• Writer: Ian Anderson
  • Producers: Ian Anderson and Terry Ellis
  • Released: March, 1971
  • Players:
    Ian Anderson–vocals, flute, acoustic guitar
    Martin Barre–guitar, recorder
    John Evan–piano, organ, mellotron
    Jeffrey Hammond-Hammond–bass, backing vocals, alto recorder
    Clive Bunker–drums, percussion
  • Album: Aqualung (Chrysalis, 1971)
  • Also On:
    M.U.: The Best Of Jethro Tull (Chrysalis, 1976)
    Live – Bursting Out (Chrysalis, 1978)
    Original Masters (Chrysalis, 1985)
    20 Years Of Jethro Tull (Chrysalis, 1988)
    A Little Light Music (Chrysalis, 1992)
    25th Anniversary Boxed Set (Chrysalis, 1993)
    Anniversary Collection: The Best Of Jethro Tull (Chrysalis, 1993)
    Aqualung: 20th Anniversary Edition (EMI, 1996)
  • According to rock legend, most of the songs on the first side of Aqualung, including the title track, were inspired by the observations of Ian Anderson‘s first wife, Jennie, on British street people. Aqualung‘s second side, which includes “Locomotive Breath,” was often described as Anderson’s anti-church, pro-God statement.
  • During that time, Jethro Tull‘s lineup was in a fairly constant state of flux — reportedly due to Anderson’s frugality and unwillingness to share song royalties with anyone except the band’s producer and manager, Terry Ellis.
  • Partly spurred by the success of “Locomotive Breath,” Aqualung sold more than five million copies.
  • “Locomotive Breath” peaked at Number 62 on the pop chart.
  • Anderson says the runaway train crash in “Locomotive Breath” is a metaphor for life. “It’s an analogy of the unending train journey of life. You can’t stop. You’ve got to stagger on.”


  • Tull remains active as both a touring and recording outfit.
  • Anderson and guitarist Martin Barre are the longest-tenured members of the band. Both have released solo albums and mounted solo tours in recent years.
  • Jethro Tull continues to tour and is working on a new album.