Jethro Tull Plays the Greek

The prog rock folksters are celebrating 50 years of making music.


Jethro Tull fans won’t want to sit this one out: It is, after all, the 50th anniversary tour of one of the world’s most popular progressive rock bands, Jethro Tull.

The band had a rocky start, since its peculiar blend of hard rock and light folk was a hard sell to audiences in the late ’60s; unable to secure a second gig, the band took to changing its name after every performance to trick venues into rebooking the band. By sheer coincidence, it was using the name Jethro Tull when it got its first ever callback, and the name stuck.

In the ’70s, the band drew attention with concept albums that weren’t. American listeners glommed onto the idea of Aqualung as a concept album, prompting frontman Ian Anderson to create the mother of all concept albums, the sprawling 43-minute parody opus Thick as a Brick (so long that it took up both sides of its debut LP). Anderson and a host of Jethro Tull luminaries take to the stage (together with Anderson’s signature flute) for a quarter-century reminiscence of times gone by. Sat., June 2, 8 p.m., $45-$115, UC Greek Theater, UC Berkeley, 2001 Gayley Road, Berkeley,

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