PRS for Music honours Jethro Tull's first gig venue

Legendary British Rock group Jethro Tull are to be honoured by the new PRS for Music Heritage Award.

A special plaque will be erected at Holy Family Church, Blackpool where the original group (then known as The Blades), vocalist and flute work of Ian Anderson, bass guitarist Jeffrey Hammond and keyboardist (then drummer) John Evans performed their first ever gig in 1964.

PRS for Music set up the Heritage Award last year to recognise the unusual ‘performance birthplaces’ of famous bands and artists. Jethro Tull is the third band to be given the honour of receiving the permanent plaque. 

Founding member Ian Anderson will be there to see the plaque unveiled in Blackpool on Thursday 25 February at 2.30pm.

Chairman Ellis Rich and Ian AndersonPRS for Music Chairman, Ellis Rich said: “Jethro Tull are rock legends so it’s a real pleasure to be honouring them today with the PRS for Music Heritage Award. In a career that has stretched across four decades the band has shaped and inspired countless other musicians so it’s a fantastic achievement to celebrate.”  

Ian Anderson said: "I'm honoured and delighted that the birthplace of my musical career has been chosen to be marked in this way. Some forty-six years, sixty million album sales and three thousand gigs later, I look back to that night here at the church hall with fondness and thanks – it’s fantastic to return and meet up again with old friends today.” 

Jethro Tull has sold in excess of 60 million albums worldwide including: This Was (1968), Stand Up (1969), Benefit (1970), Aqualung (1971), Minstrel in the Gallery (1975), The Jethro Tull Christmas Album (2003).

Anyone who was present at the first gig and is interested in attending the plaque unveiling ceremony or has photos of the performance should contact heritageplaque@prsformusic.com and will receive an official invite.