The girl from north London with the amazing voice. Released her award-winning album ‘Back to Black’ in 2006. Died of alcohol poisoning age 27.
English singer and songwriter
Birth data: 14 September 1983, time unknown. London, UK.
Chariklo 24 Taurus 27
at the point of a yod from Moon 25 Sagittarius 07 and Neptune 26 Sagittarius 28
and Pluto 27 Libra 58 and Saturn 01 Scorpio 54.
exactly square Venus 23 Leo 13
Pholus 18 Aries 57
in a grand trine with Moon 25 Sagittarius 07 and Neptune 26 Sagittarius 28
and a conjunction of Mars 20 Leo 6 and Venus at 23 Leo 13.
We don’t have a birthtime for Amy which means that we can’t be sure of her ascendant or the position of the moon. However, working with a noon birthtime gives us a conjunction in Sagittarius between the moon and Neptune – just what we would expect from such an accomplished and instinctive musician. This conjunction is also close to her south node in Sagittarius representing a talent she was born with – Neptune abolishing boundaries and connecting her wordlessly with other musicians and also with the audience.
Amy’s moon-Neptune conjunction is also part of a grand trine in fire with a conjunction of Mars and Venus in Leo. When the two planets of sexuality are conjunct in Leo the effect is, as an article in the New York Times described her as ‘an irresistible mantrap’ – that is despite also being ranked number two in the “Ten Worst Dressed Women” list of 2008.
The third part of the grand trine is the centaur Pholus in Aries and when this is in aspect to the moon-Neptune conjunction it’s a direct connection to the mass mind, enabling her to nail the mood of the times with her songs. In 2018, Alison Fensterstock on npr.org said that her 2006 album, ‘Back to Black’: “timed perfectly to a certain post-9/11, pre-financial crisis hedonism that asserted itself in the first years of the millennium.”
Then there’s a conjunction between Jupiter and Uranus in Sagittarius. This has ‘freedom’ written all over it. No way could you get someone with this conjunction to go to Rehab. Jupiter’s love of the open air combined with Uranus’ willfulness would find this intolerable. So, ‘no, no, no’. Even though this conjunction is in opposition to her Chiron in Gemini somewhere she must have known she was hurting herself.
The subtle power of her moon-Neptune conjunction comes out in her voice. It’s also part of a yod formation. This is when two planets are in sextile (60 degrees) and both form inconjuncts (150 degrees) with a third planet. This third planet becomes the focus of the yod. In Amy’s chart the focus of the yod is the centaur, Chariklo in Taurus (a sign associated with the throat and hence with the voice).
Amy’s Chariklo acts as the focus of the musical sensibility of Moon and Neptune in Sagittarius, and the challenging conjunction of Saturn and Pluto across the cusp of Libra and Scorpio.
Saturn-Pluto conjunctions are not easy to handle. How can Saturn control the deep transformative power of Pluto? Until you get through (or in this case, survive?) your Saturn return at around age 30, this is both a wildness and a wilderness. Pluto cannot accept the reality that Saturn needs to impose, it sees the controls as unacceptable limitations. So, ‘no, no, no’. Even though in some part of her psyche she must have known it was the way out of the blackness she often found herself in.
All these factors come together in ‘the black velvet ribbon’ of her voice and the words of her songs, taking the destructive relationships, the consequences of bad decisions in her personal life and the sadness and brutality of the everyday world and by accepting them, to transcend them. This is Chariklo’s job.
For according to the mythology, Chariklo was the wife of Chiron. He was wounded by one of Hercules’ poisoned arrows but as he was immortal, he was unable to die and was condemned to live in agony, that is until the gods took pity on him and let him trade his immortality for death. Chariklo stayed with her husband, caring for him during that time and that gives us the key to understanding the astrological influence of this centaur: she asks us to stay with an intolerable situation until it resolves or we find a way to transform it or transcend it.
But Amy couldn’t stay with the pain long enough. Her sensual nature was too strong with her Mars-Venus conjunction in Leo, part of her grand trine in fire.
She must have been conscious of what she was doing to herself. Intellectually she was no slouch with her sun in Virgo, conjunct Mercury. But this made a square to the conjunction of moon and Neptune in Sagittarius and her north node in Gemini. The north node represents the goal of the karmic journey and maybe she would have had to give up so many things in her life: the men, the socialising, the career in music, in order to reach it.
Chariklo’s deal is non-negotiable. She asks us to stay with the pain until it is transformed into a divine connection. But Amy found alcohol and heroin to be an easier path. She never made it to her Saturn return, and instead joined the so-called 27 club of those talents who died at that early age.
There’s more about Chariklo coming in a series of e-books on the centaurs I’m planning to put out later this year (2021). Sign up to the contact list for updates.