In the conclusion to GRR’s epic examination of the origins and development of astrology, Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia takes a wild ride around the cosmic circle of the zodiac and documents the largely unknown story of the mystic astral arts. First off, its the early stages of human development as pre historic star gazers feel compelled to paint , carve and engrave signs of the constellations (celestial maps) transforming their humble cave dwellings into cavernous cathedrals. Linking the star patterns to animals , the symbol of the circle and the far more ancient totemistic primal religion in the process. Over the course of many centuries the planets and stars (visible to the naked eye) are assigned specific qualities , associations, rituals and purposes. This astral mythology and celestial spirituality merges and is transferred, adapted , and absorbed by virtually every culture growing more and more complex and sophisticated over time. Next up, its the casting of a celestial map (horoscopes) , the astral configuration at the exact time and place of an individual’s birth – which can determine the cosmic forces that act on each of the 12 stellar mansions or houses (the signs of the zodiac) and can be used as a guide by the astrologer to tap into a persons full spiritual potential. Then last but not least – Jack visits the 12 signs aka the celestial houses or astral mansions of the zodiac digging deeply into each individual signs rich amalgamation of symbolism , allegory , mythology and spirituality.
6 tracks hit forward to advance.
In The GRR season #12 premiere -Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia zig zags his way through the latitudes and longitudes of space and time and chronicles the mysterious origins and extraordinary development of the mystic art of astrology. First off, it’s the land of the fertile crescent (Mesopotamia) as the Sumerians endlessly search the night skies in a quest to fully understand the secrets of cosmic harmony and divine celestial order. Linking the planets and stars to their own supreme deities, they formulate a mystical system of divination. Up next, it’s the Hellenistic world as the Greeks who not only loved astrology but democratized it, start to develop theories on the place of humanity and the celestial bodies in the universe. Then its the ancient Israelites who much to the surprise of modern day scholars and historians , sometimes placed beautiful mosaics of the zodiac in the center of their synagogues . Perhaps as a testament to the presence of God among the planets and stars. Next up, the Roman empire who import astrology from Greece and make it their own, even contributing the names of the planets still in use today. Then its off to Asia , where the Chinese develop their own elaborate system – one which associates each year with a particular animal. And India whose astrologers use Hellenistic techniques but infuse Indian social values and spiritual beliefs into the astral mix. And last stop…the Americas , where pre-Colombian stargazers sat patiently watching and calibrating the movements of the supreme celestial bodies. A serious and sacred task since the calculations decided the correct time for their blood ritual sacrifices.
To help celebrate this strangest of years independence day (July 4th) , Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia debuts a new ongoing GRR exclusive series exposing the steaming soft-white underbelly of American history. First off, its the venomous senator from Wisconsin – Joe McCarthy . A heavy drinker with a trumped up war record who manages via a series of anti-communist speeches to become a media darling and one of the most powerful men in Washington . “Tailgunner Joe” , wielded his sword of power like a vengeful , angry God and took special delight in destroying countless peoples lives in the process. Next up, its a historical overview of post Civil War reconstruction in the south, as progressive republicans in congress attempt a noble but ultimately failed experiment to ensure the civil and political rights of freed African Americans. An experiment that hoped to build a more equiltarian society amidst the ashes of a war ravaged nation. And last but not least … its the perverse history of America’s very own home grown white supremacist terrorist organization – the klu klux klan . Jack chronicles the unholy path of this fraternal order of bigoted thugs over the course of 150 years. As they spew their venom across the decades and sometimes even manage to bring their hateful ideology into the halls of government and houses of worship.
8 tracks hit forward to advance.
In the exciting conclusion, Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia rides the whirlwind of history and giddy-ups into the lusty lives and rowdy legends of those Robin Hood like desperados of the old west – The James and Younger gangs who held the nation spellbound with their exploits for 15 years (1866-1881). Ex confederate guerilla fighters and on the losing side of the Civil War , The James boys return home to the family farm in Missouri only to find the land under siege by corrupt railroad agents, bankers and industrialists. Victims of predatory capitalism, the angry young men decide to form a criminal band that can strike swiftly with commando precision and then vanish with ghostly ease. With an ever changing cast of characters , a grand sense of style and a touch of P.T. Barnum like showmanship , the James-Younger gang would become folk heroes as the defenders of the rural Arcadia against the invading carpetbaggers. Jack also provides detailed analysis of the Jesse James legend in film and examines six movies from classic Hollywood era (1939-1950). Including the cinematic visions of such master movie makers as Fritz Lang,Sam Fuller and Nicholas Ray.
5 tracks hit forward to advance.
In the second installment of GRR’s epic 3 part miniseries, Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia saddles up and rides like thunder through the dusty winds of time and gallops back to the bygone days of the untamed American frontier. First up, its vigilante justice as citizens who felt that the law was too weak , slow to act or corrupt take matters into their own hands and formed gangs of vengeance. Some of these wolf packs ran amok (The East Texas Regulators & The Hounds of San Francisco) and turned out to be far worse than the desperados they were supposed to be pursuing. Then its the kinky story of the most unique of these gangs – The Slicker Spankers of Missouri , who seemed far more interested in humiliating their victims with bondage and discipline than lynching them. Next up, its the little known story of Maurice Barrymore, founder of the legendary acting dynasty – who in desperate need of cash decides to take his theatrical troupe on a tour of the west , and its a smashing success . That is until one dark and stormy night the prince of players runs into one of the meanest gunslingers in Texas , Big Jim Currie. And last but not least , its the fateful tale of the last of the western outlaws and perhaps the most bungling bandit of them all – Al Jennings of Oklahoma. A legend of his own making , Jennings writes a highly fictionalized autobiography and by chance becomes an actor and technical consultant to many B movie westerns.
5 tracks hit forward to advance.
GRR returns from the Cov-19 induced lockdown as Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia continues the popular and ground breaking series on the American Western frontier. First off, its the truth and consequences of Manifest Destiny as militant protestant religious fervor merges with national policy and an endless stream of white topped wagons and railroad boxcars roll across the plains. Then its the sad but inspiring story of Modoc indian chief Captain Jack – who betrayed and enslaved by the government , decides to pack up the entire tribe and vanish from the reservation sparking off an uprising that ultimately will fail. Next up, its the exciting exploits of two legendary bands of outlaw brothers. The Renos – who with six guns drawn invented the new and successful technique of boarding and robbing a train followed by The Reynolds – who not only held up stagecoaches for their own gain but also stole lots of gold for the confederacy. Then its the King of the outlaws – Bill Doolin – who had a cool, shrewd head on his shoulders and planned carefully thought out and executed robberies. And last but not least , Jack joins the last ride of The Dalton gang – who become famous for pulling off the most bungled bank robbery in the history of the west.
7 tracks hit forward to advance.
It’s Springtime, the season of life’s opening and renewal – and its also a time of special spiritual significance for Christians as they remember and celebrate the conception , death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia (The heavy metal Joseph Campbell) examines the christian mysteries , their sacred stories of springtime and the many links and parallels to the ancient religions of the middle east and Mediterranean regions. For the ancient tales of the pagan and heathen deities and heroes share the same archetypes and form a flowing fertile river that nourished the new faith of Christianity. Next up, its the Judeo/christian connection and the many links between the christian Easter celebration and the far more ancient Passover ritual. Jack also checks out the importance of Old Testament biblical prophecy to the sacrifice , death and resurrection of Christ (the light of the world and eternal paschal lamb) and the New Testaments promise of salvation and everlasting life. And last but not least – Jack digs deeply into the symbolism , allegory and numerology found within the ancient christian legends folktales and holy scriptures in order to piece together a type of chronology of events to a pivotal moment in history that is shrouded in mystery – and has not always been made crystal clear or easy to understand.
7 tracks hit forward to advance.
A tad late for Black History month , Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia continues the series of folk tales from the mother continent – this time focusing on the greatest and most long lived of African civilizations , Ancient Egypt. First off , its the magical tale called The Golden Lotus – in which the pharaoh Seneferu has few domestic troubles , no wars to fight and little to do – falling into a deep melancholy. Seeking the advice of his court magician , the wise sage prescribes a voyage up and down The Nile – but this will not be an ordinary journey. Next up , its the sacred story of Teta the Magician – in which the Godking Khufu seeks a lost papyrus containing the words of power that will keep his great pyramid at Giza safe and standing for all eternity. And last but not least , its the biblical pharaoh from the Book of Exodus Ramses the Great – in a tale called The Princess and the Demon. In which the mighty ruler falls in love with the princess of Babylon and seeks the aid of the Moon God Khonsu – when her little sister back in Mesopotamia falls ill with a mysterious malady.
6 tracks hit forward to advance.
Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia tackles the most addictive substance in the universe – tobacco. A dangerous vice , smoking causes a host of life terminating diseases and yet the potential for illness and death is often not enough for most people to quit. The addictive power of the smoke, the effectiveness of American advertising and sly legal shenanigans continues tobacco’s global success. First off – Jack gets into the origins of the sweet leaf and its ritual and ceremonial use by Native Americans . The seeding and spreading of the tobacco plant all over the world by Spanish and Portuguese sailors and the plants economic importance in the expansion of the British colonies in North America and the birth of the United States. Next up, its the rise of the cigarette kings , ubermen of industry like Buck Duke who took a tiny family business and via devious and cut throat methods transformed it into a global industry and money making empire. And last but not least – its the advertisement wars as the major brands fight a war against each other in order to keep people buying a product that can and probably will kill you!
Jack “The Agnostic” Garcia who often goes where other historians fear to tread, examines the role of the supernatural within the spectacular operatic art form / medium. Started in late 16th century Florence Italy by a collective group of poets, musicians and scholars – as a way to emulate ancient Greek theater which was often sung or chanted. Opera has since its inception utilized mythology, folklore, legends, dark mysticism and occult themes. Many great works feature gods, goddesses, mortal heroes, spirits , ghosts, phantoms, devils, witches and all manner of strange , wonderous and monsterous creatures- slipping in or parading around the singers, players, sets and scenery. Jack gets into many of the greatest operatic composers and their musical creations including such luminaries as Monteverdi, Gluck, Mozart, Weber , Wagner , Verdi, Strauss, Prokofiev, Pendereck and Britten (just to name a few).
5 tracks hit forward to advance.