Leonard Cohen’s song “Hallelujah,” written in 1984 for his album “Various Positions,” is one of the most covered songs of our era. John Cale was the first to cover it in 1991, for a Cohen tribute album. From there Jeff Buckley picked up the torch, though he didn’t live to see his version, called “as near perfect as you can get” by John Legend years later, reach the charts. From there, Rufus Wainwright tried his hand at the track, recording it in Buckley’s honor. “Hallelujah” has also been covered by k.d. Lang and Imogen Heap. The song appeared in “Shrek” and was a mainstay of the teen drama “The O.C.,” which used assorted versions of the song to underscore pivotal scenes throughout its 2003 to 2007 run.
Here, singer and songwriter Kate Voegele takes a stab at the now-classic song. Pretty, eh?
And in another Kate connection—is it just me, or does Voegele look an awful lot like Phoebe Cates of “Fast Times at Ridgemont High” fame?
I’ll end this by saying that, in 2009, Leonard Cohen was interviewed about the popularity of the song and said he found it “ironic and amusing” that it had become so popular to cover.
Cohen said, “I was just reading a review of a movie called ‘Watchmen’ that uses it and the reviewer said, ‘Can we please have a moratorium on ‘Hallelujah’ in movies and television shows?’ And I kind of feel the same way.”