Longreads

Musicians, writers, and visual artists may work in different mediums, but living on the bottom of the capitalist food chain has cursed us with many common problems. Instead of finding unity, though, even the underdogs form a hierarchy and screw each other over.

For The Outline, Robert Silverman tells the story of his father’s regrettable success painting the cover of one of Jethro Tull’s best-selling albums. As the band became famous, the Aqualung cover art ended up on everything from coffee cups to t-shirts, and Silverman’s father, Burton, received no more payment for his effort than his initial $1,300 flat fee. Burton is now 89. He still feels he’s been wronged. The way it all went down has become rock and roll mythology. Now the Silvermans tell their story to set the record straight.

If he couldn’t win in court, perhaps, dad surmised, Anderson might be willing to…

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