Live Review: Jethro Tull

by Mitch Goldman

Fox Theatre, Atlanta GA 4/2/96

It's with no small sense of irony that Ian Anderson is taking the stage in a wheelchair at all of Jethro Tull's U.S. shows this spring. Anderson, middle-aged and middle-brow leader of Tull apparently inflicted serious damage to his right knee during a spirited on-stage antic in Lima, Peru, and is thus confined to a stage-modified wheelchair (replete with flute-holding quivers on either side). And Ian, you will remember, was wheeled onstage in a similar device (purely as a joke, of course) during Tull's 20th Anniversary tour (1988). Anderson's then-self deprecatory mocking of his (and bandmates') geezer status has come full circle; Ian makes due with flailing his arms, singing into a headset mike, and generally enjoying himself, but clearly he's a much more . . .um, mature performer than he was nearly three decades ago.