Showing posts from 2020

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson Donate Signed Guitars for Save Hospitality Charity Auction

The charitable organization Grapes for Humanity, which supports humanitarian projects around the world through the enormous generosity of the international wine community, will be hosting a Save Hospitality online auction to support of the hospitality industry. The online auction will begin Monday, September 28th and run through Wednesday October 7th via Waddington's Auctioneers & Appraiser.

In addition to serving as a member of the board of directors of the organization, Geddy Lee has also donated a bass guitar autographed by both himself and bandmate Alex Lifeson. In addition, he's offering up a selection of bottles of wine from his collection:SIGNED FENDER BASS GUITAR WITH THREE BOTTLES OF GEDDY LEE'S OWN BURGUNDY PRODUCED BY LUCIEN LE MOINE

A Fender Signature Jazz Bass Guitar, signed by both Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee, along with a bottle of 2005 Lucien Le Moine Hospices de Beaune Mazis-Chambertin CuvĂ©e Madeleine Collognon, 2005 Lucien Le Moine Hospices de B…

Neil Peart Named Greatest Prog Musician of All Time

PROG Magazine recently conducted an extensive poll to determine the top Progressive Rock musicians of all time. In the overall list of 200 selected musicians, all three members of Rush cracked the Top 10 spots.

Alex Lifeson came in at the #9 spot, Geddy Lee ended up at #4, and Neil Peart took the top honors as the #1 Greatest Prog Musician of all time. No argument here.

From the PROG article:Late Rush drummer Neil Peart has been named the greatest prog musician of all time by readers of Prog magazine.

The magazine had a shortlist of just under 250 figures from the prog world, from which fans were encouraged to vote in an online poll – and it was Peart who came out on top.

"Obviously it's very fitting that Neil Peart's been voted the Greatest Prog Musician ever by the readers of Prog Magazine, given that he sadly passed away this year," says Prog magazine Editor Jerry Ewing. "But he's long been seen as a master of his profession for five decades n…

New Rush: The Day I Was There Book Features Rush Fan Stories and Memories

Author Richard Houghton will be releasing his new book titled Rush: The Day I Was There on November 13th. Similar to other books Houghton has authored, including versions on Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, and Jimi Hendrix, his Rush book focuses on stories and memories from Rush fans across the globe.

More on the book:British music author Richard Houghton has compiled a fan history of Rush. Rush - The Day I Was There brings together the memories of over 400 Rush fans from around the world to tell their story from the perspective of the concert-goer. From some of their earliest shows through to the last show on the R40 tour, the book tells the band's story from the front row of the audience.

Richard, who remembers hurrying down to his local record store to buy Exit... Stage Left on the day it was released, said, 'I only saw Rush once myself, at the New Bingley Hall in Stafford in the UK, and couldn't possibly hope to compete with some of the guys I've spoken to for this boo…

Celebrating the Life of Neil Peart on his 68th Birthday

Just over eight short months go, right at the onset of 2020 - the year that will live in infamy - the world lost a genuine legend when Neil Peart succumbed to brain cancer on January 7th. While the sting of his sudden loss continues to weigh on Rush fans the world over, the breadth of his contributions to the world of music coupled with the inspiration he fueled for countless musicians will always be applauded. Today we mark Neil's 68th birthday with a brief look back at his decades-spanning career, while also highlighting recent tributes that were made to honor his memory.

Neil Ellwood Peart was born in Hamilton, Ontario, and grew up in Port Dalhousie (now part of St. Catharines). During adolescence, he floated between regional bands in pursuit of a career as a full-time drummer. After a discouraging stint in England to concentrate on his music, Neil returned home, where he joined Rush, a Toronto-based band, in mid-1974, six years after its formation. Early in his career, Ne…

20th Annual Modern Drummer Festival to Feature a Tribute to Neil Peart

Modern Drummer magazine will be streaming their annual drummer festival on September 12th, which coincides with Neil Peart's birthday. Part of the festival will be a tribute to the late Rush drummer and will feature a number of guest performers. From the announcement:“Modern Drummer turns 45 next year and through more than 40 of them, we formed a close and unique collaboration with the one and only, Neil Peart. Neil even gave away his iconic candy apple red kit to a Modern Drummer reader in the 80’s via mail-in letters chosen personally by Peart himself! It was without question that as Modern Drummer celebrates our twentieth festival, we are honoring Neil with a fitting tribute from some of his closest friends as well as world-class drummers that he inspired. The Modern Drummer Festival is a celebration of drums, drumming and drummers worldwide. This year will be the first year that everyone can attend as our capacity just went into the Hemispheres!” said David Frangioni, CEO an…

Alex Lifeson Celebrates his 67th Birthday Today!

Alex Lifeson, one of the founding members of Rush and the band's seminal guitarist, is celebrating his 67th birthday today. It was on this date back in 1953 that Rush Guitarist Alex Lifeson (born Aleksandar Zivojinovich) came into the world in Fernie, British Columbia. As Rush fans know, Lifeson co-founded the band in the summer of 1968 along with John Rutsey, the band's original drummer. Alex was also responsible for bringing front-man Geddy Lee into the mix.

While Alex is obviously best known for being the guitarist for Rush, he's also the part owner of the Toronto restaurant The Orbit Room, which unfortunately closed its door earlier this year, is a licensed aircraft pilot, motorcycle rider, a gourmet cook, and an artist.

Alex has also been known to dabble with a little acting now and again. Back in 2018, he appeared a couple of times on the CBC comedy-drama Crawford, which premiered on the CBC in Canada last summer. A preview clip of Alex's recent performance on…

The Rush 2021 "Moving Pictures" Wall Calendar Now Available

With 2021 marking the 40th Anniversary of the release of Rush's pivotal, best-selling album Moving Pictures, it should come as no surprise that the band's official 2021 Wall Calendar will features images from that era of the band's history.

As with past Rush calendars, the 2021 edition will feature a four-month (September-December) 2020 planner page, gorgeous color photos of the band, and more. From the official listing:More than 40 million records sold worldwide. Countless sold-out tours. A star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Officers of the Order of Canada. And that's all very nice. But for these three guys, it's all about the music, their friendship, and the fans. This official, 16-month calendar calendar includes a four-month (September-December) 2020 planner page, so get yours early! Calendar includes holidays, moon phases, image captions with locations and other information, the highest quality photography, and m…

Alex Lifeson Honoured with 2020 Casey Award for Visionary Philanthropy to HIV/AIDS Initiatives

Alex Lifeson was recently selected as the 2020 recipient of the Casey Award. The award annually celebrates individuals and organizations across Canada that demonstrate leadership in social justice and commitment to HIV/AIDS.

Alex's contributions were outlined in the following article:Rock & Roll hall of fame member Alex Lifeson is being recognized with The Casey Award for visionary philanthropy to HIV/AIDS initiatives. The award honours Lifeson’s continued and extraordinary support as a generous donor, volunteer and ambassador. He is an active supporter, whose significant contributions have had a lasting impact for AIDS service organizations, particularly Casey House, Ontario’s HIV/AIDS hospital.

Alex Lifeson has a personal connection to Casey House and has been an inspiration there for more than 20 years. Casey House founder June Callwood, who passed away in 2007, referred to him as an ‘ardent supporter’. When still located in their original space in a Victorian house, Lifes…

Geddy Lee Cardboard Cut-Out To Adorn Toronto Blue Jays Home Games

With the pandemic-truncated baseball season upon us, and stadiums across the country virtually empty of fans, many teams have taken some rather unique approaches to bringing some life back to the ballpark. Along with pumping in the sounds of crowds, quite a few teams have also filled the empty seats of the stadium with cardboard cut-outs of fans.

The Toronto Blue Jays are no different as they have now announced a collection of cutouts that will appear behind home plate including one of Geddy Lee. With the current state of the pandemic, the Blue Jays are actually playing home games at Buffalo’s Sahlen Field. As most fans know, Geddy is an avid baseball fan and has often been seen situated behind home plate of numerous Blue Jay home, dutifully making notations in his scorecard.

According to this article, some 1,600 cutouts will be "...perched in nine sections at Buffalo’s Sahlen Field on Tuesday when the Jays will host the Miami Marlins, their first game in their temporary home.…

Geddy Lee Celebrates His 67th Birthday Today!

Geddy Lee (born Gary Lee Weinrib) is celebrating his 67th birthday 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.

In addition to his musical aspirations, some of Geddy's other interests include collecting fine wines and, of course, baseball. His wine collection is rumored to include some 5,000 bottles and his love of baseball is well documented. In fact back in 2013, Geddy threw out the ceremonial first pitch at the home opener for the Toronto Blue Jays - something he admittedly dreamed of doing for years.

And of course Geddy officially became an author with the release of his book - Geddy Lee's Big Beautiful Book of Bass last year.

In addition to today being Geddy's birthday, this date also marks the 46…

Cygnus-X1.Net Featured on the Latest Something for Nothing Rush 'Fan' Cast

Back in September of last year, lifelong friends and longtime Rush fans Steve and Gerry launched a Rush-centric podcast called Something for Nothing: A RUSH Fancast. In the ten months since the launch, Something for Nothing has aired 45 episodes that cover a wide range of topics. The two friends have chatted extensively about many of Rush's albums, they've touched upon articles written about the band, and have even had a number of guest speakers join them on many episodes. Some of their guests include author Martin Popoff, Rush aficionado Mark Irwin, Skip Daly and Eric Hansen who authored the recent Wandering the Face of the Earth Rush tour book, and Ed Stenger from the Rush fan site RushIsABand.

Some months back, Steve and Gerry reached out to me to see if I would be interested in joining them for a episode and chatting about the Cygnus-X1.Net website. I was thrilled and humbled to be asked to join their growing podcast. So in mid-June, the three of us got together remotel…

Neil Peart's Family Creates Memorial Fund Auction to Support Royal Victoria Hospital

Neil Peart's immediate family, including his parents Betty and Glen, as well as his sister Nancy and her family are preparing a silent auction of donated items to help support the Royal Victoria Hospital in Barrie, Ontario.

From the annoucement:Peart Family Memorial Fund Auction
A bidding auction with amazing items donated by so many generous friends, family, & fans!

Members of Neil's Family (his parents, Betty & Glen, and sister, Nancy and her family) have all had to use the services at Royal Victoria Hospital in Barrie, Ontario and are active supporters of the RVH Foundation. With offers of so many amazing items, they decided that setting up a silent auction in support of the foundation is the perfect way to honour Neil's memory. We are so thankful to all of the amazing people who are donating items. We can keep this auction going as long as items keep coming in.

We will set up deadlines for each item so that we will always have something live to bid on. You…

Modern Drummer Magazine Releasing Neil Peart 'Legends' Issue This September

Over the course of Neil Peart's professional career, the Rush drummer had appeared on the cover of Modern Drummer magazine a record NINE times. With his untimely passing this past January, Modern Drummer dedicated their May 2020 issue to his memory, which marked the tenth cover appearance for time Neil.

Modern Drummer has just announced a new Legends series for their magazine, where the premiere issue will be centered around Neil Peart. From MD:First installment in the Modern Drummer Legends series

Anthology of all 9 of the Rush drummer’s Modern Drummer cover interviews

Includes the complete contents of his May 2020 Modern Drummer tribute issue

Analysis of Peart’s performances on every Rush studio album

A survey of the evolution of his famous live drumkits

An in-depth look at his seven self-penned books

Remembrances and impressions from dozens of leading drummers

Transcriptions of deep Rush cuts

Neil discussing the Snakes & Arrows track “Malignant Narcissism”

“A Life Changed …

Alex Lifeson Reportedly Releasing 25th Anniversary Edition of 'Victor'

During a conversation with Ultimate Guitar, The Aristocrats' drummer Marco Minnemann discussed his past collaboration with Alex Lifeson, and also revealed that Alex was preparing to re-release his solo album Victor as a '20th-anniversary edition' [SIC]. In fact as Victor was released back in 1996, the re-release would actually be a 25th Anniversary edition.

From the interview:You also worked with Alex Lifeson of Rush. In a recent interview, he mentioned that he has barely played guitar after Neil Peart's passing. Are you in contact with Alex, and would you be interested in doing something if the opportunity came up?
"Yeah, absolutely! With Alex, I've been working already for years, and Alex and I have released stuff together; he's on my albums. I know about him, he had the thought about retiring a little bit a few years ago.

"But he still likes to play guitar and I hope he continues. We've been in touch just recently actually, just a few days ago…

Neil Peart Honored With Pavilion In His Former Hometown

Neil Peart is being honoured with the naming of a pavilion in Port Dalhousie.

St. Catharines city council made the name Neil Peart Pavilion at Lakeside Park official Wednesday in a unanimous vote following public engagement earlier this year.

More than 81 per cent of residents who voted online chose Neil Peart Pavilion over the name Lakeside Park Pavilion.

"The public voting on naming is obviously fairly conclusive," said Port Dalhousie Coun. Bruce Williamson. "Neil Peart's been one of our most famous local individuals and a lot of his songs have local roots, including the namesake park."

Peart grew up in St. Catharines and went to elementary and high school in the city. He worked at the former midway in Port Dalhousie's Lakeside Park in the summer and wrote the Rush song "Lakeside Park."

Alex Lifeson Makes a Guest Appearance on Big Sugar's New Album Eternity Now

Alex Lifeson is keeping busy during his so-called retirement. He recently lent his guitar skills to the title track of Big Sugar's new album Eternity Now.

Big Sugar's Gordie Johnson talks about obtaining Alex's services:I put the record on the other day and I thought I made a mistake. It sounded like I’d grabbed a Rush record from 1988.

GJ: [Laughs] Make no mistake, my friend. That was not an accident! [Rush guitarist] Alex Lifeson is on the title track. He’s on the title track of my life and career trajectory. He was one of the first supporters of Big Sugar and one of the greatest mentors that I’ve had. And he’s such a down-to-earth chill guy. He saw us coming up, liked our music, and would do things like “Hey, man, here’s a double-neck guitar. Why don’t you take the Xanadu guitar and use it for a while?” Like, who does that?

So I texted him and I had to explain myself because it’s such a Rush knock-off. I got the Taurus Moog pedals in there and gave it the full Moving…

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson Appear in Upcoming Gordon Lightfoot Documentary

Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, Sarah McLachlan, and Alec Baldwin appear in If You Could Read My Mind, an upcoming documentary on Gordon Lightfoot, which will be streaming on-demand this summer.

Directed by Martha Kehoe and Joan Tosoni, the film chronicles present-day Lightfoot performing a show and signing autographs as he fondly looks back on his nearly six-decade career — from his coffeehouse performance days in Ontario, Canada, to his rise to international fame in the Seventies.

“He is one of the greatest examples of timeless singer-songwriter,” Lee says in the clip, sitting alongside his bandmate Alex Lifeson. “He’s a Canadian national hero, but he also speaks with a voice for everyone,” adds Bad Religion’s Greg Graffin. You can view a clip of the documentary which includes Geddy and Alex's appearance below:For more information on the documentary, click HERE.

Neil Peart Featured in the May 2020 Issue of Modern Drummer Magazine - Extended Excerpt Now Online

It has now been three months since Neil Peart passed away. While the pain of his loss continues for so many of us, it has also been heartwarming to see the countless tributes that continue to be assigned to his memory.

Numerous music magazines have paid tribute to Neil with moving pieces, including the following:
Neil Peart: Farewell to a King - Kerrang! Magazine, January 2020
Neil Peart: Suddenly You Were Gone - PROG Magazine, February 2020
A Tribute to Neil Peart - Classic Rock Magazine, March 2020
Exit The Warrior: Neil Peart - A Tribute - Planet Rock Magazine, April 2020
Neil Peart: A Farewell to Kings - MOJO Magazine - April 2020
Neil Ellwood Peart: Farewell to a King - Drumhead Magazine - April 2020One tribute that fans were particularly anxious to see was that from Modern Drummer magazine. Over the years, Neil appeared on the cover of the long-running periodical for a record nine times. Now, with the release of their May 2020 issue, Neil not only appears on the cover for the tenth …

The Neil Peart Research Award Announced by the Glioblastoma Foundation

With the unfortunate passing of Neil Peart due to Glioblastoma, a form of brain cancer, the Glioblastoma Foundation has just announced a new fundraiser research initiative entitled "The Neil Peart Research Award."

According to the foundation's website, the award will provide Neurosurgery residents at leading medical institutions around the country with funding to conduct new, cutting-edge glioblastoma research. The foundation is also offering up limited-edition 5" x 7" portraits entitled "The Professor" to anyone who donates $21.12 or more.

Please visit the foundation's website for complete information on the Glioblastoma Foundation and their fundraiser.

Thanks to Ed from RushIsABand for the news.

Timeless Concert Images Book Features Rush From the 80's

For over four decades, rock music photographer Bill O'Leary has snapped off more than 25,000 concert photos from bands such as Queen, AC/DC, Van Halen, Foreigner, Judas Priest, Ozzy Osbourne, and of course RUSH. Over the years, Bill's photos have appeared in virtually every music publication including Guitar Player, Rolling Stone, People, Guitar World, PIT, Circus, Hit Parader and Creem.

To celebrate and share his photographic work with the masses, Bill has released his first book - Timeless Concert Images: And 40 Years of Rock Concert Experiences. This nearly 200-page coffee table book offers stories and recollections behind concerts he shot over the years, and is filled with over 175 full color, live concert images photographed from the 1990's. One chapter in the book is dedicated to Rush and which includes photos taken from the Permanent Waves and Moving Pictures tours.

Bill was kind enough to share an excerpt of his write-up for Rush, as well as numerous high-qual…

A Night for Neil - The Neil Peart Memorial Celebration Coming May 16th, 2020

Since the passing of Neil Peart back on January 7th, there has been a tremendous outpouring of tributes from fans and musicians alike. Now, thanks to Overtime Angels, the charitable organization behind the annual RushCamp gatherings, fans will soon have the opportunity to gather and celebrate him themselves.

A memorial event titled A Night for Neil will take place on May 16th in Ontario’s Meridian Centre. The venue is located in Neil's home town of St. Catharines.

The event, which is being coordinated with Peart’s family, will benefit St. Catherines Hospital and Walker Cancer Centre, the Juravinsky Hospital and Cancer Centre, the Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre, as well as Overtime Angels, a non-profit charity that is also helping to put the event together.

Lance Kasten, Vice President of Overtime Angels, Inc. explains, “The event will honour “The Professor” of words, lyricism and musicianship from a fan’s perspective. The outpouring of support for this event from across th…

Permanent Waves 40th Anniversary Box Set Coming March 27th

Update: March 23rd: The release date has now been pushed to May 29th. Also, as of this writing, there still hasn't been any official announcement from Rush.Com --- yet.With 1980 marking the 40th Anniversary of Rush's famed studio album Permanent Waves, details are finally coming out regarding the 40th Anniversary Box Set:Celebrating 40 years of Rush’s Permanent Waves, the Super Deluxe Edition will feature two CDs, three 180-gram audiophile black vinyl LPs and a 40-page hardcover book filled with reimagined artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme, unreleased photos from the band’s archive and an exclusive twelve-thousand plus word essay. The Abbey Road Mastering Studios 2015 album remaster is made available on CD for the first time. CD 2 is loaded with unreleased bonus live tracks from three stops on the Permanent Waves World Tour 1980: Manchester Apollo, Manchester, England; Hammersmith Odeon, London, England; and Kiel Auditorium, St. Louis, Missouri, all newly mixed by …

A Spirit with a Vision: The Eternal Manifold Impact of Neil Peart

They say that time heals all wounds, yet there is still a sense of disbelief and pain associated with the death of Neil Peart that continues to resonate, even now on the one-month anniversary of his passing. Though the pain continues for many fans across the globe, this past month has highlighted just how far-reaching the impact of Neil and Rush has been - and continues to be. Rush fans, actually make that the Rush Family, have always been a close-knit group, sharing their stories with one another, as they all cope with their grief.

To that end, freelance writer and historical consultant Marshall Patrick Garvey reached out to me shortly after Neil's passing. He was developing his own personal tribute to Neil that he wanted to share with the broader Rush community. While this is atypical of the Rush news that is usually posted here, given the circumstances I wanted to provide Marshall an outlet for his piece. In reading it, I hope you take away a renewed appreciation for what…

Neil Peart Featured in the February 2020 Issue of PROG Magazine - Articles Now Online

Update: The March 2020 issue of Classic Rock magazine also includes a nice tribute to Neil Peart. I've made that article available at this LINK. Thanks to RushFanForever for providing the article.The February 2020 issue of PROG Magazine features Neil Peart on the cover and includes several feature articles on the late Rush drummer.

The main article, titled Suddenly You Were Gone was penned by Philip Wilding, the prolific journalist who has covered Rush numerous times in the past. Additional articles within the issue include Hail the Professor written by Chris McGarel, Making Memories written by Tim Ponting, Force Ten written by Gary Mackenzie, and The Enigma of Neil Peart written by Martin Kielty.

In the aforementioned Hail the Professor, Chris McGarel details ten examples of Neil's lyrical writing prowess including Between the Wheels from Grace Under Pressure:Grace Under Pressure contains some of Peart’s best writing. Its eight songs capture the 80s zeitgeist of Cold War …

Neil Peart Honored During 62nd Grammy Award In Memoriam Segment

Last night, the 62nd Grammy Awards ceremony took place at the Staples Center is Los Angeles, California. During their acceptance speech for Best Metal Performance, Tool drummer Danny Carey thanked “all the gods” as well as his bandmates before paying tribute to some of his influences.“As artists, we’re all influenced by people who come before us, and for me, it’s all the great drum gods,” he told the audience. “Namely John Bonham, Tony Williams, and recently, my good friend Neil Peart. This is for all of you guys.”The band won the award for their song “7empest” off Fear Inoculum. You can watch their acceptance speech below. The segment with Danny Carey thanking those who influenced him begins around the 1:10 mark.
During the ceremony's In Memoriam segment, a brief clip of Neil performing during Rush's R40 tour was shown. Neil's mentioned appeared sixth in a long line of artists that we've lost over the past year, which includes the likes of Ginger Baker, Rick Ocasek…

Neil Peart: The Interview Collection

In the week since the music world was stunned by the announcement of Neil Peart's passing, countless tributes from all four corners of the globe have poured in. Among the Rush faithful, Neil Peart was always considered a giant in his field, both from behind the drumkit as well as behind the pen. How heartwarming it was to hear from so many others that shared that same sentiment. Neil’s reach was clearly evident, and the impact he had on so many lives will resonate throughout the ages.

Neil taught us to ”…steer by the stars…” when darkness surrounded our lives. So as we all continue to mourn his loss, we should also look back and celebrate his accomplishments. Beyond his musical and lyrical prowess, Neil Peart was an incredibly articulate individual. Over the years, he was interviewed dozens of times by major publications covering topics as varied as his drumming techniques, to his lyrical inspirations, and even his enjoyment of exploring the world via bicycle or motorcycle. …