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Thankya Sai, I say Hallelujah April 29, 2006

Posted by thebeam in The Byways, The Highways.

Moved to Going My Way, please visit there 🙂



1. Lealexa - May 22, 2006

Hey, I just did the same google search and came up with your site. I am an avid Cohen fan, and though he can do no wrong, and this is one of my very favourite songs, I’m always interested in new versions, and the one from Criminal Minds is stunning. My favorite, which you don’t mention, is by John Cale. Find it.

2. thebeam - May 22, 2006

I’ll look for the John Cale version.
I think *G*
I was somewhat surprised the other day when I found out that there was a documentary movie for Leonard Cohen due for release in the USA in June. The title is “Leonard Cohen: I’m Your Man”, here is the IMDB writeup of it.

3. Sarah - October 17, 2006

Check out the Arooj Aftab version of the same song – it’s haunting and fabulous. I love to get several versions (covers) of a song and compare them all.

4. thebeam - October 17, 2006

Thanks for the heads Up, but I’m ahead of you 🙂

I found it after I found “My Old Kentucky Blog” – it is a great resource for covers of tunes. Check it out.

5. thom - October 17, 2006

My dad heard this on Criminal Minds and wanted to know who played it. I googled and got here as well. I *thought* it was Jeff Buckley, but since I hadn’t heard it myself on the show, did some further digging.
According to the site you linked (Tunefind.com search for Jeff Buckley) that song is used a LOT. On the commentary for Scrubs I think they mentioned using it first and that everyone else immitated, which seems to be the case as everyone is using it (although I don’t see it in tunefind).
But thanks for bringing this short search to a conclusive close.

6. me - October 18, 2006

TuneFind.com for Criminal Minds listed the wrong song.

I think it’s Rufus Wainwright’s rendition of Hallelujah.

The song sure is being used on a lot of soundtracks.

7. thebeam - October 19, 2006

Without a recording of the episode, I can’t be sure. But I tend towards thinking that it is most likely that Jeff Buckley is responsible for the version used on Criminal Minds.

The melody is haunting, as are the lyrics. Leonard Cohen is very much a poet in the Old Testament tradition in some ways, which tends to mean that works like this are full of references to stuff that is sacred and profane at the same time. Surely the references to David watching Bathsheba bathe before he took her into his bed show that.

In the end, I think his position on faith can best be taken from this verse from his lyrics:

I did my best, it wasn’t much
I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch
I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you
And even though
It all went wrong
I’ll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah

In the end, we will all stand before our maker. All we will bring with us will be our deeds, all of the rest won’t matter for a hill of beans. The wealth, the fancy cars, the boats and nice home on the hill. They will all be left behind.


8. Scandinavian - November 16, 2006

After watching Criminal Minds last night the song “Hallelujah stuck” in my mind and the first thing I did this morning was to google the lyrics to find the composer. First hit turned out to concern Leonard Cohen, but like others discovered, this was not the right version.
Second page I turned to for help was this one. And what a fantastic help! Thank you thebeam, for answering all of my questions – all the way from the other side of the globe 🙂

9. thebeam - November 16, 2006

Thanks for the note. How long has this show been available over there? And do you have any idea of what the delay is between US broadcast and broadcast over there?

I have friends in the US Military who are stationed in Europe, and who fume because they have to wait a few days before the latest episode of “Survivor” gets aired over there. They have to avoid news sites to avoid getting *spoilers* 🙂

10. Michael - January 8, 2007

Well, I did all the same things you did and followed much the same path. But you can’t check it. I have the season One DVDs and the music at the end of that episode is different now. No longer Hallelujah, as played on TV, but somethings else. So for some reason CBS felt they had to edit the soundtrack for the DVD version of Criminal minds. For the record, it was the March 22nd, 2006 episode of Criminal Minds, called A REAL RAIN, and they definitely have altered the final music on the DVD. And BTW it was NOT a police sniper who shot the unsub, it was Hochner. If you watch the DVD you see his gun smoking.

11. t-boy - June 9, 2007

saw criminal minds, heard ‘hallelujah’ (and i’m a big fan of cohen and his version), googled to see whose cover was used in the show, ran across your blog.
it’s such a wonderful song, all versions of it, all versions with all the different verses mixed in. i’ve gomt something like 4-5 versions of the song all around and always looking for newer ones.
and the dark tower series was so good – all the way upto volume 4; the last ones were disappointing.

do stephen king fans have a tendency towards leonard cohen compositions? or vice versa?

12. thebeam - June 12, 2007

That’s a good question. One that I couldn’t answer with any authority, as I don’t personally know (as in: meet day-to-day) any other Stephen King fans, who are also music fans.
But my guess is that there is some truth to the supposition. King readers have to have a sense of the power of words, their juxtaposition, their alternate meanings, their ability to illuminate hidden ideas. The first verse from Hallelujuh contains this phrase:

It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing Hallelujah

Musically, this identifies the chord progression of the song, but philosophically, it ties into the process of enlightment through falling in love. We go through a series of steps. Often, they are treacherous and painful, but done correctly, they lead us on in a personal journey of discover; the minor fall, the major lift.
I can’t tell you how often I’ve tried to penetrate what I imagine was on Stephen King’s mind as he tried to write the Dark Tower series. All I know, is that underneath it all, there is a dark, mysterious, terrifying and wonderful vision. I think it lurks in anyone with imagination, King is merely a master at bringing it into the light of day by putting into words on paper.
It should also be noted. Stephen King is a musician himself, he played guitar in a band with a group of other authors, “The Rock-Bottom Reminders” . Music has played a part in many of his stories, maybe the best illustration of that would be the short story “You Know They Got A Hell Of A Band”

13. Thankya Sai, I say Hallelujah - January 15, 2008

[…] Thankya Sai, I say Hallelujah Googled “leonard cohen”, came up with a “Leonard Cohen” web site run by Sony, and another site, “The Leonard Cohen Files“. The lyrics were provided, and they fit what I had remembered from the show, but didn’t offer snippets of the song … […]

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