Chuck Berry’s Occult Beliefs

A few days ago we lost Chuck Berry, one of the architects and early success stories of that R&B sub-genre called “rock ‘n’ roll” (basically salacious songs aimed at the teen market, ergo named after the human torso’s movement during coitus, DUH!). There’s been a lot written about Berry’s music and personal life for decades now, and certainly there’s a lot of eulogies out there now, but only THIS one in the Paris Review touches on his flirtation with the occult and it’s a subtle mind blow for several reasons:

“‘I was there with a book she’d given me by Edgar Cayce, and he got very agitated, wanted to know if I believed in reincarnation and in the beyond. And he started telling me a story.

“’Bo Diddley had been backstage with him one time and was talking about magic and the radio. Back then a lot of people believed that the radio was magic, that sound waves traveled to different dimensions, maybe all the way to heaven. You ever get this little shiver in your spine, Bo Diddley asked him, like it’s hot and cold at the same time? That means someone’s been making love while a song of yours is on the radio. It goes right through the air and slips back into your soul. You know?”

So, yeah, it goes into Chuck Berry AND Bo Diddley’s thoughts on magick! And goes beyond that. This is a most worthwhile read.

Frater Lux Ad Mundi

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