Monday, June 28, 2010

Music Monday ~ Moondog

In astronomical terms a Moondog is a kind of optical illusion caused by Earth's atmospheric moisture which results in the seeming appearance of a second Moon - sometimes even a third one. In terms of the musician, composer, singer who chose the pseudonym Moondog, I doubt that even Earth's atmospheric moisture could produce another like him! As Sun is now in Cancer and Cancer is ruled by the Moon, Moondog seems an appropriate subject for this Music Monday, he did have 3 planets in Cancer, too.

A classic eccentric: Louis Hardin aka Moondog, born on 26 May 1916 in Marysville, Kansas, son of a peripatetic episcopalian minister. He was blinded in an accident at age 16.

From Wandering Star with excerpts from Moondog, The Viking of 6th Avenue by Robert Scotto, in UK's The Guardian newspaper:
Louis's older sister, Ruth, read to him every day for years following the accident, and his encounters with philosophy, science and myth helped to bury whatever was left in him of his parents' Christianity. One book, The First Violin by Jessie Fothergill, inspired him to choose music as his life's work. Until then he had been interested in percussion, playing Indian drums for the high school band, but from the time he read The First Violin he was overtaken by the desire to be a composer. His father may have been a poor man of the cloth, but he was also well educated and an eccentric in his own right; his library contained many books on warfare and recordings of march music......................................

For more than two decades, he was a musician, poet, seer, "beggar", living on the streets of Manhattan. ....... His self-reliance became legendary.......

In 1969, however, his life changed dramatically, thanks to the release of Moondog by Columbia Records in its Masterworks series, backed up by an extensive promotional campaign..... From being a cult figure and local treasure, he became a celebrity of a different order: an internationally famous composer of classical music who was also a unique and easily recognisable personality. ....................

...... he fulfilled a long-delayed dream by travelling to Europe and, in so doing, returning to the site of the ancient culture that he had kept alive for so long in his clothes and his music. Except for one brief, triumphal return tour in 1989, he never returned to the US........ for the first year or so he lived on the streets in several German cities, not having the airfare to return to America.
In 1975 he met Frank and Ilona Goebel, whose family - appalled that such a talented and sensitive man could be left to fend for himself, blind, cold and uncared for - took him in. With their help, he soon enjoyed a working environment unlike anything he had ever known. In Germany, he wrote enormous amounts of music...... and produced more albums than during any other period of his life.

I'm disappointed not to find a birth time for this wonderfully whacky and talented character.
A 12 noon chart has to suffice.

Uranus simply has to be prominent in the natal chart of such an individual. I'd be surprised if it wasn't very close to one of the angles (ascendant, midheaven or opposite points). We can't know this, though, without a time of birth.

Uranus was in its own domain of Aquarius, at 19 degrees when Moondog was born and in very close trine (in harmony) with Mercury at 19 Gemini. I feel certain that one or other of those planets had to be either rising or at midheaven.

Venus (the arts) and Saturn (limitation)were conjoined in sensitive Cancer, with Neptune (creativity) in the same sign. These connect to his musical talent and the limitation his blindness placed upon him - though never dimming his creativity.

Mars in Leo and Moon likely in Aries, both dynamic Fire signs, link to his characteristic toughness and determination.

Moondog died in 1999, aged 83.


FOG ON THE HUDSON (a demonstration of various musical rhythms - I like this, but get lost after "5"!)


Wisewebwoman said...

I had read something about him years ago, T, glad you brought up so much information on this extraordinary composer.

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ I'd never heard of him, but was very happy to learn. He was truly one of life's "characters"!