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Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Gibson Custom Introduces Limited Edition Alex Lifeson Double Neck Guitar

Gibson Custom Introduces Limited Edition Alex Lifeson Double Neck Guitar
Gibson Custom has announced the release of the Alex Lifeson Double Neck guitar, a hand-crafted replica of the iconic guitarist’s 70’s Gibson Double Neck that can be heard on Rush tracks including “Xanadu” and “Vapor Trails.”

Created in close collaboration with Lifeson, the limited run of 100 EDS-1275s includes 25 that are personally signed by the iconic axeman.

After Lifeson acquired the Seventies Gibson Double Neck in 1976, it became a regular fixture on the road with him for Rush’s A Farewell to Kings tour from 1977 to 1983. The guitar has been with him ever since, making multiple appearances both on stage and in the studio. The new Gibson Custom model meticulously replicates the original, created with an in-depth digital analysis of the original neck profile and a hands on study of the guitar’s tone and wear.

The Gibson Custom Alex Lifeson Double Neck features a hand-sprayed nitrocellulose finish in Arctic White that is gently aged to mirror the original. 12-string or 6-string play can be easily accessed with a mini toggle selector and the guitar includes Custom Bucker pickups.

The intricate replication brings to live the undeniable stage presence of Lifeson’s original “two-in-one” axe.

For more information and hi-res images of the Gibson Custom Alex Lifeson Double Neck, click HERE.

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Geddy Lee to Appear on UK's My Planet Rock Tonight

Geddy Lee to Appear on UK's My Planet Rock Tonight
Geddy Lee is scheduled to be the featured guest on My Planet Rocks, the weekly show that airs on the UK's digital digital radio station Planet Rock.

My Planet Rocks has previously seen some of the world's greatest rock stars take to the airwaves. Since the series first began, the likes of Ozzy Osbourne, Iron Maiden's Bruce Dickinson, Lemmy from Motorhead, The Who's Pete Townshend, Meat Loaf, Alice Cooper, blues legend Gary Moore and the late, great Ronnie James Dio have all taken control of the radio station for an hour and given the world a glimpse into their lives.

For more information on the show and how to listen in, please click HERE.

Thanks to everyone who alerted me to this event.

Thursday, December 17, 2015

Geddy Lee talks R40 Live and Future Prospects: "Our touring life might be over"

Alex Lifeson 2015
An new interview with Geddy Lee that was recently posted at UK's MusicRadar continues the conversation about the possible end of Rush's touring career. The interview actually covers a number of topics including the release of R40 Live, many of Geddy's inspirations, and the filming/recording of the live release in Toronto:
“It felt like there was a great sense of pride in the house. The first night there were a couple of technical things bugging us and it took us a while to get a groove on, but then on the second we went out all guns blazing and it was one of the best shows of the tour.

“We were happy to have nailed it while the cameras were rolling – you don’t always get that when making a DVD. Best-laid plans and all…
With regards to Rush's touring future, Geddy had this to say:
“I really don’t know at this point,” admits Lee. “We’re not sure how many tours, if any, are left in us. Our touring life might be over; it just depends on being able to get a consensus to do more.

“Right now, we don’t have a consensus to go out on tour. And unless somebody changes their mind, it’s not looking good for that! But I remain optimistic that, maybe after some time, we can twist everyone’s arms and get back to work!”
You can read the entire interview at this LINK.

Thursday, December 10, 2015

Alex Lifeson 2015 "A Brush of Hope" Limited Edition Print Now Available

Alex Lifeson 2015
As most fans know, Alex Lifeson has been a regular contributor to the Kidney Foundation of Canada's annual "A Brush of Hope" charity project. His painting from the 2014 event, titled L'ami Geddy a L'ami Louis, is now available as a limited-edition print -- and it's autographed by not only Alex, but Geddy Lee as well.

From the announcement:
The Kidney Foundation of Canada, Atlantic Branch and Canadian great Alex Lifeson have teamed up to produce another round of exclusive limited edition prints. Only 325 prints have been made of L'ami Geddy a L'ami Louis. Each print is numbered and Alex Lifeson has personally signed each individual print.

That's right, each print has Alex Lifeson's ORIGINAL signature on it. As a bonus, due to the prints' unique nature, Geddy Lee's original autograph will also be found on the print. The print is on high quality, heavy stock, acid free paper. In addition, each print comes with a certificate of authenticity, signed by the Executive Director of the Atlantic Branch of The Kidney Foundation of Canada, confirming that the print you have purchase is one of only 325 for L'ami Geddy a L'ami Louis. The certificate also shows the print number (eg. Print No. 33 Limited Edition of 325). The certificate is printed on linen paper, making it ideal for framing with the art print or for displaying on its own.
Each print is $500 CDN. For more information, please visit this LINK.

Thanks to Kelly M for the news.

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

MusicExpress Reports Rush "Committed to at Least One More Studio Project"

MusicExpress Reports Rush Committed to at Least One More Studio Project
As many publications have been doing over the past few days, MusicExpress has also commented on the news/rumor regarding Neil Peart's retirement and the possible 'end' of Rush. Refuting the news entirely and citing a comment made by Andy Curran, the general manager of Ole, the U.S based company which had just purchased the band’s Anthem/SRO Entertainment operation earlier this year, it now appears that Rush is expected to produce at least one more studio album.

From the article:
Rush members Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson have been quick to downplay published rumours that long-time drummer and the band’s chief lyricist, Neil Peart had announced his retirement from the group.

Ole general manager, Andy Curran, speaking for the U.S based company which had just purchased the band’s Anthem/SRO Entertainment operation, offered a curt “It’s just a rumour as far as I know” in response to coverage from The Toronto Star and other news media. Curran confirmed that Rush has a live recording and concert film of their R40 tour scheduled for release and the band is committed to at least one more studio project.
On Monday, Rush was over. On Tuesday, everyone breathed a sigh of release. Today, we might have a new studio album in the future. I wonder what tomorrow will bring :)

Many thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for passing along the article.

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Q&A with Rush "Starman" and Graphic Artist Hugh Syme

Q&A with Rush
During the first decade of Rush's career, the band's long-time producer, Terry Brown, was often considered the 'fourth' member of Rush. If that's true, then graphic artist Hugh Syme, who has been responsible for virtually all of Rush's album artwork since 1975's Caress of Steel must certainly be considered Rush's fifth member.

Several months back, Syme released his incredible coffee table book The Art of Rush where he explained the creative process behind each of Rush's album covers and the artwork within. Now, has posted an in-depth interview with Syme where the discussion centers around the artist's favorite album artwork, the challenges he's had in interpreting Rush's lyrical message, his artistic inspirations, and more.

From the interview:
What’s the history behind the “Starman” emblem? What made you come up with it?

The evolution of the star and man was Neil’s and mine’s first true collaboration. He simply described the Red Star Of The Solar Federation as being all that is contrary to free thought and creativity, and the man as our hero. I simply combined the two. Never was this intended to be the band’s brand or logo, with such a strong and enduring association with all things Rush.
You can check out the entire article via this LINK.

Geddy Lee Clarifies Neil Peart Retirement Rumours

Geddy Lee Clarifies Neil Peart Retirement Rumours
Well it certainly has been an interesting 24 hour period in the world of Rush. First, as we reported yesterday, Neil Peart apparently confirmed that he was retiring, based on an article that appeared in the December 2015 issue of Drumhead magazine.

Once that news broke, so did the Rush internet as multiple new sources began proclaiming that Rush is no more, Neil Peart is done, and the music world, as we know it, is over.


Today, Geddy Lee was quoted in an new article from TeamRock that Neil was "merely confirming his position on touring."

From the article:
Lee tells Prog: “There’s really nothing to say. I think Neil is just explaining his reasons for not wanting to tour, with the toll that it’s taking on his body. That’s all I would care to comment on it.

"We’ll get together eventually and chat about things. But in my view, there is certainly nothing surprising in what he said. Neil just feels that he has to explain with all the thousands of people asking, ‘Why no more tours?’ He needs to explain his side of it.”

Asked whether he feels Peart's quote was taken out of context, Lee adds: “I think that’s absolutely right. That’s their job. Talking about something when there’s nothing to talk about.”
"From the lowest low, to the highest high..."

So I think the entire Rush community can now take a collective sigh of relief. For now, anyway...

Sunday, December 6, 2015

Neil Peart Talks Retirement in a new Drumhead Magazine Interview

Neil Peart Talks Retirement in a new Drumhead Magazine Interview
Update (12/08/2015): Donna Halper has just commented on the rumor of Neil Peart's retirement:
"I love a good rumor as much as anyone, but here's what I know regarding Neil and his retirement. He does not want to tour any more, for a number of reasons (health, wanting to be with his family). So yes, in that sense, he has retired. But he is open to getting together with Alex & Geddy at some future point to create some new music. Nothing has been decided about where or when. That's the only news I can share at this point in time. If I have more, I'll be happy to let everyone know."
Thank you, Donna :-)
Update (12/07/2015): The complete article is now online and can be read at this LINK.
The December 2015 issue of Drumhead Magazine includes an interview with Neil Peart where the Rush drummer "reflects on 50 years of hitting things with sticks."

In a couple of passages, Peart also touches upon the fact that he now considers himself retired:
"Lately Olivia has been introducing me to new friends at school as "My dad--He's a retired drummer." True to say--funny to hear.

"And it does not pain me to realize that, like all athletes, there comes a time to... take yourself out of the game. I would rather set it aside than face the predicament described in our song "losing it" ("Sadder still to watch it die, than never to have known it")"

The magazine is also holding a "Neil Peart Tour Package Contest" where one lucky winner will receive six pairs of drum sticks, a "Time Machine" snare, and 2 Paragon cymbals.

We'll have the complete transcription of this article as well as additional details of the contest available in the coming days.

Many thanks to Joe Pesch for sharing the news.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Geddy Lee on 40 years of Rush - A.V. Club

Geddy Lee on 40 years of Rush - A.V. Club
The A.V. Club, an entertainment website published by The Onion, has just posted a new interview with Geddy Lee. Titled Geddy Lee on 40 years of Rush, the interview has Geddy looking back across Rush's vast catalog of music where selects some of his favorites.

From the interview:
AVC: What’s it like with a shorter instrumental? For example, “Malignant Narcissism” sticks out as one of Rush’s shortest songs. How or when did you know it was finished?

GL: We were doing that in at Allaire Studios in upstate New York near Woodstock. It was another one of those residential studios. It was a beautiful old house that had been converted into a fantastic recording studio. We had a lot of stuff done for the album and we kept talking about what’s missing, is there something we need? And our producer was pushing us to do something live off the floor in the studio, something really spontaneous, and I had just taken delivery of this Jaco Pastorius tribute bass, where Fender had made an exact replica of his fantastic fretless jazz bass and it had just arrived and I was dying to play it. I get really restless between vocal takes so I was doing vocals and in between takes I was playing with my new toy, my bass, and the producer was listening through my vocal mic to what I was playing and he was recording it in sort of a stealth way. [Laughs.] After I finished the vocals he said, “Listen to what you were playing in between vocal takes,” and he played me back the main riff of that song and said, “Why don’t you take that and get Neil and go live on the floor and start jamming to it and see what happens.” It was the same kind of deal where Alex wasn’t around for some reason, so Neil and I went in the studio on our own and started laying the track down, and then Alex came in and added his stuff to it afterward, and it just became a real spontaneous moment in the studio.
You can read the entire interview at this LINK.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Rush's R40 Live Enters the Billboard 200 Charts at the #24 Spot

Rush's R40 Live Enters the Billboard 200 Charts at the #24 Spot
Billboard has just released their latest charting information for the week and Rush's live offering, R40 Live has entered the Top 200 charts at the #24 spot. That's the best initial charting for a live Rush album since the 2008 release of Snakes & Arrows Live. The last two live albums, Clockwork Angels Tour and Time Machine: 2011 Live in Cleveland entered the Billboard 200 at positions 33 and 54 respectively.

R40 Live also entered the Billboard Music Video charts in the #3 spot. Additional charting for R40 Live includes:
  • Billboard Canadian Albums: #30
  • Hard Rock Albums: #1
  • Top Rock Albums: #1
  • Tastemakers: #2
  • Top Album Sales: #14
  • Internet Albums: #4
  • Top Current Albums: #12
  • Click HERE for all the charting information.

    For more information on the R40 release, please use any of the links below:
  • R40 Live Album - Info Page
  • R40 Live Album - Artwork
  • R40 Live Concert Film - Info Page
  • R40 Live Concert Film - Artwork
  • To order your copy of R40 Live, use any of the links below:
  • Blu-Ray / 3 CD Deluxe Version
  • DVD / 3 CD Deluxe Version
  • 3 CD Version
  • DVD Version
  • Blu-Ray Version
  • For more information on all of Rush's albums, click HERE.

    Related News Stories
    [Rush's R40 Live - Album Liner Notes, Tracking Listing, Artwork, and More - November 21st, 2015]
    [Rush's R40 Live Album and Concert Film Released Today - November 20th, 2015]
    [Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson Hit the Interview Trail Ahead of the Release of R40 Live - November 19th, 2015]
    [Sirius XM's Town Hall Meeting with Rush - A Look Back - November 17th, 2015]
    [Rush R40 Live to Premiere on Sirius XM / Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson in Sirium XM Studios for a Town Hall Event - November 9th, 2015]
    [Rush's R40 Live to be Screened in London - October 23rd, 2015]
    [Rush's R40 Live Album Artwork, Tracking Listing, And More Revealed - October 8th, 2015]
    [Rush's R40 Live Album and Concert Film Coming November 20th. First Single Released Next Week - September 18th, 2015]

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