In celebration of the park bench, dribbly-nosed voyeur's 40th Anniversary, Ian Anderson returns to the USA with his band Jethro Tull, starting June 8 in Denver, CO and ending on the 27 in Chicago, IL.
The group features longtime members Ian Anderson (flute, vocals, acoustic guitar) and Martin Barre (guitars), Doane Perry (drums), as well as David Goodier (bass) and pianist John O'Hara. The latter two joined in 2006 after working with Ian on some of his solo projects.
The group will be performing the Aqualung album in its entirety plus a range of their other favorites from the lat 42 years. Critics dubbed AQUALUNG a concept album, particularly for Ian's critical, skeptical views of organized religion, mostly on side B ("My God," "Hymn 43"). Anderson has disputed - almost resented - the assessment seeing the record as "just a bunch of songs." This led the band to give the critics a full-blown concept album with the following studio release THICK AS A BRICK which topped the Billboard charts in 1972.
On AQUALUNG, the group explores the struggles of the less fortunate in our society (e.g., "Aqualung," "Cross-Eyed Mary," "Up to Me"). Teenage angst and formal education difficulties (e.g., "Wind Up") are explored, and Ian returns to his parental themes with "Cheap Day Return," a tune encompassing Anderson's feelings while traveling North on the train to visit his sick father. "Locomotive Breath" touches on the issues of globalization, population expansion and runaway economics. Sound familiar?
Formed in 1968, Jethro Tull released its first album THIS WAS late in that year and followed up in 1969 with STAND UP. In the 1970s, the group was one of the most successful live performing acts on the world stage, rivaling Zeppelin, Elton John and even the Rolling Stones. Surprising, really, for a group whose more sophisticated and evolved stylistic extravagance was far from the Pop and Rock norm of that era.
With now some 30-odd albums to their credit and sales totaling more than 50 million, the apparently un-commercial Tull continues to perform over a 100 concerts per year with its rich variety and depth of expression, wherever fans, young and old, want to hear Rock, Folk, Jazz and Classical-inspired music. Music for boys in long trousers and girls with brains.
In 2011, Tull will tour in Australia, Ireland, and Germany. And Ian will perform solo shows in Germany, Spain, Cyprus, Turkey, Brazil, Argentina, Chile, Venezuela, Panama, Mexico, Czech Republic, the UK, Sweden, Denmark and Finland finishing with his customary charity Christmas concerts at three UK cathedrals.
In 2006, Ian was awarded a Doctorate in Literature from Heriot-Watt University in Edinburgh, the Ivor Novello Award for International Achievement in Music and, in the New Years Honours List 2008, an MBE for services to music. In 2012, he expects to be awarded the Smithsonian Medal of Honor for smelling OK for someone his age and having ears still in proportion to the rest of his head. His bladder remains elastic and his prostate the size of a pinhead.