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Tributes Showered on Leonard Cohen

Musicians, authors and politicians have paid tribute to singer Leonard Cohen following his death at the age of 82, Sir Elton John said he was "a giant of a man and a brilliant songwriter", while Boy George called him a "poignant force of energy" and Russell Crowe thanked the Hallelujah songwriter for "the perspective, the wry smiles and the truth". Actress Mia Farrow and Hamilton creator Lin-Manuel Miranda were among others to quote the songwriter's lyrics on Twitter, while Carole King tweeted her respects with "RIP".


Peter Gabriel said Cohen's "unique voice painted unforgettable pictures" and that "there is a big hole where he stood. Anyone looking at an empty page trying to write a song lyric sits in the shadow of the mountain that was Leonard Cohen, another magical voice stilled," wrote Bette Midler, while Justin Timberlake said Cohen had "a spirit and soul beyond compare".


In a lengthy tribute, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said Cohen had "managed to reach the highest of artistic achievement. His ability to conjure the vast array of human emotion made him one of the most influential and enduring musicians ever."


Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu also paid tribute, describing him as "a great creator" and "a talented artist" and an impromptu vigil has been held outside the singer's Montreal home, with fans lighting candles and leaving messages and flowers.


Dire Straits' Mark Knopfler thanked Cohen "for so many years of music", while Canadian singer Alanis Morissette marked his passing with a crying face emoji, British singers Lily Allen and Paloma Faith also paid tribute, with the latter describing his death as "a tragic loss"; US comedian Sarah Silverman said his death would make people "remember songs like Come Healing which is a good one for these days".
Duran Duran singer Simon Le Bon wrote: "Spent a good deal of my early teens, just me & #LeonardCohen alone together in my suburban bedroom. It was a gentle & fulfilling love affair." Alexandra Burke, whose cover version of Cohen's Hallelujah was the Christmas number one after she won The X Factor in 2008, said: "Leonard Cohen, a lyrical legend, a man who will continue to inspire. A voice that will always live on. Thank you for the memories."

Nick Cave, who covered Cohen's Avalanche on his 1984 album From Her to Eternity, said he was "the greatest songwriter of them all - utterly unique and impossible to imitate, no matter how hard we tried".


Music critic Neil McCormick described Cohen as "an Old Testament poet combined with a hard-boiled comedian, I've never met someone who took much care with his phrasing and words. He could say the darkest things about the human condition, but lace it with a humour that made it palatable."

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