Monday, January 18, 2010

Music Monday ~ The Everly Brothers

Born a tad less than two years apart Don on 1 February 1937 at 2pm in Brownies Creek, Kentucky, Phil (his birthday tomorrow) on 19 January 1939 in Chicago, Illinois at 7.30pm (Data from Astrodatabank). These brothers had enough in common in their astrological natures to enable them to harmonize beautifully, and enough that's different to lead to their professional conflicts and eventual break-up.

The Everly Brothers shone their brightest in the late 1950s and early 1960s. They weren't the first duo or group of siblings to sing in harmony, but they were one of the best examples. It's said that their harmonies influenced many who came after: the Beatles, Simon and Garfunkel for instance. Although this seems reasonable, and I think has been acknowledged by those involved, I can't help thinking that the Beatles and Art and Paul would have done what they did anyway, influence or no.

The Everlys sang straight pop ballads with a hint of country. Their songs seem very innocent now. Back then things were different. It was before hippies, psychedelia and the like - a simpler time. They wrote some of their own songs, one of their biggest hits, Cathy's Clown was their own composition. A few more titles to jog hazy memories: Bye Bye Love; Bird Dog; Wake up Little Susie; Walk Right Back.

Younger brother, Phil has Sun, Moon and Mercury in Earthy business-oriented Capricorn, with no planets in Air signs, Virgo rising, Taurus at midheaven, Jupiter in Pisces close to the descendant angle. Don, the elder brother has Sun in Aquarius, Moon in Libra giving him a much different, Airy, mentally driven nature in contrast to his more practical business-driven brother. Phil does have two Capricorn planets, however, Mercury and Jupiter, adding some definite grounding. Whereas Phil has three planets in Fire signs, Don has none.

The Airy Everly supplies what's lacking in his brother, and the Fiery Everly supplies what's lacking in his sibling, both have Earth and Water in ample supply.

I'd guess that Phil, the younger brother, would often have seemed like the elder of the two, more serious, more practical.

There are several similar placements in their charts. Both have Mercury in Capricorn and Mars in Scorpio, both have generational Neptune and Uranus in the same Earth signs, Virgo and Taurus; the other outer planet, Pluto, had moved into the first degree of Leo from late Cancer by the time Phil was born in 1939.

Venus, planet of music, in these charts is in helpful trine to Saturn, planet of work and business for Phil; Don's imaginative Venus in Pisces trines Phil's Mars in Scorpio.

Their natal Moons are in challenging square aspect from Libra and Capricorn though, which could be the seat of their eventual conflicts. The two split up professionally in 1973
By then the brothers' personal lives had gone through serious upheavals. Both were addicted to speed for a while, and Don was hospitalized for a nervous breakdown. Their relationship became increasingly acrimonious until it blew up at the John Wayne Theater at Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, California, on July 14, 1973. Phil smashed his guitar and stalked off stage, leaving Don to announce the duo's obvious breakup. Subsequent solo attempts by both were largely unsuccessful. From a Rolling Stone biography.
They reunited on stage around ten years later and continued to perform together into the decade just past.

Love is Strange- from their early days:

And some 20-ish years later during a UK tour in 1985:
Bye Bye Love


Cindy Rutgers said...

Really interesting analysis of the Everly Brothers but I agree with you when you say that the Beatles, Simon & Garfunkel were so talented anyway in their own right.

anthonynorth said...

A great duo, and I agree too. The Beatles and Simon & Garfunkel - I bow in reverence to both - would have gone there regardless.

Wisewebwoman said...

I'm so happy I was at one of their last performances in Ontario Place, in the late eighties, I think. One of the best concerts I was ever at.
I adored these two so thanks for the post, T.
Interesting BTW, "Wake up Little Suzie" was banned in Ireland.
You can imagine why!!

Twilight said...

Cindy Rutgers & Anthonynorth

Yes, I think Beatles and Simon and Garfunkel were aeons ahead of the Everlys in skill and creativity.

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ Oh really! Good memory to have!
Dearie me! The Everlys banned? Who'd have thunk it!?

The Next President of the United States said...

They aren't on the same tier as Beatles, Stones, Elvis, Dylan, etc etc., but I don't know that they've ever pretended to be. Still when I was a kid in the '50s, The Everlys and Ricky Nelson were great fun to listen to and sing along with - and I still love the Everlys harmonies. A year or so ago, by the way, Bill Medley (of Righteous Brothers fame) brought Phil Everly and Brian Wilson into the studio and the three of them did a version of Beach Boys' hit "In My Room" that's as lovely as your ears have ever savored.
Also, several years ago, Karen and I were taking the kids on a trip to see Uncle Bill in Columbus and go on to the Rock 'n' Roll Hall of Fame. We were driving through northern Kentucky between Nashville and Cincinnati, and there in the middle of nowhere was the Everly Brothers Museum. We didn't stop - probably because the kids were getting restless - but we will the next time!

Twilight said...

TNPOTUS ~~ Hi! No they weren't really in the same league as the others you name - but then, the league hadn't really been set up in the Everlys' day, I guess. They were some of the first artists to usher in the youth culture - where kids got to listen to music different from their parents' taste. I suppose they smoothed the way for those who came later and did more outlandish and creative stuff.

Hmmmm - must be a museum there because it's near the birthplace of one of the bros, in Kentucky.

I'll listen out for "In My Room", the version you mention. :-)

R J Adams said...

When I was a mere stripling of fourteen I fell hopelessly in love (from afar) with a young lady called Cathy. 'Cathy's Clown' was a big hit at the time. After listening to the song over and over, I eventually plucked up the courage to 'chat her up'. Sadly, she refused my advances and walked away. Ah, well, the first of many......

I guess I was the original 'Cathy's clown'.


Twilight said...

RJ Adams ~~~ Awwww! Now that young lady had no taste at all!