It’s time to say, “fare-the-well” (and for some, “good riddance!”) to 2021. Winter has ‘officially’ arrived with the sun in the sign of Capricorn.
We now are charged with focusing on grounding, producing and finishing up loose ends as the year comes to an end. This Earth sign is driven by success and the upholder of tradition. This is the time of year we not only focus on completion but how we desire to design the architecture of our lives in the New Year ahead.
Venus really has something to say over the next few weeks. The planet of love, beauty and the senses started its retrograde on Dec. 19, (ending on Jan. 29), so the L-word is in the air, albeit possibly intense and a bit confusing. Each of us may face old relationship issues we thought we had dealt with or old flames may even suddenly reappear and then disappear equally as fast. Be open to something real but don’t bet the farm this month in a Vegas-style whirlwind matchup. Just be ready for the lessons it brings.
(*Note: When reading your monthly horoscope, it is always good to read not only your "SunSign" but also your "Ascendant"— referred to as your "Rising Sign.")
Capricorn: Dec. 22-Jan. 19
Capricorns, you are the bridge for the outgoing and the incoming. By the end of the month of the sea-goat, your inner and outer personal relationships should clarify and improve your personal nature overall. Here is your dilemma for the next 30 days: you need to step up your game with a partner (or the pursuit of one) and at the same time take a more observing role with work and output, at least until the 17th, then start upshifting your gears again with career goals. You are a randy one and a steadfast initiator but remember to be gentle with those around you, especially in matters of the heart. Be playful.
Aquarius: Jan. 20-Feb. 18
Forward-looking Aquarians, “May the Odds be Ever in Your Favor,” this one's for you. You should be able to take any old lemons that you have been dealing with and turn them into lemon-flavored mixed drinks with a lot of panaché for all your friends. But don’t get too punchy and over-inflated by the luck you may be awarded this month; ‘keep it real’. Be sure not to let things wane with an existing stable partner unless of course your freedom and self-liberty are at stake. Just as Capricorn ends and Aquarius begins on the 21st, you may need to cut loose on an unplanned outing, trip or even a little bit of a wild adventure.
Pisces: Feb. 19-March 20
If you hear a voice that tells you to check social media for some unloved object in the digital marketplace, pursue the homeless animal shelters for the next family pet or to sign-up for a dating app (if single… or maybe not); stop what you are doing, right then and there and do it. Trust your gut instincts now, especially if you are coming off of an even extra-confusing year. Remember, your connection to the unknown is your ‘superhero superpower’! You may not take home that new heirloom piece, the long-term pet, or even the next mate-to-be but there is something for you to assimilate in this process. Remember, you were born to swim!
Aries: March 21-April 19
This year, may have a repeating and common theme for you, that you may take too many initiatives and too much for granted. Where others may be out on romantic adventures, you may need to slow your roll and find some patience, which is not a usual Arian virtue. Not that you will listen to this advice because you probably think that you and you alone know what’s best for you. There may be extra tension brewing around you, particularly until mid-January. You might even want to take an extra-long holiday. Whatever you choose to do, do so with compassion for the ‘other self’ in the equation.
Taurus: April 20-May 20
My bullish friends, do you feel it? It’s either unusually exciting or extremely uneasy for you right now. Do something around the home off-beat. Paint a wall hyper-orange or buy a plasma ball for the bedroom. Make it the old Taurean you, yet in a new way! With this Venus energy, analyze some new investment strategies, diligence will deliver in your favor in the long-term. If someone tries to feed you a load of bull crap now, let it bounce off of you and toss a load of your truth in their direction. You do you.
Gemini: May 21-June 20
You are actually very good at managing contradictions so you should be pretty good at managing the month ahead. Does the proverbial ‘cat got your tongue’ resonate? Not likely, even when it should! You may not be at a loss for words but you may find your words and thoughts quantumly entangled more than usual. Take a triple booster shot of Zen to get clear and set a slower pace. As you enter the third week of January, take off your mask and get oral. Obsessions in love behind the scenes may mean more to them than to you. Ask questions and be sure to check-in.
Cancer: June 21-July 22
Crabs, did you know that ‘crab’ and ‘crib’ are related etymologically? Yes, we can get crabby and cry like babies. We can be cynical and sentimental at the same time. We are all about ‘the nostalgia’ and personal history but sometimes you just gotta cut some old baggage loose. You may need a social confidence booster right now but you don’t want to leave the house; so throw a dazzling post-holiday party at home. People will still be craving connection. Freedom from the past will actually bring you more calm than you may realize. You will be feeling the Cancer full moon on the 17th but don’t get too wild; tattooed names of party partners are hard to get rid of.
Leo: July 23-Aug. 22
With much adieu, fanfare and accolades, enter Leos. Been waiting patiently for some stage time?! Well, now is a great moment to take back any limelight you may have lent out to others, loving Lions! But purring loudly gets the best attention; not the pouncing on people with your claws out and scratching up the furniture, no matter how playful you think you can be. Toward the end of the month, you should be ready to go back out and roar with more authority. Shine on Leos, shine on!
Virgo: Aug. 23-Sept. 21
Earthy Virgos, have you been busier than usual, making your lists and checking them twice and even thrice? If they haven’t been nice, weeks ahead are generally good for you as the Sun is shining and supporting the more grounded traits of your sign. Rather than the more usual, “Why-oh-why?” you should be more about, “Why-the-hell-not?” You Virgos do know how to wear Venus energy well. If you are a more conservative native of Virgo, do something on impulse. If you are a more liberal member of the sign take it up a notch to, dare I say, ‘radical’. When you do, there may even be a doorway that opens to something totally unexpected in the larger scheme at the Aquarian Sun shift.
Libra: Sept. 22-Oct. 23
Decisions, decisions the bane of the Libran existence. Oh, why must you have to decide anything? You may feel that your social life is too legit, to have to commit—to anyone or anything. Remember, if you have asked for too many extensions or the cause of delays, the bill still always comes due at some point; this applies even to love. You will have to start paying off some of the interest now. Use the rest of December to draw up a real plan, with real goals and real deadlines. Luckily you are a child of Air, and you can change things swiftly when pressed to do so. Make a few resolutions, and with some balanced willpower, you will be able to keep them.
Scorpio: Oct. 24-Nov. 21
You may be a bit less notoriously Scorpionic and a bit more ironic over the next few weeks. Like a cat meowing at the screen door; do you want inside or outside? Since you probably already have someone holding the door open for you, either way things will line up for you nicely in some attractive ways. At the New Year party, you might want to make it a 3-4 day event. Toward the changing of the signs into Aquarius and the end of the month, you may want to find some extra fun private reasons to play the indoor cat. Remember to shut the door behind you. In your special case, a ‘good bedfellow’ might make an easy business partner as well.
Sagittarius: Nov. 22-Dec. 21
Your noble quest, dear Sagittarians, is simple, don’t get distracted! The watchword right now for you is ‘opportunity’; of which you should have many. If your mind has been on fire lately (and it probably has), January just after the holiday celebrations have waned is a good time to ground that mind-fire in something substantive. Get creative! Communicate, disseminate, educate, illustrate, cultivate don’t hesitate. You may feel extra generous but it’s not a good time to spend unwisely. There is really no need for luxuries, even though you may feel some inclination to excess, nature provides its beauties in abundance. Move your equine legs; run, work and as always—dance!
Shannon Gill is a local Evolutionary Astrologer, Jungian Counselor, and the co-founder of 'The Shift Foundation' at Samadhi Retreat Center. To learn more about her work, or to schedule a personal session, you may contact her at shannonleigill.com.
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Editor's note: the author is an Austin-based music journalist.
There are only two logical reasons for you to click on an article about Austin City Limits one week before the annual festival makes its grand return to Zilker Park: You’re either psyching yourself up for another whirlwind weekend, or you want to justify your decision for not snagging tickets.
Luckily, there’s something in this article for both parties.
This year’s ACL lineup delivers several heavy-hitting triumphs along with a few puzzling inclusions. One praiseworthy feature that immediately sticks out: There’s at least one woman occupying the top line of each day on the festival poster, and two on Friday (The Chicks, SZA) and Sunday (Kacey Musgraves and Paramore) apiece. It might not seem like much, but in an era where music festival lineups are still overwhelmingly male (and white), it’s a notable gesture that hopefully signals even greater diversity in future bookings.
Female headliners are also supplying the bulk of the star power this year. C3 Presents had their work cut out for them matching last year’s megawatt George Strait headlining performance, but they rose to the occasion with the savvy booking of the Chicks, who haven’t played a proper Austin show since 2016 at the Germania Insurance Amphitheater (they also dropped by the Moody Theater in 2018 to perform at Mack, Jack & McConaughey’s annual gala). And with Musgraves returning just three years after her last Zilker Park romp (admittedly a strange move), ACL further shores up its identity as a top-draw festival that’s more country-friendly than many of its contemporaries — this is the Lone Star State, after all.
Unfortunately, this comes at the expense of a solid rock lineup, which feels increasingly like an afterthought at ACL. Don’t get it twisted: Paramore are poised to make a triumphant ACL debut, and with a new song, “This Is Why,” out this week and an album of the same name coming in February (their first since 2017’s After Laughter), they’re a no-brainer booking. But it’s harder to get excited about their Sunday night counterparts, Red Hot Chili Peppers.
Sure, the veteran funk-punks recently reunited with classic-era guitarist John Frusciante and will be promoting two new albums, April’s Unlimited Love and the brand-new Return of the Dream Canteen, out Oct. 14. But the band headlined ACL just five years ago, and in a year featuring mammoth tours and residencies from Rage Against the Machine, My Chemical Romance, Elton John and Aerosmith (not to mention the Strokes, who just finished supporting RHCP on their U.S. stadium tour), the booking feels particularly uninspired.
You’ve got to squint awfully hard to find other bonafide rock bands on the undercard too. Stalwart emo and indie-rockers like Death Cab for Cutie, Spoon, the War on Drugs and Manchester Orchestra might scratch the itch for some, but they’re a far cry from Metallica’s thundering 2018 set or the back-to-back wallops of the Raconteurs and Guns N’ Roses in 2019. And if you’re thinking about stopping by Yungblud’s set to get your fix of snot-nosed, adolescent pop-punk — spare yourself the agony and head to the Torchy’s Tacos stand instead.
Enough bellyaching, though. ACL would be nothing without its pop and hip-hop bookings, and this year delivers in spades. SZA will make her ACL debut more than four years after her last Austin visit, when she co-headlined the Top Dawg Entertainment Championship Tour alongside Kendrick Lamar. The R&B star has come a long way since the release of her triple-platinum debut album CTRL in 2017, the same year she played her last proper Austin headlining gig at the comparatively puny Emo’s, which holds less than 2,000 people.
Yet even SZA’s star is dwarfed by Lil Nas X, the flamboyant pop-rap cowboy who parlayed his stratospheric “Old Town Road” success into a flourishing career. The 23-year-old TikTok savant has since scored two more No. 1 hits — the Jack Harlow-assisted “Industry Baby” and the sultry “Montero,” the title track off his 2021 debut album of the same name — and his ACL set is guaranteed to be both extravagant and hilarious. And festival-goers who want a bombastic, hit-filled throwback set need look no further than Pink, who’s racked up an astounding 14 Top 10 hits and dazzles in concert with her aerial acrobatics.
The rest of this year’s undercard offers plenty of highlights for fans of lighter, poppier and occasionally more reflective fare. Led by Michelle Zauner, Japanese Breakfast will captivate with their vivid storytelling and jubilant alt-pop. Culture Club, fronted by the legendary Boy George, will bring an arsenal of euphoric new wave hits in weekend 2, filling a similar role as Duran Duran last year. And pop-R&B singers Arlo Parks and Omar Apollo promise plenty of sultry hooks and good vibes.
As always, ACL attendees should make an effort to brave the early-afternoon sun and check out the treasure trove of local artists playing this year. Eric Tessmer blends incendiary blues-rock guitar playing with smart, anthemic hooks, while Pleasure Venom (who opened Bikini Kill’s sold-out Austin show in May) packs a furious, garage-punk punch. And on weekend 2, Flora & Fawna will hit the Miller Lite Stage with their explosive electro-pop confections, powered by Lili Hickman’s powerhouse vocals and tireless stage presence and anchored by Mason Ables’ deft guitar work and infectious production.
What are you waiting for, Austin? Festival season is upon us. Go bask in the glory of your favorite artists and find a few new ones in the process — just don’t expect to do much head-banging.
The new list is out from Forbes. Here are the Austin, or in some cases, Austin-ish, people on it:
1. Elon Musk, $251B, technology (various locations, primarily Austin)
16. Michael Dell, $50B, technology
86. Robert Smith, $8B, private equity (Vista Equity located here but he may reside in Florida)
99. Joe Gebbia, $7.6B, Airbnb
202. Tito Beveridge, $5B, beverages
234. Joe Liemandt, $4.5B, software
252. Thai Lee, $4.2B, IT
369. John Paul DeJoria, $2.9B, hair care, beverages
Click here to read the complete list on Forbes.