Fact or Fiction

Jethro Tull

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Despite his remarkable pragmatism and aversion to drugs, alcohol and other byproducts of stardom, Jethro Tull lead singer Ian Anderson is one of the more intriguing characters in rock. His hobbies include wildcat preservation, Indian food, and chile peppers, and he once owned a very successful salmon farm. As a good working musician, he puts up with the meet-and-greets and press events, where he plays up his eccentricities for the sake of a good story - even the meet-and-greets are quirky, as Ian won't shake hands but will bump elbows, a much more sanitary ritual.

Jethro Tull started in 1967, and the mighty Aqualung album came out in 1971. Along with the famous title track, it also contained the hits "Locomotive Breath" and "Cross-Eyed Mary." In 2011, a remastered, 40th Anniversary edition of Aqualung was released in a super-deluxe collector's edition and also in a more humble 2-CD set. On April 2, 2012, a sequel to another classic Tull album, Thick As A Brick, is scheduled for release.

With over 40 years of Tull material to choose from, there were plenty of strange-but-true tales (most confirmed by Ian in our interview) to choose from along with some good myths. See if you can separate fact from fiction in the Jethro Tull edition.
For the latest on Jethro Tull, visit their outstanding website at jethrotull.com. Here are the Jethro Tull Artistfacts.
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Comments: 72

  • Ginny From The Block - W/o The Rocks from New YorkMy Yorkie-Poo dances to Skating Away
  • Philip from South AfricaJethro Tull Rules !
  • John from California 10/10, saw them on 3 consecutive tours in San Diego starting with Aqualung in 1971. They were/are a great band live...
  • Anonymous10/10
  • Tammy from Texas7 out 10
  • Colleen from LondonI am all time fan - got 100% correct
  • R Prince from Weaver AlI was at the War Child concert and he said he got the idea for Bungle in the Jungle from having diarrhea in a airport. Truth or humor I don't know.
  • Dan P from TennesseeFun quiz - well done
  • Robert from Kentucky10/10
  • Jim from Indiana Missed one about Bungle in the Jungle. But it's early in the morn and I'm not totally awake.
  • Tony "jam Jar Jethro" Williams from Adelaide AustraliaI too only got the cover painting wrong and have no excuses for that but for me 9 out of 10 ain't bad.
  • Paige Anderson from CaliforniaI got the Aqualung cover question wrong... But I protest. Yes, Ian posed for Jennie to take pictures... However, she actually went out and snapped many pictures of homeless men on the streets. Ian was only one of many pictures taken. So... Technically, the answer I have its wrong, but it is also correct because Ian was not the only person photographed.
  • Scott H. from Pensacola, Fl6 for 10. Been a Tull fan since Aqualung came out. I was only twelve.
  • Steve C. from Whittier CalI got only THREE correct! [the no show at Woodstock, the award one, and the criticism of organzxied religion in Aqualung
  • Kitten Lyric from St Augustine"He uses a flutter tongue technique that's pretty rare in the world of Rock".....ok it took me 5 minutes to get over the laughing fit...seriously Mr. Writer I know quite a few "flutter tongues" ..with a major nod to Mr. Lindemann ....lolol
  • John Kolberg from Monona,wi 53716, WiAnybody remember Jethro Toe?
  • Diane From Orland Ca.To Penny from NC: The song you're thinking of is J. S. Bach's Bourrée in E minor.
  • Penny from NcJT did a song based on a popular medieval tune that was mainly instrumental. Help me find it. please?
  • San from PennsylvaniaActually, the cover of Aqualung is based off of a picture of a homeless man taken by Ian's then wife. It's not related to him at all.
  • Scott from N.r. Hills, TexasI still have several Tull albums, including Standup which is an album that when you open it up a cardboard cutout of the group "stands up"
  • Neil from ChicagoI saw JT in their heyday in the 70's. The venue was the Chicago Stadium. With their lacquered brick wall interior, the sound was awesom. The entire band faked out the audiance by posing as Roadies dressed in grey coveralls. After setting up, and tuning for roughly 15 minutes, Ian unzipped, and crawled out of his disguise then began the show with 'Nothing Is Easy'. Needless to say, the place went up for grabs!
  • Sue from Battle Creek, Michigan10 for10 still the best band ever! Named my daughter after Ian Anderson. I'm going to see them in Detroit in November.
  • Adrian from Argentina10 for 10. Not bad :-) Don't miss the TAAB2 tour. The album is magnificent and so is the show. Ian is a true genius! Cheerio from the south!
  • Stephen from Texas10 for 10. Favorite tune is "Teacher". Saw them in either '74 or '75 (memories is a little fuzzy... very strange) in FLA.
  • Chris F. from Albuquerque, NmIA did not "pretend to pee" in the onstage urinal. That was John Evan, the keyboard player. (I know...such important stuff. But still, if you're going to create an allegedly factual web page, make sure you've done all the research.)
  • Smoothie from Florida UsaHave a 33-1/3 album from way back when. Still plays good. Saw "Tull" @ Nassau Colliseum L.I. New York in 1970's they were awesome. I like song Wind up on Sunday's especially after further study I see no scriptural reference or direction to worship GOD on sunday (this is the catholic counterrfeit worship day.) Bible directs us ti worship on the seventh day which is the Sabbath. Ian seems to be cool person especially since he didn't care for the druggie life.
  • Chomper from Northampton County, PaI have the CD of the album and I really like it alot.. Ian Anderson combines a folk music melody (simular to the way the flute is played during the Renaisance Ages of England) and Rock music to create a style of songs that made the band Jethro Tull famous. Keep up the good work, Mister Anderson!
  • Vic from OhioOnly 9/10. I want to echo Mike from Pleasanton's recommendation of Stand Up and Benefit. If you've only heard the later Tull material, such as Aqualung, you are missing something. Of the two, Benefit is more similar to Aqualung in style; Stand Up is more like "early" Tull. Jethro Tull and Mountain was possibly the best concert I've ever seen (~1970).
  • Mike from Pleasanton, TxI still listen to "Stand Up" and "Benefit" regularly. Both much better than Aqualung, in my opinion.
  • James from Barnoldswick, United KingdomSaw Tull at Harrogate Theatre in the early seventies - once seen and heard NEVER forgotten!
  • Zero from Nowhere, Nj10 for 10. And I'm only 26! I love Tull. If they come to Jersey or New York this year I'm going to see them with my friends.
  • Tom S from Buffalo, Ny10 for 10, My wife told I can add savant to my title. Hoping to see them in Buffalo area this year! Otherwise road trip!!
  • Pablo from Montevideo, UruguayI was a Tull fan since 1971. 9/10. Not too bad. Ian came to Montevideo with the Symphonic Show and later with Jethro. UNFORGETTABLE. I Have all the offical records and many bootlegs. Jethro was the soundtrack of my life
  • Ken from ColoradoBig Tull fan! I've seen then 16 times since '73 and will continue to see them as long as they tour.
  • Scott Mattson from Cheyenne, WyomingI played the flute for eight years as a school boy, and Ian Anderson was my hero. Unfortunately, never got to see them in concert...no money, then I was pulling alerts as a missile launch officer, stationed at remote Air Force bases, too far away from available venues. Maybe I'll catch them in Denver in the future...you never know.
  • Raymond Scibran from Nyack N.y. UsaI saw Anderson & Tull every year for 10 years from Aqualung on, & then sporadically for years to follow. As far as I'm concerned, they have one of the best & finest stage shows in Rock & Roll, & have for 40 years going. Love Anderson's lyrical sense. And Tom Bruce is very correct. Martin Barre is a phenomenal guitarist, 45 years going!!! Ca'nt wait 2 C them this fall in NYC.
  • Meocyber from Alma, Co Very very intelligent, musically skilled band. I saw the opening for the Who in 1983 at Folsom Field. They were tight and ofcourse the whole show was unreal!! Got 8 of 10 right.
  • Don Sinden from Ontario Canada10/10. One interesting fact I find funny is that Ian uses a "stunt flute" on stage for twirling and throwing. Thanks, Jethro Tull members and alumni for all the years.
  • Tom from GermanyGreat Band....I like lots of their songs
  • Rjb from Washington Pa9 out of 10 not bad for an oldster.. been a tull fan since 1971.. seen the band and or ian live about 15 times so far
  • Snax from Beggar's FarmGot it in one :)
  • Bruce May from Sydney AustraliaWhen are comming back to Oz
  • Janet from Pennsylvania, UsaI loved this fact from fiction quiz. (I got one wrong.) I have loved Jethro Tull and Ian Anderson since 1969 and have seen a few concerts. He toured the USA around the time of my birthday most years. Thank you all.
  • Tom Bruce from Denver, Co Only missed one. I didn't know Ian Anderson didn't do Woodstock because hippies would be there. Huge Tull fan. Have seen them live 5 times. Martin Barre most underrated guitarist in history of rock.
  • Tony Mannerino from Carol Stream IllinoisI went 5out of ten Iguess i need a little more JETHRO TULL ONLY BEEN A FAN FOR FORTY YEARS!
  • Kerry Kassel from Planet EarthI never knew I knew so much about Jethro Tull. I only got one question wrong, and I'll bet you all will know which one I'm talking about.
  • Ian Burton from Anywhere That I Am.Tull, gave and give me many moments of note, lyrics to think about and music to stimulate, keep going Ian but forget the hair dye, live old and proud.
  • Gino Andrea Carosini from Genoai love this man...! grande ian
  • Kurt from New JerseyGot all right! AND first....
  • John S from St. Charles, Missouri U.s.a.9 out of 10 isn't too bad. I didn't know Ian dodn't care for hippies though! LOL
  • Rich from ItalyGreat quiz....I've been a fan since the early '70s. Aqualung was the first LP I purchased...Is Ian still into aqua-cultures????
  • Frank from ManchesterCant wait for the 22nd April when Tull come to The Opera house in Manchester "Thick as a Brick" Bloody Hell 40 years on
  • Declan from Derry, Ireland10 questions: 3 wrong, 2 definite answers and 5 correct, educated guesses.
  • Mark KellyGot every answer correct! :-)
  • Steve W Rogan from Sydney Australia1972, 9 years old, Saturday morning, lying underneath my bed, big sister thought she was alone. Living In The Past, full tilt on the record player. Instant fan! I'm pretty pissed that I got the hippy question wrong as I clearly recall an interview in which Ian said something along the lines of him not being too happy about the thought of people in the audience being out of mind; that he didn't like the idea of Tull's music being regarded as "head music". First experience of Tull live; Horden Pavilion - 1977 - bloody awesome!
  • Larry Beal from Nashua New Hampshirei it was one of the best album around back than and still is a classic thank u ian and your band larry
  • Kevin from CardiffInteresting........guess I proved I am a real fan of the band by only getting one question wrong! The rest was intuitive guesswork based on listening (REALLY LISTENING) to the lyrics.
  • Paul from Bayswater Western AustraliaLove the Tull and I watched Sea Hunt as well. lol
  • Druid Oaks from MichiganTull is truly inspirational. I've been a fan for 25 years and hope to see them again soon!
  • Leta from York Springs, Pa UsI loved this quiz! I got more wrong than I should have, but I really enjoyed it!
  • Mick King from TasmaniaGreat quiz but as far as I was aware Tull were commited to play elsewhere during woodstock but if you watch the woodstock video Tull music is played in-between acts.
  • Christian Yunes from CuritibaIan... You need Martin!!!
  • Patricia Morris from Riverside, California. UsaThe most beautiful music has been the result of total genius at work. I've been to 5 concerts of this amazingly talented band, even with all the member changes over the years. (love Martin Barre!) Still, to this day, I listen with awe and deep appreciation, to Jethro Tull on a very regular basis. If I had to live the rest of my life listening to only one group's music, it would be Jethro Tull's music. I just wish that some of the infrequently heard (on the radio, anyway) songs & instrumentals, were more widely known. Aqualung is a great piece of music, but in my opinion, about 90% of the rest of the Jethro Tull collection is far better. I've been a fan from the beginning & indeed, named my 2 sons after members of Jethro Tull. I know I am not the only one to do so. Ian Anderson has at least 2 young men as namesakes. Our second son was named after John Evan. It's a good thing we did so. They both ended up as musicians with the US Marine Corp. & have gifted musicians as role models. I misunderstood the hippie question as folks at Woodstock hating hippies, which seemed a very odd question when viewed as I did. I would have chosen fact if I'd realized the connotation in which it was written.
    Thank you to Ian Anderson & the band for all the beautiful music you've given to the world over all these long years. What I'd give to meet Ian Anderson & not act like a foolish schoolgirl if given the opportunity.
  • Art GeckoWell, I got 50%. Some interesting tid-bits here. I've seen Tull many times, the first in '77, and never saw the urinal! LOL!
  • Jack Garvey from MassachusettsOn the Thick As A Brick tour, a deep sea diver with Aqualung, googles, and flippers crossed the stage during the first instrumental, and I've always thought that passage was meant to capture an underwater sound--all those embellishments from the flute sounding like bubbles to the surface. While I'm at it, a few years ago I read Somerset Maugham's "Of Human Bondage" and was amazed by a passage about 100 pages into a 700+ page book that could have been a source for "My God" and "Wind Up."
  • Joseph Hagenbach from Morton, Pa 19070 UsaWell I did have a perfect score. I guess I know my Jethro. I should get a meet and greet when he comes to Philadelphia. I'll even let Ian shake my hand.
  • Chris Stolle from Richmond, IndianaGreat quiz!
  • Nicholas from Utah, UsaThe only question I got wrong because I was thrown off by the background of the Aqualung song. I mixed up the story of Ian's wife Jenny taking pictures of homeless people and the story of the front cover... Oh well.
  • Rick from Tennessee, UsaI did not know about the urinal.
  • Tim "ozzy" KasonyI was given the album Aqualung by a girl, in 1971, I have it on Itunes and was listening to it just today. Just as good now as It was in 71. Thanks Ian
  • Rod Jackson from Salt Lake City, UtI saw Jethro Tull for the first time at the Salt Palace in Salt Lake City, UT some 40 years ago. They've been magical to me ever since.
  • Joanthan from Phoenix, Az, UsaExcellent questionnaire!
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