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Rufus Wainwright — Hallelujah
Album: Shrek Soundtrack
Avg rating:
6.8

Your rating:
Total ratings: 1032









Released: 1998
Length: 4:03
Plays (last 30 days): 0
I've heard there was a secret chord
That David played and it pleased the Lord
But you don't really care for music, do you?

It goes like this the fourth the fifth
The minor fall the major lift
The baffled King composing Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah

Your faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty in the moonlight overthrew you

She tied you to a kitchen chair
She broke your throne she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah

Maybe I've been here before
I know this room I have walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you

I've seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah

There was a time you let me know
What's real and going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?

And remember when I moved in you
The holy dark was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah

Maybe there's a God above
And all I ever learned from love
Was how to shoot at someone who outdrew you

And it's not a cry you can hear at night
It's not somebody who's seen the light
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah

Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Hallelujah
Comments (392)add comment
I'm not as down on this version as most of the recent posters. I like the solo piano arrangement and performance perhaps best of all the renditions... But his voice doesn't quite do it for me. Maybe Leonard Cohen backed by Rufus...
after reading the comments about this song and hearing that it is still getting air time i have to conclude that RP dosen't care what we think of the song, but then again it has a rating of 6.8 and my 2 didn't budge the average

Not really complaining (I suppose it means I really like RP) but we had Jeff Buckley doing it at 3:09am and now Rufus Wainwright at 6:45am.  Hallelujah!

{#Cool} 

 
 Papernapkin wrote:
Please stop playing this song until the year 2050. After that, I don't mind. Thanks.

 
I second the motion. Enough is enough.

{#Skull}{#Fire}{#Drunk} 
 rez wrote:
Heard this enough for one lifetime. It's an OK song but it's not up to the number of times it gets played (in however many versions there are of it)

 
So it's not just me? Cool! Every time I hear it I have to drop what I'm doing to go rate it a 1 again.
 hbs47 wrote:
An un-inspired cover by someone else I fail see their talent, having the same surname as talent doesn't mean dilly squat, despite the record company's conclusions.

 
Well, you nailed it. Loved his dad, his son is execrable.
Sucko-barfo sums this up nicely.
An un-inspired cover by someone else I fail see their talent, having the same surname as talent doesn't mean dilly squat, despite the record company's conclusions.
{#Undecided} {#Cry}  {#Sleep}
meh
I would've sang this one with more emotions... 

The Atlantic just covered this song — check out How Leonard Cohen's 'Hallelujah' Became Everybody's 'Hallelujah'.

And they mention there's a book on the way out: The Holy or the Broken: Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and the Unlikely Ascent of "Hallelujah".

Cover of book from Goodreads.com



Rufus Wainwright B'ham 8 by ~melons
There are several versions of this song on RP.  Amazingly, they don't have the same lyrics.
Heard this enough for one lifetime. It's an OK song but it's not up to the number of times it gets played (in however many versions there are of it)
that's funny because yesterday my 11-year old nephew heard me playing the Jeff Buckley version and I couldn't understand how he knew it...Shrek!
I just can't stand Ethel doing this one. He needs to stick to showtunes where he is appreciated.
 Sonomacathouse wrote:
 Pieter wrote:

Who?

K.D. Lang, Jeff Buckley, Leonard Cohen 

 
Let's hear Buckley's version, please.

 Pieter wrote:

Who?

K.D. Lang, Jeff Buckley, Leonard Cohen 



Annnnnnnnnd...volume goes down.
 jmsmy wrote:
What a great song - and I like how Bob plays different versions of it.
 
Bob and Roberta. Ya gotta love 'em.

 jmsmy wrote:
What a great song - and I like how Bob plays different versions of it.
 
Who?
Please stop playing this song until the year 2050. After that, I don't mind. Thanks.
 pinklife wrote:

1. Leonard Cohen

2. kd lang

3. Jeff Buckley

After which, I don't particularly care.


 

I think my order might differ slightly, but I have to agree, I think the Rufus Wainwright version is probably my least favorite version. Excellent song, nonetheless.
hallelujah, blah, blah, blah. I've heard so many covers of this thing, it's bordering on the insipid...
 
What a great song - and I like how Bob plays different versions of it.

1. Leonard Cohen

2. kd lang

3. Jeff Buckley

After which, I don't particularly care.


what a beautiful song.
Pretty weak.  4
 phillips wrote:


who sang the original?
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hallelujah_(by_Leonard_Cohen)
 lyn wrote:
Not to beat a dead horse ... but in my mind the definitive version of this song by a MILE (or 1.6 kilometres as i'm canadian) is k.d. lang's live perormance at the 2006 Juno Awards. it is literally hair-raising and luminescent. Puts this version to SHAME.
  I have a hard time comparing k.d. to anybody she stands so far above most vocalist I like to hear her sing songs I don't like, she's just that good


Nice.
This version is in a 3-way tie for 2nd place for this cover, shared by John Cale, and the man himself, Leonard Cohen.
Number one is Jeff Buckley's version.
Way down the list id K.D's version
love Buckley's version, I think it's not because the song but because of Buckley....
(it's the singer, not the song, that's what i mean)
 kaybee wrote:
Ten versions from 9 different artists on RP!  This song is threatening to be to the early 2000's what "Feelings" was to the 70's.!  {#Eek}
 

Just thank your lucky stars that we're not getting the Alexandra Burke version (winner of UK's "X Factor" in December '08).  The truck driver's gear change* half-way through (with added gospel choir) still disturbs me.

*  https://www.gearchange.org/

Loved Shrek, but gimme Leonard Cohen's Hallelujah anyday!
Ten versions from 9 different artists on RP!  This song is threatening to be to the early 2000's what "Feelings" was to the 70's.!  {#Eek}
As has been mentioned previously, the much better Cale version of the song actually appears in the movie, while this one shows up on the soundtrack. https://www.allmusic.com/cg/amg.dll?p=amg&sql=10:kzfyxqq0ld0e  I'd love to see the Cale version here on RP.

Well, it doesn't always have to be the best version to deserve a listen. I enjoy the plethora of covers and sort of keep a casual collection of them. As long as the weaker covers don't supplant the great ones or the original, I have no problem. Now, if keeping Buckley's cover in circulation meant no possibility of hearing any of Cohen's original versions again, I would break out in hives. That would be a horrible choice to have to make.
Well a rather good cover but looks like almost everyone covers that and I heard better versions, so better play the original.
 fredriley wrote:
This is on the soundtrack of a kiddy's film? I'm sure I picked up references to S&M sex in the early part of the song, and more than a few sex references later on. Or perhaps they only play 'safe' extracts in the film...
 
Have you seen the movie? It's not shy about penis jokes and other wink-wink, nudge-nudge adult humor that supposedly goes over the kiddies' heads.

Man, I hated that movie. I'll take my children's entertainment without a side order of wanna-be hipster snark, thanks.

Wasn't it Leonard Cohen?
 alph wrote:

There was absolutely no need for another cover of this song.

 
... or for RP to play it.

John Cale nailed it, kd lang did a good job, Jeff Buckley's was overwrought but moving ... and yeah, this one adds absolutely nothing.

Ironically, I don't think I've ever heard Leonard's version
yuk! shreksoundtrack? what the f**k!
 jlind wrote:

I like pretty much every version of this song I've heard, but it'd be nice to hear the original sometime.


 

who sang the original?
This song is fine if you only have to hear it once. After that it's just sap.
 phlattop wrote:

And what if another artist loves the song so much they want to record it? C'mon, lighten up. While Wainwright's version may not measure up to Buckley's, who's to say someone else won't in the future? One of the great things about music is hearing the differences in how one artist covers a song from the next artist. Vive la difference, you know?

 
Amen, brother....

I love, love, love this song. It was a perfect pick for Shrek.
 alph wrote:

Agreed. There was absolutely no need for another cover of this song.
 
And what if another artist loves the song so much they want to record it? C'mon, lighten up. While Wainwright's version may not measure up to Buckley's, who's to say someone else won't in the future? One of the great things about music is hearing the differences in how one artist covers a song from the next artist. Vive la difference, you know?

deadline wrote:
Deadhearted and dispensable.

Wait.. did he just sing "the holy duck was moving too?"

  

      Lol
Not to beat a dead horse ... but in my mind the definitive version of this song by a MILE (or 1.6 kilometres as i'm canadian) is k.d. lang's live perormance at the 2006 Juno Awards. it is literally hair-raising and luminescent. Puts this version to SHAME.
Hallelujah this song is almost over!
This is awful. I'm glad I've heard much better versions of this song before this one or I might not have appreciated the song's beauty nearly as much.

I like pretty much every version of this song I've heard, but it'd be nice to hear the original sometime.


Not even throwing Jeff into this discussion.

This
Sounds
Uninspired
Deadhearted and dispensable.

Wait.. did he just sing "the holy duck was moving too?"

 . . . as had been written

Yep.  Buckley's is in another category entirely.

Maudlin.

Leonard Cohen is well ventured because all the versions that had made of its song had been all successful; nor always it happens  -   8.


Baby I have been here before
I know this room, I've walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you.
I've seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It's a cold and it's a broken Hallelujah

 alph wrote:

Agreed. There was absolutely no need for another cover of this song.

 
     Yep.  Buckley's is in another category entirely.

This version ranks at the bottom for me.  Too rushed.  Too nasally.


Still prefer Cohen's rendition, but i'll take this one if i must.
This is on the soundtrack of a kiddy's film? I'm sure I picked up references to S&M sex in the early part of the song, and more than a few sex references later on. Or perhaps they only play 'safe' extracts in the film...
 mread wrote:

It was John Cale, not JJ (unless there's an obscure version out there somewhere by JJ Cale). And anyway, Cale's version was in the movie. Wainwright's version was swapped in for the soundtrack release ... can't remember why.



 
Artist/Label conflict/ownership issues.

And John Cales treatment of this beats Wainwright by a country mile - this sounds like 'happy birthday' in comparison.

IMHO

philipburrows wrote:
Jeff Buckleyᅵs version is the definitive and only version of this song you ever need and will ever need! And if you disagree, you are clearly demonstrating your ignorance of music in general.


Agreed. There was absolutely no need for another cover of this song.

It must be ill-advised covers day here on RP.
philipburrows wrote:
And if you disagree, you are clearly demonstrating your ignorance ...
Comments like that always make me chuckle.
Martino wrote:
good song! Bad version!!!!
overplayed song...doesn't matter what version. Mute button is engaged!
Jeff Buckley's version is the definitive and only version of this song you ever need and will ever need! And if you disagree, you are clearly demonstrating your ignorance of music in general.
macadavy wrote:
Leonard Cohen wrote 'Hallelujah'. Wainwright gives it one of the best interpretations, right up there with K D Lang's. :smile:
You're right. I hit the wrong Song comment section here. :-)
Leonard Cohen wrote 'Hallelujah'. Wainwright gives it one of the best interpretations, right up there with K D Lang's. :smile:
betsy wrote:
What a beautiful segue from Classical Gas. Not my favorite version, but lovely radio right there. Just lovely.
"Version"? He *wrote* the bloody song.
betsy wrote:
matthead wrote:
Is it just me, or does it almost sound like he sings "... and the holy duck was moving too..." Good heavens, I thought I mis-heard - he definitely said DUCK. Buckley says dove, Cohen on his live album says Ghost. Rufus says duck. 'Nuff said.
Oh shit.... I've nearly ruined my keyboard with all the coffee I've spit on it. :roflol: YMMD!
Gorgeous.
matthead wrote:
Is it just me, or does it almost sound like he sings "... and the holy duck was moving too..." Good heavens, I thought I mis-heard - he definitely said DUCK. Buckley says dove, Cohen on his live album says Ghost. Rufus says duck. 'Nuff said.
SomeOldGuy wrote:
Rufus Wainwright, Jeff Buckey, JJ Cale, Leonard Cohen..
It was John Cale, not JJ (unless there's an obscure version out there somewhere by JJ Cale). And anyway, Cale's version was in the movie. Wainwright's version was swapped in for the soundtrack release ... can't remember why.
Is it just me, or does it almost sound like he sings "... and the holy duck was moving too..." I'm with the folks who like Buckley's cover a bit better than this one. Not that Rufus isn't good, I think I just like the slower tempo of Buckley's better for this song.
What a beautiful segue from Classical Gas. Not my favorite version, but lovely radio right there. Just lovely.
good song! Bad version!!!!
endoboy wrote:
How many version of this song do we have to listen to at all? .
Just seems very manipulative to me. The song itself, regardless of the version. I can't even begin to address the lyrics because the tune itself bugs me so much. This song may be the "one-est" of my one ratings (the one rated most "one-y"?)
endoboy wrote:
How many version of this song do we have to listen to at all? They all suck.
totally agree. Get this and K D Lang's version off your top 20 rotation Sucko Barfo :beat:
cavalaxis wrote:
This song still gives me chills. In a completely good way. His voice is so amazing. Thank you Bill!
Totally agree. This is my favorite version... every time it comes on I have to stop what I'm doing and let my eyes glaze over. *ahh*
Wizzuvv_oz wrote:
I think I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like this song.
Nope. Hooray for the internet, it brings people together. :)
How many version of this song do we have to listen to at all? They all suck.
lathyris wrote:
Geez, how many versions of this song do we have to listen to before we get back to Buckley's? I've been waiting to hear that one for awhile!
I'm with you. When, Bill, oh when? :pray:
I think I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like this song.
Although this is my favorite version, I'm completely burned out on hearing this song in one form or another every day. :neutral:
This song still gives me chills. In a completely good way. His voice is so amazing. Thank you Bill!
It must be lunch time now. (this song give me chills in the stomach flu kind of way, right before you puke your guts out)
Geez, how many versions of this song do we have to listen to before we get back to Buckley's? I've been waiting to hear that one for awhile!
enidualc wrote:
this is my most favorite version :meditate: .
Buckley blows this version away, any day...
So many covers... Jeff Buckley's one is far the best one.
The male version of Ethel Merman. Bought his first cd because of the hype and could not bear to get through it. Horrible. This song, though, I gave pretty high marks.
every time I hear a different version of this song, it impacts me less and less unfortunate, it is a beautiful song
This is horrible
what I like best about this is it led me to Buckley :motor:
overcaffeinatted wrote:
Do you people do anything besides listen to music and get off on one-upping each other's critiques? That said, this is a 6.
Better switch to decaf.
Hannio wrote:
I was just wondering what JC would have done with it.
I suspect J.R.(Cash)* would have done a treatment similar to 'Hurt'. It certainly would have been Godlike. I like Rufus Wainwright, and haven't heard a version of this song I didn't like, but Mr. Cohen and Mr. Buckley did better versions, in my opinion. *apparently he went by 'J.R.' until he joined the military, in which mere initials were not allowed. So he chose 'John'.
Rufus Wainwright, Jeff Buckey, JJ Cale, Leonard Cohen.. great version, but I'm waiting for the version by (let your imagine run wild) ELmer Fudd?
When this came on during "Shrek" I laughed out loud in a way I hadn't the rest of the film. I regret to say it, but in my opinion its placement in that movie is completely hamfisted and AWFUL. I felt like I was being manipulated, as if they KNEW they couldn't wring a drop of tender sentiment out of the rest of the movie so they decided to deluge the audience with it. Just came out as maudlin and awkward.
agree
Give me back my Jeff Buckley. MINE.
this is my most favorite version :meditate: .
shayborg wrote:
Ditto. It definitely doesn't stand up to Leonard Cohen's either.
Agreed. Disappointing not to hear either of the other versions.
I love this song and love Rufus, and this is my least favorite version, but it's still great.
luckywhitegirl wrote:
wow, I totally disagree. I think this version is just flat and soul-less compared to Jeff Buckley's.
Ditto. It definitely doesn't stand up to Leonard Cohen's either.
pigglywiggly wrote:
Amazon has it listed sung by John Cale
You're right, I'm sorry--went by memory. But if I know the CD really has the Rufus version, I'll try to find a used copy sometime. Thanks, all.
wow, I totally disagree. I think this version is just flat and soul-less compared to Jeff Buckley's.
pigglywiggly wrote:
Interestingly, now Amazon has it listed sung by John Cale. Odd. My daughter has the soundtrack and it is, indeed, Rufus Wainwright.
John Cale sings it in the movie. Rufus sings it on the CD soundtrack. Heaven knows why.
EB3 wrote:
Is this track REALLY on the soundtrack? Amazon lists Jeff Buckley, not Rufus. My son was watching the movie the other day, and it ain't Rufus in the film. Where to get this version? Which, by the way, I prefer to all the others. Leonard's is nice, though.
Interestingly, now Amazon has it listed sung by John Cale. Odd. My daughter has the soundtrack and it is, indeed, Rufus Wainwright.
Hannio wrote:
I was just wondering what JC would have done with it.
JC stands for more than Johnny Cash.
BlueHeronDruid wrote:
So far I've not disliked a single cover I've heard of this. Then again, I haven't heard Johnny Cash do it.
I was just wondering what JC would have done with it.
:daisy: Love this song!
Is this track REALLY on the soundtrack? Amazon lists Jeff Buckley, not Rufus. My son was watching the movie the other day, and it ain't Rufus in the film. Where to get this version? Which, by the way, I prefer to all the others. Leonard's is nice, though.
overcaffeinatted wrote:
Do you people do anything besides listen to music and get off on one-upping each other's critiques?
Naive!
bokey wrote:
I've yet to hear a bad version of this song.
i think this might be better then jeff buckley's version. but maybe that the tequiza talking?
Do you people do anything besides listen to music and get off on one-upping each other's critiques? That said, this is a 6.
I've yet to hear a bad version of this song.
ejsamuel wrote:
add k d lang's version too. RW and LC - both Montreal boys.
The best version, in my opinion, is John Cale's from "Fragments of a Rainy Season" -- a live record with a riveting performance of this song at the end, segueing into natural sound. Cale also sang different stanzas than Cohen. Buckley then followed Cale's version. Give Cale the credit for unearthing and performing this amazing song. (I think it's weird that someone would sing this at a wedding, though... it's an extremely bitter song about disappointment in love...)
I'd like to know the dirt on why Cale's version was in the actual movie (as well as being on "I'm Your Fan"), but Rufus' version is on the soundtrack to the movie. There must have been some stink between the producers and Cale after the film was in the can.
:crashcomp: