Jethro Tull Sunderland Empire March 1971

Jethro Tull Sunderland Empire March 1971
tull Jethro Tull are a special band to me. They are one of those bands I grew up with. I was heavily into them in the early 70s, as were many of my mates, and Stand Up was an album that we listened to again and again. I remember marvelling at Ian Anderson on Top of the Pops, his mad crazy eyes staring at me through the TV, and his eccentric garb shocking my parents. Their early singles were classics. My favourites were The Witches Promise, Teacher and Sweet Dream. I first saw Jethro Tull in concert at Sunderland Empire on 20 March 1971, the day after their classic album Aqualung was released.I was 14 years old at the time. Early gigs are very important in shaping musical tastes for the rest of your life, and this one certainly did that for me. Tull played two shows at the Empire that evening, and I decided to go along to the late show with a few mates. We felt very grown up, being allowed to go to the “late” show, and felt sure that the band would play better at the second concert. We had good seats in the “slipper” to the left of the stage. Support for the gig was Steeleye Span, a newly formed folk-rock band, who delivered a pretty good set. But we were there to see our heroes Jethro Tull. By this relatively early point in their career, their line-up had already changed several times, and was Ian Anderson on flute and vocals, Martin Barre on guitar, Clive Bunker on drums, John Evan on keyboards and Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond on bass. I think they started with Nothing is Easy, and the set featured a number of Tull favourites, and some tracks from the Aqualung album. We were just blown away by Jethro Tull that night, and by Ian Anderson in particular, who is one of the most charismatic performers, and was at the height of his craziness in those days. And so started a lifelong obsession with this band. I have seen them quite a few times since that gig, and watched their line-up and their musical style change over the years. But in those days in the early 70s so many years ago for me and a group of mates, Jethro Tull were legends and were one of the bands that we returned to again and again. Published setlist from a gig in 1971: Nothing Is Easy; Aqualung; With You There to Help Me; By Kind Permission Of; Sossity: You’re a Woman; Reasons for Waiting; My God; Cross-Eyed Mary; Wind Up; Locomotive Breath; Hard-Headed English General; Wind Up (reprise)

2 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by Mitch on July 19, 2013 at 8:23 am

    I was at the 5pm early show. A fantastic concert.
    The 5pm setlist was – Nothing Is Easy, Aqualung, With You There To Help Me, Hymn 43, Sossity You’re A Woman, Reasons For Waiting, My God, Cross Eyed Mary. Encore: Wind Up.

    Steeleye Span were great too. They were promoting the release of their second album – Please To see The King.
    Their setlist was – The False Knight On The Road, The Lark In The Morning, The King, Hitlers Downfall, The Hag and the Money, Prince Charlie Stuart, Cold Haily Windy Night, Farther Along, Silver Spear, The Female Drummer.


  2. Posted by vintagerock on July 19, 2013 at 8:27 am

    Excellent and many thanks for the setlist Mitch Best wishes Peter


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