Wikipedia: “The 27 Club is a term that refers to the belief that an unusually high number of popular musicians and other artists have died at age 27, often as a result of drug and alcohol abuse, or violent means such as homicide or suicide.”
We will explore the horoscopes of some of the 60 known deaths of the members of that notorious club; Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin and Amy Winehouse.
The Progressed Moon in any person’s horoscope returns to its Natal position in about 27 years after birth. We will look at this Progression in each of the 5 horoscopes analyzed and see if there is a common thread that is tied to this first cycle of the Moon in nativities.
Jimi Hendrix was known as the most innovative guitarist of the 1960s. He has Natal Uranus in exact Opposition to Natal Mercury. His unusual (Uranus) fingering (Mercury) of the strings of the guitar brought him to the height of the mountain of talented musicians of the hippy generation. The red lines in the charts show the Progressed Lunar Return. The blue lines point out the other Progressed aspects of interest, and the green lines show significant Transits.
The red line shows that Jimi’s death is still within orb of the time of the Progressed Lunar Return. A period of 6 months before and 6 months after the exact Conjunction is the sphere of influence. It is a most intense time in the life, because the Moon is the indicator of the emotional field of experience. This is tied to the mental constructs leading ultimately to the individual’s actions, whether for good or otherwise.
In Jimi’s case, there are Transits of Uranus and Pluto to show the gravity of the situation surrounding his death. Shown in short green lines at the top of the chart is T. Uranus that has been making contact with Jimi’s Natal Neptune for some time prior to his death. T. Pluto is also shown with a short green line to point out the slowly approaching Conjunction with N. Neptune. The seriousness of “playing” with drugs during this time is indicated by these two profound Transits.
Jimi’s rise to fame is noted in this 9th house situation and T. Uranus gives Neptune its burst of sudden notoriety in the field of music, and also shows the exposure to the mass drug culture of the times. Several of these hard aspects in Transit indicate that there had been prior troubles in Jimi’s life, but the Progressed Saturn in exact Opposition to Natal Venus from the 6th to the 12th house is the real indicator of the difficulty in passing through this trying time unscathed.
The T. Moon position is shown by the long green lines from the bottom of the chart. The true position of the T. Moon is not certain as the exact time of death is an estimate. But one can surmise that the T. Moon did make an Opposition aspect with N. Mars and a Conjunction with T. Saturn shortly before, at the time of, and shortly after the event of his death. Often it can be seen that the major Transits and Progressions show the development of a grave issue, and the T. Moon kicks off the potential tragedy at the most poignant hour. More on the Transit Moon in a horoscope visit: Robin Williams – a suicide to prevent.
THE NATAL CHART – A brief look.
The nativity features are a Bowl Temperament Type, with the Mutable Disposition delimiting the Bowl (Venus/Saturn Opposition in Mutable signs). This Type points to a desire to please people, and the upturned Bowl shows the impulse to pour out the contents of his talents without restraint. There is no Point Focus planet to form a T-Cross with the Opposition which would allow a necessary positive direction for his tensions. His musical abilities instead are his manner of self-expression and release.
The Sun/Moon pair are in Trine along with the Trine of the planets of Significance, Uranus/Neptune. Mars/Venus and Jupiter/Saturn pairs are not in major aspect with themselves. This leaves the Sun/Moon and Uranus/Neptune to decide the Self-determination which is Subjective Function. This “proves” that it would be difficult to assist Jimi in handling his problems as he is highly motivated through following his own council. Objective Function could have allowed him to make major decisions based on input from sources appealing to him from his environment.
The Bowl Type is led through the houses by Uranus, which is then considered in High Focus in Jimi’s 5th house of unrestrained self-expression, inventive character and unconventional behavior. It is the indicator of his highly unique and individualized mode of musical performance and the keyword becomes Experimentative – which is precisely what brought his style to such heightened popularity.
His Leading Uranus Sabian Symbol degree is revealing:
GEMINI 3 The garden of the Tuileries This is a symbol of the self-confidence and authority which come to man through social position and wealth, and of his ability to bring all his capabilities to some graceful and exquisite self-expression. Here are the more exalted or immortal constants of everyday values, evident as they are given a solid foundation in human achievement or are preserved through a concern for them by people in general. The keyword is LUXURY. When positive, the degree is the creative stability which enables each individual to participate in the full gamut of satisfactions developed and cherished by his fellows as well as himself, and when negative, complete selfishness and a joy in lording it over others.
Jimi Hendrix photo by MARC SHARRATT – 1967
Next up: JANIS JOPLIN
Janis Joplin showed an immense talent for singing, just as Jimi Hendrix showed for his guitar performance. Janis had come out of an obscurity in youth, to the height of popularity which surprised her as much as her fans. She was unpopular as a student in her early days in Port Arthur, and took incredible pride in herself when returning at one point in her career to visit again those who previously marginalized her.
The red line shows the Progressed Moon just a few months beyond its Lunation Return, and so very much a sign of the emotional intensity and upheaval of the times. But the chart shows that it is mostly Transits that “encouraged” the mounting stress on her life style, and those Transits include Neptune that brings the misuse of drugs once again into the picture. At the time of her death, Transit Neptune was approaching an Opposition to her Natal Uranus, and the Transit Moon close by indicates its “kickoff effect” of the more major Transit aspect in action.
Uranus, as well as being aspected by an Opposition by the transiting Moon, somewhere in the vicinity of the time of death, is making in Transit a Square to Natal Moon. This is a reciprocal planetary exchange bringing more force and importance to the configurations.
All the significant Transits are shown in green, and the faint lines show the supportive yet powerful indications of the entire Gestalt. Transit Jupiter does make an exact Square to important Natal Mercury, but the more profound undercurrent is provided by Transit Pluto and its approaching Conjunction with Natal Neptune. This is the bass note factor of a mounting stress upon the native.
There is one feature of the Progressed chart not to be ignored, and that is the Progressed Sun reaching the ascendant and just into the first house. The Sun finally coming out of hiding with its 30 year journey through the 12th house is shown by the blue circle on the left of the chart. Just when things might have looked brighter, the rest of the horoscope proved to be too much of a challenge to withstand.
A brief look at the NATAL HOROSCOPE
The Temperament Type is a See-Saw and shows the native’s capacity for communication across divided lines of thinking. She was a spokesperson in a sense with song for her generation, and drew attention from conventional singers, like Tom Jones in 1969, who introduced her to audiences that resulted in an expanded exposure to those with more traditional cultural tastes. Natal Pluto in Opposition to Natal Mercury is the Core Opposition of the See-Saw that drew some criticism by Jones who commented that their singing together was more of a screaming match then two unique artists sharing styles.
Born with a preponderance of retrograde planets proved her to be caught up most tightly in her own brand of thinking and behavior. Being born just days after Mercury Stationed puts her mind, attitude and demeanor into High Focus. Natal Mercury is Conjunct Venus in the 12th, and although grating to the ears at times because in the sign of Uranus’ Aquarius, still her voice proved to be the ultimate sounding board of an entire 60’s generation.
Janis’ Natal Mercury definitely stands out in several ways, not the least in its Sabian Symbol of A popularity that proves ephemeral. This points more to her lifespan in years rather than an indication of her career being forgotten. She truly has become a legend in her field, and she will remain on the minds and hearts of those who adored her for some time to come.
The entire symbol:
AQUARIUS 10 A popularity that proves ephemeral This is a symbol of the eternal challenge which comes to an individual at every point of climax in his experience, and of the swing of the pendulum between an endorsement and a repudiation of his efforts by his social group. He must learn to accept the applause as encouragement in his self-strengthening, but to look for any continued sustainment from his own stability of being. A courageous self-confidence and an unflagging faith are worthy of recognition, but only in their moment of significance. The keyword is APPROBATION. When positive, the degree is a gift for bringing the issues of life to a dramatic consummation at a time of crisis, and when negative, prodigal opportunism.
The symbol indicates that the challenge was to find stability within the self, and the potentials were there with three planets including the purposeful Sun in the 12th house of Subjective Self-sustainment. With better guidance in her early years on how to keep her Cardinal Sun and Moon under control, it could have curtailed its at times exaggerated attention on the personal self and there might have been a very different outcome in the life.
There was the promise of fame for years to come, but Amy Winehouse was caught in a cycle of destruction that took her life on July 23, 2011. Unfortunately she was the victim of divorced parents that were both too detached and oblivious to what a marriage fallen apart can do to a young and vulnerable.
The tumultuous relationship with Blake Fielder-Civil was in a sense what gave her a very deceptive security that had been lacking due to the absent father. Not shown here is the comparison of charts between the unfortunate couple. Amy’s Natal Pluto in needy Libra was exact to the degree in Opposition to Blake’s Sun in in impulsive Aries. Pluto opened up Amy’s psyche to a most vulnerable state possible and in times when he was not present she fell apart. With a stable family relationship and some loving discipline that was so needed, she might have been able to weather the inevitable storms that unfortunately became her downfall. Having no inner strength to rely on, and co-dependent, it became impossible for her to find strike a balance when fame finally took hold. Drugs and alcohol had long been a substitute for that inner balance, and when those elements became toxic, her body gave way and she joined the 27 Club.
The purple circle shows Amy’s Progressed Moon just entering her 8th house accompanied by Transit Pluto that always brings closer the shadow of death and rebirth. She was 5 months passed her Progressed Lunar Return and Transit Pluto tracking along with the Moon is enough to know that the astrological factors were very much in place to leave her susceptible to drug abuse and out-of-control emotions that a bit of spiritual light would have resulted in a happier outcome.
A feature of her horoscope that shows the weakness she had to deal with is the lack of an Opposition of planets that could have given her an anchor in the outside world. A genuine awareness was lacking from a too subjective point of view.
The multiple Conjunctions throughout her chart shows an exaggeration of energies that always amplifies its effects on others. The Bundle Temperament Type shows specialization rather than versatility and this in Amy’s case was a total dedication to her art and the man she was obsessed with. Mars is the Leading planet in her Bundle, and therefore in High Focus in the sign of Assurance, especially it comes to performing. The otherwise Initiative as the keyword takes on an Indomitable flare when it is a planet of focal determination. And she becomes unstoppable when acting out through the Sabian Symbol degree of, Chickens intoxicated. With this symbol in High Focus it is no wonder that she literally battled with drugs and alcohol.