Ian Anderson Quotes
'Aqualung' marks the point at which I had the confidence as a songwriter and as a guitar player to actually pick up and play the guitar and be at the forefront of the band. It's also the album on which I began to address religious issues in my music, and I think that happened simply because the time was right for it.
A lot of pop music is about stealing pocket money from children.
All the time I was playing the flute, the lines, the solos, the riffs, the construction, were based on my guitar skills. I did not play the flute to exploit its natural faculties, but I used it as a surrogate guitar.
As a musician, life is not over just because you are getting older, and so I find retirement a very frightening and dark thought.
As a songwriter, you tend to develop your own style, your own technique, based around what it is you're trying to write and perform, in terms of your own music. So a way of evolving a guitar style as a songwriter is much easier, I think, than developing a true style of your own just from listening to music or playing other people's music.
Classical music only really came into my life in 1969. I wish I had heard classical music and church music when I was a teenager or even as a child.
I can never make up my mind if I'm happy being a flute player, or if I wish I were Eric Clapton.
I don't really set out to please anybody, and I don't think I ever have. I have occasionally been encouraged to try to write something specifically for the purpose of releasing it as a single to get radio play. Those are not my best songs, as a rule.
I don't think people really do listen. We plug into music, and we have short attention spans. We tend to download individual tracks from iTunes rather than a whole album. We buy music DVDs and watch them once, and then they disappear into a drawer, or we loan them to a friend, and we never watch it again.
I don't think successful musicians were really put on this planet in order to have a great time, pat themselves on the back and say, 'Oh, what a clever boy I am!' I think that, like most artists, we were put on the planet to suffer just a little. And we do.
I feel the audience has a right to know if some of the money they're spending is going to a certain cause, and reassuring them the money is going to where it's supposed to be going.
I kind of like the idea of living a rather ordinary life as a shopkeeper, and I examine that possibility as one of the outcomes of the young Gerald Bostock growing older.
I make up my own mind in light of available facts, with my own experience and a sense of personal ethics.
I suppose when I started playing guitar, it was the means to an end. I never thought of myself as a fully fledged guitar instrumentalist. And my early excursions on the electric guitar were curtailed when Eric Clapton came on the scene, and I decided I was never going to be in the same arena as a Clapton or a Peter Green.
I think I've owned all the models of iPods so far. And these days between my iPod, iPhone and my personal laptop computer, I'm someone who is very, very grateful for all the ways to listen to music and completely switch off from people around me and listen to the music in detail, which is very hard to do if you're in a room with other people.
I think it's really the job of the composer, the artist, the painter, the writer to present people with options. I'm just really reflecting the thoughts and actions around me.
I think the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, first of all, has got to be put into the context of being an American cultural showcase. It's there to be a museum showcase of all that's great about American music.
I think we always view people who make us feel uncomfortable and appear to intrude on our middle-class cozy space, we view them with, if not hostility, at least suspicion, discomfort, embarrassment.
I was always more interested in the ultimate live performance rather than the recording for its own sake. And, for the audience too, that thrill of - just being there.
I was not a great guitarist, so I sold my 1960 Fender Stratocaster in exchange for a Shure Microphone, made in Chicago, and a flute.
Ian Anderson Profile
August 10, 1947
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