Jethro Tull’s Anderson donating Israel concert funds to coexistence groups

Move marks third time singer donated proceeds from Israel shows.

October 28, 2018 23:13
2 minute read.
Ian Anderson, the lead singer of rock band Jethro Tull, Wikipedia Festivalsommer

Ian Anderson, the lead singer of rock band Jethro Tull, Wikipedia Festivalsommer. (photo credit: SVEN MANDEL)


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Ian Anderson, the lead singer of rock band Jethro Tull, will once again be donating his earnings from his four concerts in Israel to progressive Jewish groups.

Anderson, who played in Haifa and Tel Aviv last week and is set to perform in Jerusalem on Sunday evening, will be giving his proceeds from these shows to two organizations: Shatil and the Polyphony Foundation.

Shatil is the operative arm of the New Israel Fund, which calls itself a social and economic justice organization that works to promote democracy and civil rights. The Polyphony Foundation, founded in 2006, uses music to bring together Arab and Jewish youth in Israel.

“We are happy and excited to receive Ian Anderson’s contribution, along with the Polyphony Foundation, and we thank him warmly,” said New Israel Fund director Mickey Gitzin in a statement Sunday. “His support for the work we do is an important statement by an international artist, and shows a deep commitment. We encourage more international artists to come to Israel, to excite the Israeli public and to donate to the activities of human rights, equality and democracy.”

This marks at least the third time that Anderson has visited Israel and donated the proceeds to charitable organizations.

In 2010, he pledged to give his earnings from three shows to “bodies representing the development of peaceful co-existence between Muslims, Jews and Christians, and the fostering of better Palestinian/Israeli relations.”

In an interview that year with The Jerusalem Post’s David Brinn, Anderson said it was an easy decision.

“These things don’t make me feel particularly good or saintly, it was just one of those things you do from time to time, like most people in my position,” he said. “We’re not talking about millions of dollars here, we’re talking about a few thousand – after all, it’s three little concerts in Israel.”    

At the time he donated to three non-profits dedicated to coexistence: Hand in Hand, Peace Child Israel and Neveh Shalom/Wahat al-Salam.

And in 2012, he did the same after his three shows in Israel.

“I don’t let those people bully me and tell me where to play, I make my own decisions,” he told Brinn in a 2012 interview. “The fact that I might choose not to benefit financially from my performances and donate my earnings is my own decision as well.”

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