One Click Wonder: the Hallelujah choruses

Today, Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah" is set to land two of the top three slots in the Christmas top 40, courtesy of "X Factor" winner Alexandra Burke and late singer Jeff Buckley. Here’s some other moments in the song's much-covered history...
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John Cale

Back in 1991, Cale was the first to realise its anthemic potential, turning the tinny synth-backed original into a spine-tingling piano ballad, and serving as inspiration for Buckley's more celebrated 1994 effort.

Rufus Wainwright

Wainwright's atypically restrained rendition appeared on the soundtrack to 2004's Shrek, though its bleak sentiments proved an odd match for a tale of fairy-tale princesses and talking donkeys.

kd lang

Giving the boys a run for their money, crooner lang stamps her authority on the song with a powerhouse vocal performance that’s soaring but never overwrought. Talent show contestants, take note.


Scoring points for experimentation, if not for execution, the U2 frontman's 1995 spoken-word version, recorded for Cohen tribute album Tower of Song, now also serves as a tribute to rubbish Nineties trip-hop.

Katherine Jenkins

Any Cohen fans upset by the song's X Factor appropriation should steer well clear of 2008's other cover from Welsh opera diva Jenkins that's part Songs of Praise, part Celine Dion. Drippy isn't the word.