Legendary musician Phil Spector, famous for his “Wall of Sound”, and infamous for having killed Lana Clarkson, died on 16th January.

Birth Chart

Phil Spector had the Sun in Capricorn opposing the Sun in Cancer, therefore born on a Full Moon.  Full Mooners often arouse strong feelings in others, just as their own emotions are very powerful.  The opposition of the Sun and Moon was part of a T-square with the exaggerative planet Jupiter, which resulted in a grandiose style.  Mercury was opposite his Descendant, so he needed communication, while being lonely at heart.  Venus (music) is very prominent in his chart in terms of connectedness with other planets, both favourable and unfavourable: Venus closely sextile Jupiter spelled sociability, and success in the music industry; Venus trine Neptune brought sensitivity to sound and music.  However, Venus is loosely square Saturn in his chart (loneliness), and Venus was exactly opposite Pluto.   Could that aspect have been responsible for the rage and disappointment in love which led to his killing of Lana Clarkson?  Plenty of people have this aspect, and manage to control it, but it may well have been a factor.  In addition, Venus square the Nodal Axis indicates much karma with musicians and in the music world.  Mars conjunct Jupiter made him an intense ball of energy allied with enthusiasm, capable of going over the top.  While Mars in Pisces closely opposite Neptune contributed to a complex sexuality.  Worthy of mention too are Jupiter trine closely Pluto (a huge sense of power, or megalomania) and Saturn closely conjunct South Node, coming into this incarnation with a great deal of karmic baggage.  And Pluto square his natal Nodal Axis may have given rise to dark thoughts shaping his karmic path.

Early Life and Career

Phil Spector was born on Boxing Day in 1939, in the Bronx, New York.  In his late teens, he formed a band called the Teddy Bears, and their debut single “To Know Him is to Love Him” was number one in the U.S. charts (when Pluto was trine his natal Sun, a life-changing transit).  The title came from an inscription on his father’s grave – his father had committed suicide in 1949.  He formed his own record label at the age of 21, Philles Records, when his progressed Sun trined his natal Neptune in Virgo in his 4th House.  During the course of his musical career, he collaborated with many bands and artists.


In the early 1960s, he worked with the Ronettes, and was responsible for their big romantic hits.  The Ronettes consisted of two sisters and a cousin, who wore distinctive beehive hairdos and well defined eyeliner (interestingly, Amy Winehouse, a fan of Phil Spector, adopted the beehive).  Their honeyed-toned hits included Be My Baby, Baby I Love You, (The Best Part of) Breakin’ Up and (my own personal favourite) Walking in the Rain.

Here he developed his famous “Wall of Sound”.  In “I’m Your Man”, a biography of Leonard Cohen by Sylvie Simmons, it is well described:

“His records were ‘Phil Spector’ records, the artists and musicians merely bricks in his celebrated ‘Wall of Sound’ – the name that was given to Spector’s epic production style.  It required battalions of musicians all playing at the same time – horns bleeding into drums bleeding into strings bleeding into guitars – magnified through tape echo.”

The lead singer of the Ronettes, Veronica Bennett, or Ronnie Spector as she came to be called, married Phil Spector in 1968. She became a captive in her own home, and eventually escaped barefoot with the help of her mother in 1972.  Her synastry with Phil Spector shows: Her Sun on his I.C. (for a time, he made her his emotional foundation), her Saturn square his natal Mars (an abrasive contact), Saturns exactly sextile (some conducive working together) and his Jupiter opposite her Neptune (triggering his delusional side).

Other Collaborations


Jerry Lieber: he co-wrote Spanish Harlem

Ike and Tina Turner: he produced “River Deep Mountain High”

The Righteous Brothers: he produced “You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling” and “Unchained Melody”

The Beatles: he produced “Let it Be”, “Imagine” with John Lennon, and “All Things Must Pass” with George Harrison.  George Harrison would recall it would take “eighteen cherry brandies before he could get [Spector] down to the studio”.

Leonard Cohen: he produced “Death of a Ladies’ Man”.  Leonard Cohen found the production of this album a bit of a nightmare, and Sylvie Simmons devotes the whole of Chapter 15 to Phil Spector (pub. 2012) in her biography of Cohen, “I’m Your Man”.  She wrote:

“Where Leonard’s darkness manifested as ‘withdrawal and melancholy’, with Spector it was ‘megalomania* and  insanity, and the kind of devotion to armaments that was really intolerable…There were guns everywhere.  Phil was beyond control.’ ”

*Jupiter trine Pluto, among other aspects in Phil Spector’s natal chart

Injury and Killing

Phil Spector was seriously injured in a car crash in 1974, and was hospitalized with head injuries which necessitated hours of surgery.  The accident shows up in his chart as a transit of Uranus to his North Node.  It is likely that this event further exacerbated his extreme personality traits.

On 3rd February 2003, Phil Spector shot actress Lana Clarkson at his mansion.  One trial was aborted, and the process was restarted, eventually resulting in a 19 year prison sentence in 2009.  During the proceedings, possible diagnoses of bi-polar syndrome and Parkinson’s were brought up in relation to his health.  On the day of the shooting, Mars was exactly opposite his natal Ascendant, a transit which can be a trigger point in a volatile or unstable personality.  The fated interaspects in their charts included his Pluto square to her Venus, and her Pluto sextile his Moon.  Her transits on the day were harsh: Chiron squared her natal Sun, Pluto squared her natal Mars (danger) and Jupiter square her natal Neptune.  On the day he was sentenced Saturn squared his natal Mercury, Uranus opposed his natal Neptune, and Neptune trined his natal North Node in Libra in 5th House.  Neptune rules incarceration, and his natal Uranus is in the 12th House of Prisons.  He died in Stockton Prison in California, having tested positive for Covid a few weeks earlier.

At some point in his trial, he stated:

“No sleep, depression, mood changes, mood swings, hard to live with, hard to concentrate, just hard—a hard time getting through life, I’ve been called a genius and I think a genius is not there all the time and has borderline insanity.”