Think Twice, It's All Right
rock-singer son of a rock legend (and cultural icon) has got to be a
little awkward. In the case of Bob Dylan's youngest son, Jakob, frontman
for The Wallflowers, it's previously been a “don't ask don't tell” situation.
The handsome singer with the voice that at times is eerily reminiscent
of Dad's (but smoother than the gravelly tones of Bob) has made a business
of not talking about his family legacy or how it's affected him. The
Wallflowers just released their latest CD, Breach, and
at last, the enigmatic son of an enigma tells us how it feels.
under opposite signs, the two Dylans have astrological connections that
are respectful but distant. Father Bob is a Gemini (with the three planets
in the brilliant and quick-witted sign), while son Jakob is a Sag (with
four planets in this restless sign of the student and teacher). Jakob's
Venus in Sagittarius is in the same sign as his father's
rising sign. The rising sign (aka Ascendant) is all about a person's
image in the world. The Venus-rising sign connection is warm, but the
underlying message from the father is "You are a romantic reflection
of me and my artistic talent" (Venus rules romance and art).
seems to acknowledge this role of keeper of his father's reputation/reflector
of his glory, but longs for more knowledge and unconditional love. On
the album's first single, "Sleepwalker," Jakob (who writes
all the songs on the CD) sings:
I could be the one they adored
could be my reputation,
where I'm from that lets them think I'm a whore
an educated virgin."
role seems similar to the dignifed, privileged, late-bloomer role that
John F. Kennedy Jr., another Sag, played in response to his legendary
father, who, like the elder Dylan, was also a hyper-articulate, charismatic
Ain't Me, Babe
never acts or talks like a brat (at least not publicly), complaining
about being the son of a historical figure, but he does seem to turn
the public's perceived disappointment in him on himself. In "Hand
Me Down" off the new album, he sings:
a hand me down
better when you're not around
feel good and you look like you should
you won't ever make us proud."
Mercury (planet of communication) is in Sagittarius, the sign of the
late bloomer. The archetypal Sag needs to do a lot of roaming, meandering
and aimless living before he matures into the philosopher figure who
is finally ready to preach from experience. Father Bob has Mercury in
Gemini, the quick-witted sign that rules the planet of articulation,
and it sits opposite his son's Mercury in Sag. (Editor's Note:
Dylan's planetary positions were calculated using a sunrise chart. If
he was born in the afternoon, his Mercury would be in Capricorn.) No
doubt Jakob is able to pick up on his father's detached and unimpressed
reaction to his music.
Bob lives long enough, he may end up finding that the fruit didn't fall
far from the tree. It may take the son awhile to come into his own as
a social commentator and rock poet, but with Sun, Moon, Mercury and
Venus all in Sag, a sign associated with sometimes embarassing truthfulness
and fanatical idealism, he will grow into this role eventually, and
honestly. Bob may just have to understand that it's a lot easier for
a man like himself with Sun, Mercury and Venus in verbally-brilliant
Gemini to articulate his vision, than a stumbling Sag archer.
Gotta Serve Somebody
coming up for both Dylans? Well, Bob recently went through his second
Saturn return. Saturn returns come three times, (every twenty nine years,
approximately) if we live that long. Bob's first was shortly after Jakob's
birth, and his second one was this past May. This return of Saturn,
which normally occurs around age fifty-nine, signifies a "coming
to terms" period in an individual's life, particularly where it
comes to issues such as mortality, spirituality and leaving a legacy
on this Earth.
young Jakob's songs reflect his "under-achiever" persona,
the elder Dylan may also be dealing with the possibility that his most
significant working years on this Earth are behind him. Perhaps he will
find the real spiritual meaning in his life that he searched for so
awkwardly in the public eye so many years ago. Of course, when lucky
Jupiter transits Bob's Sun, then Venus, then Mercury in spring 2001,
the father may once again outshine the son.
later, in late winter/spring 2002, volatile Pluto will go over Jakob's
Sun. At that time, Jakob may make a radical change in the way he makes
music, and finally find a way out of his father's shadow. It may not
be as radical as when Bob first went electric, but it should still make
pretty big waves in the rock community, and certainly within Jakob's
own psyche. In the meantime, as lucky Jupiter opposes Jakob's Venus
(in November 2000), the Wallflower may have to explore issues around
gratitude (a strong Jupiter theme). He may at times wish that he didn't
have such a famous dad and could truly "make it on his own,"
but during this current cycle he is being pushed to thank his lucky
stars for the good fortune of being born a Dylan.