Monday, January 17, 2011

Music Monday ~ Diane Warren - Songwriter, 12th House.

Songwriters, as I've remarked before, are often forgotten once a song "takes off", as performed by a particular artist. Commentators, reviewers and journalists are often guilty of aiding and abetting this when they write, for instance, "Aerosmith's Dont Wanna Miss a Thing" or "Toni Braxton's Un-break my Heart" - leaving the impression (for some readers/listeners) that the artists wrote those songs. Most songwriters tend to be "backroom people" by nature and won't mind too much, as long as the $$$$$ keep rolling in.

Diane Warren is one such songwriter whose name isn't nearly as familiar as those of the hundreds of singers who have had success singing songs she wrote. I wasn't surprised to find, from her natal chart, that her natal Sun lay in 12th house. Astrologers consider 12th house a place of isolation of one sort or another - the astrological backroom, as it were.

Diane has had many, many hit songs across the Billboard charts (reports vary from 100 to 200) and her songs have been featured in numerous movies.

There's an excellent article about Diane Warren at Sound on, (SOS) written by Paul Tingen. From that piece I learned that Diane's draw to music and writing began in her mid-teens
"....after being given a guitar by her father, obsessively spent hours every day honing her craft in the garden shed. From her 15th birthday onwards she tried, with her father's help, to gain a foothold in the Los Angeles music machine, to be met for more than a decade with rejection after rejection."
By 1983 though she had become a staff writer and a couple of years later enjoyed real success with her songs regularly climbing high in the music charts.
".... performed by artists such as Aerosmith, Elton John, Tina Turner, Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Roberta Flack, Celine Dion, Whitney Houston, Roy Orbison, Eric Clapton, Lenny Kravitz, Pet Shop Boys, Joss Stone, Christina Aguilera, Enrique Iglesias, Jessica Simpson and Mary J. Blige."
Her songs are mainly romantic ballads, e.g. Because You Loved Me, If I Could Turn Back Time, How Do I Live, Can't Fight The Moonlight, There You'll Be. That last one used to have me in tears every time I heard it at one point in my life! A list of her songs appears at Wikipedia.

Diane maintains control of her songs which are published by her own company RealSongs, reported to be "the most successful female-owned and operated business in the music industry".

A further quote from the linked article - because I think it connects very well to her natal chart, which follows, using data from Astrodatabank.
Despite her success, Warren remains relatively obscure to the public at large, having made a conscious decision to remain behind the scenes and not to be an artist in her own right. She appears genuinely shy and uncomfortable with the limelight, and has also remained resolutely single, making one wonder how she managed to become both a successful businesswoman and a renowned composer of love ballads. Her deceptively simple answer is the same in both cases. "I don't know what the process is," she says, "but the process is that I show up. This is what I always say: I show up. If you don't show up, nothing is going to happen. You have to get there. And I am excited to get here every day and can't wait to get to work. As long as I feel like that, things are cool."

"Showing up" may not sound like a magic bullet to many aspiring songwriters and musicians, but it's amazing how many of us dream rather than show up. By contrast, Warren knew from day one, even in her parent's garden shed when writing three songs a day ("they all sucked"), that 'showing up' is the First Commandment of Success. She continues to put the principle into practice at an astonishing rate, and still works 12 hours a day, six days a week, rarely taking a holiday. She says that she writes about a song per week, and she's built up a back catalogue of over 1000 songs.
"Yes, I am a workaholic,"
Warren agrees. "And it's hard to tell you what I actually do, because writing is a magical experience. I always try to be inspired, but of course some days you're more 'on' than others. On Sundays I try to take at least part of the day off. I don't come into the office, if I can at all help it. There's a place on the beach where I like to go to, just to get out of here for a moment. And then I hit it hard on Monday. But you know, sometimes I find myself writing on the beach."

Sun in Virgo, and in 12th house, conjunct Jupiter describes a writer who is also a workaholic. Virgo is ruled by Mercury, the writer's planet, and it's the sign of the potential workaholic too. With Jupiter, planet of excess so close, in Diane's case her potentiality to work, work, work is exaggerated further. (See quote above!)

Mercury, Moon and Neptune were all in Libra, in 1st house of self as Diane came into the world. Libra is ruled by Venus, planet of the arts including music. So it's appropriate that Mercury is here, as well as Neptune, planet of creativity, and Moon (inner self). There's a definite softness and charm about all of Diane's songs - typically Libran. Venus in Cancer. I'd not have been surprised to find even more Cancer in her natal chart. Her songs are very sentimental and emotional, typical Cancerian traits. Venus in Cancer in 10th house of profession does describe her work well - Venus (art) in Cancer (emotion, sentimental) in 10th house (career).

I drafted this post during last week. Coincidentally, yesterday evening, watching part of the Golden Globe Awards on TV, I noticed that Diane Warren won the Golden Globe for best song written for a movie soundtrack. The award is for a song she wrote for the movie Burlesque.

My favourite of Diane's songs - sung by Faith Hill: There You'll Be (used in the movie Pearl Harbor)

When I think back
On these times
And the dreams
We left behind
I'll be glad 'cause
I was blessed to get
To have you in my life
When I look back
On these days
I'll look and see your face
You were right there for me

In my dreams
I'll always see you soar
Above the sky
In my heart
There will always be a place
For you for all my life
I'll keep a part
Of you with me
And everywhere I am
There you'll be
And everywhere I am
There you'll be

Well you showed me
How it feels
To feel the sky
Within my reach
And I always
Will remember all
The strength you
Gave to me
Your love made me
Make it through
Oh, I owe so much to you
You were right there for me

[Repeat chorus]

'Cause I always saw in you
My light, my strength
And I want to thank you
Now for all the ways
You were right there for me
You were right there for me
For always

[Repeat chorus:]


Astrology Unboxed said...

Hi Twilight:
There is a very good speech given by Elizabeth Gilbert (Eat, Pray, Love) in 2009 at the TED conference that basically said the same thing about artists and creativity. That their "Job" was to show up in good faith without worrying about starring at a blank screen (in Gilbert's case).
It'a a good advice to keep in mind and one that Diane Warren seems to have perfected.

Wisewebwoman said...

Lovely intro, T, thanks.
That happens to be my philosphy too: just show up. Magic has happened as a result of this.

Twilight said...

Astrology Unboxed (Fabienne) ~~

Yes, she does.

It takes a good deal of self-discipline to keep showing up when self-employed - no bosses breathing down one's neck - I guess. Especially so working in any creative sphere, and with some sucess already achieved, so not working simply to fill the fridge.

Twilight said...

WWW ~~~ My pleasure! Yes, magic will NEVER show up if we don't.