Leonard Cohen’s Songwriting Catalog is the Latest to Find a Buyer

Could a biopic be next?

Leonard Cohen
Singer/Songwriter Leonard Cohen in recording studio.
Ian Cook/Getty Images

We’re currently living through a watershed moment in popular music, as numerous high-profile songwriters (and, in some cases, those songwriters’ estates) sell their catalogs for impressive sums of money. For some high-profile holdouts, it seems like a question less of if then when — and the latest big name to have their catalog purchased is none other than Leonard Cohen.

Pitchfork reports that Cohen’s estate sold his songwriting catalog for an undisclosed amount. The buyer was Hipgnosis Songs Fund, who also own the catalogs of the likes of Neil Young and Lindsey Buckingham.

According to the report, the deal includes the “songwriter’s share” of Cohen’s work up until 2000, and both that and the “publisher’s share” of his songs from 2001 to 2016. 2001 was a significant year for Cohen, as it saw the release of Ten New Songs, his first album in almost a decade.

Remember the time when “Hallelujah” was essentially inescapable on film and television soundtracks? We might be seeing something similar on the horizon. Also somewhat more likely than before: the prospect of a prestigious Leonard Cohen biopic. Thinking about the casting possibilities makes the mind boggle.

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