Showing posts from July, 2011

Happy Birthday Geddy Lee

Geddy Lee (born Gary Lee Weinrib) turns 58 today!

Happy Birthday, Geddy -- and many happy returns! "Gary" was born in the small Toronto village of Willowdale. As many fans know, his given first name "Gary" transformed into "Geddy" during his high school days thanks to his mother's heavily-accented pronunciation of his name.

July 29th is also an important date in Rush history as it marks the date, back in 1974, when Neil Peart joined the group.

Rush EuCon 2011 Coming To Scotland in October

The annual European Rush Convention, also known as Eucon 2011, will take place on October 1st, 2011 in Glasgow, Scotland at 'The Ferry'.

According to the convention's flyer, the one-day event will feature the talents of the Rush tribute band "Counterparts" as well as the classic rock covers band "Joe's Band".

The fun will continue with a collection of rare Rush videos and music, a Rush-themed raffle/auction for charity, a Rush Pub Quiz, plus other Rush-themed "surprises".

And, of course, food and drink will be available throughout the event.

All proceeds will be donated to the MS Society.

For tickets and additional information, please visit,, or

Thanks to William Winsborough for sharing the news.

Alex Lifeson Takes the Top Spot in Gibson's list of Canada's Top 10 Guitarists

In an article titled North Stars: Canada’s Top 10 Guitarists, Gibson ranks the top ten native Canadian guitarists. As you would expect from the world’s second-largest country, Canada has produced its share of great guitarists. From Newfoundland to The Yukon, it’s impossible to pinpoint a “Canadian” music style – just as it is with the U.S. – but from blues to folk to hard rock, there are certainly some great players, often legends in their native country but undervalued outside. Topping the list is Alex Lifeson:1. Alex Lifeson

1. Alex Lifeson It must be hard being Alex Lifeson sometimes. Despite the fame and money, imagine having to match the drum and bass skills of Neil Peart and Geddy Lee for 37 years? Lifeson has done it, though. An undeniably great riff writer, he is also one of rock’s most idiosyncratic soloists, blending strong melodies with neo-jazz flurries across a Rush catalog that has leapt from Zep-esque slammers to acoustic ballads, from reggae-inflected pop to instrume…

Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland DVD Release Date Pushed Out

Though originally scheduled to be released on September 27th, the upcoming concert film Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland is now apparently scheduled to be released on October 25th.

The new release date comes from the pre-ordering page on Amazon.Com. A release date and opening price for the Blu-Ray version of the film is still not available, however there's no reason to think that both the DVD and Blu-Ray versions wouldn't be released simultaneously.

To place your pre-order for either version, use the links below. Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland DVD - $13.99
Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland Blu-Ray - No Price Yet We'll keep you posted if anything further changes on the release date. Related News Stories
[Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland DVD Now Available for Pre-Order - July 21st, 2011]
[Rush Close Out the Time Machine Tour - Look Towards the Future - July 3rd, 2011]
[Rush Prepare to Take on Vegas / RushCon:X1 Begins - June 24th, 2011]

Drummer Neil Peart's Body is a Finely Tuned Instrument

The Los Angeles Times has just posted an interesting article/interview with Neil Peart where the discussion centers around his fitness regiment and how he's able to keep up the stamina required to tour and perform with Rush: If you're a good drummer, it's a physically demanding job. To be the greatest, you must follow a training regimen that goes beyond the lighted stage.

A recent reader's poll in Rolling Stone magazine proclaimed my fellow Canadian Neil Peart of Rush to be the greatest living drummer, and I, many drum magazines and TV's "Family Guy" agree. Accordingly, I endeavored to snag an interview with a man who rarely gives interviews. I wanted to discover how a rocker — a career not known for promoting health or longevity — can keep his body a skin-smashing machine after 37 years in the same rock trio giving calorie-combusting concert performances that would blow the lumbar discs and ventricles of lesser men.

Getting to meet Peart might be co…

Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland DVD Now Available for Pre-Order

Pre-ordering is now available for the highly anticipated concert film Rush - Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland. Expected to be formally released on September 27th, 2011, Amazon.Com has opened up pre-ordering for both the DVD and Blu-Ray versions of the concert film.

Click below to place your order. Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland DVD - $13.99

Rush Time Machine 2011: Live in Cleveland Blu-Ray - No Price Yet As most fans know, this will be the first Rush concert DVD that was filmed in a U.S. location. "We realized after all these years that we've shot films in all these different locations. But we've never really shot an entire film in America. We thought, 'Well, that's just wrong.' So where do we want to shoot? And it dawned on me that it was appropriate to shoot in Cleveland, where our entire American adventure began." - Geddy Lee Thanks to RushFanForever for passing along the news. Related News Stories
[Rush Close Out the Time Machine Tour…

Neil Peart Jam Session Video with Stewart Copeland, Les Claypool and Danny Carey Now Online

Back in late April, we reported that Neil Peart had met up with Stewart Copeland of The Police and Danny Carey of Tool and Les Claypool for a jam session. ... recently DANNY got together for a drumming/recording session with NEIL PEART (RUSH) and STEWART COPELAND (THE POLICE). LES CLAYPOOL was also involved, but I'm not sure as to what capacity. Whether or not these guys will get together again, or anything will come from the initial 'session', I really don't know... The video of that jam session is now online at Neil Peart's website.

The video is titled Count Drumula! and credits Carey Copeland Claypool Peart.

The "zany jam" took place at Stewart's studio in Los Angeles.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for passing along the news. Related News Stories
[Neil Peart Jams With Stewart Copeland and Danny Carey - April 29th, 2011]

Rush Voted Best Prog Rock Band of All Time

Last week, Rolling Stone Magazine held a poll for its readers, asking them to select the best Progressive Rock Band of All Time.

The results? In RS's own words, it "wasn't even close". 1. Rush
Well, this poll wasn't even close. Rush won in a landslide – but this couldn't come as any surprise. The Canadian trio have perhaps the most intense and enthusiastic fan community in all of rock. The band deserves such commitment. While most of their peers have fallen apart due to greed or laziness, Rush has maintained the same line-up since 1975 and their concerts are as spellbinding as they ever were. It's also beyond dispute that Neil Peart is the greatest drummer on the planet. They just wrapped up an epic tour where they played Moving Pictures straight through, and are working on a new album. Here's hoping that they bust out 2112 the next time out. It's the only way to top that last tour. Rounding out the Top 3 were Pink Floyd and Genesis.

To see th…

Neil Peart's News, Weather, and Sports Update - July 2011

Neil Peart has posted the July 2011 update to the News, Weather, and Sports section of his website.

In this entry, titled "The Frying Pan and the Freezer ", Neil focused on his motorcycle journeys during the 2011 leg of the Time Machine tour, and the brutal weather he endured when the band was touring throughout the southwest: It was June 13, and the temperature was 112 degrees Fahrenheit. It felt like an oppressive oven.

It felt deadly.

Apart from residents of the American Southwest, or the desert areas of North Africa, most sensible persons have never experienced such hellish degrees of heat. (I have long treasured a bit of weather trivia, asking which two states have never recorded temperatures above 100 degrees. One is Alaska, not surprisingly, but the other is Hawaii—kept more temperate by its mid-ocean setting and steady trade winds.)

In any case, let me tell you: 112 degrees is brutally hot. Especially on a motorcycle, on a dusty gravel road, under the midday sun, wea…

A Time Machine of Rush Articles

Though the Time Machine Tour ended about two weeks ago, a Rush Time Machine of other sorts has been taking place here at Cygnus-X1.Net over the past couple of weeks. Three new lengthy articles are now online that transport us back to the early part of the 21st century, when Rush were returning from their 5 year hiatus following Neil Peart's personal tragedies.

This rebirth period for Rush is as an important a time for the band as any other during their decades-long history. Given that, I spent some time uncovering, scanning and transcribing some key articles from this period of time.

Up first is a insightful interview with Neil Peart that appeared in the September 2002 Issue of Modern Drummer. This was the first such interview with Neil Peart after his return to Rush. An amazing read.

Up next is another interview with Neil in the February 2003 Issue of Cycle World Magazine. This interview focuses more on Neil's appreciation of cycling and his then-released book Gho…

Rush's Limelight Makes Guitar World's "100 Greatest Classic Rock Guitar Songs" List

Included in the August 2011 issue of Guitar World is their list of the 100 Greatest Classic Rock Guitar Songs of All Time. Along with the listing of the songs, a short description / story of the bands behind the songs are included.

Coming in at #25 is Rush's Limelight: "Limelight"
Artist: Rush (Moving Pictures, 1980 [Released in 1981, written in 1980])
Recorded: Le Studio, Morin Heights, Quebec: October-November 1980
Guitarist: Alex Lifeson
Gear: Stratocaster with Bill Lawrence L-5000 in the bridge and a Floyd Rose vibrato, Marshall 4140 Club & Country Combo

Background: "'Limelight' is about being under the microscopic scrutiny of the public, and the need for privacy-trying to separate the two and not always being successful at it," guitarist Alex Lifeson says. "Because we've never been a high-profile band, we've managed to retain a lot of our privacy. But we've had to work at it."

For the recording, Lifeson used a modified St…

Rush's Countdown -- Space Shuttle Songs: The Music Astronauts Wake Up To

Late last week, the launch of the Space Shuttle Atlantis marked the the start of the NASA's final Space Shuttle mission. In celebration of the event, Spinner Canada counted down their Top 10 astronaut wake-up calls. Rush's Countdown from their Signals album took the #1 spot:1. 'Countdown'
Canada brought more to the Shuttle Program than the Canadarm, and it came in the form of a Rush song. The iconic Canuck prog-rockers' 1982 single 'Countdown' was wholly inspired by Columbia's first trip in 1981, the first of the Shuttle Program. The song even samples audio from this launch and was played to wake up the crew on Columbia's 27th flight in 2002, on the day the shuttle landed back on Earth for the last time. So it's a pretty perfect pick to complete our wake-up song countdown as NASA's space shuttle program enters T-Minus Zero. To see the entire list, click HERE.

Thanks to RushFanForever for passing along the news. Related News Stories

Rush's 2112 Makes the Guinness Book of World Records

The 2011 Guiness Book of World Records - Gamer's Edition includes a category for the Longest Song Featured In A Rhythm Game where the band's epic 2112 is identified as the current record-holder: Holder: "2112" (Rush, 1976) The prize for the longest commercially released song to be featured in a rhythm game goes to veteran Canadian rockers Rush, whose 20-min 23-sec 1976 track "2112" features as the final number in Guitar Hero: Warriors of Rock (Activision, 2010). Click HERE to order your own copy of the Guinness Book.

Thanks to Eric from Power Windows for the news.

Alex Lifeson Featured in Vintage Guitar Magazine and Total Guitar Magazine

The September 2011 issue of Vintage Guitar Magazine features Alex Lifeson on the cover and includes an article with the Rush guitarist.Alex Lifeson
Rush Keeps Rollin’
Critics have called them pretentious since the start, and not every rock listener signed on as a fan. But Rush has always focused on writing songs, playing, and performing to the best of their individual abilities. Through the group’s many musical changes, Alex Lifeson has provided unique guitar work, and played mandolin, bouzouki, mandola, along with other instruments. By Elliot Stephen Cohen More about Vintage Guitar Magazine:Published monthly since 1986, each huge issue of VG is packed with articles to inform, entertain, and save you money, with information and histories of the instruments and the people and companies that built them, great interviews with the top players of today and yesterday and the instruments they use, the secret repair tips of the experts, pricing info, and much more! And Vintage Guitar has thou…

Neil Peart Featured in the August 2011 Issue of UK's Rhythm Magazine

The August 2011 issue of Rhythm Magazine, the UK's best-selling Drum Magazine, features Neil Peart on the cover and includes an 11-page article on The Professor: Rush's prog drumming legend Neil Peart tells us about his continuing pursuit of drumming excellence. The Professor lets us in on why after 45 years behind the kit he's still working to make himself a better player. Neil talks about taking lessons, improvisation, finding the perfect sound and much more. We also get a guided tour of the Time Machine kit from Neil's drum tech Lorne Wheaton and wind the clock back to The Professor's first-ever Rhythm cover. Click HERE for more information and ordering instructions.

Rush Close Out the Time Machine Tour - Look Towards the Future

Update: Click HERE for a photo gallery from the Seattle concert. Last night, Rush took the stage for the final time in 2011, drawing a close to the two-year long Time Machine tour at the scenic Gorge Amphitheater outside of Seattle, Washington. Throughout the two-year tour, Rush played 83 shows across North and South America as well as Europe.

And though the tour may now be just a memory, it shouldn't be long before we can relive it with the Time Machine DVD; a concert filmed on April 15th in Cleveland. The DVD is expected to be released on September 27th.

For more memories of the tour, you can check out the Time Machine Tour Gallery featuring well over 1,000 pictures from over 30 venues.

With the tour now over, and after a well-deserved break, Rush will turn its attention to (finally) completing Clockwork Angels; their long-anticipated 20th studio album. Geddy has recently been quoted in saying that he "hopes" to have the album finished before Christmas (presumably C…

Rush Sighting on E!'s The Soup

There was a Rush sighting on tonight's episode of The Soup; the weekly entertainment show hosted by Joel McHale on the E! Entertainment Network. Below is the rather humorous clip: Lee Farber, the writer and supervising producer of 'The Soup' is apparently a huge Rush fan which likely led to the Rush mention on the show.

You can also watch the video clip directly at YouTube via this LINK.

Geddy Lee Portrait Featured in Face of Canada Exhibit

In celebration of Canada Day, artist William Meire held an exhibit at Canada Place titled Face of Canada. In it, Meire showcased more than 100 oil paintings of notable Canadians. Asked to select his favorite, Geddy Lee was the obvious choice for the self-proclaimed Rush fan: “I love Rush, I’m a Rush fan. I love Geddy Lee, as far as entertainers, he’s very inspiring to me. And Neil Young, of course, they’d be right up there as far as entertainers. They’re so inspiring, I listen to them both constantly as I paint,” he says. "Friday marked the debut of Meire’s show. Outside, Canada Place was awash in red-and-white-clad revellers celebrating the country’s 144th birthday, but plenty of people were drawn indoors to check out Meire’s exhibit, dramatically lit in a dark ballroom. Some gasped as they found their favourite Canadians; others studied the portraits in quiet contemplation." -The Province.

Meire's Gallery Website can be view via this LINK.