Win Butler, JK Rowling, Justin Timberlake And More Remember The Late Leonard Cohen


News broke last night that musical legend and beloved poet Leonard Cohen had passed away at the age of 82. The Montreal-born artist died in his Los Angeles home, with his son Adam telling Rolling Stone magazine that his father died at peace and creating art until his final moments.

Cohen’s career as a musician began to take off in the 1960s and ’70s, with his poetic lyrics and gravelly voice helping shape the folk movement along with artists like Bob Dylan, Paul Simon and fellow Canadian Joni Mitchell.

Writing numerous poetry books and releasing 14 albums, including last month’s You Want It Darker, Cohen’s career is one filled with countless awards, accolades, and famous covers that helped make him an international icon.

One of Cohen’s most famous covers is courtesy of the late Jeff Buckley, who released a cover of “Hallelujah” on his 1994 album Grace, three years before his tragic death.

With news of Cohen’s passing hitting the media last night, mourners began paying their respects at the French-Canadian artist’s home on Saint Laurent in Montreal, with fans leaving candles, flowers and messages. By 11 pm local time, approximately 200 people had gathered to pay their respects to an artist who championed his hometown throughout his career.


With timing fitting for a man regarded as one of the greatest poets of modern history, Cohen’s death comes one day before Remembrance Day. Just last year, Cohen recorded John McCrae’s “In Flanders Field” to commemorate the famous poem’s 100th anniversary. The Remembrance Day poem is also a timely reminder that in the face of difficult times in Canada and around the world, turning to art for comfort is more important now than ever.

Many celebrities took to social media today to post their messages of mourning and thanks to the late Leonard Cohen, including a number of Canadians.

Prime Minister Trudeau.

Singer/songwriter Alanis Morissette.

Actor Kiefer Sutherland.

Singer Matthew Good.

Journalist George Stomboloupolous.

Singer/songwriter Carly Rae Jepsen.

Of course, Leonard Cohen’s impact on music and poetry was felt outside of his native Canada as well. Jennifer Hudson was one of many artists to cover Cohen’s most popular song, “Hallelujah.”

Justin Timberlake posted a simple and sweet message about the late singer.

Rage Against The Machine’s Tom Morello paid his respects to one of the “greatest, deepest and wisest.”

Vampire Weekend’s Ezra Koenig provided a short biography of Cohen as inspiration for those pursuing their dreams.

Courtney Love posted an emotional message for Cohen, asking him to save her a seat next to her late husband and fellow poet, Kurt Cobain.

Arcade Fire’s Win Butler shared a memory from when he first moved to his adopted home of Montreal.

Lin-Manuel Miranda shared his favourite piece of songwriting from Cohen.

Beck gave thanks to Cohen for his lifetime of work.

Author JK Rowling shared one of Cohen’s most famous lyrics.

Comedian Patton Oswlat says what many of us are thinking about this week.

The Walking Dead’s Norman Reedus is using Cohen’s music to get through this sad day.

Singer Mika listed Cohen one of the greatest writers of all time.

Comedian Sarah Silverman is thankful for Cohen providing music for dark days.

And Lena Dunahm used Cohen’s words to remind everyone that things will be fine.

Leonard Cohen #onlyoneprayer

A photo posted by Lena Dunham (@lenadunham) on