Leonard Cohen’s ‘Hallelujah’ returns to US chart following his death

Cohen's version of the classic ballad appears on a US chart for the only the second time since it was originally released in 1984.

Leonard Cohen’s most famous song, ‘Hallelujah’, has returned to the US Billboard chart following his death.

The classic ballad enters at Number 20 on the Hot Rock Songs chart following one million US streams and 3,000 downloads sold, all logged on the evening Cohen’s death was announced, Billboard reports.

It is expected to rise again on next week’s chart, which will take into account streams and downloads in the week following the announcement of his death.


Remarkably, Cohen’s version of ‘Hallelujah’, which was originally released in 1984, has only appeared on a US chart once before. It peaked at Number 7 on the Hot Singles Sales chart in December 2012, says Billboard.

In the UK, Cohen’s version of ‘Hallelujah’ has only ever charted for a single week – at Number 36 in December 2008, when X Factor winner Alexandra Burke took a cover of the song to Number One. Jeff Buckley’s cover of ‘Hallelujah’ peaked at Number Two during the same period.

Last week, it was announced that Cohen had passed away at the age of 82.  His manager Robert B. Kory has since confirmed he “died during his sleep following a fall in the middle of the night”.

READ MORE: RIP Leonard Cohen – the full NME tribute and obituary

After news of his death broke last week, the world of music and countless artists he inspired rushed to pay tribute to the late musician.


Nick Cave hailed him as “the greatest songwriter of them all“, while Rufus Wainwright wrote: “We need you now up there as much as we did down here“.

Last weekend, Cohen’s son Adam shared a touching tribute to his father.

“My sister and I just buried my father in Montreal,” Adam Cohen wrote. “With only immediate family and a few lifelong friends present, he was lowered into the ground in an unadorned pine box, next to his mother and father. Exactly as he’d asked.”

However, a tribute to the late musician on BBC One’s Strictly Come Dancing last weekend split opinion. One fan branded it a “desecration”, while another wrote on Twitter: “No, just no.”

READ MORE: So Long, Leonard: All The Cohen Covers In Tribute To The Legend