I think it hurts when a singer dies
because at one point something they
said gave you life.
Some line they sung
understood the deepest part of you.
And you worry if anyone will be
able to do that again.
Everybody has experienced the defeat of their lives. Nobody has a life that worked out the way they wanted it to work out. We all begin as the hero of our own dramas, in centre stage, and inevitably life moves us out of centre stage, defeats the hero, overturns the plot and the strategy and we’re left on the sidelines, wondering why we no longer have a part, or want a part, in the whole damn thing. So everybody’s experienced this. When it’s presented to us sweetly, the feeling goes from heart to heart and we feel less isolated and we feel part of the great human chain, which is really involved with the recognition of defeat.
Leonard Cohen on why people enjoy listening to melancholy songs. From a BBC radio interview in 2007.