New Songs
Professional ratings
Review scores
AllMusic3/5 stars link
Pitchfork Media(8.1/10)
Robert Christgau(choice cut) link
Rolling Stone4/5 stars link

Field Commander Cohen: Tour of 1979 is a live album by Leonard Cohen released in 2001. Songs were recorded live at the Hammersmith Odeon, London, on 4, 5, and December 6, 1979 and at the Dome Theatre, Brighton, on December 15, 1979. Cohen said it was his best tour ever.[citation needed]

Accompanying Cohen was the jazz band Passenger from Austin, Texas, consisting of members Steve Meador on drums, Roscoe Beck on bass, Mitch Watkins on guitar, Bill Ginn on keyboards and Paul Ostermayer on saxophone and flute. Other tour members included violinist Raffi Hakopian, oudist John Bilezikjian, and backup singers Laura Branigan, Jennifer Warnes and Sharon Robinson. Beck would become a stalwart of Cohen's studio and live bands for more than a decade afterwards.


James Hunter of Rolling Stone called the LP "elaborately, and yet simply, awesome." Mark Deming of AllMusic writes that Field Commander Cohen "presents an especially strong argument for Cohen's gifts as a musician." The New York Observer also praised the album: "Mr. Cohen's voice is warm and strong throughout, and still has some of the high end that is not so evident on his last two studio albums..."

Track listing[edit]

  • Written by Leonard Cohen, except where noted.
  1. "Field Commander Cohen" – 4:25
  2. "The Window" – 5:51
    • violin solo by Raffi Hakopian
  3. "The Smokey Life" – 5:34
    • duet with Jennifer Warnes
  4. "The Gypsy's Wife" – 5:20
    • violin solo by Raffi Hakopian
  5. "Lover Lover Lover" – 6:31
    • includes two long oud solos by John Bilezikjian
  6. "Hey, That's No Way to Say Goodbye" – 4:04
    • violin solo by Raffi Hakopian
  7. "The Stranger Song" – 4:55
  8. "The Guests" – 6:05
    • violin solo by Raffi Hakopian
  9. "Memories" – (Cohen, Phil Spector) 4:38
    • sax solo by Paul Ostermayer
  10. "Why Don't You Try" – 3:43
    • duet with Sharon Robinson, solo by Paul Ostermayer
  11. "Bird on the Wire" – 5:10
    • guitar solo by Mitch Watkins
  12. "So Long, Marianne" – 6:44

External links[edit]