Photos and stories from more than 4 decades.

Foto: © Carsten Bergmann

The new book „Jethro Tull Over Germany“ contains many previously unreleased stories and photos of the traces the band and Ian Anderson left in


in the past 40 years. It will be published with Verlag Siegener Rock-Museum on 2nd April 2012 (German language only). The authors, journalist Wolfgang Thomas and his son Kevin, who is an English teacher, unearthed stories and photos of the band, which has toured Germany more extensively than any other Rock band. Even before Ian Anderson formed the band in the end of 1967, two founding members had already become familiar with Germany and the German audience – guitarist Mick Abrahams and drummer Clive Bunker had been on the road in Germany in 1964 as members of beat group “The Toggery Five”, who tried to copy the success of The Beatles in Germany, which is the topic of one chapter.

The decision to write this book was made by Wolfgang and Kevin Thomas in Merkers, Thuringia, after having attended a Jethro Tull concert 500m below the surface of the earth in a salt mine on 24th July 2010 – one of the most unusual venues he’s ever played at, as Ian Anderson recalls. While Wolfgang Thomas started with research for the book right away, Kevin Thomas remained a valuable source for discussion and hints on where further stories might evolve from. Wolfgang also talked to many contemporary witnesses and sifted through the vast archive of Siegen-based Rock Museum.
In January 2012 Kevin Thomas conducted a 90 minute interview with Ian Anderson about his connections to Germany and German fans, his most memorable experiences when touring Germany in the past 40 years and about future projects in Germany. 

Snippets from the interview are interspersed among the chapters throughout the book. Among other topics, the musician talks about his wish to perform charity concerts in German churches, of which the proceeds would fund the renovation of the “architectonic treasures”.

“Jethro Tull Over Germany” takes the reader to the concert in the salt mine in Merkers, and then leads back to the very first performance of Jethro Tull in February 1970. At this concert, an outraged group of supporters who had not been admitted to the concert because it was sold out, demolished the venue (Jahrhunderthalle, Frankfurt-Hoechst). The reader will be lead through each and every tour Jethro Tull, Ian Anderson or Martin Barre have ever performed in Germany. 

Musicians, such as German guitarist Florian Ophale, who has been a member of the Ian Anderson Band for nearly ten years, musicians of German support acts and fans tell their own Jethro Tull story, and fascinating photos have been collected from archives of a number of German professional photographers.

The book contains an introduction written by Coesfeld-based entrepreneur Michael Ostendorf, who has been a long time friend of Ian Anderson and his family. It ends with an account on the first two appearances of Ian Anderson in Germany in 2012: in January Ian Anderson presented the “Berliner Bären”, an award for cultural achievement of the Newspaper “Berliner Zeitung”, and in February he and his band, together with the Filmorchester Babelsberg, performed an anniversary concert for Frederick the Great, whose 300th birthday is celebrated throughout this year. It also contains an outlook on Ian Anderson’s new album “TAAB2”.

Photo: © Horst Schaumann


Authors: Wolfgang and Kevin Thomas 
title: Jethro Tull Over


256 pages, hardcover, coloured
publisher: Verlag Siegener Rock-Museum
ISBN 978-3-00- 037254-4