Much has been said and written about the Great Conjunction of December 21, 2020, which was visible as a once in a lifetime giant ball of starlight in the night sky from most everywhere on earth. Inasmuch as the Great Conjunction, the intersection of Jupiter and Saturn at a zodiacal degree in their respective orbits around the Sun, takes place every 19.847 years, heralding the beginning of an astrological cycle and an astronomical phase of that length, so too was our particular conjunction this year part of a longer notable zodiacal cycle of roughly 200 years which ends and starts over at this time pertaining to the element ascribed to the sign in which the Great Conjunctions occur. I shan't discuss that here, as I'm just here considering music that was created under great conjunctions in the past 100 years. Nevertheless, the Great Conjunction of 2020 is considered by many to not only herald the beginning of a new Jupiter/Saturn cycle initiated in the idealistic sign of Aquarius, but also the dawning of a new era which promises an emphasis on the metaphysical world and a shift from the dominance of materialism of the last 200 years.
Music, of course has always occupied and being accessed through the ethereal realm, even as musicians have traditionally been physically together to channel it. In the past few years, we've already seen that process metamorphasizing with the event of technologies making it possible for non localized musical collaborations to unfold and instantly be streamed worldwide.
Experiencing the third Great Conjunction of my adult life, looking back especially to the Great Conjunctions of 1980/81 and 2000, and also to the one before I was born in 1961, I notice a pattern of highly energized musical movements which sprang up in the wake of these Great Conjunctions.
The Great Conjunction in Libra on December 31, 1980, which revisited itself twice in early 1981, is particularly exciting to me because it coincided with my coming of age -- finishing high school, taking my first trip abroad, moving out of my parents' home and becoming OBSESSED with collecting records and starting my first radio show. This was the moment in which I discovered punk, reggae, rap, electronic music, new romantic, the evolutionary disco (Prince, Chaka Khan, Imagination), funk, the underground scenes of New York and London and of course the rich band scene in Australia where I lived. and a revolutionary reverence for blues, jazz, rhythm and blues of the earlier 20th century whence came the impetus of so much of this music. Perhaps everybody feels this way about what was happening musically in their late teens, but I do feel that the Libra Great Conjunctions of 1980/81 gave rise to an unparalleled wellspring of musical creativity.
Around the year 2000 Neo soul, conscious rap and indie rock had arrived with more masterpiece albums afoot. By this time, we were just beginning to enjoy technology that allowed super portability of huge music collections. While this moment was not as musically impactful to me as that of the early 60s and early 80s, I certainly noted in the early 21st century that albums which became classics came thick and fast in the beginning of the century.
I've often thought about these periods in record making in a non astrological context, but since 2020 is the year my life as a musician in the physical realm was put on hold, leaving me with all the time I've needed to heed an astrological calling, vis a vis Zodiac Soundtracks, I can fit anything I think of into an astrological framework.
I now present my take on 100 Years of Great Conjunction Musical Masterpieces in my longest yet Zodiac Soundtrack. Of course we are blessed with musical masterpieces every year, but I do feel each of these Great Conjunctions has sparked a musical movement or several, and I'm excited for all the new music which will find us in 2021.