Two Smokers

Back in early October when I put up a couple of plugs for Lana Del Rey, I was beginning to wonder if I’d lost my ear for a tune. After all, the critics have been panning her as a rich, fake, botoxed bimbo.  So I was delighted to learn today that her debut album had gone straight to No. 1 in the UK album charts . In fact it’s gone to No. 1 in 15 countries.

Sometimes songs just grab me, usually about 30 seconds into hearing them the first time. And that’s what hers did.

Simultaneously, Leonard Cohen – whom I also noted a few weeks back – has jumped into the No.2 spot with his latest album.

And anyway she’s a smoker (just like Leonard Cohen).

Correction: Leonard Cohen has quit smoking in recent years, and worse still

Everybody Knows, a Leonard Cohen song delivered in his famously deep, raspy voice, the final result, according to Cohen himself, of “about 500 tons of whiskey and millions of cigarettes,” has been chosen as the music for a major anti-smoking ad.

But, and here’s the kicker, he’s planning to take it up again.

“Also, I’ve decided that I’ll start smoking again when I’m 80. I’ll be 78 this year and, if I go on tour for a couple of years, I’ll be able to start smoking on the road. I’m looking forward to that tour!”


“I was excited. She was very original. I didn’t think she was the same as the other alt-indie girls. She also is a very intelligent and creative person. She would ride around on the subways all night sometimes, writing lyrics and stuff like that. When I was pitching her, I said, “Here’s somebody with the outer manifestation of Marilyn Monroe with the inner manifestation of Leonard Cohen.” That’s how I saw her. For people to say she’s just this created thing is wrong. She’s probably going to continue to evolve and in a way, that probably didn’t get her too much time to do that, now she’s engrossed in the public. As an artist, I’m very supportive of her.”

About Frank Davis

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8 Responses to Two Smokers

  1. smokervoter says:

    After 500 tons of whiskey and a million cigarettes he’s still alive and kicking at 77 freakin’ years of age, the average lifespan. Those vices really took their toll, eh? So harmful were they that the Australian Assistant Health Minister feels completely justified in running hateful Goebbelesque ads. “It is a hard-hitting TV commercial, we make no apologies about that because we also know that graphic television advertising really does work the best”

    No apologies indeed. These folks trade kudos with one another over how hateful and spiteful they can get with their enemies – the smokers of the world who refuse to bow to their orders. Real nice folks.

    It’s no wonder that the terms Smoke Nazi’s and Health Nazi’s have become part of modern lingo. If the jackboot fits, wear it.

    As to running them during the Olympics, I recall an outfit by the name of spending what had to have been a small fortune to run dour, horrid anti-smoking ads during the Superbowl some years back. A complete dud. It was like coming in and throwing a wet blanket over everyone at a rip roaring party. Most people just thought “Who invited the Taliban to our beer bust anyway?” and poured themselves another drink and lit up a Marlboro.

    Screw these awful killjoys.

  2. DrHGuy says:

    A 2008 post, Leonard Cohen – From Marlboro Man To Anti-smoking Troubadour, discusses Cohen’s smoking, including the use of his music in those ads run in New South Wales during the Beijing Olympics and his poem, “What Did It” from Book Of Longing, which follows:
    An acquaintance told me
    that the great sage
    Nisargadatta Maharaj
    Once offered him a cigarette,
    “Thank you, sir, but I don’t smoke.”
    “Don’t smoke?” said the master,
    “What’s life for?”

    In addition, a gallery 60+ images of Leonard Cohen smoking can be viewed at

  3. garyk30 says:

    If only I were 40 years younger!!!!

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  7. John says:

    I LOVE women who smoke… it is so sexy!

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