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Friday, June 24, 2016

The History Of Rush by Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson: The Early Years

The History Of Rush by Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson: The Early Years
TeamRock.Com has just posted a new, exclusive interview with both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson in celebration of Rush's unofficial 50th anniversary. The two bandmaters actually met back in 1966, though their first gig together wouldn't take place until two years later:
1968: The First Gig
Alex Lifeson: It was cool to be young and be in ‘a band’. I had a friend named John Rutsey who played drums, and we had a little basement band called The Projection. The guy that lived next door to me, Gary Cooper, was the bass player. He was older than us and he was the only one who had a car. That was a very important friend to have. That band never really gigged. We just played at a party maybe once every six weeks during the summer. It was mostly about getting together and playing the three or four songs that we knew. And Gary Cooper didn’t stick around for long. But out of The Projection came the first gig as Rush. John’s brother Bill had said, ‘You need a better name for the band – how about Rush?’ And we liked it. We were offered this gig at a drop-in centre, so I called this guy I’d been jamming with, Jeff Jones, who played bass and sang. We did that gig. Twenty people showed up. The following week we were offered another gig at the same place, but Jeff said he couldn’t do it – he was already in another band at the time. So that’s when I called Geddy.
Check out Part 1 of the interview at this LINK.

Part 2 of the interview, titled from 2112 to stardom is available HERE.

Part 3 of the interview, titled Moving Pictures and the 1980s is available HERE.

Thanks to Arthur R. Spear for the news.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Rush: A Brief History of Time - Part 13 Now Online

Rush: A Brief History of Time - Part 13 Now Online
The thirteenth installment of the ongoing series Rush: A Brief History of Time, an ever-growing archive of articles, interviews, reviews, and advertisements about Rush that span every decade from the 70's onward, and collected from the world over, is now online.

The thirteenth installment includes 239 "new" articles and advertisements; 54 from the 1970's, 39 from the 1980's, 110 from the 1990's, 1 from the 2000's and 35 from the current 2010 decade. Roughly half of the articles this time around focus on the releases of Presto and Roll the Bones, including some great, separate interviews with each of the band members.

Also included in this installment are numerous, early concert reviews from the 1970's, many of which definitely did not paint Rush, or their musical prowess, in a favorable light. One such review from 1974 had this to say:
"I really don't see what all the excitement over Rush is about. They're just another "high energy" rock band who prides itself on its ability to "boogie."
If that statement doesn't scream the 70's, I don't know what does :)

As always, special thanks go out to Heiko Klages for providing the majority of the articles and advertisements that make up this installment. Additionally, I would like to thank Rush historian and mega-collector Joe Pesch for also providing dozens of articles this time around. Other contributions came from Bob Wegner, Eric Hansen, Greg Nosek, and Kelly Moretta. Thank you, all!

To read the entire thirteenth installment, please click HERE.

To check out all thirteen installments of Rush: A Brief History of Time, which includes a chronological listing of all the articles (nearly 1,200 in all), please click HERE.

Friday, June 3, 2016

Rush Caress of Steel Artist Proof Lithograph Drawing Now Available

Rush Caress of Steel Artist Proof Lithograph Drawing Now Available
Update: Well, that didn't take long. The item has sold-out, which isn't surprising given the limited run. We'll keep an eye out in case the Backstage Club offers up more in the future.
The Rush Backstage Club has just announced the availability of a Caress of Steel Artist Proof Lithograph drawing that is framed and signed by prolific Rush artist Hugh Syme.

From the announcement:
We have released the Artist Proof Limited Edition of Hugh Syme's original Caress of Steel drawing. This is the first piece of art Hugh created for Rush, and it became the centerpiece of the album cover. This is printed on high quality heavy art paper, and framed meticulously by our friends at Frameworth.

Each piece is hand signed and numbered by the artist, in a limited edition of 40. Each piece also comes with a Certificate of Authenticity affixed to the back of the piece. The litho size is 12" x 12" and the finished framed size is approximately 17" x 17".

Price: $374.99 USD
The drawing also appears in Hugh Syme's book The Art of Rush. A high-resolution version is also available on Syme's website.

Click HERE for more information and ordering instructions.

Monday, May 30, 2016

Rush: The Unofficial Illustrated History Third Edition Coming June 1st

Rush: The Unofficial Illustrated History Third Edition Coming June 1st
Author Martin Popoff is no stranger to Rush. Back in 2004, the prolific author published the very well received Contents Under Pressure: 30 Years of Rush at Home and Away. Back in 2013, Popoff released the first edition of Rush: The Unofficial Illustrated History.

Now word comes that a fully revised and updated version of his Illustrated History book will be released on June 1st.

From the Amazon Listing:
Rush: The Illustrated History is a fully updated, richly illustrated history from prolific rock journalist and noted Rush authority Martin Popoff. The book follows the world-conquering exploits of Rush band members Geddy Lee, Neil Peart, and Alex Lifeson from the band's formation in Toronto to their fortieth anniversary celebration and tour. Popoff's stellar history is complemented by LP reviews from a slate of highly regarded music writers, a thorough discography compiled by the author himself, and more than 400 photographs and articles of memorabilia, from candid backstage images and live performance photography to picture sleeves, gig posters, period print ads, ticket stubs, backstage passes, and more. The result is a visually stunning and authoritative review befitting the rock band with one of the most devoted fan bases ever.
Pre-Ordering is available via Amazon.Com, with the book available in both Hardcover and Kindle form.

To learn more about Popoff and his other projects, check out his website.

Thanks to reader Joe Pesch for passing along the news.

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Andy Curran Hints at Future Rush Releases and the Band's Future

Andy Curran Hints at Future Rush Releases and the Band's Future
On Friday, Canada's FYI Music News published an article featuring the Andy Curran who, as many Rush fans may know, was Anthem Entertainment's former A&R executive. After Anthem was acquired by Canadian-headquartered music rights management firm ole, Curran was named the new Label Services general manager/A&R.

In the article, Curran hints at some upcoming Rush related releases for 2016:
"Aside from prepping the 40th anniversary deluxe edition of 2112 and a documentary of Rush’s R40 tour that is looking to be released in 2016’s fourth quarter, Curran is pouring over the catalogue to prep long-unavailable titles for reissue, digitally, on CD and on vinyl."
The R40 tour documentary was developed by the band in conjunction with Fadoo Productions. During the R40 tour, Fadoo had documentary crews on hand during most of the shows, as well as at last year's RushCon. The documentary focuses primarily on the fans.

The comment about the 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition of 2112 is interesting and a little perplexing, given the band has already released a deluxe edition of the album back in 2012. Given this is the 40th Anniversary of the release of Rush's first live album All the World's a Stage, one has to wonder if this album, and not 2112, is getting some type of Deluxe Edition reissue.

Regarding the future of Rush, Curran had this to say:
“If I was a gambling man, I would say those guys are going to record some more music,” Curran says. “The live component is certainly a question mark with Neil, but they’re still quite young at heart. I don’t see those guys sitting still for too long and we’ll be working with them in the future.”
You can read the entire article via this LINK.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for passing along the news.

Neil Peart News, Weather, and Sports Update - May 2016 - BubbaGram™#6

Neil Peart News, Weather, and Sports Update - May 2016 - BubbaGram™#6
Neil Peart has posted a new update to the News, Weather, and Sports section of his website. In this 6th installment of the ongoing BubbaGram series, Neil continues to talk about some of the sites he and his riding mates visited during the R40 tour. One place in particular was Crater Lake National Park in Oregon:
Perhaps my major ambition for that day was to get riding photos of Crater Lake. After five or six visits over the years, I had never managed to capture the “sense of place” in a single image—and if I could do that with a motorcycle passing through, that would be the ultimate. (We have ridden through and photographed some impressive walls of snow around there, towering above the plowed road even in early summer. The area gets forty-five feet of snow, so it takes a while to melt—but was all gone by July 22.)

The larger and more spectacular a place is, the harder it is to convey to others—in words or in photographs. I believe the opening image does a pretty good job (thank you, thank you), but some places you just have to see for yourself. A few examples would be Lake Louise, Grand Canyon, Bryce Canyon, Death Valley, and Crater Lake.
Neil once again hints at his 'retirement' from performing live with Rush via this passage:
Definitely “going big” on these last few rides. “Bingeing,” I guess.
New disorder: “binge riding.”
Up at 6:30 again on bus—after show, and 1:00 a.m. bedtime.
Because . . . won’t be doing this anymore.
Neil ends this entry with a poignant thought about the impending end of the R40 tour:
The day was truly reborn, and being fueled and refreshed, I would summon the energy to face the next part of the day: route planning, soundcheck, dinner with the Guys at Work, warmup, and show number thirty-one.

Just four more to go, as we traveled into the Southwest and the home stretch — literally home, for me.
Click HERE to read the entire entry.

And to check out every News, Weather, and Sports entry Neil has made dating back to 2005, they are all available at the News, Weather, and Sports Archives.

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Geddy Lee Attends Pearl Jam Concert, Gets Shout-Out by Eddie Vedder

Geddy Lee Attends Pearl Jam Concert, Gets Shout-Out by Eddie Vedder
Pearl Jam was performing in Toronto on Thursday night and none other than Geddy Lee happened to be in attendance. Pearl Jam's lead singer Eddie Vedder took notice of their special guest and gave Geddy a shout out during the concert.

The band proceeded to play a few notes from Fly By Night as well as Cygnus X-1 before Vedder addressed the crowd:
"...we have been a band for twenty five years but if we wanted to play a Rush song we would probably have to play for another twenty five..."
Geddy took some backstage photos with Vedder and Pearl Jam drummer Matt Cameron who, coincidentally, played drums on Geddy's solo album My Favorite Headache.

For more information on the event, click HERE.

Thanks to everyone who alerted me to this event.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Alex Lifeson: Songwriter, Producer & Musician - Guitar Connoisseur Magazine

Alex Lifeson New Solo Album?
Back in March we first announced that a new feature interview with Alex Lifeson was published in Guitar Connoisseur Magazine. At that time, the interview was only available via the magazine's Apple News Feed. Now, the entire interview is available directly on the magazine's website.

The interview touches upon several topics, including Alex's solo project Victor, the R40 tour set up, and his emotive solo from The Garden:
GC: We talked a while ago about the guitar solo in The Garden from Clockwork Angels and how you recorded it direct, using Logic on your home computer. So often musicians talk about creating a vibe in the studio, and in this case your most memorable solo in recent years was created in a fairly ordinary way?

AL: That solo was recorded one afternoon in Geddy’s studio. He had taken a day off, so I came in and updated a few of the songs, getting caught up cleaning tracks and recording newer versions of guitar, keys, and drum parts. I wanted to fill in the “insert solo here” space with at least something. I fiddled with some guitar plug in settings in Logic and quickly recorded a few passes, and then edited them for the final version. After completing it and listening back, I thought , “hmm, that kind of fits perfectly!”. The solo you hear on the album is that very same solo, a quick throw away that worked, and this has happened on other songs as well, such as the solo on “Leave That Thing Alone”, acoustic verses in “Bravest Face”, and the solo on “Bravado” to name a few.
You can read the entire interview at this LINK.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Rush Make Billboard's Top Money-Makers List of 2015

Rush Make Billboard's Top Money-Makers List of 2015
Billboard magazine has just released their annual list of the Top Money Makers in the Music Industry for 2015. The list of 40 acts includes such notable entries as The Rolling Stones (#3), Billy Joel (#4), U2 (#8), AC/DC (#24), and Paul McCartney (#33).

Coming in at the very respectable #16 spot is Rush, with revenues totaling $12 million for the year. Of the $12 million haul for the band, the vast majority ($10.7M) was related to their R40 Live Anniversary tour - an impressive showing given the relatively short length of the tour.

In fact as the Billboard article states, "...touring is once again the determining factor for the 40 genre-spanning acts that topped Billboard's ranking of music’s highest-paid musicians of the past year..."

You can check out the entire list via this LINK.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for passing along the news.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Neil Peart's R40 Live Drum Kits on Display at GearFest 2016

Neil Peart's R40 Live Drum Kits on Display at GearFest 2016
Road Trip Alert: Now is your chance to get up close and personal with not one, but both drum kits that were featured during Rush's R40 Live 40th Anniversary North American tour. Both kits will be on display during this year's GearFest.

GearFest 2016, which takes place on June 17th and 18th in Fort Wayne, Indiana, features "... two full days of hands-on gear demonstrations, workshops held by top engineers and musicians, amazing musical performances, and chances for you to win over $88,000 of free gear. Learn from and interact with hundreds of instrument and equipment designers and the industry's leading artists..."

According to the event page, Neil's drum tech, Lorne "Gump" Wheaton, will be on hand to answer questions and give tours of the kits. There will be photo opportunities.

For more information about GearFest 2016, please click HERE.

Thanks to reader Joe Pesch for passing along the news.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

All The Gifts Of Life: 40 Years Of Rush's '2112'

All The Gifts Of Life: 40 Years Of Rush's 2112
In celebration of its 40th anniversary, Alex Lifeson shares his memories about the making of Rush's classic ground-breaking album 2112 in a new feature interview posted at NPR:
"I remember thinking," Lifeson says candidly, "'I had eight years of playing rock in a band, and it's awesome, I love it, and I don't want to compromise. If this will be the end, I dunno, I'll go back to working with my dad plumbing, or go back to school, or something else.' To me it was impossible to take a step backwards and do something we'd already done just to please a record company."

The story is the stuff of legend. Rush stubbornly stuck to their plan, following up an album that had an ambitious 20-minute conceptual piece with an album with an even more ambitious 20-minute conceptual piece. Structurally 2112 was very much similar to Caress of Steel, only the band's vision was clearer, their musical chops were stronger, the songwriting was more advanced. Best of all, they sounded grown up.
The article closes with Alex's thoughts about Rush being cited as the influence for many other bands -- not only because of their musical prowess but because they did it their way:
"When other bands cite us as an inspiration or an influence, [the theme of 2112 is] what they're talking about, more than anything. I've often read when we're mentioned as an influence for a band they'll say, 'We're big Rush fans, because they did it on their own, they did it their own way, and that told me that I could do the same thing. If I stick with it, persevere, I can do things the way I want them to be.'"
Click HERE to read the entire article.

Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Alex Lifeson to Participate in Alice Cooper's Rock & Roll Vampire Bash Golf Classic

Alex Lifeson to Participate in Alice Cooper's Rock & Roll Vampire Bash Gold Classic
Alex Lifeson is among a list of special guests who will participate in Alice Cooper's Rock & Roll Vampire Bash Gold Classic.

The other guests include Frankie Muniz, Neal Smith, Frank Sidoris, Tommy Thayer, Danny Seraphine, and Jeff Allen.

From the event page:
Sponsored by Airpark Dodge Ram Chrysler Jeep, Fiat of Scottsdale and Alfa Romeo of Scottsdale, Alice Cooper's Rock & Roll Golf Classic and Rock & Roll Vampire Bash directly benefit Solid Rock and The Rock Teen Center, and bring together some of the biggest names in entertainment and sports, and many PGA veterans and community leaders.

Join Alice and Sheryl as they raise the dead at Alice Cooper's Rock & Roll Vampire Bash on Sunday, April 24th from 4:30-10:00 pm. The nocturnal fun includes a Cocktail Reception where you can chill with us in the Pro Em VIP Lounge, Silent Auction, Dinner, Live Auction and Live Entertainment on the PCS Stage with Alice Cooper and friends, including Alex Lifeson (Rush), Danny Seraphine (Chicago), Tommy Thayer (KISS), Frank Sidoris (Slash), and Neal Smith (Alice Cooper), and the comic genius of Jeff Allen.

Tickets are $250 per person and are on sale now by calling Joy Covell at the Solid Rock office at 602-522-9200.
For more information on the event, please click HERE.

Thursday, April 7, 2016

ABC's The Goldbergs Promises Significant Rush Reference in Upcoming Episode

Rush Reference on The Goldbergs
ABC's television comedy The Goldbergs, which is now in its third season, has had a number of Rush sightings (typically of the t-shirt variety as the image to the right reflects) over the course of its run. However there may be a much more significant Rush reference in the upcoming April 13th episode which is titled, appropriately, "Rush".

From the DirectTV description of the episode (Season 3, Episode 21):
Beverly smothers Barry when he tells her that she favors Adam; Murray is not happy about Erica's new boyfriend who is a Rush fanatic.
The episode will air Wednesday, April 13th at 9:30PM EST on the ABC network.

For more information about The Goldbergs, check out the official ABC series page HERE.

Thanks to reader ‎Janice Ross for the news.

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Alex Lifeson on 40 Years of '2112': 'It Was Our Protest Album'

Alex Lifeson on 40 Years of 2112: It Was Our Protest Album
In connection with the 40th Anniversary of Rush's album 2112, Rolling Stone Magazine has published a new, lengthy interview with Alex Lifeson about the band's seminal album.

Titled Alex Lifeson on 40 Years of '2112': 'It Was Our Protest Album', the interview touches upon the importance of the album in Rush's history, the artwork and Starman logo, and how the band's manager, Ray Danniels essentially lied to the record label about the album:
Your record label explicitly asked you not to do another suite like "The Fountain of Lamneth." How did you present 2112 to them?

[Laughs] Well, Ray [Danniels], our manager, went in and lied to them and basically told them, "Yeah, the band is working on a great record. It's gonna be a real commercial success and the songs are very straightforward." And then we delivered it. The fortunate thing is our deal at that time was a production deal. So, really, we had full control over content, including artwork. Once we delivered it to the record company, it was theirs to work with. So we were really lucky.
You can read the entire article via this LINK.

Thanks to reader ‎Arthur R. Spear for the news.

Alex Lifeson Interview in Guitar Connoisseur Magazine Hints at Possible New Solo Project

Alex Lifeson New Solo Album?
Is Alex ready to record and produce the follow-up to his 1996 solo album Victor? According to a new interview that was just posted by Guitar Connoisseur Magazine, it's a possibility.

From the interview:
... What I enjoyed most about making [Victor] was the variety of the material. It was a wonderful opportunity for me to explore and expand on certain genres of music that were not necessarily open to me within the context of Rush. The workload was relentless, and I seemed to be working on that album every day for a year, but it was enormously satisfying for me as a songwriter, producer, and musician. I don't have the same drive to jump into a project like Victor at the moment, but I do have hours of material that does inspire me to at least consider such a thing...
Currently, the interview is only accessible via the magazine's Apple News Feed at this link via the Apple News App. If anyone has the ability of exporting the entire interview, please contact me.

In addition to his work on Victor, Alex also discusses his work on Clockwork Angels, particularly his solo on The Garden, his various signature guitars, his early influences, and more.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for both the news and the article extract.

Friday, March 18, 2016

Details Emerge About Neil Peart's New Book Far and Wide: Bring that Horizon to Me!

Details Emerge About Neil Peart's New Book Far and Wide: Bring that Horizon to Me!
It was late last year when we first learned about a new book coming from Neil Peart. Today, new details, including an image of the book's cover, have emerged.

From the Amazon description:
Thirty-five concerts. 17,000 motorcycle miles. Three months. One lifetime.

In May 2015, the veteran Canadian rock trio Rush embarked on their fortieth anniversary tour, R40. For the band and their fans, R40 was a celebration and, perhaps, a farewell. But for Neil Peart, each tour is more than just a string of concerts, it’s an opportunity to explore backroads near and far on his BMW motorcycle. So if this was to be the last tour and the last great adventure, he decided it would have to be the best one, onstage and off.

This third volume in Peart’s illustrated travel series shares all-new tales that transport the reader across North America and through memories of fifty years of playing drums. From the scenic grandeur of the American West to a peaceful lake in Quebec’s Laurentian Mountains to the mean streets of Midtown Los Angeles, each story is shared in an intimate narrative voice that has won the hearts of many readers.

Richly illustrated, thoughtful, and ever-engaging, Far and Wide is an elegant scrapbook of people and places, music and laughter, from a fascinating road — and a remarkable life.
Neil's latest book is set to be released on September 13th of this year. You can pre-order it via Amazon at this LINK.

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Neil Peart News, Weather, and Sports Update - March 2016 - BubbaGram™#5

Neil Peart News, Weather, and Sports Update - March 2016 - BubbaGram™#5
The latest update from Neil Peart (See: BubbaGram™#5, has just been posted to the News, Weather, and Sports section of his website. In this 5th installment of the ongoing BubbaGram series, Neil talks about a harrowing motorcycle accident he suffered back in 2010 during the band's Time Machine tour.

From the entry:
It was September 15, 2010, cool with mixed sun and clouds, a day off after a show in Boston on our Time Machine tour. Dave had dropped us in New York State near Albany, and in the morning Michael and I worked our way over to the Delaware River and started west across the backroads of northeastern Pennsylvania. We were riding in the general direction of the next show, in Pittsburgh, planning an overnight stop somewhere along the way.

The narrow paved two-lane wound along creeks and low ridges, through farmland and leafy woods, with many blind hills and corners. So our speed was “careful.” I came around a right turn to see a sharp left ahead, so was aligning the bike for that next corner entry, when suddenly the whole machine started shimmying below me. It oscillated side to side a few times, then went down. In a snap I was off and sliding across the pavement on my left side. What a universe of fear and helplessness opens inside you during split seconds like that. And no wonder time seems to slow, because it is so full—of raw, existential terror.
Neil continues to explain what happened, and the aftermath of the accident, in the entry. Click HERE to read the rest of the story. Also, below is a video of Neil's drum solo which he performed after getting into his little 'spill'.

To pre-order Neil's new book Far and Wide: Bring That Horizon to Me! at Amazon, use this LINK.

And to check out every News, Weather, and Sports entry Neil has made dating back to 2005, they are all available at the News, Weather, and Sports Archives.

Thanks to reader Stuart Holden for the news.

Monday, March 14, 2016

Rush and MusiCounts Sponsor 2016 Teacher of the Year Award

Rush and MusiCounts Sponsor 2016 Teacher of the Year Award
Canada’s music education charity MusiCounts alongside Rush, are the sponsors behind the 2016 Teacher of the Year award which recognizes teachers with outstanding dedication to inspiring and nurturing the musical growth of Canadian youth.

This year, Don Bossé of Fredericton High School (FHS) in Fredericton, NB was the recipient of the award, which was given to him by both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson.

From the announcement:
At the surprise presentation to Bossé, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson spoke about the reasons they chose to support this award. “When everything you have in life has come from the fountain of music, you want to spread that around and you want to encourage others,” said Lee. “Music is a fantastic way to enrich your life and to express yourself, so to encourage teachers to help young people find that in themselves is a very noble cause.” “It’s also way more fun than math,” added Lifeson.

Drummer Neil Peart, although not able to be a part of the presentation, recalled the three teachers (referred to as his Holy Trinity) that had a profound influence on him: “Freddie Gruber, Peter Erskine and Don George, who was my first drum teacher from my hometown of St. Catharines. Don gave me my most important encouragement at the age of 13 by telling me I could be a drummer if I wanted to be – that meant a lot.”
Click HERE to read more.

Wednesday, March 9, 2016

Alex Lifeson Talks Rush's Uncertain Future in New Rolling Stone Interview

Alex Lifeson Talks Rush's Uncertain Future
Rolling Stone magazine recently caught up with Alex Lifeson to discuss the low-hanging fruit of Rush's future. While the news is anything BUT new, Alex does confirm (once again) that Rush is essentially done with lengthy tours.

From the article:
"We had such a great time on the tour," Lifeson tells Rolling Stone. "And it was really nice to go through all the material in reverse chronology, and I think our fans really enjoyed it. I think that no matter how long it would have been, it would have been too short. Neil was prepared to commit to 30 dates and he told us that right from the very beginning. He didn't even want to do the tour, to be honest with you. It's been increasingly difficult for him, but he committed to the tour and we got through it. As far as he was concerned, that was the end of touring."
Asked if Lifeson (and Lee) might tour together sans Peart, Alex replied in his usual witty form:
"Well, we have been saying that every 40 years, we fire our drummer and get a new one..."
You can read the entire article via this LINK.

Monday, February 29, 2016

Geddy Lee and Producer Terry Brown Talk 2112 In New Interview

Geddy Lee and Producer Terry Brown Talk 2112 In New Interview
The March 2016 issue of MOJO Magazine, which features the late David Bowie on the cover, includes a Rush-focused article/interview titled Rush Make 2112, 1976. Both Geddy Lee and long-time Rush producer Terry Brown talked about the impact 2112 had on the success of Rush, as well as some unexpected negative impacts the album's release had.

From the article:
Sales were slow at first. And then we had that terrible thing in England with the NME. 2112 was speaking out against totalitarianism, but the NME called us fascists. It made zero sense. Ayn Rand had a very controversial image as an anti-socialist and extreme right-wing capitalist, but that was a side of her work that was not of interest to us.

My father Morris and my mother Mary were both in Auschwitz for a time, so I was really deeply hurt by that NME story. At that time in Britain, the press was hunting down anything that sniffed of fascism. I can't blame them for that. But they got the wrong guys with us. I am not a violent type, but I wanted to punch the guy who wrote that. Definitely, I could have helped educate him.
You can read the entire article via this LINK.

Sunday, February 28, 2016

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson Discuss Rush's Past and Future in new Sound Opinions Interview

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson Discuss Rush's Past and Future in new Sound Opinions Interview
Both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson were guests on Friday night's episode of Sound Opinions, a program that is part of Chicago's Public Radio station. The nationally-syndicated radio talk show, which focuses on rock music, is hosted by Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot.

From the announcement:
Rush & Opinions on Kanye WestFamous for its instrumental virtuosity and heady, sci-fi influenced lyrics, the Canadian prog-rock trio Rush has amassed an obsessive cult following. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush join hosts Jim DeRogatis and Greg Kot to discuss the band's remarkable 40-year career. Then they review the latest album from polarizing rapper Kanye West
Yes. Kanye West.

Putting that piece of the interview aside, components of the interview focused on the future of Rush. Ed Stenger from RushIsABand transcribed those portions of the interview which included Geddy and Alex's responses about the future:
Alex: I think right now we don't have any plans for anything. Keep in mind that we had a year and a half off after the Clockwork Angels Tour. We didn't talk about anything to do with the band in a year and a half. I think we're just in a stage now where we're just kind of taking some time, reconnecting with our families and friends and pursuing some other interests, and having some fun really. I know Geddy and I love writing together. We've been doing it since we were young teenagers. I'd like to think that we'll do it until we're very old men instead of just "mostly" old men.

Geddy: For Neil it's become too hard. And that's a phrase he likes to use. To play for 3 hours, to play the way we feel is being "Rush" - the way Rush plays a 3-hour show that's very complicated. That has taken its physical toll on his body. During the course of any of the last few tours he's gone through periods that he's having problems. Whether it's tendonitis or whether it's some other thing. So I think for him it's enough. He can't go through all that again. That's gonna dictate obviously what performing live is going to mean for Rush. And whether that happens or not - I can't really say at this point.

Alex: Neil's in a great headspace now. He's really enjoying his life and feels great. He's spending a lot of time with his daughter and his family. And doing the things that he loves to do, with his health intact. That's a very positive thing.
You can listen to the entire interview via the embedded player below or at the Sound Opinion Website. The Rush portion of the audio begins around the 6:15 mark and continues through to the 48-minute mark.

Thanks to everyone who alerted me to this interview.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Hear Wintersleep's Soaring Song With Rush's Geddy Lee

Hear Wintersleep's Soaring Song With Rush's Geddy Lee
Though Rush is currently on an extended hiatus, that certainly hasn't impacted Geddy Lee's desire to continue to make music, even if it isn't with his band. Recently, Geddy lent his bass-playing skills on a track for the Canadian indie-rock band Wintersleep.

Rolling Stone reports:
When Canadian indie-rock band Wintersleep were recording their new album, The Great Detachment, they got sidetracked chatting about their love for one of their country's most famous musical exports. "We were talking about how amazing Rush was ... and how incredible Geddy Lee is," Paul Murphy, the band's lead singer, told Rolling Stone. "He can sing these incredibly complex melodies with complex lyrics, while playing perhaps even more incredibly complex bass parts, while also operating foot pedals. If there was an instrument he could play with his eyeballs, I'm sure he'd be able to!"

Coincidentally, later that same night, the band ran into trouble while fine-tuning the bass line on one of the tracks, "Territory." "It was cool but the song didn't feel as lively as it should in the end," Murphy explains. "Someone was like, 'What would Geddy Lee do?' jokingly, and Tony [Doogan, producer] was like, 'Oh, the best bass player in the world? He'd make it incredible. Why don't we just ask him?'"

They did, and Wintersleep's "what if ...?" fantasy quickly turned into reality.
Click HERE for the entire Rolling Stone article. You can also listen to the track via the embedded player below.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for the news.


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