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This Date In History:

November 22, 1968

Beatles release Beatles also dubbed the White Album, the group’s only double album. It was called the White Album because it did not have any text or graphics on it, only the word “Beatles” on a plain white backdrop.

Many of the songs in the double album showcase experimentation with music from a hodgepodge of unexpected genres including 1930s dance hall music and chamber music. At the time, the usage of these diverse styles into one album was pretty unprecedented on the pop music scene. Most of the songs were reportedly inspired during transcendental meditation sessions with Maharishi Mahesh Yogi in Rishikesh, India in the spring of 1968.

John Lennon’s female companion and artistic collaborator, Yoko Ono, was also present with him for the first time in the recording studio for the production of the album, something that would later become more and more commonplace.

Eric Clapton played lead guitar on George Harrison’s While My Guitar Gently Weeps. Other songs in the White Album: Dear Prudence, Back In The U.S.S.R., and Revolution 9. In 2003, the album was reportedly ranked number ten on Rolling Stones list of  “The 500 Greatest Albums Of All Time.”

When the White Album was released on Nov. 22nd, Expansive Jupiter in Artistic Libra was tightly conjunct Genius Uranus in the sky, with Uranus serving as a chief instigator of the Counterculture in the 60s. Mental Mercury was also conjunct Mystical Neptune, who was seriously meditating away with the Maharishi, too, in Probing Scorpio. Energizer Mars in Creative Libra was also exactly square to Libra’s ruler Venus in Business Capricorn, another indicator of artistic expression.

With Dream Big Jupiter conjoined Rebel Uranus, there is often a deep need to “experiment” and “change things up.”   Perhaps why we have the merging of the different musical genres on the double album. Uranus symbolizes the wacky scientist experimenting in the laboratory. Too, with Jupiter-Uranus,  Jupiter characteristically acts as a big cheerleader for the latter, goading him on in his constant quest for “new significant breakthroughs.”

The Illuminating Sun had also just entered Adventurous Sagittarius that day, just like today.  It was harmoniously sextile to both Jupiter and Uranus, acting as a “trigger” to that planetary duo’s more “non-traditional” or “oddball” brand of creativity.

We also have Jupiter conjunct Uranus again now, this time in Neptune-ruled Pisces, a creative sign also associated with musical and artistic achievement.   Just last week, with Jupiter getting ready to station direct in Pisces, Apple announced that its iTunes service would start selling Beatles music. Interestingly, too, when the White Album was being recorded, the Beatles were simultaneously debuting their new “Apple Corps,” a multimedia business enterprise. Seems what goes around, comes around.

Patrice Thompson

Copyright 2010

Source Notes:

calendar: http://www.sxc.hu/photo/1072482

White Album: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Beatles_%28album%29


day  in history: http://www.brainyhistory.com/days/november_22.html

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