Archive: Blog Entries from August, 2009

Sunday, August 30, 2009

New Rush oddities from MUSICinTheABsTrAcT.org
8:53PM EST | link | comments (37) |

There are several new audio clips posted over at MitA's Rush Oddities site. All but one of these tracks involve songs from the Snakes & Arrows album. You can check them out by clicking on the provided links or by using the player below. Thanks MitA!

[Custom remix of 'The Way The Wind Blows' featuring bass, vocals, and drums only]
[Previously hidden guitar effects from 'The Way The Wind Blows']
[Live concert power-outage during "Force-10"]
[Custom mix of 'Good News First' revealing new guitar parts]
['We Hold On' without guitar]
['Far Cry' featuring Alex Lifeson guitar parts]
["Acoustic" version of 'Armor & Sword' featuring Geddy and Neil]
[Hidden echo effect on Geddy vocal in 'Armor & Sword']

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Saturday, August 29, 2009

Behind-the-scenes Rush documentary pics
9:26AM EST | link | comments (21) |

Rush documentary filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen were recently interviewed for the Rush feature in the most recent issue of Prog. We learned several more details regarding the documentary including the fact that the release will not likely occur until next summer. In one portion of the interview they talk about interviewing Neil Peart:

... "Neil's very private but that's understandable given everything that he's gone through," muses Dunn. "But what we found was that when you get Neil on a motorbike in a remote area, the kid comes out in him. So we have filmed Neil riding through Quebec, parts of Europe and California and we've found that when you sit down with Neil, one on one, he loves to talk. And Rush fans know that he's smart and articulate and always has something interesting to say." ...

There are now several behind-the-scenes photos from these Neil Peart video shoots along with a few other miscellaneous pics posted on the Banger Films (Scot and Sam's production company) website. Just go to this link, click on Photos, then click on Rush in the lower left. Thanks to Sean for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Rush: The Documentary update]
[Rush: The Documentary working cover, planned 2009 release]
[Rush: The Documentary update]
[Sam Dunn on the upcoming Rush documentary]
[Rush: The Documentary]
[RushCon report]

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Friday, August 28, 2009

Updates and other random Rush stuff
2:51PM EST | link | comments (21) |

All of the Rush news items we touched on this past week weren't really new news items; they were generally just updates and/or more details regarding some news bullets we were already aware of. The biggest of these was the official confirmation via Rush.com of the birth of Neil Peart's new baby daughter Olivia Louise Peart. We'd first heard unconfirmed reports of the birth a couple of weeks back. We also went over some more details regarding Alex Lifeson's involvement with Apple's GarageBand software during Rush's break from recording/touring where Lerxst had recorded a few instructional videos. Alex mentioned this in his recent Classic Rock presents ... Prog interview but it was overshadowed by the other contents of the article. Alex also celebrated his 56th birthday yesterday. Last night the first of a 2-movie, 4-part series celebrating the Canadian music scene of the '70s and '80s' aired on the CBC. I'd first mentioned this in last week's Friday Updates post. And yesterday I let you know that Chris McDonald's new Rush book - first mentioned back in May of last year - is now available for pre-order. The book is titled Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown and you can pre-order it at this link.

The organizers of last month's RushCon have put up a wonderful wrap-up post over at the RushCon website, complete with a bunch of great photographs. It looks like they had a blast.

American Motorcyclist September, 2009A couple of weeks ago I'd posted scans of the Neil Peart cover feature in the September, 2009 issue of the American Motorcyclist - the magazine of the American Motorcyclist Association. The article celebrates the fact that he was recently awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the Association and Neil shares his thoughts on motorcycles and motorcycling. The article also includes quotes from some of Neil's riding partners including Brian Catterson (editor-in-chief of Motorcyclist Magazone), Brutus, Greg Russell and Michael Mosbach. Neil's riding partners also all wrote a series of short articles on riding with Neil that was included as bonus content for AMA members. Reader Chris W got his hands on some scans of this bonus content which you can check out by clicking on the links below.

AMA Magazine September 2009 Bonus Content:
[cover] [page 1] [page 2] [page 3] [page 4] [page 5] [page 6] [page 7]
[page 8] [page 9] [page 10] [page 11] [page 12] [page 13] [page 14]

Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit (which he used from Fly By Night through 2112) was put up for auction on eBay by owners Main Drag Music in Brooklyn, New York a few weeks ago and the kit ended up being sold for $25,100! Michael of NeilPeartDrumsticks.com knows the new owner of the kit and posted a photo and an update on the status of the kit to the Counterparts messageboard. He is working with the owner to help restore the kit to a playable condition.

... Trying to get this all ready for a special photo shoot in the next couple weeks and then on to a special display in November where folks will actually be able to play the kit themselves. ...

Keep checking Michael's site over the next few weeks for updates.

While on the subject of rare Rush collector's items - if you are a collector you might be interested in the fact that there is currently a rare handwritten Alex Lifeson letter from 1977 available on eBay. Myself and Andrew Olson (runs a Neil Peart fan page) both know the seller and can vouch for the authenticity of the item. If you are interested you can check it out at .

You may remember how I reported a few months ago that Alex Lifeson was in attendance at the sold out Chickenfoot show at The Mod Club Theatre in Toronto back in late May. Chickenfoot is the recently-formed supergroup consisting of vocalist Sammy Hagar (Van Halen), bassist Michael Anthony (Van Halen), guitarist Joe Satriani and drummer Chad Smith (Red Hot Chili Peppers). Alex took the guys out on the town the night prior and from all accounts had a pretty wild time. Sammy Hagar discussed that evening and the next day's show in a recent interview with Nightlife:

... Ross CAT - The Sound Academy show this week will be your second visit to Toronto. I was one of the fortunate 500 folks to see the "Road Test Tour" at the Mod Club in May.
Rumor has it that you and CHAD got tangled up with RUSH guitarist ALEX LIFESON the night before and tore up the town.

SAMMY - Hey man lets clear that up right hear & now, I blame ALEX for that night; it was my tequila but that boy gave us hometown tour I won't soon forget, he can throw down with the best of them.

Ross CAT - Was there any discussion about ALEX taking the stage with CHICKENFOOT that night for a song or two?

SAMMY - No, we're really trying to focus on the CHICKENFOOT material on this first tour. Every place that we played there were world class musicians & friends. Man we had some of the best shredders on the planet in the house like ALEX, BRIAN MAY & STEVE LUKATHER comin' out to the shows. I told every one of those guys they have an open invitation to come to CABO and jam ...

Thanks to Andrew W for the heads up.

The Rush Backstage Club is running a new contest where you could win a signed Snakes & Arrows CD. The contest ends on September 10th and you can sign up to enter at this link. Thanks to thomas for the heads up.

NPR ran a story yesterday on electric drag-racing and used Rush's Red Barchetta for the outro music. You can listen to the story at this link. Thanks to Tim for the link.

LanceTheShred noticed a Rush reference in the Urban Dictionary's definition of face melting.

Reader Scott_PA let me know that the Classic Rock Revisited web site is rolling out a list of the most influential rock songs over the next few weeks. So far they've listed numbers 51-100 and Rush made the list twice; Working Man came it at #77 and Tom Sawyer at #84. To see the complete list go to this link.

Rocker/filmmaker Rob Zombie has been making the rounds on cable TV this week promoting his new Halloween 2 movie which was released today. Several folks spotted his promo shots on the SyFy Channel during Ghost Hunters the other night. And he was also seen doing the promos during the AMC Movie Channel's running of John Carpenter's original Halloween film. The coolest thing about the promos was the fact that Zombie was wearing a Fly By Night t-shirt! You can check out a couple screenshots by clicking on the thumbnails above. You may recall that Zombie's remake of the original Halloween included Rush's Tom Sawyer on the soundtrack. Thanks to ferret and Power Windows for the screenshots.

Exodus lead singer Rob Dukes is a motorcycle enthusiast and will soon embark on his third cross-country motorcycle trip. He talks about being inspired by Neil Peart's Ghost Rider in a recent interview with The Gauntlet:

... Neil Peart's book was inspiring to me. It was a very sad read, but a great book. He was going through a lot when he started on his quest; I was just looking to change my life. I was living in New York and wanted to surf and live at the beach in California. I was going to finish my master scuba diving license and teach scuba diving, but I ended up singing for EXODUS. Life is weird. Two years ago, my friend Lenny and I rode to the four corners of the United States. We went 14,652 miles in six weeks and two days. This trip will be about 4,500 miles. ...

Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

RushFanForever also contributed the following links for today's post. First up is a Huffington Post article by Robbie Gennet titled Who Isn't John Galt. The article discusses the influence of Ayn Rand on art and culture and includes a couple of references to Rush. Next up is this Associate Content article titled Rush's The Trees: A Parable of Social Justice and Its Unintended Consequences. Lastly is this article discussing the 25th anniversary of the launch of Canada's MuchMusic that references Rush. From the article:

... Yes, it's been nearly 25 years since MuchMusic launched with Rush's "The Enemy Within," followed by an interview with singer Geddy Lee and a Day One playlist that also included the Fixx, Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Yes and Slade. ...

So in celebration of that momentous event that occurred 25 years ago this coming Monday, here's the video for Rush's The Enemy Within:

Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, August 27, 2009

New Rush book now available for pre-order: Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown
9:01PM EST | link | comments (19) |

Back in May of 2008 I posted a survey for Rush fans that was put together by musician, musicologist and Rush fan Chris McDonald. Chris was working on a book that was to be an academic (musicological) study of Rush and wanted to get a representative range of opinions on the band from fans. He also requested that fans send him any photographs of the band that they were willing to let him use. Later in July of 2008 we got a sneak peak at the subject matter of the book when Chris wrote an article for the July 2008 issue of the academic journal Popular Music & Society titled Open Secrets: Individualism and Middle-Class Identity in the Songs of Rush. I'm happy to say that Chris has finished the book and it will be available for purchase this Fall. The title is Rush, Rock Music, and the Middle Class: Dreaming in Middletown and you can pre-order it at this link. From the book's description:

Canadian progressive rock band Rush was the voice of the suburban middle class. In this book, Chris McDonald assesses the band's impact on popular music and its legacy for legions of fans. McDonald explores the ways in which Rush's critique of suburban life -- and its strategies for escape -- reflected middle-class aspirations and anxieties, while its performances manifested the dialectic in prog rock between discipline and austerity, and the desire for spectacle and excess. The band's reception reflected the internal struggles of the middle class over cultural status. Critics cavalierly dismissed, or apologetically praised, Rush's music for its middlebrow leanings. McDonald's wide-ranging musical and cultural analysis sheds light on one of the most successful and enduring rock bands of the 1970s and 1980s.

The book's publisher is the Indiana University Press and it will tentatively be released on October 28th. Chris wanted me to personally thank everyone who sent him their survey responses and photographs; they were a big help in completing the book.

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CBC documentaries explore Canadian music scene of the 70's, 80's
10:29AM EST | link | comments (18) |

UPDATE - 9/18@7:47AM: Reader RushFanForever watched part 2 of Rise Up and gives the following report:

Geddy Lee commented on how the Canadian music television channel 'MuchMusic' was a huge benefit for Canadian music talent in that it created a network and connected Canada to the rest of the world.

Geddy commented positively about The Tragically Hip with the following:

'You can hear how The Tragically Hip sound like a rock band. However their music is very multilayered which gives it a timeless and enduring quality. Big props for The Tragically Hip.'

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 9/11@9:25AM: Reader RushFanForever watched This Beat Goes On and gives the following report:

Geddy Lee had some positive comments about Rough Trade with Carole Pope.

He considers the band very innovative through their combination of hard-edged new wave rock and raw sexuality, along with the controversial raunchy lesbian-themed subject matter in the songs.

The Rush tribute came on 15 minutes before the show ended.

Guitarist James Black of Finger Eleven mentioned the first song he learned was 'In The Mood'.

Geddy Lee mentioned memories of performing in high schools and bars and being loud with their brand of hard rock. He also mentioned memories of recording and performing in England in the late 70's and 'Closer To The Heart' being a hit. The footage of the song shown was from the Exit..Stage Left video.

Geddy also mentioned that the reason Anthem signed Max Webster was because the band had faith in Max Webster as great musical talent and an opening act.

Singer Mitsou made a comment of how it was great that a Canadian band like Rush has sold 35,000,000 albums and they are ours (meaning they are Canada's greatest rock royalty).

Kim Mitchell commented about discovering great bar bands such as Rush in the early days. He mentioned how grateful he was when Rush took Max Webster on the road as an opening act. Max Webster to him is considered the 'little brother' of Rush.

Singer Gowan discussed the influence of Toronto bands such as Rush, Max Webster and others that helped pave the way for later Canadian talent.

The first part of the second documentary ran last night. Here is RushFanForever's report:

I just finished viewing part one of the CBC documentary - 'Rise Up' which documented Canadian musical acts from the 80's.

The first 10 minutes of the documentary focused on the influence of Rush in the early 80's.

Alan Doyle of 'Great Big Sea' and Rob Preuss and Derrick Ross of 'The Spoons' discussed the influence of Rush in the early 80's with the song 'Tom Sawyer' and the 'Moving Pictures' album and how they both impacted Canadian music.

Gordie Johnson of 'Big Sugar' discussed how 'Tom Sawyer' symbolized the end of 70's rock. He also mentioned 'Tom Sawyer' being a heavy radio hit with a dark growling synthesizer riff and how it has influenced hip-hop acts with sampling the song.

Geddy mentioned that 'Tom Sawyer' was a sleeper at first on radio when 'Limelight' was played constantly. Other songs from 'Moving Pictures' including 'Tom Sawyer' slowly became hits when DJs began playing the deeper album cuts.

Rik Emmett of Triumph discussed how radio embraced the band early in their career because they were not as progressive as Rush. Rock radio did not play Rush as much until 'Moving Pictures'.

----- snip -----

I mentioned in last week's Friday updates post that a couple of new documentaries exploring the Canadian music scene in the '70s and '80s will be running on the CBC over the next several weeks. The documentaries are titled This Beat Goes On and Rise Up respectively. Each are 2 hours long and will air in 2 parts on Thursday nights at 9PM EST over the next 4 weeks beginning this evening. Rush along with several other Canadian artists will be featured including an interview with Geddy Lee. From the National Post:

Don't expect to learn about Gordon Lightfoot's love life or Trooper's backstage antics in This Beat Goes On and Rise Up!, two documentaries about the Canadian music scene in the 1970s and '80s made by the team of writer Nicholas Jennings and director Gary McGroarty. The films, which feature a combined 200 interviews and will be airing on CBC on four consecutive Thursday nights, are designed to honour Canadian songwriters, not drag them through the mud. ...

...The songs that the duo were able to round up include everything from classics by the usual subjects, records by Anne Murray, Rush, Neil Young and Joni Mitchell, but also influential, forgotten favourites, singles by bands like The Viletones, Rough Trade, Leroy Sibbles and The Kings. With interviews and live footage, the filmmakers -- whose earlier documentary, 2006's Shakin' All Over, looked at Canadian folk rock in the '60s -- explain how the Canadian music industry was born. ...

...The documentaries, featuring interviews with Nash the Slash, k-os, Burton Cummings and everyone from Corey Hart to Geddy Lee, highlight the music from all across Canada, from D. O. A to Great Big Sea. ...

Thanks to RushFanForever for the info.

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Happy Birthday Alex!
6:57AM EST | link | comments (43) |

Alex young and oldOn this day back in 1953, our favorite guitarist - Alexandar Zivojinovich (aka Alex Lifeson) - was born in Fernie, British Columbia. He turns 56 today which makes him the youngest member of Rush, being born about a month after Geddy Lee and just under a year after Neil. Happy birthday Lerxst! May you have many more. Next up is Neil, who'll turn 57 on September 12th.

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Monday, August 24, 2009

Olivia Louise Peart
6:10PM EST | link | comments (81) |

About 2 weeks ago we learned via an unconfirmed report that Neil Peart's wife Carrie Nuttall gave birth to a healthy baby girl on August 12th. We now have official confirmation of the birth along with the baby's name via Rush.com:

August 24, 2009

The RUSH family congratulates Neil and his wife Carrie on the birth of their healthy, beautiful daughter Olivia Louise Peart.

We learned in a NeilPeart.net News update earlier this summer that Neil and Carrie were expecting. A big congratulations to the proud parents and family. Now we just need some pictures!! Thanks to thomas for the heads up.

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Alex Lifeson instructional videos for Apple's GarageBand
1:27PM EST | link | comments (12) |

In his recent Classic Rock presents ... Prog interview one of the things Alex Lifeson mentions being involved with during Rush's break from recording/touring is Apple's GarageBand software. GarageBand is a software application that allows users to create music or podcasts, and is included in all shipments of iLife. The most recent version of the software (iLife '09) includes music instruction, allowing users to buy instructional videos by several popular artists such as Sting, Norah Jones and Ben Folds. Alex Lifeson recently recorded some of these instructional videos for a few of Rush's hits as he described in the interview:

... "The Apple thing was fun", he says by way of explanation. "They have this new thing on the Garageband software [the mini-home studio affair that is part of Apple's iLife bundle] where songwriters and musicians teach people how to play their songs. It's great, you'll be able to download me. I went in and they filmed me for four days doing a song a day: Tom Sawyer, Limelight, The Spirit of Radio and Working Man. It's really comprehensive stuff and you can slow it down to really watch what I'm doing.

"It was odd, you realize how difficult it is to play some of those solos slowly, especially on something like Working Man."

We imagine it's quite difficult to master at its normal pace.

"I guess," and there's another laugh, "I'm not sure how much time I spent on that solo originally, I didn't know better, I was a kid when I wrote that. But I loved doing the Garageband stuff, though, and the end result is just great. When you're learning to play with just notation it's not the same - what the right hand is doing is so important and you never get to see that stuff. ...

I don't have any information as of yet on when Alex's videos will become available, but will let everyone know as soon as I do.

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Friday, August 21, 2009

Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:49PM EST | link | comments (75) |

Classic Rock presents ... Prog coverThings are finally starting to get interesting again in Rush-land. This past week we got a look at the new Alex Lifeson interview in the current issue of Classic Rock presents ... Prog, and Lerxst had a LOT of great information to share with us all. First and foremost, the band tentatively plans to hit the studio this Fall. There's also a sidebar article where Rush Documentary filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen are interviewed. We learn several more details about the documentary including the unfortunate fact that we probably have to wait until the Summer of 2010 for a release. Alex also talks about his involvement with Apple's Garageband software, and mentions that he has a cameo playing a cross-dressing cop in the new Trailer Park Boys movie Countdown to Liquor Day. While we're on the subject of Alex, he will be turning 56 this coming Thursday, August 27th. Happy early birthday Lerxst!

So as it stands right now, it's going to be a very busy 2010 for Rush; we could potentially see a new album and tour, a Rush documentary should be released, the band may get their Hollywood Walk of Fame star, and - who knows - they might even get inducted into the Rock Hall finally. :) So which of these events do you think will occur first (or at all)? Take the Poll and let us know. Here are the results of the last poll where I asked everyone what they thought of Neil's involvement with the new Vertical Horizon album. The vast majority of you (40%+) think it was very cool and are pleased with the result.

American Motorcyclist September, 2009Neil Peart was the subject of the cover feature in the September, 2009 issue of the American Motorcyclist - the magazine of the American Motorcyclist Association. The article celebrates the fact that he was recently awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the Association. Richard J. Atkins Ed. D. and Don Argento (director of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame and Museum) presented the award to Neil and also interviewed him for the magazine. The article is titled Rocker & Roller: Rush Drummer Neil Peart Lives For Motorcycles. He's Also One Incredibly Thoughtful Guy. Neil shares his thoughts on motorcycles and motorcycling including how he learned to ride, what he likes in a motorcycle and his riding style. You can check out scans of the article in this post.

Last Friday Dream Theater played the Molson Amphitheater in Toronto and performed a cover of Rush's The Camera Eye which you can check out some bootleg videos of in this post.

Yesterday I let you know about the forthcoming documentary on Welsh rockers the Manic Street Preachers. It's called No Manifesto and will contain a small Rush cameo. Bassist Nick Wire is a huge Rush fan and had the honor of interviewing Geddy and Alex after Rush's Wembley gig back in 2007. The documentary contains some video footage of this meeting as seen in this preview clip. The movie is slated for a tentative release sometime this Fall.

Speaking of documentaries, a couple of new documentaries exploring the Canadian music scene in the 1970s and '80s will be running on the CBC over the next several weeks. You can bet that Rush will get a mention or several. For more information and air times, check out this Toronto Star article. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

Porcupine Tree's Steven Wilson's playlist for this past Monday as shown on his website lists 12 albums including Rush's A Farewell to Kings. Just last month Wilson's playlist included Rush's Hemispheres. The man has good taste! Thanks to chutch15 for the heads up.

Modern Drummer October 2009According to Cygnify over at Counterparts, the October 2009 issue of Modern Drummer contains an article where 30 professional drummers discuss Neil Peart and his influence on their careers. A few of these can be read on the Modern Drummer website at this link.

Reader 1001SOS let me know about a rush reference at lifehacker.com. They review an application called ControlPad which uses the number pad on your keyboard as a quick launcher for applications and system commands. They use the number 2112 for their example and challenge readers to guess which application they linked the number to.

Reader ou812112 let me know that Rush's Red Barchetta made autonet.ca's list of The best songs about cars, coming it at #6. Here's what they said:

With lyrics by master storyteller Neil Peart, this song is about a future where new cars are mostly automated and the passion involved in driving is being lost. If you enjoy driving, you'll be able to relate to lines like 'well-weathered leather, hot metal and oil, the scent of country air.'

And while on the subject of Red Barchettas, Autoblog.com has an extensive photo gallery featuring a collection of Ferrari 166MM Barchetta's at this week's Pebble Beach Concours d'Elegance. Thanks to Ros-ma Kloma at Counterparts for the link.

Last week I let you know about the City Sonic Project - a collaboration between Toronto documentary film companies White Pine Pictures and Kensington Communications. The project pairs Canadian music artists with award-winning Canadian filmmakers to create short documentary films about the artists' connection to places where their musical lives were transformed. One of the 13 short films pairs Geddy Lee with director Bruce McDonald. Geddy is followed as he takes viewers on a tour inside the legendary Massey Hall (where All the World's a Stage was recorded). All 13 films will have their world premier as part of the Toronto International Film Festival's TIFF in Concert program at Yonge and Dundas Square which runs from September 10th through the 19th. New films will premiere each day of the Festival and all City Sonic screenings are free to the public. City Sonic recently posted all the screening times to their website and Geddy Lee at Massey Hall will screen on September 13th at 12PM. To check out a couple of photos of Geddy on location during the filming, go to the Facebook event page or check out the above thumbnails.

Richard L pointed me to this American Profile article where the Hemphill Brothers Coach Company is profiled. Rush's tour manager Liam Birt is quoted in the article:

... Liam Birt, tour manager for the rock group Rush, has nothing but praise for the brothers and their business. "I've used the Hemphills on Rush, the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Queensryche, and Crash Test Dummies tours, all with outstanding results," he says. "They understand we don't work in a 9-to-5 environment and that they need to be able to reach out 24/7 to keep these tours rolling. Like myself, it's how they grew up-on the road." ...

Former Max Webster frontman and Rush friend Kim Mitchell is a DJ at Q107 in Toronto. On his Friday show he does something called the Friday Traffic Jam where he takes a song that he likes and jams to it on guitar. This past Friday the song he picked was Rush's Far Cry. To listen to the audio clip just go to this link and scroll down in the audio player to Kim Mitchell takes on Rush's "Far Cry" for the Friday Traffic Jam. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

Musician April 1985Reader RushFanForever recently dug up this quote from Led Zeppelin's Jimmy Page which mentions Rush in the April 1985 issue of Musician Magazine:

... Speaking of raw enthusiasm, how does Page regard the recent profusion of heavy metal thrash, for which he must surely be attributed some of the blame? "I do like the new heavy metal bands, because they're not polite," Jimmy sniggers. "It's just not polite; it's good! It's like 'Fuck you.' I used to go to a club in town called the Funny Farm and they played heavy metal music all the time like Rush, who are extremely good." ...

Alex referenced the above interview in his and Geddy's November 2008 appearance on the CBC's The Hour:

George: Page said that Rush was one of the bands he was excited about right?

Alex: Yeah they mentioned that in an interview somewhere.

Jimmy Page is one of Alex's biggest influences as he described in this June 1980 Guitar Player interview:

... "Page was probably my greatest influence early on," affirmed Alex Lifeson of the durable Canadian trio Rush. "Rush started just a little before the time Led Zeppelin came out, and when I heard the first album, I thought, 'They're doing just the things we want to do; they have the sound we want to have.' And if we were that good, we could have played like that too, if you know what I mean." ...

Alex also mentions his admiration of Page and how he finally got to meet his hero in this March 2006 Guitar Player interview:

... "I wanted to look like him, and play like him and be just like him," Lifeson remembered his youthful infatuation with Page, which came full circle when they came face to face backstage many years later. "You meet your hero, and he's a hero! He was everything I hoped he would be - I'll never forget that." ...

The Musician quote and the March 2006 Guitar Player quote were both later referenced in the 2007 Jimmy Page biography Jimmy Page: Magus, Musician, Man, and the Musician quote is also mentioned in Hammer of the Gods: The Led Zeppelin Saga. Speaking of Led Zeppelin, check out Led Zeppelin Swag to purchase the above referenced books and a bunch of other cool Led Zeppelin merchandise.

A couple of Fridays back our own air guitar/drum master LanceTheShred (host of RatCon 2009) competed in the US Air Guitar finals in Washington DC. Lance was featured in an NBC news story about the event. Unfortunately Lance did not win (he came in fourth) but - as promised - Rush was well-represented in his performance as you can see by watching his performance video below.

That's it for this week. Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, August 20, 2009

Manic Street Preachers documentary No Manifesto to feature Rush
3:27PM EST | link | comments (12) |

The Manic Street Preachers are a critically-acclaimed alternative rock band from Wales who are the subject of a forthcoming documentary titled No Manifesto due to tentatively release sometime this fall. The band's bassist Nicky Wire is known to be a huge Rush fan. Just recently Wire wrote an 8-page feature on Rush album art which appeared in the June, 2009 issue of Classic Rock presents ... Prog. Back in late 2007 Nick interviewed Geddy and Alex for the December, 2007 issue of Classic Rock magazine after their Wembley show. Rock photographer Ross Halfin was on hand for this and took this great photo of Wire with Alex and Geddy where Wire proudly displays his Rush jean jacket. Director Elizabeth Marcus tells me that the documentary will contain video of this backstage meeting between Wire and the boys as displayed in this clip from the documentary's YouTube channel. The clip also has Nick showing off his collection of buttons and patches and declaring Geddy as the greatest bass player of all time. Here's the clip:

Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up and director Elizabeth Marcus for the info.

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Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Rush: The Documentary update
3:52PM EST | link | comments (33) |

Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyenAs I'd mentioned yesterday, the special Rush issue of Classic Rock presents ... Prog contains a sidebar article where Rush Documentary filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen are interviewed by Classic Rock's Jerry Ewing. Back in September of 2007 we first learned that Scot and Sam were planning on creating a documentary on Rush. The original official press release about the project came out in October of 2007 and the plan was to release the documentary in late 2008. But due to another project they were working on simultaneously (the Iron Maiden: Flight 666 documentary) it looked like the project might be put on hold for a little while. We then got some more info in late 2008 via a second press release and some other inside sources, and at that time it looked like the documentary would be released later this year. Well it now looks like the release has been delayed until early next summer although filming should be completed by the end of this year. Here's a transcription of the Prog interview with Sam and Scot where they update us on the current state of affairs:

RUSH: THE MOVIE

Fresh from their success with Iron Maiden's Flight 666, filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen turn their attention to Rush. Jerry Ewing gets the lowdown.

It seems fitting that the two men who have managed to present rock music in a well-structured and thought-out light cinematically in recent years should turn their attention to Rush. That's exactly what fellow Canadians Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen are now doing, with the first ever feature film documentary on Geddy, Alex and Neil.

"Geddy had been in Metal: A Headbanger's Journey and we were thinking about other bands we could work with," explains McFadyen. "We felt that Rush had always been overlooked by the critics so we met them on tour and they liked what we said. We started working on it, then Iron Maiden came about so we took a break to do that and raised the financing for the Rush film. We've started on it now and done a load of interviews so now we're editing with a load of archival footage.

We've been lucky, not only have we had access to [Rush management] SRO's archives but also Geddy, Alex and Neil's own personal archives," enthuses director Dunn. "I was just at Geddy's house this week. Going through his personal collection of memorabilia. I dug up some gems I don't think Rush fans have ever seen so we're hoping to offer something new."

As Rush fans themselves, Dunn admits this is making him feel like a kid let loose in a candy store.

"Well, Geddy's definitely the premier band archivist. He has a massive collection of photographs and clippings. We even got our hands on Neil's handwritten lyric sheets from back when they were making Fly By Night, 2112 and A Farewell To Kings, and I don't think they've ever been seen before."

Given the private nature of the band, particularly drummer Neil Peart, the fact that the band are fully co-operating with the filmmakers makes the prospect of the finished cut even more mouth-watering.

"Well they're not quite at the end of their career - they have a few albums left in them," states McFadyen. "They're going to start recording their next album soon and we're hoping to be able to show that in the film. They seem to like the scope of what we were doing. We were going to take the time and energy and talk to hundreds of people. We were hoping for the ending to have them to be inducted into the Rock 'n' Roll Hall Of Fame. So we're kind of holding off to see if that might happen, because if any band deserves it it's them.

And as for the reclusive Peart?

"Neil's very private but that's understandable given everything that he's gone through," muses Dunn. "But what we found was that when you get Neil on a motorbike in a remote area, the kid comes out in him. So we have filmed Neil riding through Quebec, parts of Europe and California and we've found that when you sit down with Neil, one on one, he loves to talk. And Rush fans know that he's smart and articulate and always has something interesting to say."

The as-yet untitled film will also feature contributions from a host of musicians who have toured with or been inspired by Rush, including Billy Corgan, Trent Reznor, Tool, Foo Fighters, Kiss, Uriah Heep and Primus. Dunn and McMadyen look to complete filming at the end of this year, so a theatrical release is slated for early next summer.

Watch out for exclusive footage of the three members interacting with each other in the band's unique way.

"We got some rare backstage footage in Europe," Says Dunn. "And the camaraderie between the three really comes across. They're almost telepathic and I think that's what's been behind their great success. They have such a deep understanding of each other's personalities and of each other's strengths. That's something that's pretty amazing to see and what we want to convey in the film."

The handwritten lyric sheets that Dunn refers to were actually made available in the tour books The Words and Pictures Volume 1 and Volume 2. However those are just copies and Sam may be planning on using video/photographs of the originals in the film. It sounds like part of the explanation for the delay of the release is to include footage of the band in the studio for their next album, which Alex has stated will tentatively happen this Fall. It's interesting that they are also hoping that Rush actually gets into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame next year, in order to include that in the documentary as well. I somehow doubt that will occur, but stranger things have happened. If that doesn't materialize I suppose they could at least include Rush's Hollywood Walk of Fame ceremony assuming that happens by next summer. Many thanks to Chris W for providing the scan of this article so I could transcribe it. You can purchase the magazine online via this link.

Related Posts:
[Rush: The Documentary working cover, planned 2009 release]
[Rush: The Documentary update]
[Sam Dunn on the upcoming Rush documentary]
[Rush: The Documentary]
[RushCon report]

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Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Classic Rock presents ... Prog Alex Lifeson interview details: Rush in the studio this Fall!
6:34PM EST | link | comments (44) |

Classic Rock presents ... Prog coverUPDATE - 10/20@9:20AM: A full transcription of the article is now available online at this link.

The Classic Rock presents ... Prog special Rush issue became available earlier this month. The issue's tagline reads Everything's Fun Again Now! Alex Lifeson on RUSH & the story of Prog Metal and the issue features 4 separate collectible Rush covers each representing a different era of the band. The issue contains a 9-page feature on Rush titled Making Waves where Alex Lifeson is interviewed, giving a retrospective history of the band. Before diving into the history, Alex talks about what he's been up to during Rush's break. One thing he discusses in detail is how he's involved with Apple's Garageband software:

... The Apple thing was fun", he says by way of explanation. "They have this new thing on the Garageband software [the mini-home studio affair that is part of Apple's iLife bundle] where songwriters and musicians teach people how to play their songs. It's great,
you'll be able to download me. I went in and they filmed me for four days doing a song a day: Tom Sawyer, Limelight, The Spirit of Radio and Working Man. It's really comprehensive stuff and you can slow it down to really watch what I'm doing.

"It was odd, you realise how difficult it is to play some of those solos slowly, especially on something like Working Man."

We imagine it's quite difficult to master at its normal pace.

"I guess," and there's another laugh, "I'm not sure how much time I spent on that solo originally, I didn't know better, I was a kid when I wrote that. But I loved doing the Garageband stuff, though, and the end result is just great. When you're learning to play with just notation it's not the same - what the right hand is doing is so important and you never get to see that stuff. ...

Alex goes on to discuss Rush's early days and then breaks into a discussion about the recording of Snakes & Arrows along with their recent tour.

... "Also, you know, getting to do songs like Entre Nous again, there was the demand to do stuff like that, the crowds really seemed to like hearing it, that makes everything fun again too. After we'd done the R30 tour and drew a line under things like Closer To The Heart, it was good to look at different parts of our catalogue and experiment with some of the less well=know material, the stuff that we haven't aired for years. I know Ged was knocked out when he went back to listen to Permanent Waves and it was so much fun to rearrange those songs in the way we did, I hope we get to do a lot more of that, to tinker a little with some of those old songs when we play them again". ...

Lerxst then discusses the few low points in Rush's career; post-Hemispheres, post-Hold Your Fire and Neil Peart's trajedies of the late 90s. He then had this to say regarding Vapor Trails:

... Then when we did reconvene for Vapor Trails and it became this most emotional and powerful record. We think very highly of that record, but there are things wrong with it, the way it sounds, it could have been better recorded, we would have done things in a different way, but I suppose we weren't thinking straight, no, not that, it was just very raw, very visceral, you know."

Normally very effusive, Lifeson struggles with the words momentarily: "A lot of that stuff on there is first takes and demos, but because of what had happened and how we felt, we didn't want to re-record, they felt too precious in a way, we were very protective of those songs at that time, we were all feeling very tender about it. Rich [Chycki] - my engineer - re-remixed One Little Victory and Earthshine for Retrospective III and they sounded just great. ...

And here's the meat of the article; Alex talks about going into the studio this fall, as was previously rumored!

... "Tentatively, we start work on the next album in the fall - I did mention it to Ged before he went away on holiday and he sort of looked the other way. Come September and we'll certainly have some plans, we did the last record, or we started on the last album in the fall and I'd like to do that again, start recording maybe. I don't know who might produce, that's some ways off yet." ...

Lerxst also mentions his guest appearance at a concert with The Tragically Hip in Toronto this past May, and his cameo in the Canadian vampire horror-comedy film Suck due out later this year. And he has some news regarding the next Trailer Park Boys movie: Countdown to Liquor Day...:

... I'm also in the second ... Trailer Park Boys film, I really enjoy working with those guys, they hand-picked the part for me, I'm usually in some kind of uniform, this time I get to play a cross-dressing cop, how hard can it be?" ...

As an added bonus, there's a sidebar article discussing many juicy details regarding the upcoming Rush documentary which I'll post about in the next couple of days. Many thanks to Chris W for all the info! You can purchase the magazine online via this link.

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Sunday, August 16, 2009

Neil Peart American Motorcyclist Magazine cover feature
10:37AM EST | link | comments (45) |

UPDATE - 8/20@9:05AM: There's also a digital copy of the magazine available at the AMA website here (thanks Andy O).

UPDATE - 8/16@7:24PM: I added the full scans below (thanks glortiz).

American Motorcyclist September, 2009Neil Peart is the subject of the cover feature in the September, 2009 issue of the American Motorcyclist - the magazine of the American Motorcyclist Association. The article celebrates the fact that he was recently awarded an Honorary Life Membership in the Association. Richard J. Atkins Ed. D. and Don Argento (director of the AMA Motorcycle Hall of Fame and Museum) presented the award to Neil and also interviewed him for the magazine. The article is titled Rocker & Roller: Rush Drummer Neil Peart Lives For Motorcycles. He's Also One Incredibly Thoughtful Guy. Neil shares his thoughts on motorcycles and motorcycling including how he learned to ride, what he likes in a motorcycle and his riding style. Neil says the following on receiving the Honorary Life Membership:

I once read an interview with my fellow drummer Nick Mason, from Pink Floyd, and he remarked that of all the gold records and awards he had received for his musical success, he was most proud of his election to the British Racing Drivers Club. That's how I feel about receiving this Honorary Life Membership to the AMA - both proud and humble at being so honored by the motorcycling community. My gratitude and pride are tremendous and sincere. Thank you.

The article also includes quotes from some of Neil's riding partners including Brian Catterson (editor-in-chief of Motorcyclist Magazone), Brutus, Greg Russell and Michael Mosbach. Many thanks to glortiz for the heads up and cover scan.

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Saturday, August 15, 2009

Dream Theater covers Rush's The Camera Eye at Toronto show
2:36PM EST | link | comments (35) |

UPDATE - 8/18@5:28PM: Here's another one (thanks amoderndaywarrior2112).

UPDATE - 8/15@7:11PM: Here's another video with slightly better sound quality and different angle (thanks DigitalMan745).

Progressive metal band Dream Theater played the Molson Amphitheater in Toronto last night. It's no secret that all members of the band are huge Rush fans and often discuss in interviews how much of an influence Rush has been on their music. They've also been known to cover Rush songs in concert from time to time. Last night they started out their encore with a cover of Rush's The Camera Eye with a backdrop of the Moving Pictures album cover. Rush hasn't performed this song live since the Signals tour. Here's a bootleg video of the performance:

If you are aware of any better quality videos, please let me know. Thanks to DigitalMan745 for the heads up and the video link.

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Friday, August 14, 2009

Updates and other random Rush stuff
10:27AM EST | link | comments (32) |

According to an unconfirmed report (from a good source though), Neil Peart is a new daddy to a bouncing baby girl! We've all been anxiously awaiting this news since we first learned in a NeilPeart.net News update earlier this summer that Neil and Carrie were expecting. A big congrats to the happy couple on behalf of all RIAB readers.

In another piece of Neil Peart news, Neil's original Slingerland drum kit (which he used from Fly By Night through 2112) was put up for auction on eBay by owners Main Drag Music in Brooklyn, New York last week. The auction ended on Sunday and the winning bid was for $25,100! According to Michael of NeilPeartDrumsticks.com - who knows the new owner - the plan is to put the kit in some kind of museum, possibly the Percussive Arts Society Museum in Indianapolis.

Today is also the 35th anniversary of Neil Peart's first show as a member of Rush. They played the Civic Arena in Pittsburgh, PA. Neil wrote about this experience in Roadshow:

... Among the sleek buildings that indicated Pittsburgh's successful transition from Iron City to a technological center, I caught a glimpse of the low dome of the Civic Center Arena. That was where Alex and Geddy and I had played our first show together, on August 14, 1974, opening for Manfred Mann's Earth Band and Uriah Heep in front of about 11,000 people. Among the many memories of that life-chaning experience, I would never forget standing on the floor beside stage left while Uriah Heep played 'Stealin'.' The big dark building, colored lights on the heroic figuries up on the stage, the roaring audience, the sheet electricity in that place. Halfway through their show, the retractable dome of the Civic Arena had peeled back, open to the summer night...

On Tuesday Rush's Grace Under Pressure Tour video was released as a standalone audio CD. Rush recorded this show back on September 21, 1984 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto and later released the video on both VHS and LaserDisc. In 2006 they released a remastered DVD version of the concert as part of the Replay X3 Box Set which also included a bonus audio CD of the Grace Under Pressure Tour video. They later made the DVD available to be purchased as a separate item.

Also on Tuesday, the Paul Rudd and Jason Segel bro-mantic comedy I Love You Man was released to Blu-ray and DVD. The movie is filled with Rush references including a cameo from the band where they perform Limelight during a concert scene. You can watch an extended clip of the scene here. The 2-disc set includes an 18-minute Making Of feature, outtakes, extended and deleted scenes, a gag reel and commentary from director John Hamburg and actors Paul Rudd and Jason Segel. You can purchase your copy at this link. Reader RushFanForever also located this recent interview with directory John Hamburg where he has a lot to say about working with Rush on the movie.

Yesterday I let you know about the City Sonic Project - a collaboration between Toronto documentary film companies White Pine Pictures and Kensington Communications. The project pairs Canadian music artists with award-winning Canadian filmmakers to create short documentary films about the artists' connection to places where their musical lives were transformed. One of the 13 short films pairs Geddy Lee with director Bruce McDonald. Geddy is followed as he takes viewers on a tour inside the legendary Massey Hall (where All the World's a Stage was recorded). All 13 films will have their world premier as part of the Toronto International Film Festival's TIFF in Concert program at Yonge and Dundas Square which runs from September 10th through the 19th. New films will premiere each day of the Festival and all City Sonic screenings are free to the public. Keep an eye on the City Sonic website for details and screening times.

On Tuesday night I was a guest on internet radio talk show Used Bin Radio. I had a great time talking Rush for about half an hour with hosts Brad and Joe. If you missed the show there is a podcast available at this link. My part starts in at about the 35-minute mark.

Legendary guitarist, inventor and studio wizard Les Paul died yesterday at the age of 94. Besides being an accomplished musician and entertainer, he was a pioneer in the development of the solid-body electric guitar and is credited with inventing or discovering many recording innovations. Alex Lifeson is one of the many artists to use Gibson Les Paul guitars over the years.

The October 2009 issue of Guitar World magazine features an interview with Dream Theater guitarist John Petrucci. When asked about the track The Count of Tuscany off of their new album Black Clouds & Silver Linings he says the following:

...indicates a big-time Rush influence. They have always had the ability to write majestic-sounding music, very royal and uplifting....

Later, when talking about different band influences that each member brings to the band, he says that he and Jordan Rudess ...grew up in the same town and share similar influences of Iron Maiden and Rush. Thanks to Michael G for the heads up.

Dream Theater's James LaBrie was also recently interviewed by Edmonton's Vue Weekly. From the article:

Dream Theater's James LaBrie grew up loving Rush. While that may not be a stretch for an Ontario teen of the '70s, these days he can also boast some common ground with Geddy Lee. Not only do both gentlemen lend distinctive voices to their respective prog-rock bands, but both have also sung the national anthem at major league games-and gotten stage fright doing it.

"I was reading one time that Geddy Lee, he was saying out of all the years that they played all over the world, and playing in front of 20 000 people a night, he was never so nervous as when he sang for the Toronto Blue Jays game, a baseball game, and he had to walk out there and sing the national anthem," LaBrie says. "And I thought, 'Wow, that's so true,' because I remember walking out on [Maple Leaf] ice and going, 'Wow, this is really bizarre. This is totally different.' You're out there, it's naked, it's you and your voice and it's you singing to a crowd of whatever-18 000 people-by yourself. But it was still cool. I had a great time doing it.

"It was [stage fright]" he laughs. "I could understand where Geddy Lee was coming from. It was almost like your first gig, to go out there and go, 'Holy shit, why am I getting nervous? I've done this many times before.'" ...

Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

Progressive metal band Tool is currently on tour and for at least one show have been playing the opening riff to Rush's A Passage to Bangkok to open their song Rosetta Stoned as seen in this YouTube video (thanks Craig). Rush and specifically Alex Lifeson are big Tool fans. Alex said the following regarding Tool's album Aenima in a Guitar World interview a few years ago:

Adam Jones is a fabulous guitarist and songwriter, and Tool are such a powerful band. You know it's Tool when you hear them, because they're intensely dynamic, yet heavy, even when they're playing is light. I listened to this album over and over; I don't do that very often. Tool have an interesting, intelligent approach to song construction and lyrics. It's just too bad we don't hear from them more often.

Indeed, it looks like Alex hung out with Adam Jones, Maynard James Keenan and comic book author Steve Niles when Tool played Toronto recently. Niles is a friend of Tool and toured with them for 2 weeks, even playing guitar on 46 & 2 at the Toronto show. He posted this photo of him, Adam, Alex and Maynard at dinner in Toronto. Thanks to bobcat for the photo and the heads up.

Rush gets a mention in this Las Vegas Review-Journal article about bands with a rabid fanbase. Here's what they said:

A Rush fan is like the rock 'n' roll equivalent of the Trekkie, and I'm talking about the kind that can speak fluent Klingon and knows Spock's mom's maiden name. Write anything about this band, and you will get responses from all over the world. I used to poke fun of the undeniable geekiness of Geddy Lee and Co. -- seriously, Rush is like hard rock's pocket protector -- but have come around after seeing them live. Their last two Vegas gigs were among the best shows of the year in '07 and '08 respectively. The nerds officially have had their revenge.

Thanks to RushFanForever for the link.

Antimusic.com ran a poll recently to determine the Top 100 Singers According to You. Geddy Lee made a decent showing coming in at #42.

Sci-fi author Kevin J. Anderson is a huge Rush fan and has drawn inspiration from Rush for a number of his writings. His 1988 Rush-inspired novel Ressurection, Inc. even drew the attention of Neil Peart and the 2 have been friends ever since, even collaborating on the 1994 short story Drumbeats. Neil also wrote the introduction to Anderson's 2006 short story compilation Landscapes. In his latest book The Edge of the World Anderson takes a stab at fantasy and dedicates it to his friend Neil Peart. The book is heavily influenced by Rush and prog rock and even contains a companion CD of music by prog rock band Roswell Six called Terra Incognita: Beyond the Horizon. Thanks to Power Windows for the information.

I have several old Rush article scans to share with you courtesy of a couple of members of the Counterparts message board.

The first is from the March, 1978 edition of the New Musical Express. It's by the controversial writer Barry Miles and is titled Rush: Is Everybody Feelin' all RIGHT? (Geddit...?). It's the article where Rush was essentially accused of being fascists, greatly upsetting the band. You can check it out by viewing the thumbnails.

The next is from the May, 1979 edition of the New Musical Express. It's by John Hamblett and is titled Rock Against Right-Wing Rock Being Called Fascist. It addresses the previous article, giving Peart a chance to defend himself against accusations of Rush being fascist.

These next 2 article are from the June 1977 and May, 1983 issue of Sounds Magazine respectively. They're by Geoff Barton and you can check them out by clicking on the thumbnails.

Geddy Lee is one of many famous Canadians included in a commercial supporting Canadian general interest magazine The Walrus. The magazine publishes long form journalism on Canadian and international affairs, along with fiction and poetry by Canadian writers. It was launched in September 2003 as an attempt to create a Canadian equivalent to American magazines such as Harper's, The Atlantic Monthly or The New Yorker. Thanks to Power Windows for the heads up. Here's the video of the commercial on YouTube:

That's all for this week. Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, August 13, 2009

Unconfirmed report: Neil Peart is a new daddy to a baby girl
2:24PM EST | link | comments (43) |

UPDATE - 8/17@5:25PM: According to RUSHGIRL at Counterparts, the date of birth was August 12th.

From an unconfirmed report via RUSHGIRL at the Counterparts board, Neil Peart and Carrie Nuttall are the proud parents of a baby girl! We learned in a NeilPeart.net News update earlier this summer that Neil and Carrie were expecting. It was 12 years ago this past Monday, August 10th that Selena - Neil's daughter by his late wife Jackie - was killed in a tragic car accident at the age of 19. A big congratulations to Neil and Carrie on this joyous event.

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Geddy Lee at Massey Hall short film documentary to premier at TIFF
12:28PM EST | link | comments (9) |

UPDATE - 8/20@12:50PM: City Sonic recently posted all the screening times to their website and Geddy Lee at Massey Hall will screen on September 13th at 12PM. To check out a couple of photos of Geddy on location during the filming, go to the Facebook event page or check out the above thumbnails.

The City Sonic Project is a collaboration between Toronto documentary film companies White Pine Pictures and Kensington Communications. The project pairs Canadian music artists with award-winning Canadian filmmakers to create short documentary films about the artists' connection to places where their musical lives were transformed. One of the 13 short films pairs Geddy Lee with director Bruce McDonald. Geddy is followed as he takes viewers on a tour inside the legendary Massey Hall. From the press release:

GEDDY LEE (RUSH) AT MASSEY HALL is also directed by Bruce McDonald. Considered among the most influential rock bands in the world, Rush has been inducted in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and have 24 gold records, 14 platinum and 3 multi-platinum records. It is no surprise that their June 1976 sold-out concerts at Massey Hall in Toronto (that ended their 2112 tour), would become an historic event at an historic venue. These shows were recorded for the double-live album All the World is a Stage - an album that broke the band in the U.S., becoming their first Top 40 Billboard hit and paving the way for a string of famous Rush live albums. It was a first for Rush, but not the first time singer/bassist Geddy Lee felt magic on the stage at Massey. McDonald follows Lee as he takes viewers on a tour inside the legendary concert hall.

All 13 films will have their world premier as part of the Toronto International Film Festival's TIFF in Concert program at Yonge and Dundas Square which runs from September 10th through the 19th. New films will premiere each day of the Festival and all City Sonic screenings are free to the public. Keep an eye on the City Sonic website for details and screening times.

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Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Ed to guest on internet talk show Used Bin Radio tonight
10:47PM EST | link | comments (17) |

UPDATE - 8/12@8:11PM: The podcast is up. You can listen to it at this link. My part starts in at about the 35-minute mark and runs for close to a half hour.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 8/12@10:06AM: I had a great time talking to Brad and Joe last night. Hopefully you got to listen in, but if not a podcast of the show should be available in the next couple of days at this link. A big congrats to RushFanForever for winning the Snakes & Arrows Blu-ray; he answered the Rush trivia question at the end of the show.

UPDATE - 8/11@10:58PM: I added some more information about tonight's show from the newsletter in the post below. The show starts in 2 minutes!

Used Bin Radio is a weekly internet radio talk show geared towards Classic, Modern and Progressive Rock. Hosts Joe and Brad are lifelong Rush fans as well as RIAB fans; their shows are chock full of Rush bumper music and references. The show airs live on Tuesday nights from 8-10PM PST (11-1 EST) and I'll be a guest on tonight's show if everything goes according to plan. You can listen live to the program on purerockradio.net and it is also syndicated on progrock.com and redeyeradionetwork.com. Past shows can be listened to via podcast at this link. Listen in if you get a chance.

From the show's newsletter:

Hey kids... get ready to "Take Off"... to the Great White North...?
Against our better judgment we've decided its time to release our inner Rush-geek...

Join us on Tuesday for...
* USED BIN RADIO *

This week we're pleased to welcome Ed Stenger, coordinator of the Rush news and info site www.rushisaband.com We'll be discussing the inner workings of the band, their music and the latest events in the world of our favorite Canadian trio.

And just to keep you on your toes, be sure to stay tuned for a chance to call in and win the new RUSH - Snakes & Arrows Live Blu-Ray disc.
(Courtesy of Anthem-Atlantic Records)

And as always, we'll review the latest music news (and a few naked photos of your mom)

We also wanna hear about what YOU'VE been listening to. So join the conversation...
Call us live... (Yes, that's right you'll hear your voice on the radio)
310 840-4438
(this phone number only works during our broadcast hours)
Or send us an email at
usedbinradio@usedbin.com

So join us, this Tuesday (and every Tuesday) for a 120 fun-filled, free-form minutes of tunes... talk... and talk about tunes...

Tuesday August 11
8PM PST (in Los Angeles)
...that's 9pm for you Central people...
...around 11pm for our East Coast pals...
...and 4am Wednesday morning for our British contingent...
...that's 8:30 am Wednesday if you're moving through Kashmir...
Tune in by clicking:
www.purerockradio.net
(Then click "LISTEN" and choose you're preferred audio player)

You can also tune in and catch us live on:
www.progrock.com
or
www.redeyeradionetwork.com
catch the podcast at
http://purerockradio.net/podcast.xml
check our latest video clips at
http://www.youtube.com/usedbinradio
find us on iTunes at
http://itunes.apple.com/WebObjects/MZStore.woa/wa/viewPodcast?id=325348646

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Grace Under Pressure Tour live CD now available for purchase
10:37PM EST | link | comments (4) |

About a month ago the news came out that Rush's Grace Under Pressure Tour video would finally be released as a standalone audio CD. The CD is now available for purchase at Amazon and other online retailers. Rush recorded this show back on September 21, 1984 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto and later released the video on both VHS and LaserDisc. In 2006 they released a remastered DVD version of the concert as part of the Replay X3 Box Set which also included a bonus audio CD of the Grace Under Pressure Tour video. They later made the DVD available to be purchased as a separate item.

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I Love You Man movie featuring Rush now available for purchase
10:31PM EST | link | comments (2) |

The Paul Rudd and Jason Segel bro-mantic comedy I Love You Man was released to theaters back in March and grossed over 80 million dollars worldwide. The movie is filled with Rush references including a cameo from the band where they perform Limelight during a concert scene. You can watch an extended clip of the scene here. The film was released to Blu-ray and DVD today. The 2-disc set includes an 18-minute Making Of feature, outtakes, extended and deleted scenes, a gag reel and commentary from director John Hamburg and actors Paul Rudd and Jason Segel. You can purchase your copy at this link.

Related Posts
[I Love You Man movie featuring Rush now available for pre-order]
[Rush I Love You Man cameo extended video clip]
[I Love You Man opens in 2nd place with $18 million]
[I Love You Man release open thread]
[I Love You Man soundtrack to feature Rush]
[I Love You Man trailer available; movie features Rush cameo]

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Sunday, August 9, 2009

Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit sold on eBay for $25,100
1:59PM EST | link | comments (29) |

UPDATE - 8/9@9:42PM: Michael of NeilPeartDrumsticks.com knows the buyer of the kit and had this to say in the comments:

Well the auction is over and the kit was won by a great guy and serious RUSH collector. :-)

No, not me. I do know who and just got off the phone with him. Good news is that it won't be locked away in a basement. It won't be going to Toronto either.

We were discussing ideas of where it can be displayed for all to see. Right now we are talking my personal favorite place is the Percussive Arts Society Museum in Indianapolis. This museum is also host to the International Drummers Hall of Fame.

They have quite an impressive collection of drum kits including some used by Buddy Rich and Gene Krupa. How nice would it be to have this kit displayed alongside Buddy and Gene's?

We are also discussing another venue to display it at for one week but that will be announced later after arrangements are made.

This is going to be a fun project to work on! I think you will like what might be done with the used heads off the drums. :-)

RUSH On!
-Michael

Great news!

----- snip -----

Last week Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit (which he used from Fly By Night through 2112) was put up for auction on eBay by owners Main Drag Music in Brooklyn, New York. The auction ended earlier today and the winning bid was for $25,100! By viewing the bidding history you can see that there were a lot of 2112-inspired bids; one for $2,112, one for $12,112.12, and my personal favorite - $21,121.12. Congratulations to the winning bidder; let's hope they either donate it to a museum or otherwise make it accessible for fans to appreciate.

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Saturday, August 8, 2009

Neil Peart news update
5:06PM EST | link | comments (22) |

Neil Peart[NEWS, WEATHER, and SPORTS: August, 2009 - A Little Yellow Cabin on Yellowstone Lake]

Neil Peart has once again updated the News page on his website, describing a recent motorcycle trip to Yellowstone National Park - his last major trip before settling in with his wife to await the birth of their baby this month. It's an especially long news update, spanning 2 lengthy pages. Neil's prose is as interesting and educational as is typical of his writings, but there's very little mention of Rush other than an allusion to Rush's Manhattan Project as it relates to his visit to Arco, Idaho - the The First City in the World Lighted by Atomic Power. He also gives us a possible glimpse into some future Rush lyrics:

... I can only hope that one day I will return to Yellowstone, maybe even to that little yellow cabin. And that wish gives rise to another line in iambic tetrameter-"If the fates are kinder, than they sometimes seem to be."

That line too just cries out to be sung, perhaps in a triumphant chorus, with harmonized backing vocals:

If the fates are kinder, than they sometimes seem to be
(A little yellow cabin on Yellowstone Lake)
There will still be many journeys and adventures for me
(A little yellow cabin on Yellowstone Lake)
A million miles, a hundred songs in my head
(A little yellow cabin on Yellowstone Lake)
'Til the stupid fates decide it's time to make me dead
(A little yellow cabin on Yellowstone Lake)
Yeah!

Now everybody...

Many thanks to lilvictory for the heads up.

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Friday, August 7, 2009

Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:02AM EST | link | comments (40) |

The big news of the last week was Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit being put up for auction on eBay. The bidding is already up over $10,000 and the auction runs through Sunday. For all the details and to place your bid go to this link at eBay.

About a month ago the news came out that Rush's Grace Under Pressure Tour video would finally be released as a standalone audio CD this coming Tuesday, August 11th. Earlier this week we learned that the CD is now available for pre-order at Amazon and other online retailers. Rush recorded this show back on September 21, 1984 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto and later released the video on both VHS and LaserDisc. In 2006 they released a remastered DVD version of the concert as part of the Replay X3 Box Set which also included a bonus audio CD of the Grace Under Pressure Tour video. They later made the DVD available to be purchased as a separate item.

The Classic Rock presents ... Prog special Rush issue became available on Wednesday. The feature story is titled Everything's Fun Again Now! Alex Lifeson on RUSH & the story of Prog Metal and the issue features 4 separate collectible Rush covers each representing a different era of the band (click on the thumbnails above to see the covers). Starting with this issue international customers are now able to purchase the magazine online via this link.

Tuesday we found out that Rush now has an official Twitter page. To check out their page and follow their updates just go to twitter.com/rushtheband. So far they have 2 tweets posted. And in case you didn't already know, RIAB is on Twitter too. Rush also has an official Facebook page and an official MySpace page.

This past Tuesday Survivorman creator and host Les Stroud was a guest on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson. The 2 got to talking about the fact that Les is Canadian and once worked as a music video set builder. It turns out he worked on the set of Rush's The Big Money music video. For a transcript of the exchange as well as video, check out this post.

Axe Heaven makes miniature replica guitars of famous musicians, including several Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson models. I've mentioned them a couple of times in the past and Eric over at the Power Windows site has collaborated with Jason from Axe Heaven to help ensure that the replicas were as accurate as possible. They currently have 2 Alex Lifeson replicas, a Geddy bass replica and a Geddy 3-bass set replica. I'd mentioned last month that they'd also soon have a Geddy Lee Rickenbacker 4001 as well as a Neil Peart Snakes & Arrows kit replica available. The Neil Peart Snakes & Arrows kit replica is now available for purchase for $59.99. The kit is made from solid wood and metal parts and includes 12 drums, 9 cymbals, sticks, stands and a stool. For all the details along with photos, and to purchase one for yourself go to this link. Only 20 of the kits have been made so far so act quickly if you want one. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

I often get a lot of questions from readers regarding information about a particular Rush tour or tour date, and I almost always direct them to the Power Windows Tour Archive. This page has every known tour date and tour for Rush listed along with scans of ticket stubs and concert posters. Site owner/administrator Eric does a great job of compiling all this information and recently made a significant number of updates which he wrote about in this post:

... For the last few months, fellow fans Skip Daly, Heiko Klages, Jeff AnalogKidAudioVideo, and Darren RushFanForever have separately provided many details to verify and/or dispel rumored tourdates and setlists dating back to 1974. Skip and Jeff have been invaluable in cleaning up the early setlist and tourdate info, and Jeff has even helped dispel a long standing rumor that Rush opened for Styx during the All The World's A Stage Tour (the opposite was true, meaning the infamous "Seattle '76" show is now believed to be March 28th, 1976, i.e. from the 2112 tour.). Heiko has long been providing many historical newspaper clippings from the 70's, including this humorous review of Rush's second show ever in the UK, June 2, 1977. For more information, check the tourdates and setlists found in the Tour Archives area, especially for those distant tours from the mid-70's.

Today, I've added something that fellow Rush historians will find very special, a poster and newspaper review of a "lost show" which predates the 2112 tour by a couple of weeks. Rush fan Max Lobster unearthed a very interesting newspaper article from the Brantford Collegiate Institute in Ontario. The story includes a very informative interview with Geddy Lee, given after a show in the BCI gym. In the interview, Geddy discusses the concepts found in their 'soon to be released' album, 2112. The article doesn't give the date of the concert, unfortunately, but fellow fan RushFanForever found a BCI graduate online who still has in his possession the show's concert poster from February 21st, 1976; this means that this show took place at least two weeks before the 2112 tour was previously believed to have begun. Personally, I believe that Rush likely performed more than one show in Ontario before kicking off the 2112 tour, hopefully more information can be unearthed in the future. Check out both the poster and review of the BCI concert here.

Used Bin Radio is a weekly internet radio talk show geared towards Classic, Modern and Progressive Rock. Hosts Joe and Brad are lifelong Rush fans as well as RIAB fans; their shows are chock full of Rush bumper music and references. The show airs live on Tuesday nights from 8-10PM PST (11-1 EST) on purerockradio.net and is also syndicated on progrock.com and redeyeradionetwork.com. Past shows can be listened to via podcast at this link. I'll be a guest on this coming Tuesday's show if everything goes according to plan, so listen in if you get a chance.

There's an article on influential Cream drummer Ginger Baker in the latest Rolling Stone magazine. The article includes the following quote from Neil Peart:

"His playing was revolutionary - extrovert, primal, and inventive," says Rush drummer Neil Peart. "He set the bar for what rock drumming could be. I certainly emulated Ginger's approach to rhythm - his hard, flat, percussive sound was very innovative. Everyone who came after built on that foundation. Every rock drummer since has been influenced in some way by Ginger - even if they don't know it."

Thanks to PuppetKing2112 at The Rush Forum for the quote and RushFanForever for the heads up.

Kurt sent me this link to a cool jazz version of Tom Sawyer by Gary Novak's jazz band Sundogs.

Rush's A Passage to Bangkok was the Travel Song of the Day a couple of weeks ago at Worldhum.com, the travel blog of the Travel Channel. Thanks to Power Windows for the link.

Rush gets a brief mention towards the beginning of this review of a recent Steely Dan show. Thanks to Will C for the heads up.

There's a new Rush Forum to let you all know about. It's called The Rush On and you can check it out at this link.

Reader Rob F noticed a Rush reference in this recent LifeHacker.com article which talks about Project Playlist. Just check out the graphic they use - they have good taste in music. :)

The Guardian's music blog put up a post last week where readers recommended songs about failure. The idea was to propose songs that recognize when things have gone wrong. Rush's Red Barchetta made the cut:

I would put a Rush track on every single week if I was allowed. This one is from their wedge-cut and leather tie years and it concerns an over-watched young chap whose only weekend desire is to, "elude the Eyes and hop the turbine freight, to far outside the wire where my white-haired uncle waits". It's a metaphor for sexuality and freedom, you see.

Thanks to Tom A for the heads up.

Reader Graham GB38457 alerts us that the UK's Planet Rock online radio station is taking votes to determine the Greatest Albums of All Time. You know what to do; vote for Rush!

Reader Drodham let me know that rocker Tom Morello (Audioslave, Rage Against the Machine) gave Neil Peart a mention in a recent Twitter post:

Keith moon, phil rudd (ac/dc), neil peart, charlie watts, mitch mitchell, maybe a couple more, and meg white. Great stylists, unique artists

Morello had also given a birthday shout-out to Geddy Lee on his Twitter page last week.

Ever wonder what Rush album artist Hugh Syme looks like? Reader RushFanForever found this online bio of Hugh which includes a photo.

Our own air guitar/drum master LanceTheShred (host of RatCon 2009) will be competing in the US Air Guitar finals tonight in Washington DC. Lance was featured in an NBC news story about the event which you can watch below. Lance assures me that Rush will be well-represented in his performance this evening.

Good luck Lance! Have a great weekend everybody!

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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Rush reference on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson
12:43PM EST | link | comments (14) |

The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson is an American late-night talk show on CBS hosted by Scottish American comedian Craig Ferguson. On Tuesday's show one of his guests was Survivorman creator and host Les Stroud. The 2 got to talking about the fact that Les is Canadian and once worked as a music video set builder. It turns out he worked on the set of Rush's The Big Money music video. Here's a transcript of the exchange courtesy GotRush at The Rush Forum:

l: we were both young then, you were probably in a punk band, i was in a rock band
c. yea, what, what, your Canadian though ?
l. yea, well your Scottish
c. what. . what band were you in....Rush ?
( both have a good laugh )
c. Were you in Rush, that would be awesome, Rush are Canadian
l. actually you know what, I actually, I built the board for the big money video, for Rush
c. ( looks at him with disbelief )
l. i used to be in rock video's building, building sets and stuff.
c. did you really
l. i built that board, yea yea....
c. so you have connection with Rush ?
l. so what do you do
c. in my wildest dreams I'd like to be.....
l. I was just in their office last week
c. what Rush ?
l. well, yea cause.....
c. They have an office
l. they do
c. that's not very rock and roll
l. BIG office with gold records, like....fill this room
c. really !
l. yea it was exciting actually
c. is the office in canada, is that where the....
l. ( laughs )
c. I thought Rush would live in a hollowed out volcano, or something like that
l. no, ya know, well ya know, so what you want to talk about
c. well we've done sharks, we've done Rush ...

And here's a video of the exchange. The Rush part begins at about the 7-minute mark.

Thanks to RushFanForever for the video link and the heads up.

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Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Classic Rock presents ... Prog Rush issue now available
10:05AM EST | link | comments (23) |

The Classic Rock presents ... Prog special Rush issue becomes available today. The feature story is titled Everything's Fun Again Now! Alex Lifeson on RUSH & the story of Prog Metal and the issue features 4 separate collectible Rush covers each representing a different era of the band (click on the thumbnails above to see the covers). Starting with this issue international customers will now be able to purchase the magazine online via this link.

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Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Official Rush Twitter page
1:33PM EST | link | comments (23) |

It's official! Rush is on Twitter. To check out their page and follow their updates just go to twitter.com/rushtheband. So far they have one Tweet posted, telling folks to go vote for Geddy Lee at this link. And in case you didn't already know, RIAB is on Twitter too. Thanks to rtrushfan for the heads up.

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Grace Under Pressure Tour live CD now available for pre-order
10:13AM EST | link | comments (19) |

About a month ago the news came out that Rush's Grace Under Pressure Tour video would finally be released as a standalone audio CD this coming Tuesday, August 11th. The CD is now available for pre-order at Amazon and other online retailers. Rush recorded this show back on September 21, 1984 at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto and later released the video on both VHS and LaserDisc. In 2006 they released a remastered DVD version of the concert as part of the Replay X3 Box Set which also included a bonus audio CD of the Grace Under Pressure Tour video. They later made the DVD available to be purchased as a separate item.

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Monday, August 3, 2009

Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit now up for auction
11:53PM EST | link | comments (15) |

[]

We learned last week that Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit (which he used from Fly By Night through 2112) is currently in the hands of Main Drag Music in Brooklyn, New York and would be put up for auction. We originally reported that Sotheby's Auction House would be handling the auction but Main Drag Music has decided to go through eBay instead. For more information or to place a bid go to at eBay. The auction runs through next Sunday, August 9th. From the item description:

Up for bidding is Neil Peart′s first Slingerland drum set purchased shortly after he joined Rush in late 1974 and used through the recording of 2112. It′s featured on the subsequent live album, All the World′s a Stage, both as a photographic centerpiece on the cover and sonically on the tracks. Peart′s solo on Working Man/Finding My Way from All the World′s a Stage is one of the most well known Drum solos in the world of Rock Drumming, and was introduced by Geddy Lee saying, "The Professor on the drum kit!" This set was also used to record Fly by Night, Caress of Steel, and as mentioned, their commercial breakthrough 2112. This is one of the most iconic drum sets from the world of Rock music and was highly influential--following the release of All the World′s a Stage drummers everywhere studied the cover photo and copied the setup, not to mention Peart′s style. Again, this is the very same drum set that was used on the record and is shown on the cover. It was played at first without the four concert toms, which were added later, circa 1975. ...

For the complete description along with plenty of pics go to at eBay.

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