Thursday, 25 September 2014

glenn cornick RIP

It was somewhat belated news that one morning newspaper obit announced Jethro Tull bassist, Glenn Cornick, had passed away on August 28th.
If Jethro Tull had a golden moment it was surely with their second album 'Stand Up', where the band still in their early years captured a stand out performance on just their second LP.
Cornick had been an original member of Tull then being led by ace guitarist Mick Abrahams who were working over some driving blues rock around the small gigs and colleges with their first album 'This Was', it's notoriety due more to the cover photo of the group.
After the huge success in the UK with their single "Livin' In The Past " and an outrageous performance on Top Of The Pop's the music and image was an instant hit. Cornick being immediately recognisable with the head band and glasses and just as much an essential part of the bands rag bag persona.
By the second album 'Stand Up' in 1969 their sound was now a clever blend of blues and the new progressive rock surfacing in the UK and produced some genuinely fine musicianship delivered with at times fierce conviction. The rhythm section of Clive Bunkers and Glenn Cornick was particularly central to the quality of the sound.
With the inventive songwriting of Ian Anderson now elbowing Mick Abrahams from the band by "Stand Up" Jethro Tull were now hot news. In 1970 they were performing on the Sunday night at the 1970 Isle Of Wight Festival, by November that year and after finishing a successful tour of the US, Cornick was sacked. Rumours abound as to why but in truth no actual explanation was given. Not even to Glenn himself who remained mystified to the end. The last album he was to play on was Tull's third, 'Benefit' and given that it was released around the same year as his departure made it an equally odd move by the management or shall we say a true rock and roll bass player did not fit comfortably into the Anderson scheme of things.
Watch this great 4 minute video of the whole shabby affair. Glenn always was good value in interviews.

He went onto form 'Wild Turkey' and released 3 albums in the 70's without too much fuss but the band toured Stateside supporting Tull on some tour dates before calling it quits in the mid 70's. Wild Turkey did make it back one more time in the 90's and for the last time in 2000's recording two live albums with his old mates, one of which was Clive Bunker.
He died in Hilo, Hawaii of all places, that's along way to go for a guy from Barrow-in-Furness. Some journey.
Here's the Cornick pile-driving riff kicking off Tulls "A New Day Yesterday" from 'Stand Up'. And that album sleeve.