Ian Anderson, known throughout the world of rock music as the flute and voice behind the legendary Jethro Tull, celebrates his 41th year as a recording and concert musician in 2004.
Ian was born in 1947 in Dunfermline, Fife, Scotland. After attending primary school in Edinburgh, his family relocated to Blackpool in the north of England in 1959. Following a traditional Grammar school education, he moved on to Art college to study fine art before deciding on an attempt at a musical career.
Tull formed in 1968 out of the amalgamation of the John Evan Band and McGregor's Engine, two blues-based local UK groups.
Still enjoying a lengthy and ongoing career, Jethro Tull has released 30 albums, selling more than 60 million copies since the band first performed at London's famous Marquee club.
After undertaking more than 2500 concerts in 40 countries throughout three decades, Tull plays typically 100 concerts each year to longstanding, as well as new fans worldwide.
Widely recognized as the man who introduced the flute to rock music, Ian Anderson remains the crowned exponent of the popular and rock genres of flute playing. So far, no pretender to the throne has stepped forward. Ian also plays ethnic flutes and whistles together with acoustic guitar and the mandolin family of instruments, providing the acoustic textures which are an integral part of most of the Tull repertoire.
Anderson has recorded four diverse solo albums in his career: 1983's eclectic-electric "Walk Into Light"; the flute instrumental "Divinities" album for EMI's Classical Music Division in 1995 which reached number one in the relevant Billboard chart, and the more recently recorded, and critically acclaimed, acoustic collections, "The Secret Language of Birds", released in 2000, and "Rupi's Dance" in 2003.
In early 2002, Jethro Tull completed their first DVD of live concert and performance material. Also released is the new associated live CD. Both are entitled, "LIVING WITH THE PAST".
In 2003, Ian A. released his fourth solo album, RUPI'S DANCE, Martin Barre launched his guitar towards STAGE LEFT and Tull did the almost unthinkable: THE JETHRO TULL CHRISTMAS ALBUM was released to celebrate the "other" Christmas. With its fair quotient of "cynicism and grumpiness" as Ian puts it, this record will delight old fans and new fans alike with the alternative and conventional Christmas spirit combined.
Re-masters of the entire Tull catalogue are being released, dusted down and spruced up. Hear that tambourine again.... the breath behind the flute.... the pick on string and the stick on skin.
Ian Anderson lives on a farm in the southwest of England where he has a recording studio and office. He has been married for 27 years to Shona who is also an active director of the companies. They have two children - James and Gael - who work in the music and television industries respectively.
His hobbies include the growing of many varieties of hot chile peppers, the study and conservation of the 26 species of small wildcats of the world and collecting and using vintage Leica and other cameras. He reluctantly admits to owning digital cameras and scanners for his work on the photographic promotional images related to Tull as well as his solo career.
Ian owns no fast car, never having taken a driving test, and has a wardrobe of singularly uninspiring and drab leisurewear. He still keeps a couple of off-road competition motorcycles, a few sporting guns and a saxophone which he promises never to play again.
He declares a lifelong commitment to music as a profession, being far too young to hang up his hat or his flute, although the tights and codpiece have long since been consigned to some forgotten bottom drawer.