The rise of 'Hallelujah'
Leonard Cohen performs at Madison Square Garden on December 18, 2012.
December 26th, 2012
10:35 AM ET

The rise of 'Hallelujah'

By Edgar Treiguts, CNN

(CNN) – It's a song that's been recorded by hundreds of artists. It's been a favorite in TV competition shows and been used as a healing anthem in times of tragedy. And just recently, after the tragedy in Newtown, Connecticut, 'Hallelujah' emerged again.

The popularity of 'Hallelujah' was hardly foreshadowed when it was written and first recorded by Leonard Cohen in 1984. The song was on an album Cohen's record company decided not to release.

A decade would pass before it was embraced by another artist, and its true introduction began.

Listen to the full story on CNN Soundwaves

- CNN Belief Blog

Filed under: Belief • Christianity

soundoff (20 Responses)
  1. Anon

    Hallelujah basically means glory to Yahweh but you'll seldom hear anyone talk about that.

    December 27, 2012 at 7:06 pm |
  2. Akira

    I like Rush.
    Saw them years ago.
    I like Leonard Cohen, though, too.
    Never saw him.

    December 26, 2012 at 7:58 pm |
    • midwest rail

      Akira, there is a youtube video of k.d. lang singing "Hallelujah" at a tribute to Cohen. Great performance.

      December 26, 2012 at 8:00 pm |
    • Akira

      Thanks, midwestrail.
      I will check it out!
      (I have no idea why this posted twice...)

      December 26, 2012 at 9:00 pm |
    • tallulah13

      The k d lang version is amazing.

      December 26, 2012 at 11:18 pm |
  3. 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

    Waiting for Captain Asshole to realize Leonard C is a Canadian. . .

    December 26, 2012 at 12:00 pm |
    • truth be told

      Leonard C is not a detriment to America nor is Captain A ... you are.

      December 26, 2012 at 12:39 pm |
    • midwest rail

      As usual, tbt responds with the most unintentionally funny post of the day. captain a is a detriment to humanity.

      December 26, 2012 at 2:03 pm |
    • Akira

      I thought captain america and tbt are the same person...

      December 26, 2012 at 2:37 pm |
    • truth be told

      You thought wrong but that is not unusual for your kind.

      December 26, 2012 at 2:57 pm |
    • Akira

      And what is my "kind?"
      Think very carefully before you make base assumptions about me...you have no idea who I am.
      All you had to do was say, "I'm not."

      December 26, 2012 at 3:10 pm |
    • sam stone

      tbt is still talking like tbt does..like a mouthy litte cvnt

      December 26, 2012 at 4:50 pm |
    • Roger that

      I prefer these Canadians.


      December 26, 2012 at 7:14 pm |
    • Akira

      I like Rush.
      Saw them years ago.
      I like Leonard Cohen, though, too.
      Never saw him.

      December 26, 2012 at 7:49 pm |
  4. Akira

    Leonard Cohen was brilliant.

    December 26, 2012 at 11:55 am |
    • 0G-No gods, ghosts, goblins or ghouls

      Is he no longer brilliant?

      December 26, 2012 at 12:01 pm |
    • Apple Bush

      Hi Akira,

      Hope you had a lovely Christmas. I found it amusing last night how people on the blog would put themselves above God in order to tell us what God thinks lol.

      To answer your question, what came first? Tolkien covered all of that in the Silmarilian, and much more eloquently than the Bible. The heavens were sung into being, and that works for me.

      December 26, 2012 at 12:15 pm |
    • Akira

      If he is still composing now, he's really brilliant.

      fred, you mean? Oh, yeah, he's a real corker.
      Yes, my day was lovely, if a bit tiring.
      I meant, which book was written first, TH or LOTR?
      I'll look it up, lol.
      TH is a lot of fun, so far; I am enjoying it immensely.

      December 26, 2012 at 12:54 pm |
  5. Atheism is not healthy for children and other living things

    Isn't this article about entertainment ? Wait, i forgot ... religions are about entertainment 😉

    December 26, 2012 at 11:09 am |
    • Which God?

      @ Atheism is not... too phunnie, fun-knee. Doh!

      December 26, 2012 at 12:12 pm |
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The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.