A few days back, I had quite a lengthy and in-depth discussion with an “awakened” fellow muso about the possible true nature and implications of the music industry and the power of music in general. It is actually rare that I have these types of conversations with musos. Although that might sound a rather conceited comment to make, there is a very good reason why it is sadly the case.
My involvement with musically minded folk has been an almost lifelong experience, with the intensity increased in recent times – especially since my exposure to some of the greater truths of reality. I know from my own journey that the inherent nature of music (particularly for those involved with making music) is one of somewhat blind adoration. Musicians give themselves over, almost altruistically, to the sounds, ideas and influence of their muses. It may not necessarily be in the form of peer-involved hero worship, sometimes perhaps merely taking the form of a devotion to the power that created music can wield.
Here lies the problem: the “power” of music. It is no secret that, more than any other cultural experience, music can affect us hugely. There is no other phenomenon that can so effectively move us emotionally, allow us to recapture moments and experiences from our pasts, reshape our views of self and society at large, and so on. The individuals that harness this power should therefore have a staggering hold over the hearts and minds of the masses. In certain hands, it could (theoretically) be the basis of the power to change the world.
With this in mind, one could easily assume that singer/songwriters and musicians perhaps hold the most authoritative roles on the planet. Of course, they don’t! Power is most certainly wielded here, but it is only in the hands of the creators who haven’t deferred their power to a higher authority and I suspect there are very few cases of this in the music industry. Those who truly take advantage of the influence of music don’t create music; they simply finance and control its direction. Given what I have come to understand of such entities, you can be assured that it isn’t for any beneficial gain of the masses.
You might wonder why anybody with a conscience would wish to be affiliated with such a game. I can only use myself (and my peripheral experiences on the outskirts of the game) as an example in this case. Recently, I have come to truly understand and appreciate the value of independence from larger influences (even from the influence of fellow musos who have largely been indoctrinated by the tired mantras fed to them within the game – “you can’t write songs about that”, “you should do this because it’s what is most popular”, etc.)
Examining the processes at work in the music community reveals two distinct phenomena at work. The first and more obvious mechanism is routed through the visible conduits of money control, manipulation of psychological constructs (fear, love, sex, death, that sort of thing), deference to (or engineered defiance of) authority and peerage, etc. The second is a far more complex aspect, rooted in the ancient practices of ritual, worship and sacrifice.
The effectiveness of music to the power elite has truly come into focus in the last hundred years, especially since the advent of “popular music”. There are some well documented examples of how this was superficially achieved in the past. Here, I am reminded of the time when Frank Sinatra became involved with the campaign to elect JFK as US president and the song “High Hopes” was given new lyrics to encourage folk to “elect Jack Kennedy”!
Although this is an effective method of persuasion for many, there will always be an equal number of people who see right through it. In the case of Sinatra, it may have been that some people just didn’t want to vote for JFK. Others may have acted against the influence because they recognised that it was, albeit in a simplistic manner, a case of ‘being told what to do’. This highlights the, ultimately, limited success of such a superficial venture, but also shows the surface level of a much more complicated mechanism.
A number of alternative researchers have examined the methods that have been taken in the past, most notably during the 1960s, to usurp the influence of music. In the case of Alex Constantine and his fascinating book “The Covert War against Rock”, agencies such as the CIA are noted as having large vested interests in the music industry.
“In 1967, an increasingly subversive form of music melded with politics in San Francisco. Still eclipsed by federal classification are the tactics of the intelligence sector in the destabilization of the lives of politically-tuned musicians on the fringe of the anti-war movement, as revealed before the Senate Intelligence Committee in a leaked intelligence memorandum submitted for the record on April 26, 1976:
‘Show them as scurrilous and depraved. Call attention to their habits and living conditions, explore every possible embarrassment. Send in women and sex, break up marriages. Have members arrested on marijuana charges. Investigate personal conflicts or animosities between them. Send articles to the newspapers showing their depravity. Use narcotics and free sex to entrap. Use misinformation to confuse and disrupt. Get records of their bank accounts. Obtain specimens of handwriting. Provoke target groups into rivalries that may result in death’ [Intelligence Activities and Rights of Americans: Book. II, April 26 1976, Senate Committee with Respect to Intelligence Report]”
Initially, it may appear as though the increasingly political tone of the music from this period of history was “perceived” as a threat to the establishment and that steps were taken to subvert, undermine, weaken and silence such purveyors of this music. This is, however, far from the whole story. Although there are many examples of musicians that threatened the intentions of the global agenda players (some of whom ultimately paid a very high price for their principles), not all so-called “politically active” musicians were what they appeared to be.
Dave McGowan’s incredibly revelatory blog series: “Inside The Laurel Canyon: The Strange but Mostly True Story of Laurel Canyon and the Birth of the Hippie Generation” paints a far more complex story that connects with numerous musicians of the time and is a highly recommended read for anybody who buys into the mainstream, “official” history of popular music. http://www.davesweb.cnchost.com/
This story examines the myriad of military connections to the musicians (and artists and actors) that lived in or frequented the Laurel Canyon region of Los Angeles for many years. The story also ties into the CIA controlled drug scene of the time and, by extension, the countless mind control projects that became something of an obsession to the US military and intelligence agencies.
One phenomenon that intersects these convoluted machinations of the music industry is the so-called “Forever 27 Club”. This strange repeated occurrence (usually dismissed by most as nothing more than coincidence) involves a not-insignificant amount of well-known artists meeting their demise at the age of 27. A curious number of these individuals actually intersect the Laurel Canyon story and also have ties to the military industrial complex.
Perhaps the most infamous members of the “27 Club” were Jim Morrison, Jimi Hendrix and Janis Joplin. In the aforementioned book by Alex Constantine, he says, “you could say that the CIA and other intelligence agencies may have had a hand in the deaths of Hendrix, Janis Joplin and then Morrison. Simply for the reason that they were leaders of a generation during the 1960s.”
Jim Morrison was the enigmatic lead singer of The Doors. It does seem something of a twisted irony that Morrison, who was a key figure in the development of the Canyon scene and subsequent Hippie / anti-war movement, was actually the son of US Navy Admiral George Stephen Morrison. Admiral Morrison commanded the US warships that allegedly came under attack while patrolling Vietnam’s Tonkin Gulf in August 1964.
The Gulf of Tonkin incident is a key example in understanding the process through which global events often occur. “Tonkin” is labelled by many alternative researchers as a “false flag” event, instrumental in the ultimate scale of the Vietnam War. In actuality, the incident was an ‘attack’ that never took place at all, all but officially acknowledged as a ‘façade’. The intent may well have been to provoke a defensive response, which could then be cast as an unprovoked attack on U.S ships.
How strange it should be then that the event, in which Admiral Morrison played such a key role, ultimately resulted in a large scale negative social reaction to the war… a reaction that that was partly led and influenced by his son via his music.
Jim Morrison died in July 1971. According to Wikipedia, “Morrison developed a severe alcohol and drug dependency that culminated in his death at the age of 27 in Paris. He is alleged to have died of a heroin overdose, but as no autopsy was performed, the exact cause of his death is still disputed.”
According to Dave McGowan, “Jimi Hendrix, who reportedly briefly occupied the sprawling mansion just north of the Log Cabin (Laurel Canyon) after he moved to LA in 1968, died in London under seriously questionable circumstances on September 18, 1970. Though he rarely spoke of it, Jimi had served a stint in the U.S. Army with the 101st Airborne Division at Fort Campbell. His official records indicate that he was forced into the service by the courts and then released after just one year when he purportedly proved to be a poor soldier. One wonders though why he was assigned to such an elite division if he was indeed such a failure. One also wonders why he wasn’t subjected to disciplinary measures rather than being handed a free pass out of his ostensibly court-ordered service.”
“At the time of Jimi’s death, the first person called by his girlfriend – Monika Danneman, who was the last to see Hendrix alive – was Eric Burden of The Animals. Two years earlier, Burden had relocated to LA and taken over ringmaster duties from Frank Zappa after Zappa had vacated the Log Cabin and moved into a less high-profile Laurel Canyon home. Within a year of Jimi’s death, an underage prostitute named Devon Wilson who had been with Jimi the day before his death, plunged from an eighth-floor window of New York’s Chelsea Hotel. On March 5, 1973, a shadowy character named Michael Jeffery, who had managed both Hendrix and Burden, was killed in a mid-air plane collision. Jeffery was known to openly boast of having organized crime connections and of working for the CIA.”
Janis Joplin was an occasional visitor to the Laurel Canyon scene. Joplin and The Doors shared the same producer, Paul Rothchild, a man with numerous connections to US Army Intelligence. Joplin died a mere sixteen days after Hendrix was found dead.
Another member of “27 Club” was Brian Jones of The Rolling Stones. Jones does have a tenuous connection to Laurel Canyon. The period between 1968 (when Jones parted company with the band) and his controversial death in July 1969 was a time when The Rolling Stones heavily frequented Laurel Canyon. Mick Jagger has extensive Canyon connections, most notably obvious was his involvement in two “Canyon” produced, occult-drenched film projects: Kenneth Anger’s “Lucifer Rising” and Donald Cammell’s “Performance”. Cammell and Anger were key figures in the Canyon scene.
As with the music of The Beatles, Dr John Coleman (in his book, “Conspirators' Hierarchy: The Story of the Committee of 300”) has claimed that The Rolling Stones were a creation of The Tavistock Institute, designed to subvert the direction of the then contemporary music scene as part of an engineered “Aquarian Conspiracy”. I’ll leave you to decide the validity of that particularly angle.
The Forever 27 Club contains a myriad of disparate artists from across many decades. A few examples include:
Alan "Blind Owl" Wilson - leader, singer and primary composer of Canned Heat, Arlester "Dyke" Christian - frontman, vocalist and bassist of Dyke & the Blazers, Ron "Pigpen" McKernan - founding member, keyboardist and singer of the Grateful Dead, Dave Alexander - bassist for the Stooges, Pete Ham - keyboardist and guitarist, leader of Badfinger, Jacob Miller - reggae artist and lead singer for Inner Circle, Pete de Freitas - drummer for Echo & the Bunnymen, Richey Edwards (February 1, 1995 Disappeared; officially presumed dead November 23, 2008) - lyricist and guitarist for Manic Street Preachers, Jeremy Michael Ward - The Mars Volta and De Facto sound manipulator.
More recent notable entries include Amy Winehouse and Kurt Cobain. There has been a huge amount of speculation regarding these two individuals. Speculation about Winehouse includes theories on mind control and her knowledge of the inner workings of the industry. Her interview with Jonathon Ross where she claims that certain individuals tried to put her in a “pyramid shaped box” is particularly interesting.
Speculation regarding Cobain’s death will probably continue for as long as anybody remembers him. One curious tale involves the time he spent with the author William S Burroughs, shortly before his death. It is claimed that there are photographs of Cobain inside an “Orgone Box” (similar to the ones created by Wilhelm Reich) which allegedly belonged to Burroughs, although this (the box story, that is) may well be little more than an urban legend. There are images of Cobain waving from inside a outdoor cubicle, but this doesn't really prove anything.
Burroughs did actually have extensive contact with many people involved with the CIA drug distribution during the 1960s, as well as those involved in the CIA’s MKUltra projects. He also had friends amongst the Laurel Canyon set. His novel “Naked Lunch” is claimed to be a thinly veiled account of his alleged time spent on the CIA’s payroll. Make of this what you will!
Some of the stranger aspects of these stories (particularly the numerous deaths and bizarre practices of the Laurel Canyon scene) possibly indicate an occult or ritualistic undercurrent. Such practices are actually nothing new in music. Christopher Knowles book “The Secret History of Rock ‘n’ Roll” (which examines the history of music and worship) begins with a telling quote from The Natya Shastra: “dancing and music are more pleasing to the gods than rites and prayers.”
It seems altogether plausible that everything we have come to recognise about music today, has its roots in every form of ancient worship – whether it be the Neolithic, ancient mystery teachings, Dionysian, Bacchanalia, or any other practice. The question is: do any of these beliefs factor into the relatively contemporary music scene? The “Forever 27 Club” phenomenon may hold some clues to answering this question. It may even be possible that there is a ritualistic connection to the actual number 27.
Certainly in astrological terms, the number 27 (although most would argue that it is actually 29) may suggest the phenomenon of “Saturn’s Return”. The effect of the Saturn return, or any of the heavy planets, is said by many to indicate an major transitional period, possibly even a weeding out of what is unnecessary ready for the next portion of life. Even if 29 years is the more accurate figure at work, it may be that there is an “approaching effect” at 27. However, this is not a subject I’m really versed in to any great degree (I had to try and understand what little I could from a more astrologically savvy friend!)
The point here is the connection to Saturn and transitions. Firstly, is it possible that some of this derives from the practice of Saturn worship… a belief system that many researchers believe has darker tones, even connections to the global elite and secret society practices? In relation to the music industry, it might also explain why we often see so much Saturn imagery connected to contemporary pop artists and their music videos.
As for the transitional aspect, I have looked back through the history of popular musicians and singers (that didn’t die between the age of 27 and 29) to see if there are significant events in their personal or professional lives at that age. What I found actually surprised me. Here are just a few arbitrary examples of major transitions that I came across.
Mama Cass, singer with The Mamas and the Papas, recorded “Dream a Little Dream of Me” from her solo album of the same name in 1968 and subsequently embarked on a solo singing career. She was aged 27.
In 1973, David Bowie toured and gave press conferences as “Ziggy Stardust” before a dramatic and abrupt on-stage "retirement" at London's Hammersmith Odeon on 3 July 1973. Bowie effectively killed off his most successful personae live on stage. Shortly after his 27th birthday in early 1974, He moved to the United States and launched his soul, funk, “Thin White Duke” personae, leaving his glam rock image behind forever.
In 1985, Madonna became an overnight success with the release of “Crazy for You”, “Material Girl” and “Like a Virgin”. She even appeared in her first movie roles. She embarked on her first concert tour in North America, The Virgin Tour, with the Beastie Boys as her opening act. Madonna commented: "That whole tour was crazy, because I went from playing CBGB and the Mudd Club to playing sporting arenas.” She was aged 27. Madonna also started dating actor Sean Penn and married him on her 27th birthday.
Kate Bush became a huge globally selling artist following the release of “Hounds of Love” in 1985. Thereafter, she built her own private studio near her home, where she could work at her own pace. She practically retired from the public limelight, shunning the music industry’s main publicity routes. She was aged 27.
The Beatles effectively ceased functioning as a coherent band in 1968. John Lennon began writing and recording experimental material with Yoko Ono as well as his own solo material. He was aged 27.
Of course, these are just a couple of examples. I encourage you to do a random Google of your own. You will be surprised how often the age of 27 marks a major changing point or shift. It also seems to be the case for many movie actors!
So what can we make of all this? My gut (and a fair amount of evidence) tells me that there is more to the music industry than we may ever actually get our heads around. Is it possible that all these factors are just a great bundle of interconnecting paths and coincidences? It could be that what we are often witnessing is little more than the wild lifestyles of over indulgent individuals, whose fame has led them out of control, with all the rest of the high strangeness simply misunderstood coincidences. I do actually believe in coincidences… at least in small to moderate numbers!
However, I find it difficult to summarise the whole subject in such a naïve manner. I have often extolled my position on continually repeated coincidences and used the flipping coin analogy to illustrate my point. On this occasion (and because I’ve been discussing the subject of music) it seems fitting that I leave you with a few lines from a little ditty from Monty Python:
“Here comes another one. Here it comes again. Here comes another one… when will it ever end!?”
Peace my friends!
The Truth Seeker’s Guide.
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