Rod & Ken, Johannesburg, 2009
A Thought for Today
Freedom and love are luxuries. We have to
work hard to earn them.
One Does It For Me!
What light can you shed on "Written in the Stars"? I'd never heard of it
before until recently.
We had a similar question
some years ago, Simon. It's not one of Rod's better know works - in fact
I'd never heard of it until someone wrote asking about it.
As usual the best person to
tell you about the album is Rod himself - here are the liner notes.
-Ken, Johannesburg, South
Africa, March 11
Notes - "Written in the Stars"
Man has always believed that the stars have much to do with controlling
his life, his love, his destiny. Out of this belief has come the
universal language of Astrology.
The interest in Astrology has grown to such a point that hundreds of men
and women make their living as Astrologers, thousands of books and
magazine articles have been written on the constellations. Astrology
guides are sold on every newsstand and no newspaper is complete without
its daily horoscope column.
I have had more than a passing interest in Astrology for a long time -
but then, who can resist scanning the newspaper every day to find out
what the stars have planned for him ? My interest was further kindled on
meeting Carroll Righter, the dean of present day astrologers, who has a
world syndicated column with an unbelievable audience of one hundred
million every day. Righter is a most remarkable man; one look and he can
tell if you’re an angry Leo or a sad eyed Aquarius, and he knows
thousands of people by their sign-names alone. It is to followers of the
subject with interest of that intensity that this album is dedicated.
In writing this suite, I have tried to keep the music ‘romantic’ in
nature, yet descriptive of the zodiac sign the melodies represent. Each
selection has a subtitle and is meant to further romanticize the suite.
Several of these themes have already become “pop” songs, since I have a
passion for setting words to music. “Scorpio” has a lyric called “Come
Back Home to Roma” and “Leo” has become “Wait Till the Music is Done”.
My personal favorite in the album is the “Aquarius” theme.
Once the suite was completed, there was the business of finding the
right interpreter... and found him in the person of Dick Jacobs. I have
worked with Dick off and on for some time, and my appreciation of his
talent goes far beyond the usual compatibility of an Aries and a Taurus
( he’s Aries, I’m a Taurus - very compatible, you know ). I regard him
as one of the most versatile arranger - conductors in the field of
popular music, especially when it comes to scoring for strings. I am
constantly amazed at the many colors he can get out of a single
Whatever your concern for the zodiac - personal, academic, romantic or
sceptic - I hope the music here has something special to say to you.
- Rod McKuen
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