Books

“Over the years, there have been a fair few writers who have attempted to plumb the unfathomable depths of The Jolly Jethros’ secret lives…”

schrammnew

Jethro Tull: Complete Lyrics

Hardcover (1993) - Karl Schramm and Gerrard J. Burns

View on Amazon.co.uk | View on Amazon.com

“Together with some anecdotal support from interviews with me, this book – hardbacked to the core – puts down for once and for all the wordy cravings and meanderings of youth, maturity and middle-to-late age.” – IA

a new day

Jethro Tull – the a New Day Tapes: Vol. One: 1

Paperback (2012) - David Rees and Martin Webb

View on Amazon.co.uk | View on Amazon.com

“The first more analytical attempt of note was the more informed and down to earth biographical approach of one David Rees – a modest chap who, through the good offices of the Tull Fanzine “A New Day” had a wealth of gathered facts and interview snippets to draw upon.” – IA

driving in diverse

Driving In Diverse: A Collective Profile of Jethro Tull

Paperback (1999) - Barbara Espinoza

View on Amazon.com

“Barbara Espinoza wrote to me to ask for interviews and contacts for a proposed book. She managed the unthinkable: an interview with the reclusive hermit, Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond! Jeffrey offered up some thoughts on his life and work, which he wouldn’t ordinarily share with me – and I see him every few months for lunch or dinner. What a treat to see this in print. He probably made most of it up ‘though.” – IA

TullColoursnew

Flying Colours: The Jethro Tull Reference Manual

Paperback (2000) – Greg Russo

View on Amazon.com

“A large and packed handbook/reference manual theme offers much researched and gathered detail. Without so much direct input from the band members, Greg has brought together astonishing bits and bobs to delight the Tull fan seeking after the tiniest pearl of information, useful only – perhaps – to the son of fruit-fly or the criminally and pathologically nerdomaniacal.” – IA

JT History of the band

Jethro Tull: A History of the Band, 1968-2001

Paperback (2001) - Scott Allen Nollen

View on Amazon.co.uk | View on Amazon.com

“With notable contributions from other band members, this book has a foreword by me – which must mean that I endorse the entire content in every last shard of detail. In fact, I cannot quite bring myself to read the whole thing – or any of these other books for that matter – since it is all a bit close to home and my memory occasionally disagrees with the recollections of other witnesses to the tale.” – IA

Pocket Collection

Jethro Tull (Pocket Essential series)

Paperback (2002) - Raymond Benson

View on Amazon.co.uk | View on Amazon.com

“A new entrant to the Tull author hall of infamy is Raymond Benson – the official author of contemporary James Bond books. Raymond has now completed a small but perfectly formed (how would I know, since I haven’t seen it) little book of modest dimension and price to initiate the less demanding potential reader of Tull stuff and nonsense.” – IA

Over the years, there have been a fair few writers who have attempted to plumb the unfathomable depths of The Jolly Jethros’ secret lives: not that there is much to plumb. Maybe the odd grubby descent into Jogmania, Pussycatology, or overindulgence at the table of the Great God Hurry Curry.

The first one I remember was an Australian (bloke) who, at the time of “A Passion Play,” wrote some obscure but well-meaning treatise on me as the poet – a thoroughly wasted literary journey since I have a distinct dislike of poetry in general and have never modelled myself on its weird and fanciful practitioners. I believe it was entitled “To Be The Play.” Not many copies have survived, methinks, to grace the book cabinets and libraries of the disciples of Rock. He was a nice man, ‘though and travelled with the band in the great down-under for a few days in 1972, I think I remember.

In 1993, Karl Schramm and Gerrard J. Burns took upon themselves (with a little help from truly-yours) to fashion the then complete lyrics of Tull songs from the album covers’ lyric pages, the deciphered mutterings of the records themselves and the half-remembered words which each night I sing with gay abandon on the concert stage but can never recall the next morning if asked so to do.

Together with some anecdotal support from interviews with me, this book – hardbacked to the core – puts down for once and for all the wordy cravings and meanderings of youth, maturity and middle-to-late age. Must bring it up to date soon.

The first more analytical attempt of note was the more informed and down to earth biographical approach of one David Rees – a modest chap who, through the good offices of the Tull Fanzine “A New Day” had a wealth of gathered facts and interview snippets to draw upon. Combined with the input of his fully feathered friends in the Tull fan community, this material was honed into the book known, revered and worshipped as the first real compilation of facts and a little forgivable fiction, as “Minstrels In The Gallery.” With photographic additions from Martin Webb – himself an author of articles on rare records – Mark Colman and others, this book galvanised others to follow suit.

The Americans were not to be left out with a trilogy of efforts forthcoming in the last two or three years.

Barbara Espinoza wrote to me to ask for interviews and contacts for a proposed book. She managed the unthinkable: an interview with the reclusive hermit, Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond! Jeffrey offered up some Driving In Diverse: A Collective Profile thoughts on his life and work, which he wouldn’t ordinarily share with me – and I see him every few months for lunch or dinner. What a treat to see this in print. He probably made most of it up ‘though.

Barbara needs a little help on the proof-reading front – a lot of typos and grammatical no-no’s here, but still a good read. Published in 1999, her book is curiously named “Driving In Diverse.”

Greg Russo’s “ Flying Colours” is a book with a different feel. A large and packed handbook/reference manual theme offers much researched and gathered detail. Without so much direct input from the band members, Greg has brought together astonishing bits and bobs to delight the Tull fan seeking after the tiniest pearl of information, useful only – perhaps – to the son of fruit-fly or the criminally and pathologically nerdomaniacal. Bags to ponder on here. Published in 2000.

Scott Allen Nollen, a writer on the subject of classic film, literature and music, produced the well-researched work “Jethro Tull – A History Of The Band 1968-2001.” With notable contributions from other band members, this book has a foreword by me – which must mean that I endorse the entire content in every last shard of detail. In fact, I cannot quite bring myself to read the whole thing – or any of these other books for that matter – since it is all a bit close to home and my memory occasionally disagrees with the recollections of other witnesses to the tale.

A new entrant to the Tull author hall of infamy is Raymond Benson – the official author of contemporary James Bond books. Raymond has now completed a small but perfectly formed (how would I know, since I haven’t seen it) little book of modest dimension and price to initiate the less demanding potential reader of Tull stuff and nonsense. In this, the “Pocket Essential Jethro Tull,”Raymond has had a little help from me by way of interview and encouragement, mostly on account of his continued sending of the latest Bond publication, completely free of charge. As the once-proud owner of a Walther P88 pistol – specially set aside for me by the makers – with the serial number 007, I have still a soft spot for the Bond saga. Sadly, said gun has been forcibly neutered under the draconian revisions to UK firearms laws and is relegated to the far reaches of my gun safe. It actually had a grungy single action trigger pull and the double action was even more of a pig. God give me back my Browning Hi-Power with the Barstow match barrel and the MMC target sights. Trigger pull a safe pound and three quarters and reliable with all known 9mm ammunition. Sadly neutered also.

The above authors have all reached out to long-standing Tull fans and neophytes alike with a huge investment in time, labour and commitment. Their love of the band comes shining through and I take my hat off to them all. Far too lazy to put pen to paper or digit to QWERTY, I leave this rarified atmosphere to their own circular breathing.

There have, of course been other Tull authors from other countries, published in their native tongues, and forgive me for not mentioning their names and efforts here. I guess you will find them, on the w.w. web, as indeed you will those detailed above.

Am***n.com will oblige and B****s and N**b*l can probably take your money too.

So, give the ears a rest. Pick up a book sometime and let their words do the talking. Here’s to all the Tull authors – bet they never do it again!