Rock ‘n’ Roll ‘n’ Crowley

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Thanks to Monkey for some Crowley connections with music – or should that be “musick”?

The International Times voted Crowley “the unsung hero of the hippies.”

Avant-garde film artist Kenneth Anger is a Thelemite: Mick Jagger of the Rolling Stones and Jimmy Page of Led Zeppelin both scored soundtracks for Anger’s films about Crowley.

Crowley’s photo appears on the Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper album cover. The Beatles testified that the characters who appeared on the album were their “heroes.” John Lennon explained to Playboy magazine that “the whole Beatle idea was to do what you want … do what thou wilst, as long as it doesn’t hurt somebody” (Lennon, cited by David Sheff, The Playboy Interviews with John Lennon and Yoko Ono, p. 61).

Ozzy Osbourne called Crowley “a phenomenon of his time” (Circus, Aug. 26, 1980, p. 26). Ozzy recorded a song called “Mr. Crowley.” “You fooled all the people with magic/ You waited on Satan’s call / … Mr. Crowley, won’t you ride my white horse…”

On the back cover of the Doors 13 album, Jim Morrison and the other members of the Doors are shown posing with a bust of Aleister Crowley.

David Bowie referred to Crowley in his song “Quicksand” from the album Hunky Dory.

Graham Bond thought he was Crowley’s illegitimate son and recorded with his band Holy Magick.

Iron Maiden lead singer Bruce Dickinson said: “… we’ve referred to things like the tarot and ideas of people like Aleister Crowley” (Circus, Aug. 31, 1984). Their song “The Number of the Beast” said, “666, the number of the beast/ 666, the one for you and me.”

Daryl Hall of the rock duo Hall and Oates admits that he follows Crowley. “I became fascinated with Aleister Crowley, the nineteenth-century British magician who shared those beliefs. … I was fascinated by him because his personality was the late-nineteenth-century equivalent of mine—a person brought up in a conventionally religious family who did everything he could to outrage the people around him as well as himself” (Rock Lives: Profiles and Interviews, p. 584). Hall owns a signed and numbered copy of Crowley’s The Book of Thoth .

Sting, formerly of the Police, has studied Crowley’s writings.

Stiv Bators, lead singer for The Dead Boys and Lords of the New Church, had a song titled “Do What Thou Wilt/ This Is the Law,” after the philosophy of Satanist Aleister Crowley. In another song Bators sang: “I heard the Devil curse/ I recognized my name.”

The Marilyn Manson song “Misery Machine” contains the lyrics, “We’re gonna ride to the abbey of Thelema.”

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