The Holy or the Broken

Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and the Unlikely Ascent of "Hallelujah"

The Holy or the Broken

How did one obscure song become an international anthem for human triumph and tragedy, a song each successive generation seems to feel they have discovered and claimed as uniquely their own? Celebrated music journalist Alan Light follows the improbable journey of “Hallelujah” straight to the heart of popular culture.
  • Atria Books | 
  • 288 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781451657852 | 
  • November 2013

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About the Author

Alan Light
Photo credit: Mary Ellen Matthews

Alan Light

Alan Light has been one of America’s leading music journalists for the past twenty years. Light was a senior editor at Rolling Stone, founding music editor and editor in chief of Vibe, and editor in chief of Spin magazine. He has been a contributor for The New Yorker, GQ, Entertainment Weekly, Elle, Mother Jones, and the Oxford American,and is the author of The Skills to Pay the Bills, an oral history of the Beastie Boys; The Holy or the Broken: Leonard Cohen, Jeff Buckley, and the Unlikely Ascent of “Hallelujah”; and cowriter of the New York Times bestselling memoir by Greg Allman, My Cross to Bear.

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