Archive: Blog Entries from March, 2010

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Rush tour date updates
9:52PM EST | link | comments (36) |

Now that a summer Rush tour has been essentially confirmed by both Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee, I thought I'd post an update regarding tentative/rumored tour dates. There has been some news this evening out of Albuquerque, NM where the tour is set to kickoff. The Journal Pavilion in Albuquerque has been renamed to the Hard Rock Casino presents The Pavilion according to the Albuquerque Journal and other news outlets. The Albuquerque Journal article (subscription required) states the following (thanks Cy B):

... The Pavilion, which has a 15,000-seat capacity and hosts some of the largest concerts, already has booked Brooks and Dunn, Iron Maiden, Rush, Rihanna with Ke$ha, Toby Keith and several others for this summer's concert series, which starts May 22. ...

And 96 Rock announced on the air this evening that Rush would be playing there on June 29th (thanks rushsister), which I'm guessing was not supposed to happen since there has been no official announcement from the band. Either way, the pieces of the puzzle are coming together. I've also heard a tentative date of August 9th for the Shoreline Amphitheater show, early October Florida dates at both the Cruzan Amphitheatre in West Palm Beach and the Tampa Ford Amphitheatre in Tampa Bay, a September date at the Consol Energy Center in Pittsburgh, and a mid-August date at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre. Here's the updated list of tentative/rumored dates:

June 29th:
Hard Rock Casino presents The Pavilion - Albuquerque, NM

July 1st:
KC Starlight Theatre - Kansas City, MO

July 3rd:
Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th:
Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

July 23rd:
Saratoga PAC - Saratoga Springs, NY

July ??:
Nikon at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY
Darien Lake PAC - Darien Center, NY

Aug 5th:
USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 9th:
Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA

Aug 22nd:
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Aug ?? (early August):
Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Aug ??:
Red Rocks Amphitheatre - Morrison, CO

Sept 14th:
TD Center - Boston, MA

Sept ??:
PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

Sept ??:
Consol Energy Center - Pittsburgh, PA

Oct ? (early October):
Cruzan Amphitheatre - West Palm Beach, FL
Tampa Ford Amphitheatre - Tampa Bay, FL

??:
Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON
Blossom Music Center - Cuyahoga Falls, OH

Related Posts:
[Geddy Lee confirms summer Rush tour followed by new album]
[Alex Lifeson reveals Rush tour, album details in new interview]
[Lorne Wheaton: off to YYZ for sessions ... on the road this summer]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues]

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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Geddy Lee confirms summer Rush tour followed by new album
7:28PM EST | link | comments (144) |

Sandra Miller of Akron's 97.5 WONE had a brief conversation with Geddy Lee recently where Geddy confirms Rush's plans for touring/recording that were first mentioned by Alex Lifeson in a Toronto Globe and Mail interview last week. Here's what Geddy said:

We're kind of looking at a kind of a 2 year plan. A little bit of writing now, getting a couple of tracks down. Playing some songs in the summertime on tour that people are not familiar with as well as bringing back a whole range of older songs. And getting quickly back into the studio again and finishing the album and see what the impact of that is.

You can listen to the interview yourself at this link or use the player below.

Here's what Alex Lifeson had said in his Toronto Globe and Mail interview last week:

... We were off for a year and a half, and now it's just pouring. Everything is totally crazy and there's not a minute left in the day. We've got these half-dozen songs, and we'll probably go in the studio and work on a couple of them and see how it goes, perhaps release something - and I say perhaps - and then we plan on being on the road in the middle of June. Ideally, we'd like to showcase a couple of these songs on the tour, come off tour in mid-October, go back in the studio and continue writing, then record through late this year and early next year, and then release the album in the spring of 2011 on a slightly more substantial tour. This [year's] tour will probably be about 45 dates. Most likely summer, 2011, would be more like 70. ...

It's going to be a busy couple of years for Rush and their fans. Thanks to Evan for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Alex Lifeson reveals Rush tour, album details in new interview]
[Lorne Wheaton: off to YYZ for sessions ... on the road this summer]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Neil Peart: new Rush project may not be a full-length album]
[Rush 2010 tour and album update]
[Radio stations giving away Rush 2010 tour tickets?]
[Geddy Lee: Rush in the studio soon, Summer 2010 tour possible]
[Neil Peart news update: Rush to discuss future plans this month]
[Alex Lifeson: new Rush album, tour possible in 2010]

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Sunday, March 28, 2010

Rush Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame induction
4:48PM EST | link | comments (151) |

[Concerts On Demand: Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 2010]

UPDATE - 4/1@4:16PM: RushFanForever got word from Alexisonfire's publicist regarding why their performance of Tom Sawyer was not included in the CBC broadcast and here's what they said:

Unfortunately, there were technical difficulties in recording the live feed of their performance. So the recorded version is not usable for broadcast :(

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 4/1@11:45AM: Jacob Moon has posted the last piece of his 3-part series describing his experience Sunday night to his website along with a bunch of great behind-the-scene photos with Rush. You can check it out at this link. And there's also this YouTube video of Moon rehearsing for his performance at last Sunday's Gala (thanks Tr1gger).

UPDATE - 3/30@9:32AM: Here's some more post-induction coverage from the Toronto Sun (thanks John H), and Jacob Moon has posted his own personal description of the event to the news page on his website (thanks Rob S) and also spoke about his version of Subdivisions in this radio interview (thanks RushFanForever).

UPDATE - 3/29@7:07PM: It looks like the CBC Radio 2 site has posted the entire ceremony to its Concerts on Demand page. No need to listen to the live broadcast of Canada Live. They have the entire show broken out into segments; just pick and choose or listen to the whole thing.

UPDATE - 3/29@3:44PM: REMINDER: The ceremony will air this evening at 7PM EST on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live. You can listen online at this link.

UPDATE - 3/29@2:01PM: The Canadian Music Scene site posted a BUNCH of great behind-the-scenes photos from the cocktail reception dinner that was held for the inductees at the King Edward hotel in downtown Toronto last night prior to the Gala. You can check them out at this link (thanks RushFanForever).

UPDATE - 3/29@1:08PM: Here's a link to a Canadian Press video news story covering the event which includes an interview with Neil Peart (thanks hermy).

UPDATE - 3/29@11:04AM: Here's another article covering the event from the CTV website that includes a great photo of the guys on stage during the ceremony (thanks hermy).

UPDATE - 3/29@7:12AM: Here's some video of a CBC news story covering the event which includes a short interview with Scot McFadyen discussing the documentary. They include a few cool production stills from the film from early in Rush's career. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

UPDATE - 3/28@8:47PM: Even though the Gala just began less than an hour ago, Canada.com has already published a post-induction article complete with a photo of the boys with their award (thanks random_sample).

This evening Rush will be inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame at the Hall's 6th annual Gala at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. They will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. Over the past week all three band members have been hitting the interview circuit to discuss the band's induction. There's this CBC video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, a Canadian Press interview with Neil Peart, an Alex Lifeson Toronto Globe and Mail interview, a JAM! Music interview with Neil Peart and the latest is this Toronto Star interview with Geddy Lee which seems to confirm Rush's expected tour that Alex Lifeson detailed in his Globe and Mail interview:

... Lee is in lockdown mode at the moment, writing and recording material for a new album (Rush's 20th studio opus) and rehearsing for a mini-tour that involves a special diet, daily workouts with a personal trainer, and the kind of intense spiritual and mental exercises only Olympic athletes understand. ...

Geddy also expresses some thoughts on the band's upcoming induction this evening:

... "Anytime your country honours you is important, it's huge," said Lee, adding that he feels he and his bandmates have often been overlooked as songwriters. "Not that winning awards is something we think about or discuss. We just try to keep moving forward ... it's not very often we get a chance to look back at what we've created. "It's humbling, frankly, to be joining a group that includes Joni Mitchell, Leonard Cohen, Gordon Lightfoot and so many other great songwriters." ... "When you have a great lyric the music becomes a natural extension of the mood and content. The `music first' method is more difficult, but often more rewarding. It relies a lot on craftsmanship, and on the magic of musical inspiration and improvisation ... but the words have to match that special quality, and it's sometimes painstaking work to get that to happen." ... "I understand why no one covers our songs," Lee said. "They sound daunting. But, as Moon proved in his 'Subdivisions' video, most of the songs can be stripped back to their simplest form, and find a new life. "When we tried to write songs that are simple and uncomplicated, it didn't work. "One of our producers used to tell us, `You'd have a lot of hits if only someone else recorded them.' "

The performers at tonight's Gala will include Canadian folk singer/songwriter Jacob Moon doing his rendition of Subdivisions, Primus frontman Les Claypool will be playing The Spirit of Radio and Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire will be covering Tom Sawyer. Speaking of covers, the Toronto Star article contained this interesting bit of information:

... word is out that Nelly Furtado is considering taking a crack at a popped-up version of Rush's "Time Stands Still." ...

Tickets are still available for tonight's Gala and can be purchased via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets and get a 20% discount. The ceremony will air on radio tomorrow at 7PM on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live and at 4PM on Espace Musique. It also is being videotaped for a future TV broadcast.

Related posts:
[New Neil Peart interview confirms Nick Raskulinecz as producer]
[New Neil Peart Canadian Press interview]
[New CBC video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson]
[Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala tickets special offer]
[Alexisonfire, Les Claypool, Jacob Moon to honor Rush at Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala]
[Rush to be inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame]

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Saturday, March 27, 2010

New Neil Peart interview confirms Nick Raskulinecz as producer
11:33AM EST | link | comments (77) |

[Rush-ing into Songwriters Hall]

UPDATE - 3/28@10:02AM: Here's an interview with Geddy Lee in today's Toronto Star where he discusses the induction (thanks katskahnne).

We've been treated to a whirlwind of Rush interviews over the past few days in the run-up to the band's induction into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame tomorrow evening. This after a couple of months of radio silence from the trio. On Tuesday the CBC posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where the two divulged that the band has been writing new material and have 6 new songs written already. Then on Thursday the Canadian Press published an article/interview with Neil Peart regarding his thoughts on the induction and revealed even more information regarding the band's new material, saying they would be recording 2 of the new songs for possible release. Then yesterday we hit the jackpot when a new Alex Lifeson interview was published in the Toronto Globe and Mail. Lerxst outlined the band's plans well into 2011, including details regarding their next album:

... We were off for a year and a half, and now it's just pouring. Everything is totally crazy and there's not a minute left in the day. We've got these half-dozen songs, and we'll probably go in the studio and work on a couple of them and see how it goes, perhaps release something - and I say perhaps - and then we plan on being on the road in the middle of June. Ideally, we'd like to showcase a couple of these songs on the tour, come off tour in mid-October, go back in the studio and continue writing, then record through late this year and early next year, and then release the album in the spring of 2011 on a slightly more substantial tour. This [year's] tour will probably be about 45 dates. Most likely summer, 2011, would be more like 70. ...

Neil Peart added his voice to the mix later yesterday with these words from a JAM! Music interview, confirming that they are once again working with producer Nick Raskulinecz:

... the band is about five songs into the record with co-producer Nick Raskulinecz, from 2007's Snakes and Arrows, but won't talk about the sound or how or when the tunes will be released or subsequent tour plans. "I stopped in Toronto a couple of weeks back and went over to Geddy's house and listened to what they've been working on from my lyrics and it's very exciting, we've got probably five very good songs there," ... "So we were saying, 'Well, I kind of just want to keep working on this and finish the record.' But on the other hand we were thinking, 'Well, something we haven't done since the '80s is write new songs and go out and play them.' It's interesting to be so deeply involved in songwriting right now with this honour coming up. It kind of puts a fresh observation on it for me." ...

Peart also had a lot to say about their upcoming induction, particularly involving Subdivisions; one of the five songs Rush is being honored for and the song he is most pleased with being chosen.

... "It's a very unusual song construction lyrically and musically that we managed to make work," he said. "It was written at a time when we weren't working, so to speak. We were mixing a live album and we just started playing around and wrote a song for fun. Although it's very serious in it's musical structure, one of the most complicated actually that we've had in terms of arrangement drum part alone, it's a really intricate drum part to play and consequently I still love playing it almost 30 years later and that's a good testament."

Peart is also stoked that YouTube sensation Jacob Moon, who plays Subdivisions entirely by himself on a Hamilton building rooftop, is among three artists paying tribute to Rush Sunday night.

"We all shared Jacob Moon's performance of Subdivisions quite a long time ago and sent it to each other, 'Hey have you seen this?' because it's such a beautiful cover. The imaginative way that he uses the little cassette player to get my voice in there. It's superb. And it is that kind of song. It's a singer-songwriter's song. I loved to see his version of it and I loved the idea that song has endured to his generation." ...

So Peart offhandedly seems to resolve an age-old debate among Rush fans regarding who does the Subdivisions voice-over in the chorus to the song. Apparently it's Peart and not Mark Dailey, as some have claimed.

Peart also reveals that he'll write and deliver the band's acceptance speech tomorrow night. In addition to Moon doing his rendition of Subdivisions, Primus frontman Les Claypool will be playing The Spirit of Radio and Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire will be performing Tom Sawyer. The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th annual Gala will take place tomorrow night at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. Tickets are still available for the Gala and can be purchased via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets and get a 20% discount. The ceremony will air on radio the Monday after the Gala on at 7PM on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live and at 4PM on Espace Musique.

Related posts:
[New Neil Peart Canadian Press interview]
[New CBC video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson]
[Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala tickets special offer]
[Alexisonfire, Les Claypool, Jacob Moon to honor Rush at Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala]
[Rush to be inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame]

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Friday, March 26, 2010

Alex Lifeson reveals Rush tour, album details in new interview
3:29PM EST | link | comments (84) |

[Rush's Alex Lifeson on doing what he loves]

UPDATE - 3/27@12:38AM: ... and there's this JAM! Music interview with Neil Peart (thanks katskahnne) where he confirms that Nick Raskulinecz has been helping the band on the production side of things once again:

... Rush drummer Neil Peart says the group's Canadian Songwriting Hall of Fame induction Sunday night in Toronto comes as he is in the midst of writing lyrics for the next Rush studio album.

He says the band is about five songs into the record with co-producer Nick Raskulinecz, from 2007's Snakes and Arrows, but won't talk about the sound or how or when the tunes will be released or subsequent tour plans.

"I stopped in Toronto a couple of weeks back and went over to Geddy's house and listened to what they've been working on from my lyrics and it's very exciting, we've got probably five very good songs there," Peart told QMI Agency. "So we were saying, 'Well, I kind of just want to keep working on this and finish the record.' But on the other hand we were thinking, 'Well, something we haven't done since the '80s is write new songs and go out and play them.' It's interesting to be so deeply involved in songwriting right now with this honour coming up. It kind of puts a fresh observation on it for me."

----- snip -----

This coming Sunday, March 28th Rush will be inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame at the Hall's 6th annual Gala at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. On Tuesday the CBC posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where they discuss the upcoming induction with Laurie Brown. The two divulged that the band has been writing new material and have 6 new songs written already. Then yesterday the Canadian Press published an article/interview with Neil Peart regarding his thoughts on the induction and revealed even more information regarding the band's new material. Unfortunately neither of these interviews said much regarding the band's next tour, but a more recent interview with Alex Lifeson published in today's Toronto Globe and Mail most certainly does. When asked about the band's next album Lerxst reiterated his bandmates' statements and also revealed several details regarding not only the tour, but the next Rush album as well:

... We were off for a year and a half, and now it's just pouring. Everything is totally crazy and there's not a minute left in the day. We've got these half-dozen songs, and we'll probably go in the studio and work on a couple of them and see how it goes, perhaps release something - and I say perhaps - and then we plan on being on the road in the middle of June. Ideally, we'd like to showcase a couple of these songs on the tour, come off tour in mid-October, go back in the studio and continue writing, then record through late this year and early next year, and then release the album in the spring of 2011 on a slightly more substantial tour. This [year's] tour will probably be about 45 dates. Most likely summer, 2011, would be more like 70. ...

Wow! There's a lot to digest here so we'll take one thing at a time. His statement that they plan on being on the road in the middle of June confirms all the rumors we've been hearing that the tour would start in mid-late June. But Alex adds to that saying it will end mid-October and include around 45 dates which would be similar in scope to the 2008 tour. But that's not all folks! He goes on to say that they'd then probably hit the studio late this year and record a full album to be released in the Spring of 2011 ... then embark on a major, 70-date tour in 2011! My guess is that the 2011 tour would include Europe and possibly South America. I think this is the almost confirmation we've been waiting for. Now all we need are the official dates. For the sake of completeness, here's my current list of tentative/rumored tour dates:

June ?? (mid-late June):
[venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM

July 1st:
KC Starlight Theatre - Kansas City, MO

July 3rd:
Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th:
Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

July 23rd:
Saratoga PAC - Saratoga Springs, NY

July ??:
Nikon at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY
Darien Lake PAC - Darien Center, NY

Aug 5th:
USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd:
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Aug ?? (early August):
Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Sept 14th: TD Center - Boston, MA

Sept ??:
PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

??:
Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON
Blossom Music Center - Cuyahoga Falls, OH

Related Posts:
[Lorne Wheaton: off to YYZ for sessions ... on the road this summer]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Neil Peart: new Rush project may not be a full-length album]
[Rush 2010 tour and album update]
[Radio stations giving away Rush 2010 tour tickets?]
[Geddy Lee: Rush in the studio soon, Summer 2010 tour possible]
[Neil Peart news update: Rush to discuss future plans this month]
[Alex Lifeson: new Rush album, tour possible in 2010]

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Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:39AM EST | link | comments (32) |

UPDATE - 3/26@2:57PM: Yet another interview surfaced today; this one is with Alex Lifeson and appears in the Toronto Globe and Mail. He reiterates much of what was said in his CBC interview, but adds several details regarding the tour! You need to check this out!!!

... We were off for a year and a half, and now it's just pouring. Everything is totally crazy and there's not a minute left in the day. We've got these half-dozen songs, and we'll probably go in the studio and work on a couple of them and see how it goes, perhaps release something - and I say perhaps - and then we plan on being on the road in the middle of June. Ideally, we'd like to showcase a couple of these songs on the tour, come off tour in mid-October, go back in the studio and continue writing, then record through late this year and early next year, and then release the album in the spring of 2011 on a slightly more substantial tour. This [year's] tour will probably be about 45 dates. Most likely summer, 2011, would be more like 70. ...

Leave it to Lerxst to spill the beans! :) Wow. It sounds like they have a plan.

----- snip -----

Things are heating up in Rush-land! There was a lot going on this past week and things promise to only get better from here on out. This coming Sunday, March 28th Rush will be inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame at the Hall's 6th annual Gala at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. Rush's management finally let our three heroes off their leashes in order to talk about the induction; we hadn't heard anything from the band since Neil Peart's mid-January Canadian Press interview. On Tuesday the CBC posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where they discuss the upcoming induction with Laurie Brown. The two reveal that the band has been writing new material and have 6 new songs written already. Then yesterday the Canadian Press published an article/interview with Neil Peart regarding his thoughts on the induction and he also reveals some information regarding the band's new material:

... he says the band plans to do pre-production on two new songs in the coming weeks, with a tour possibly following.

"We're going to put those (songs) together and if they turn out well, we'll maybe even release them (on their own)," he said. "We're saying, what if we do a little songwriting and then a little touring to play those songs, and then get back to the songwriting again? It would be an interesting way to shake up our usual way.

"There's nothing I can confirm yet ... these things are immensely complicated and so much involved, all I can say is that we're considering that." ...

So Neil is careful not to confirm anything, but it now seems more likely that we will at least see a couple of new Rush songs released digitally prior to the tour.

Tickets are available for the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala and can be purchased via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets and get a 20% discount. The ceremony will air on radio the day after the Gala on March 29th at 7PM on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live and at 4PM on Espace Musique. Rush will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. For my next poll I thought I'd ask everyone which of these five songs is your favorite? Take the Poll and let us know. You can check out the results of the last poll where I asked everyone what their favorite song off Fly By Night was at this link. By-Tor and the Snow Dog was the clear winner with Anthem and In the End making a strong showing.

The only downside of the new Rush interviews mentioned above was the absence of any sort of official tour confirmation. I'm sure the guys were instructed by the Rush PR machine to stay mum on the subject until the official announcement can be made. That said, I can assure you that the tour is still a go. Don't forgot about Lorne Wheaton's March 17th MySpace post:

Off to YYZ for sessions...on the road this summer. Mood: pumped :)
Posted at 11:20 AM Mar 17

And I am continually assured from multiple sources that the tour is still happening and have heard absolutely nothing to the contrary. Since last Friday's post I've received three more tentative tour dates: September 14th at the TD Center in Boston, MA; July 23rd at the Saratoga PAC in Saratoga Springs, NY; and July 1st at the KC Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, MO. Here's the complete list of tentative/rumored dates so far:

June ?? (mid-late June):
[venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM

July 1st:
KC Starlight Theatre - Kansas City, MO

July 3rd:
Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th:
Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

July 23rd:
Saratoga PAC - Saratoga Springs, NY

July ??:
Nikon at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY
Darien Lake PAC - Darien Center, NY

Aug 5th:
USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd:
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Aug ?? (early August):
Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Sept 14th: TD Center - Boston, MA

Sept ??:
PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

??:
Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON
Blossom Music Center - Cuyahoga Falls, OH

It's anybody's guess as to when the official tour announcement will occur, but I would assume it will be either this coming Monday (March 29th) or next (April 5th). Have patience Rush fans!

On Monday it was confirmed that the Rush documentary's world premier will occur at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 24th. Here are the theaters and showtimes:

Sat, Apr 24, 9:30PM SVA Theater 1
Sun, Apr 25, 1:30PM SVA Theater 1
Mon, Apr 26, 3:00PM Clearview Chelsea Cinema
Fri, Apr 30, 11:59PM Village East Cinema 1

Visit the Tribeca Film Festival website for information on obtaining tickets. And on Wednesday it was revealed that the Canadian premier will occur at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto, which runs from April 29th to May 9th. Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage will be shown Thursday, April 29th at 9:30PM at the Winter Garden Theatre and Friday, April 30th at 4:00PM at the Isabel Bader Theatre. For ticket information visit the Hot Docs website. Power Windows also reported that the DVD is finished and will be tentatively released on June 29th.

The Rush Backstage Club is running a new contest where you could win a Vapor Trails Pen with Lanyard. This item is not currently available for purchase and would make for a very unique Rush collectors item. The contest ends on April 8th and you can sign up to enter at this link.

Voting for DRUM! Magazine's 15th annual Drummies reader's poll is now open. Neil Peart has won Drummer of the Year for the past three years along with several other awards. You can place your vote at this link. Thanks to Spindrifter for the heads up.

Last Friday I'd mentioned how RIAB reader and Brigham Young University English professor Patrick Madden (Pat) has published a book of personal essays called Quotidiana (University of Nebraska Press). It is just recently available at Amazon and other booksellers. Its chapters cover a wide variety of subjects, from laughter to fatherhood to the nearly infinite nature of nature, but one unifying theme is the influence of Rush on the author. Half the essays are peppered with Neil Peart's lyrics in conversation with the author's life. Pat used so many lyrics, in fact, that he had to get Neil's permission (it was graciously granted). The book's third essay, Remember Death (those who deciphered the skull-and-femur Morse code message in their Roll the Bones tourbook will recognize this phrase), is especially Rush-related. It chronicles the author's epiphany one summer day in 1981 when his friend placed headphones on his head and played Tom Sawyer. From there, it builds a meditation on death through the lens of Rush. One of the tropes prominent in the essay is the vocabulary Pat learned from Rush lyrics. The essay itself intentionally includes dozens of "Rush words." Pat and the University of Nebraska have produced a PDF of the Remember Death pages for RIAB readers, along with a contest. Read Remember Death, noting all the "Rush words" you find (hint: there are between 50 and 100; they're mainly from the albums through Hold Your Fire). Send your alphabetically organized list in an email to Pat at pcmadden3@yahoo.com with RIAB Vocabulary Contest in the subject line before Friday, April 12th. The person who identifies the most Rush words will win a signed copy of Quotidiana plus a vinyl New World Man single (with an otherwise unreleased live version of Vital Signs on the back; according to several sites, this is the only time, other than their 1973 self-released 45, that Rush has ever released a single that does not appear on a full-length album). Two runners up will win one vinyl 45 each, of either The Big Money (b/w Middletown Dreams) or Time Stand Still (b/w High Water). Each winner will also receive a RIAB bumper sticker.

Geddy Lee appeared briefly on the Monday, March 23rd edition of CTV's eTalk Sightings. They caught some footage of Geddy shopping in Toronto's Yorkville neighborhood. You can check out the footage at this link at about the 6:35 mark. Thanks to Rob S for the heads up.

Apparently Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson will be appearing on an upcoming episode of Canadian reality TV show KayvonTV according to the show's website. There's no word as of yet regarding air times or the nature of their appearance. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

Reader John B pointed me to this Popular Science article and accompanying video showcasing a 1969 GTO with an iPod Touch remote control. Guess what's playing when he turns on the stereo? Rush of course!

There was a Rush reference in the Monday, March 22nd episode of Lopez Tonight on TBS. In a skit titled The Classics: in a friggin' nutshell with Andrew Dice Clay, the Diceman says a few words about several literary classics including Tom Sawyer:

Tom Sawyer ... ahead of his time. I didn't really read the book, but the song by Rush kicks ass.

You can watch the video at this link; the Rush bit occurs at about the 50-second mark. Thanks to State of Grace via Counterparts for the heads up.

User baldiepete over at The Rush Forum located this gallery of pics from a Rush show at The Apollo in Glasgow on June 10th, 1980. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

NBC Sports was using Rush's Animate as bumper music during their coverage of the PGA golf tournament last weekend. Thanks to gezopete and RushSkins for the heads up.

Reader Mike W let me know about a brief (and inaccurate) reference to Rush and 2112 made by philosopher Harry Binswanger on the Ayn Rand Center's TV website during a discussion about Ayn Rand's influence on modern culture. You can listen to the discussion at this link. The reference occurs at about the 41-minute mark.

Rocker Joan Jett caused quite a flap a couple of months ago when in several interviews she accused Rush of ridiculing her all-girl 70s band The Runaways when they opened for Rush back in 1977. Jett was making the interview rounds promoting the just-released biopic film The Runaways. Now her former bandmate Cherie Currie is reiterating Jett's comments. From a recent CTV article:

... Rush shared the same label as The Runaways. Currie says the band members showed little respect to the girls. "They were sabotaging our equipment. Sabotaging our stage show. They were doing everything they could to stop us. But, we were unstoppable. The only thing that stopped us was ourselves," ...

The Runaways actually attended a party in Rush's honor in December of 1976 as pictured here but didn't tour with them until a couple of months later in February of 1977 where the alleged incident(s) would have taken place.

Primus frontman Les Claypool will be playing a version of The Spirit of Radio at the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala on Sunday. For a preview you check out this bootleg video of Claypool performing the song at a show in Tel Aviv, Israel earlier this week (thanks RAKA):

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

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Thursday, March 25, 2010

New Neil Peart Canadian Press interview
5:02PM EST | link | comments (63) |

[Rush say Canadian songwriters' hall induction means more than Rock hall snub]

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson CBC interview, March 2010This coming Sunday, March 28th Rush will be inducted into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame at the Hall's 6th annual Gala at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. They will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. On Tuesday, the CBC posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where they discuss the upcoming induction with Laurie Brown. The two reveal that the band has been writing new material and Geddy excitedly says the following at one point:

... Just about a month and a half ago we had no songs. And now we've been writing and now we've got about 6 songs that we just love...

Today the Canadian Press published an article (thanks glortiz) where they speak with Neil Peart regarding his thoughts on the induction and he also reveals some information regarding the band's new material:

... While their induction has to do with songs that Rush wrote more than a quarter-century ago, Peart is excited about their current output, too.

In fact, he says the band plans to do pre-production on two new songs in the coming weeks, with a tour possibly following.

"We're going to put those (songs) together and if they turn out well, we'll maybe even release them (on their own)," he said. "We're saying, what if we do a little songwriting and then a little touring to play those songs, and then get back to the songwriting again? It would be an interesting way to shake up our usual way.

"There's nothing I can confirm yet ... these things are immensely complicated and so much involved, all I can say is that we're considering that." ...

So it looks like they may not be recording all 6 of the songs mentioned in the CBC interview; at least not initially. This jibes with something I'd picked up from a source recently who informed me that the band was getting together in April in Nashville to record 2 songs with Nick Raskulinecz. Neil's comments seem to confirm this for the most part. They still couldn't squeeze a tour confirmation out of him though! Neil also relays his thoughts on Rush's exclusion from the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame:

... "No ... you know who it matters to, is the fans," ... "It would matter a lot to our fans for us to have that validation. It doesn't matter to me. I've got the success and respect that we've had, and the opportunity to do exactly what we wanted for 35 years, do we need them to make us feel better? No, not at all."

"Being in the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame, that's 10 times - 100 times - more (important) than being in some critics' list." ...

The performers at the gala will include Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire who will be performing Tom Sawyer. Drummer Jordan Hastings was recently interviewed for an article in the Hamilton Spectator (thanks RushFanForever) and discusses Alexisonfire's connections with Rush and how honored they are to perform:

... "When I was a kid I had a drum teacher who used to like playing bass with his drum students," says Hastings, 28, who still lives in Burlington. "The only bass lines he knew were Rush bass lines so he'd teach me how to play the drums and we'd jam out. That was when I was about 12 or 13, maybe.

"I've been a Rush fan for a long time. My dad's a Rush fan. Every single drum teacher I've had has been a Rush fan. It's one of those things, if you're a drummer, you really respect Neil's work. This guy really knows what he's doing."

There's also this other connection between Rush and Alexisonfire. Peart was born in Hamilton, as were three of the five members of Alexisonfire, including Hastings.

Peart then grew up in Port Dalhousie, near St. Catharines. ... where Alexisonfire came together, eight years ago.

"Our bass player and guitar player lived in a house in Port Dalhousie for quite some time," Hastings explains. "That's another reason why we think (Rush) may have come to us."

Either way, the entire band considers it an honour to be playing at Rush's Hall of Fame induction. They're expecting Peart, Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee to be in the audience. Alexisonfire knows they have to be sharp. They've been practicing Tom Sawyer while on their current tour with Billy Talent.

"We've made a little tweak here and there," Hastings said. "But we haven't really strayed from the song at all." ...

Primus frontman Les Claypool will be playing a version of The Spirit of Radio and had the following to say in the same Canadian Press article mentioned above:

... "I can tell you it's a bitch to play," ... "Playing it's not nearly as difficult as singing it. I don't think I'll be going into the dolphin spectrum that Geddy (Lee) goes into. I might be bringing it down an octave."

Claypool says he's been a Rush fan since he was 13 or 14 years old. It was then that he went to see the band perform live, his first-ever concert.

"I drank three beers and threw up in the parking lot," he recalled.

"I had a great time." ...

Also performing will be Canadian folk singer/songwriter Jacob Moon who will be doing his rendition of Subdivisions.

Tickets are available for the Gala and can be purchased via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets and get a 20% discount. The ceremony will air on radio the day after the Gala on March 29th at 7PM on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live and at 4PM on Espace Musique.

Related posts:
[New CBC video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson]
[Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala tickets special offer]
[Alexisonfire, Les Claypool, Jacob Moon to honor Rush at Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala]
[Rush to be inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame]

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New contest at the Rush Backstage Club
10:19AM EST | link | comments (24) |

Vapor Trails Pen With Lanyard[Win a Vapor Trails Pen With Lanyard!]

The Rush Backstage Club is running a new contest where you could win a Vapor Trails Pen with Lanyard. This item is not currently available for purchase and would make for a very unique Rush collectors item. The contest ends on April 8th and you can sign up to enter at this link.

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Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Rush documentary Canadian premier, DVD release update
9:46AM EST | link | comments (30) |

UPDATE - 4/2@9:06AM: Rush.com finally posted a news item about the documentary and confirm that most of Rush will be in attendance at the April 24th premier:

Zoë Vision, in association with Banger Films, is thrilled to announce the premiere of the documentary, "Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage" at The Tribeca Film Festival on April 24.

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, along with the documentary's filmmakers, Scot McFadyen & Sam Dunn (whose filmography also includes: "Iron Maiden: Flight 666," "Metal, A Headbangers Journey" and "Global Metal") will all be on hand in New York to celebrate the release of this much-anticipated film.

I had originally heard that all 3 members would make it, but 2 out of 3 ain't bad I guess. Thanks to hermy for the heads up.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/28@10:08AM: The Banger Films blog just put up a post stating that filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen will be hanging out during both screenings of the film and hinted at the possibility of one or more members of Rush being present as well.

... Scot and Sam will be hanging about during the Canadian premiere and are sure to open up to some Q&A possibly after the screening. ... No word if the fellows are in for the Friday show but given the hype, I'd suggest there is a very strong chance. ...

----- snip -----

I had already posted this as an update to my Rush documentary post from yesterday, but I figured that it was important enough to garner its own post, and many of you may have missed it. Yesterday we learned that the Rush documentary will get its Canadian premier at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto, which runs from April 29th to May 9th. Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage will be shown Thursday, April 29th at 9:30PM at the Winter Garden Theatre and Friday, April 30th at 4:00PM at the Isabel Bader Theatre. For ticket information visit the Hot Docs website. The documentary's world premier will occur at the Tribeca Film Festival on April 24th. Here are the theaters and showtimes:

Sat, Apr 24, 9:30PM SVA Theater 1
Sun, Apr 25, 1:30PM SVA Theater 1
Mon, Apr 26, 3:00PM Clearview Chelsea Cinema
Fri, Apr 30, 11:59PM Village East Cinema 1

Visit the Tribeca Film Festival website for information on obtaining tickets. Power Windows is also reporting that the DVD is finished and will be tentatively released on June 29th.

Related Posts:
[Rush documentary schedule for Tribeca Film Festival released]
[Rush documentary title; confirmed for Tribeca Film Festival]
[Rush documentary to premier April 24th at Tribeca Film Festival]
[Rush: The Documentary: tentative May 18th DVD release]
[Rush documentary update]
[Rush featured in the latest issue of The Walrus]
[Rush documentary reportedly finished]
[Rush: The Documentary sneak peek shown at Windsor film festival]
[Behind-the-scenes Rush documentary pics]
[Rush: The Documentary update]

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

New CBC video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson
11:49AM EST | link | comments (131) |

Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson CBC interview, March 2010[A Conversation with Rush]

UPDATE - 3/23@3:42PM: For those wondering about the timing of this interview - according to the interviewer Laurie Brown, it was conducted in early March (thanks hermy).

UPDATE - 3/23@1:04PM: I can't believe I missed the best part! At around the 4:45 mark Geddy says the following with regards to new material:

... Just about a month and a half ago we had no songs. And now we've been writing and now we've got about 6 songs that we just love. ...

----- snip -----

The CBC just posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where they discuss their upcoming induction into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame with Laurie Brown. This is the first word we've received from any member of the band since Neil Peart's January Canadian Press interview. They spend the bulk of the interview discussing their approach to writing music, focusing on the 5 songs that will be inducted into the Hall of Fame next week. But what will likely be of most interest to Rush fans are the bits of the interview where the two discuss recording and touring. At about the 19:30 mark Geddy mentions possibly bringing back Closer to the Heart for the next tour. And towards the end of the interview (around the 49-minute mark) Alex confirms that they've been writing and working again, and is very excited about it. So although they didn't officially confirm a tour, they did hint at it - and they confirmed that they are working on new material. You can listen to the entire interview at this link.

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Rush documentary schedule for Tribeca Film Festival released
7:19AM EST | link | comments (8) |

UPDATE - 3/23@11:37AM: We can now confirm that the documentary will get its Canadian premier at the Hot Docs Canadian International Documentary Festival in Toronto, which runs from April 29th to May 9th. It will be shown Thursday, April 29th at 9:30PM at the Winter Garden Theatre and Friday, April 30th at 4:00PM at the Isabel Bader Theatre. Thanks to BW&BK for the news.

The Tribeca Film Festival website posted its complete list of films for this year's festival last week, including the world premier of the Rush documentary. The documentary's official title is Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage. It is included as one of the 14 films featured as part of the TFF '10 Encounters and has a running time of 106 minutes. The full schedule was released yesterday afternoon and - as I'd revealed a couple weeks ago - the Rush documentary will premier on Saturday, April 24th. Here are the theaters and showtimes:

Sat, Apr 24, 9:30PM SVA Theater 1
Sun, Apr 25, 1:30PM SVA Theater 1
Mon, Apr 26, 3:00PM Clearview Chelsea Cinema
Fri, Apr 30, 11:59PM Village East Cinema 1

Visit the Tribeca Film Festival website for information on obtaining tickets. Thanks to emajor7th for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Rush documentary title; confirmed for Tribeca Film Festival]
[Rush documentary to premier April 24th at Tribeca Film Festival]
[Rush: The Documentary: tentative May 18th DVD release]
[Rush documentary update]
[Rush featured in the latest issue of The Walrus]
[Rush documentary reportedly finished]
[Rush: The Documentary sneak peek shown at Windsor film festival]
[Behind-the-scenes Rush documentary pics]
[Rush: The Documentary update]

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Saturday, March 20, 2010

Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala tickets special offer
1:45PM EST | link | comments (35) |

UPDATE - 3/23@11:55AM: The CBC just posted a nearly hour-long video interview with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson where they discuss their induction into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame with Laurie Brown.

UPDATE - 3/22@5:21PM: The ceremony will air on radio the day after the Gala on March 29th at 7PM on CBC Radio 2 as a special presentation of Canada Live and at 4PM on Espace Musique.

UPDATE - 3/22@4:07PM: I've confirmed with a representative of the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame that all three members of Rush will be present at the Gala. They also told me that the show will be recorded but there are no details as of yet regarding any type of TV broadcast. However, they did confirm that it will be broadcast via radio on CBC Radio 2 and Espace Musique in Canada. More details as I learn them.

A couple of months ago it was announced that Rush along with Quebec musician Robert Charlebois would be the 2010 songwriter inductees into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. Rush will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. The 2010 inductees will be honored at the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th annual Gala on Sunday, March 28th at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. The performers for the gala will include Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire performing Tom Sawyer; Primus frontman Les Claypool playing a version of The Spirit of Radio; and Canadian folk singer/songwriter Jacob Moon doing his rendition of Subdivisions. Tickets are now available for the Gala and can be purchased via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets and get a 20% discount.

Related posts:
[Alexisonfire, Les Claypool, Jacob Moon to honor Rush at Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala]
[Rush to be inducted into Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame]

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Friday, March 19, 2010

Updates and other random Rush stuff
10:28AM EST | link | comments (117) |

UPDATE - 3/20@1:25PM: I have a date for the SPAC show: July 23rd. I updated the list below.

UPDATE - 3/20@8:34AM: I have another date: July 1st at the KC Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, MO.

UPDATE - 3/19@6:10PM: Tickets are now available for the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th Annual Gala where Rush will be honored on Sunday, March 28th at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. You can purchase tickets via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets. It looks like regular tickets start from $140.50 CND, but with the special offer they are $100.50 CND.

The Rush 2010 tour came a step closer to being official when Neil Peart drum tech Lorne Wheaton posted the following to his MySpace page Wednesday:

Off to YYZ for sessions...on the road this summer. Mood: pumped :)
Posted at 11:20 AM Mar 17

One can reasonably assume that this means Rush is touring this summer and by sessions he is likely referring to tour rehearsals, although it's also possible this means studio work. Hopefully this will extinguish any doubts people might have regarding whether Rush will tour this summer. Rest assured - the tour is on and we should get an official announcement any day now. I posted a few more tour date/venue updates in my post yesterday. Here's what I have so far:

June ?? (mid-late June):
[venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM

July 1st:
KC Starlight Theatre - Kansas City, MO

July 3rd:
Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th:
Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

July 23rd:
Saratoga PAC - Saratoga Springs, NY

Jul ??:
Nikon at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY
Darien Lake PAC - Darien Center, NY

Aug 5th:
USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd:
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Aug ?? (early August):
Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Sept ??:
PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

??:
Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON
Blossom Music Center - Cuyahoga Falls, OH

Remember that none of the above information is confirmed or official in any way. I only post it to give fans an idea of the route the tour may be taking. If anyone has any industry connections or contacts at the various concert venues, please find out what you can and let us know.

The Tribeca Film Festival website posted its complete list of films for this year's festival this past Monday, including the world premier of the Rush documentary. The documentary's official title is Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage. It is included as one of the 14 films featured as part of the TFF '10 Encounters and has a running time of 106 minutes. The full schedule with show times won't be released until sometime next week, but from what I've heard the premier red carpet event will occur on Saturday, April 24th and all 3 members of Rush will be on hand. Reader Phil Simon has started a Facebook group for any Facebookers who plan to attend the premier.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place this past weekend in New York City. As it usually does, the latest batch of inductees (especially ABBA) stirred up a bit of controversy, causing writers and bloggers across the web to create their own lists of artists that are not in the Rock Hall but should be. For all the details check out this post.

RIAB reader and Brigham Young University English professor Patrick Madden (Pat) has published a book of personal essays called Quotidiana (University of Nebraska Press). It is just recently available at Amazon and other booksellers. Its chapters cover a wide variety of subjects, from laughter to fatherhood to the nearly infinite nature of nature, but one unifying theme is the influence of Rush on the author. Half the essays are peppered with Neil Peart's lyrics in conversation with the author's life. Pat used so many lyrics, in fact, that he had to get Neil's permission (it was graciously granted). The book's third essay, Remember Death (those who deciphered the skull-and-femur Morse code message in their Roll the Bones tourbook will recognize this phrase), is especially Rush-related. It chronicles the author's epiphany one summer day in 1981 when his friend placed headphones on his head and played Tom Sawyer. From there, it builds a meditation on death through the lens of Rush. One of the tropes prominent in the essay is the vocabulary Pat learned from Rush lyrics. The essay itself intentionally includes dozens of "Rush words." Pat and the University of Nebraska have produced a PDF of the Remember Death pages for RIAB readers, along with a contest. Read Remember Death, noting all the "Rush words" you find (hint: there are between 50 and 100; they're mainly from the albums through Hold Your Fire). Send your alphabetically organized list in an email to Pat at pcmadden3@yahoo.com with RIAB Vocabulary Contest in the subject line before Friday, April 12th. The person who identifies the most Rush words will win a signed copy of Quotidiana plus a vinyl New World Man single (with an otherwise unreleased live version of Vital Signs on the back; according to several sites, this is the only time, other than their 1973 self-released 45, that Rush has ever released a single that does not appear on a full-length album). Two runners up will win one vinyl 45 each, of either The Big Money (b/w Middletown Dreams) or Time Stand Still (b/w High Water). Each winner will also receive a RIAB bumper sticker.

A new Rush greatest hits compilation titled Time Stand Still: The Collection is being released by Spectrum/Universal in Europe on March 23rd. It contains 13 tracks from Rush's Universal Records era (through Hold Your Fire). Thanks to Neil H for the heads up.

Reader RushFanForever alerted me to a recent National Post article titled Vinyl Treasures which discusses LP rarities and uses the Moon Records first pressing of Rush's first album as an example:

In 1974, a local rock band called Rush played our high school cafeteria and after the concert was over I bought a copy of the group's debut album from the singer, a genial, hawk-nosed fellow named Geddy Lee. He smiled, pointed to the pile of records and spoke, but since my eardrums were still ringing from the 120-decibel music, I had no idea what he was saying. But now I know: "Buy all the records in this pile and don't open any of them because they'll be worth a fortune in 35 years."

The pile of LPs Mr. Lee was selling next to the stage were some of the 3,500 pressings of Rush's first album, produced by Moon Records. A sealed version of the album sold for US$831 on eBay in November, according to popsike.com,a site that tracks record prices. ...

It's that time of year again, time for classic rock stations across the nation to conduct their annual March Madness (often dubbed March Bandness) battle of the bands competitions. Several folks alerted me to Philadelphia's WMMR March Madness competition last week. Rush made it to the final 4 but ultimately lost to Tool. There are several contests that just started or are about to start. Some that I know about are Buffalo's 97 Rock, St. Louis's KSHE 95, 92.3 in Fort Wayne, and 96 Rock in Raleigh. You know what to do. If you know of any more of these contests, let me know about them so we can use the power of RIAB readers to bring victory for Rush.

Jocelyn P let me know about a Rush reference in a recent episode of the French Canadian TV show C.A.. In the latest episode (Season 4, Episode 10), one of the characters decides to split from his wife and move back in with his parents. In his old bedroom there's a Rush Permanent Waves poster on the wall. You can check out a screenshot here and if you live in Canada you can watch the show at this link (around the 18-minute mark).

Rush gets referenced in a recent review of the new 2010 2010 Aston Martin Rapide at AutoBlog.com:

... With our iPhone plugged into the system, we had Rush's Tom Sawyer blaring so loudly that you would have sworn Geddy Lee was wailing at us inches away, Alex Lifeson was strumming in the passenger seat and Neil Peart was hanging out in the rear hatch smashing a full complement of drums. Our ears rang for hours that night. ...

ChicagoNow.com blogger JVO recently put up a post titled Permanent Waves: Making the case for RUSH where he defends his love of Rush:

... One year ago this month, it became okay-ish to listen to Rush when the hit film "I Love You, Man" brought Paul Rudd and Jason Segel to the party. Even so, my snarkier, more musically sanctimonious, friends still wouldn't hear any of it. I tried my best to first reel them in with the band's hits, like "Closer to the Heart" and "Tom Sawyer" ("Xanadu" and "Digital Man" are songs that are earned, not given). I pointed out how tight the band is throughout "Spirit of the Radio"...How "Limelight" may in fact have the greatest guitar riff ever....How "Subdivisions" speaks to the alienated child in us all. I'm convinced that they wouldn't be swayed because they chose not to be swayed.

I'm unapologetically a Rush fan. I've got their library "on shuffle" as I'm typing this (currently playing the bombastic "Cygnus X-1 Book II" from "Hemispheres"). Magnificent. If liking Rush isn't cool, well...I'm happy to be lame.

Speaking of I Love You Man, the movie - laced with Rush references and a Rush cameo as well - was released one year ago tomorrow. Here's the extended Rush concert scene from the film where they play Limelight:

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

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

Lorne Wheaton: off to YYZ for sessions ... on the road this summer
7:56PM EST | link | comments (52) |

UPDATE - 3/25@9:11PM: I have a new date: September 14th at the TD Center in Boston, MA. I've also added it below.

UPDATE - 3/20@1:25PM: I have a date for the SPAC show: July 23rd. I updated the list below.

UPDATE - 3/20@8:33AM: I have another date: July 1st at the KC Starlight Theatre in Kansas City, MO.

UPDATE - 3/19@9:15AM: There is definitely no scheduling conflict with a potential July 19th Rush show at Mohegan Sun since according to the venue the Lady Gaga show has been canceled. False alarm.

UPDATE - 3/18@11:15PM: Actually, I'm not so sure about that Lady Gaga show on July 19th at Mohegan Sun - it doesn't seem to be happening after all (thanks fifer68). That date still looks to be open. I'll leave it with a ?? for now though.

UPDATE - 3/18@9:20PM: As vaportrails2002 pointed out in the comments, Rush will not be at Moghegan Sun on July 19th since Lady Gaga is booked for that date. So I'm adding that one to the sometime in July group.

UPDATE - 3/18@9:14PM: Several folks have mentioned in the comments that sessions probably means tour rehearsals - which sounds right to me.

Back on February 14th, Neil Peart's drum tech Lorne Wheaton updated the status on his MySpace page saying the following:

Waiting for decisions to be made.... Mood: (none)
Posted at 3:42 PM Feb 14

Apparently his wait is over and some decisions have been made, because yesterday he updated his status to this (thanks Ordinary from Finland):

Off to YYZ for sessions...on the road this summer. Mood: pumped :)
Posted at 11:20 AM Mar 17

Sessions!? Does this mean that Rush is doing some studio work?! Perhaps; although it might be some side work. And the fact that Lorne states that he'll be on the road this summer is a pretty definite indication that Rush will be touring. Either that or Lorne plans on renting an RV and going on an extended summer vacation. :) Hopefully this will help quell any doubts that people might have regarding the tour. No worries everybody; we'll have an official announcement soon enough. I really have no idea when this might occur exactly, but I don't see how they can push it beyond the end of this month. I've been having trouble getting specific dates this go-around although I do have a few more cities/venues to add for July: Nikon at Jones Beach Theater in Wantagh, NY; Darien Lake PAC in Darien Center, NY; and Saratoga PAC in Saratoga Springs, NY. I've also moved the PNC date to that timeframe as well after receiving some new info. And I have some good news for myself and other fellow Clevelanders. A DJ at Akron's 97.5 WONE stated earlier today on the air that a little birdie told him that Rush would be in Northeast Ohio this summer (thanks Evan). I have to assume it would be Blossom Music Center in Cuyahoga Falls, OH. Here's what I have so far.

June ?? (mid-late June):
[venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM

July 1st:
KC Starlight Theatre - Kansas City, MO

July 3rd:
Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th:
Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

July 23rd:
Saratoga PAC - Saratoga Springs, NY

July ??:
Nikon at Jones Beach Theater - Wantagh, NY
Darien Lake PAC - Darien Center, NY

Aug 5th:
USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd:
Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Aug ?? (early August):
Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Sept 14th: TD Center - Boston, MA

Sept ??:
PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

??:
Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON
Blossom Music Center - Cuyahoga Falls, OH

None of the above information is confirmed or official in any way of course. If anyone has any industry connections or contacts at the various concert venues, please find out what you can and let us know.

Related Posts:
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Neil Peart: new Rush project may not be a full-length album]
[Rush 2010 tour and album update]
[Radio stations giving away Rush 2010 tour tickets?]
[Geddy Lee: Rush in the studio soon, Summer 2010 tour possible]
[Neil Peart news update: Rush to discuss future plans this month]
[Alex Lifeson: new Rush album, tour possible in 2010]

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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Rush tops lists of bands that should be in the Rock & Hall of Fame
11:00AM EST | link | comments (126) |

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place this past weekend in New York City. As it usually does, the latest batch of inductees (especially ABBA) stirred up a bit of controversy, causing writers and bloggers across the web to create their own lists of artists that are not in the Rock Hall but should be. Included in most of these lists and often at the top is our favorite Canadian power trio, Rush. This post on CNN's The Marquee Blog titled Most shocking Rock & Roll Hall of Fame snubs (thanks Sean) includes Rush as does this list from the Boston Globe (thanks Brian). Canadian Industry Minister Tony Clement even tweeted about the exclusion of Rush, saying:

I'm sick for one day and WT heck? ABBA in the R&R HofF?? And no Rush? This world is just so confusing...

Rush also topped the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette's list of 12 acts that deserve induction (thanks Brian S):

It took a while for this Toronto band to really hit its stride, and by then it had already built up a large pool of critical disfavor. The original Rolling Stone Record Guide gives each of its first three albums one star and calls Rush a "poor man's Led Zeppelin." It wasn't until the influence of second drummer Neil Peart kicked in that the band started to reveal its grand potential. To this day, Rush is still loved by some, hated by others -- largely because of Geddy Lee's siren voice -- but it's hard to deny it on musicianship, influence, popularity and longevity.

This past Sunday the We Will Rock You Blog broadcast a special two-hour episode of Long Live Rock on Blog Talk Radio titled The Top 10 Bands That Should Be in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (But Aren't) and Rush topped their list as well:

... Every year when the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame holds its induction ceremony, we're reminded all over again of some of the strange choices the Hall makes - and the legendary bands that continue to get snubbed year after year after year. So this year we took a poll of real rock fans, asking one simple question: what are the bands that rock music fans think should be in the Hall of Fame?

The results of our poll are mostly the same bands I expected, the same bands that people talk about over and over and over and nobody can believe they aren't in there already. There are also a couple of surprises. Here's our Top 10:

10) Jethro Tull
9) Emerson, Lake and Palmer
8) Judas Priest
7) Styx
6) Journey
5) Alice Cooper
4) KISS
3) Deep Purple
2) Yes
1) Rush

We were joined by some very special guests. Charlie Brusco is the head of Alliance Artists; he manages Styx and Lynyrd Skynyrd among others, and he is on the Cleveland board of the rock and Roll Hall of Fame Museum. Charlie shared with us an insider's view of how the process works, and why it tends to be exclusive of popular success. We also had comments from Gregg Rolie of Journey, Dennis Dunaway of the original Alice Cooper group, and Rick Wakeman of Yes. ...

If you are at all interested in how the induction process works and why so many deserving bands are excluded, I highly suggest that you give it a listen. You can hear the entire program online at this link. Happy St. Patrick's Day everyone!

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Monday, March 15, 2010

Rush documentary title; confirmed for Tribeca Film Festival
12:13PM EST | link | comments (164) |

[Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage]

Last Thursday I reported that the Rush documentary would be premiering at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York. This information was just confirmed this morning when the Tribeca website posted its complete list of films for this year's festival. The Rush documentary now has an official title; Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage. It is included as one of the 14 films featured in the TFF '10 Encounters section and has a running time of 106 minutes. Here's the description from the Tribeca Film Festival website:

For fans and newcomers to the legendary Canadian band Rush, this is the music documentary to experience. Directors Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn embark on a comprehensive exploration of this extraordinary power trio, from their early days in Toronto, through each of their landmark albums, to the present day. Sit back and revel in the words, music, and wonder of Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart.

The full schedule with show times won't be released until sometime next week, but from what I've heard the premier red carpet event will occur on Saturday, April 24th and all 3 members of Rush will be on hand.

Related Posts:
[Rush documentary to premier April 24th at Tribeca Film Festival]
[Rush: The Documentary: tentative May 18th DVD release]
[Rush documentary update]
[Rush featured in the latest issue of The Walrus]
[Rush documentary reportedly finished]
[Rush: The Documentary sneak peek shown at Windsor film festival]
[Behind-the-scenes Rush documentary pics]
[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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Sunday, March 14, 2010

Rush 2010 tour update
6:28PM EST | link | comments (118) |

UPDATE - 3/15@6:47PM: Well, it obviously doesn't look like there will be any announcement today. :(

UPDATE - 3/15@9:44AM: No tour announcement yet, and none of the radio station major tour announcements involved Rush. But the day is still young so maybe we'll get something later today. Keep your fingers crossed.

My last tour update thread was getting pretty cluttered so I thought I'd start a new one. Hopefully by this time tomorrow we'll have some official dates or at least an official tour announcement. A number of radio stations are reporting that they'll have a major concert announcement tomorrow morning including 93.5 WTPA in South Central PA, WDHA in New Jersey, WFBQ 94.7 in Indianapolis and 94.9 KQDS in Duluth, MN. We can only hope that they are talking about Rush. Since my Friday post I've removed the Casino Rama show and added one at the Mohegan Sun along with a September date at the PNC Bank Center in Holmdel, NJ. Here's the list of tentative dates I have so far:

June ?? (mid-late June): [venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM

July 3rd: Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

July 19th: Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

Aug ?? (early August): Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA

Aug ?? (early August): Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

Aug 5th: USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

Sep ??: Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON

Sep ??: PNC Bank Center - Holmdel, NJ

Related Posts:
[Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues]
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Neil Peart: new Rush project may not be a full-length album]
[Rush 2010 tour and album update]
[Radio stations giving away Rush 2010 tour tickets?]
[Geddy Lee: Rush in the studio soon, Summer 2010 tour possible]
[Neil Peart news update: Rush to discuss future plans this month]
[Alex Lifeson: new Rush album, tour possible in 2010]

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Friday, March 12, 2010

Updates and other random Rush stuff
2:32PM EST | link | comments (107) |

UPDATE - 3/13@10:43PM: I'm now hearing that the Casino Rama show won't be happening. There may have been discussions at some point, but as of right now it doesn't look likely. I'm crossing that one off the list. But to replace it, I'm adding the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. I've heard from a source at the venue that Rush will is tentatively scheduled to play there on July 19th.

Information regarding Rush's expected 2010 tour finally started coming together this past week. A number of sources are indicating that an official tour announcement is coming next week, most likely on Monday, March 15th. Whether that announcement will contain the complete tour itinerary or just some general information (opening date, number of stops, etc.) remains to be seen. Assuming my information is correct (not always the best assumption to make!), it looks like the North American tour will kick off in Albuquerque, NM in mid-late June and run through September. Here are the dates I have thus far:

June ?? (mid-late June): [venue unknown] - Albuquerque, NM
July 3rd: Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI
July 19th: Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT
July ?? (mid-late July): 2 shows at the Casino Rama - Rama, Ontario (60 miles north of Toronto)
Aug ?? (early August): Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Aug ?? (early August): Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA
Aug 5th: USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT
Aug 22nd: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)
Sep ??: Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON

I'm hoping to hear a few more dates before the weekend is over. If I do I'll put up a new post to replace this one, which is getting pretty cluttered. But I'm really hoping we'll have some solid and official dates early next week. Until then, we'll rely on the rumors and leaked info. If anyone has any industry connections or contacts at the various concert venues, please find out what you can and let us know. I keep hearing that the tour will continue into 2011 and that South American and European legs will be included but there are very few details on that front, and I'm guessing that the the initial tour announcement won't say much about this. It's now pretty clear that Rush will not be releasing an album of new material prior to the tour, but instead we can hopefully look for a couple songs to be released digitally (Rush.com, iTunes?), maybe even along with the tour announcement. And I haven't heard any information at all on the theme of this tour; will they celebrate the 30th anniversary of Permanent Waves? will it be a b-sides tour? will they wear kimonos? will they play Stonehenge? With no new album to tour on, it's anybody's guess at this point.

In addition to all the tour news coming in, information regarding the Rush documentary also surfaced this past week. Despite a bit of joking around regarding the premier by the filmmakers, it looks like the film will open at the Tribeca Film Festival on Saturday, April 24th. Hopefully this information will be confirmed when Tribeca announces their complete schedule of films this coming Monday, March 15th, because I really don't want to buy a plane ticket to Siberia. :) It's also expected that they'll announce the DVD release date for the documentary as well, which Power Windows is now reporting has been delayed until sometime in June. This is complete speculation on my part, but I'm thinking that Rush will take the opportunity on Monday to announce both the tour and the documentary release in one fell swoop. We can only hope; not sure if I can stand another week of waiting!!

Rush Tourbooks remastered seriesThe Rush Backstage Club emailed out their newsletter last night announcing that they now have available new, remastered versions of all the Rush tourbooks dating back to the 2112 album! You can check them out at the Rush Backstage Club at this link and purchase one for $14.99. They are also running a new contest where you could win 1 of 3 R30/Feedback dryer t-shirts. The tie-dyed t-shirts are the same ones that Geddy threw to fans from his dryers during the R30 tour! On the back of the t-shirt the text reads: Hey man this shirt came from Geddy's dryers. The contest ends on March 24th and you can sign up to enter at this link. You can also now follow the Rush Backstage Club on Facebook and Twitter.

Neil Peart's percussive-centric version of The Hockey Theme debuted back in January during a Philadelphia Flyers at Toronto Maple Leafs game on The Sports Network (TSN). The video of the song can be seen on YouTube and runs about 1-minute long. It features Neil pounding away on his custom NHL kit along with hockey video highlights interspersed throughout. There's also a version of the video with just Neil playing. The song is also available for purchase on iTunes at this link and will be available for Rock Band next week. Neil Peart wrote extensively regarding his experience recording the song in his most recent news update at NeilPeart.net. In the update he mentioned that the Drum Channel would be releasing a Making of video at some point in the near future. As promised, you can now check out the 9-minute Making of The Hockey Theme with Neil Peart video at the Drum Channel website at this link. Here's a YouTube preview video.

A couple of months ago it was announced that Rush along with Quebec musician Robert Charlebois would be the 2010 songwriter inductees into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. Rush will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. The 2010 inductees will be honored at the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th annual Gala on Sunday, March 28th at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. The performers for the gala were announced earlier this week and will include Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire performing Tom Sawyer; Primus frontman Les Claypool playing a version of The Spirit of Radio; and Canadian folk singer/songwriter Jacob Moon doing his rendition of Subdivisions.

Rob Stefaniuk's vampire horror/comedy flick Suck - which features an appearance by Alex Lifeson as a border guard - will get its US premier at the SXSW Film Festival in Austin, TX this coming Wednesday March 17th. For details check out this post.

Canadian actor/comedian Mike Myers was a guest on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon last Friday. In one segment called Mike's Canada Corner Mike sits at a desk and talks about US/Canada relations in the wake of Canada's victory over the US in men's hockey at the 2010 Winter Olympics last month. At one point he brings up the Rush-Bagot Treaty:

... Let's talk about the Rush-Bagot treaty of 1817. Now the Rush-Bagot treaty of 1817 is not to be confused with the Rush treaty of 2112 - a treaty in which every citizen in North America will be issued a copy of what is arguably the greatest concept album ever recorded by a power trio...

While he says this, a picture of Rush from the 70s is displayed along with the cover of the 2112 album. You can watch the show online at this link. The Rush part comes in at about the 27-minute mark. Thanks to Bob M for the heads up and philradz for the video link. Speaking of 2112, the album celebrated its 34th anniversary this past Wednesday.

Speaking of anniversaries, today happens to be Alex Lifeson and his wife Charlene's 35th wedding anniversary. Congrats and may you have many more!

Neil Peart's original Slingerland drum kit (which he used from Fly By Night through 2112) will be on display for a charity fundraiser featuring Rush tribute band Chronicles at Last Call in Naperville, Illinois on Saturday, March 20, 2009. Chromey - as the kit is affectionately referred to - will be on display starting at 7PM. You can have a picture taken with the kit for $10.00 and actually play it between the hours of 7-9PM and 11:30PM-12AM for $20.00. All proceeds collected will go directly to the American Cancer Society. You can also donate directly online at this link. Chromey's owners ran a similar fundraiser at PASIC this fall and raised over $1200! The kit was purchased on eBay last Summer and restored to a playable condition by the new owner Dean with the help of Michael of NeilPeartDrumsticks.com.

Greater Boston Rush tribute band Lotus Land was featured in a Boston Globe article this week which discussed the growing popularity of tribute bands. Lotus Land played a show on February 19th at Patriot Place in Foxboro, MA opening for KISS tribute band ALIVE. The article mentions the show and how it sold out the 1050 capacity club. Thanks to Donna Halper for the link. Speaking of Rush tribute bands, the 2007 documentary television series Tribute Bands is currently airing on IFC Canada. The first episode of this 4-part documentary series focuses on Rush tribute bands and is called For the Love of Rush.

Rolling Stone's Rock and Roll Daily blog compiled a list earlier this week of readers picks for the best Freedom Song. Rush's Freewill made the list at #4. You can check out the entire top 10 at this link. Thanks to mhill for the heads up.

DrumDiscounters.com is an online drum retailer that offers free downloadable play-a-long songs for drummers. The songs are available as mp3 files with either the music and drums on both channels, just the music on both channels (drumless), or a split version with drums on the left channel and the music on the right channel. They have several Rush songs available including Fly By Night, Limelight, A Passage To Bangkok, Subdivisions, Tom Sawyer, The Trees and YYZ. Thanks to Power Windows for the info.

A couple of weeks I ago I mentioned a veiled Rush reference in a recent episode of ABC's Lost. In the episode The Substitute (Season 6, episode 4) the character Jacob leads Locke down a ladder to his cave ... Jacob's Ladder! Entertainment Weekly's Popwatch blog noticed the Rush song reference (and also the Huey Lewis song of the same name) and discussed it, asking their readers which was the proper music reference; Rush or Huey Lewis. The votes have been tallied and Rush came out ahead. From the Popwatch blog:

Finally, the tweets have been tallied: By a vote of something like but not necessarily 85-50, America has decided that when it comes to a ladder belonging to Jacob, the proper music reference is Rush, not Huey Lewis and The News. (Others receiving votes: Bruce Springsteen, Bruce Hornsby, and... Chumbawamba.) Thanks to everyone who slightly clogged Twitter by participating in this contest. So, what happens now? Well, I believe we can make Jeff do whatever we want, and right now I'm thinking that he should spend the rest of the week listening to "Cygnus X-1" on Rush's excellent A Farewell to Kings, which, according to Wikipedia, contains "the highest note sung by Geddy Lee on any studio album (Bb5 at 9:27)." But I'm open to suggestions.

Reader RushFanForever pointed me to this great Performing Musician article from last September on Neil Peart's drum tech Lorne Wheaton. On working with Neil:

... "[Neil] doesn't touch a stick at home; there's not one drum there!" Lorne explains. "But he works very hard when it comes down to it. Usually with Rush, Neil and I will get back together four weeks before the band rehearsals start and I'll have four days with the kit first. I'll take it to pieces, redo everything, wax it and have it all set for him. Then he does two or three weeks' worth of just getting his hands in shape and playing to a CD of songs that they've talked about using in the set. We've gotta rehearse that for five hours a day, for two to three weeks, and he'll work the calluses up on his hands. After that, he'll be ready for four weeks of rehearsals with the band. It's a nice way of being able to do it; you get time to make everything right before anybody jumps into it!" ...

Reader RUSHgeek snapped a photo of this Rush-inspired billboard for portable generators that can be seen heading up the highway from Toronto to Orillia. You can check it out at this link.

The University of Alberta's student newspaper The Gateway recently celebrated Canadian Music Week by asking their staffers to write about their favorite Canadian bands. Aaron Yeo chose Rush:

Rush. Need I say more? No, I don't need to, but I will anyway.

The unchanging trio of Alex Lifeson, Geddy Lee, and Neil Peart have been in the limelight for over three decades (a few hundred dog years), and have earned their right in Canadian music history. With hearts full of soul and bravado, each of them have been finding their way to the top in the world of music today. They've each made a name for themselves in everyday glory, so that none of them are ever referred to as "that guy from Rush."

As a band, they're decidedly Canadian, and have become both a national icon and the pride of the country. Their support spans at least half the world, and while the fanbase is predominantly male, the breadth of ages is huge. Ranging from greasy garage band teenagers to 50-year-old working men who were once in a band - but then got married - Rush have been making memories for their aficionados who are all proud to listen to YYZ for another 2,112 times.

While they may not be the most popular band in the spirit of radio, Rush have established their amazing body of work and caused permanent waves across the globe. They are Canada.

Well said!

The April, 2010 issue of the UK's Classic Rock magazine contains a reprint of an old Neil Peart interview from 1980 where Neil discusses the making of the Permanent Waves album. You can check it out be clicking on the thumbnails above. Thanks to ADesignForRush for the heads up and the scans.

UK alternative/progressive rockers Muse played the Air Canada Center in Toronto earlier this week and at the end of their song Plug in, Baby they busted into Rush's YYZ. You can check out the video below or at this link. The Rush bit begins at about the 4:20 mark. Thanks to Cygnusxx1 for the heads up.

Have a great weekend and keep your fingers crossed for an official tour announcement next week.

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Rush Backstage Club: remastered tourbooks and new contest
7:36AM EST | link | comments (17) |

Rush Tourbooks remastered seriesThe Rush Backstage Club emailed out their newsletter last night announcing that they now have available new, remastered versions of all the Rush tourbooks dating back to the 2112 album! You can check them out at the Rush Backstage Club at this link and purchase one for $14.99. They are also running a new contest where you could win 1 of 3 R30/Feedback dryer t-shirts. The tie-dyed t-shirts are the same ones that Geddy threw to fans from his dryers during the R30 tour! On the back of the t-shirt the text reads: Hey man this shirt came from Geddy's dryers. The contest ends on March 24th and you can sign up to enter at this link (thanks thomas). You can also now follow the Rush Backstage Club on Facebook and Twitter.

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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Making of The Hockey Theme with Neil Peart video available
10:25PM EST | link | comments (8) |

Neil Peart's percussive-centric version of The Hockey Theme debuted back in January during a Philadelphia Flyers at Toronto Maple Leafs game on The Sports Network (TSN). The video of the song can be seen on YouTube and runs about 1-minute long. It features Neil pounding away on his custom NHL kit along with hockey video highlights interspersed throughout. There's also a version of the video with just Neil playing. The song is also available for purchase on iTunes at this link and will be available for Rock Band next week. Neil Peart wrote extensively regarding his experience recording the song in his most recent news update at NeilPeart.net. In the update he mentioned that the Drum Channel would be releasing a Making of video at some point in the near future. As promised, you can now check out the 9-minute Making of The Hockey Theme with Neil Peart video at the Drum Channel website at this link. Here's a YouTube preview video:

Thanks to rosmakloma for the heads up.

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Rush documentary to premier April 24th at Tribeca Film Festival
7:18AM EST | link | comments (45) |

UPDATE - 3/15@11:45AM: The documentary was just announced as one of the 14 films in the TFF '10: Encounters section. Here's the description:

RUSH: The Documentary
Directed by Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn
(Canada)-World Premiere
For fans and newcomers to the legendary Canadian band Rush, this is the music documentary to experience. Directors Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn embark on a comprehensive exploration of this extraordinary power trio, from their early days in Toronto through each of their landmark albums to the present day. Sit back and revel in the words, music, and wonder of Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart.

The complete schedule with showtimes should be released later today.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/12@10:02AM: Power Windows is now reporting that the dvd release has been delayed at least 2 weeks and that an official announcement will come in the next couple of days. No surprise there! I expect that they'll announce this on Monday when the full list of films at Tribeca are announced.

UPDATE - 3/12@7:52AM: It seems that the the filmmakers are having a little fun at our expense. They posted the following to the Banger Films blog this morning:

Rush: The Documentary Exclusive World Premiere

Breaking News! There is a lot of chatter circulating around the premiere of the new documentary from producers Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn. Well you heard it here first! "Rush: The Biggest Secret in Music" is to have its Global Premiere on May 18th at the Siberian Music and Film Festival 2010. The city of Khanty-Mansiisk will transform into a hub of documentary film virtuosity as the Sprit of Fire film competition enters its 8th year in production.

Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen are speechless with excitement over finally breaching the news and state that the band will of course, be in attendance to launch their film with the Banger Films crew.

Early April Fool's joke? Or maybe they're just a little piqued at all the internet rumors floating around. Either way, there is no such thing as the Siberian Music and Film Festival. And even if there was, do you really think that they'd premier the movie in Khanty-Mansiisk... in Siberia, Russia ... and all 3 members of Rush would show up? Thanks to jackrelax for the heads up. (edit: there is a Spirit of Fire film festival in this city, but it ended on March 3rd.)

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/11@9:29AM: I should note that the Tribeca Film Festival website revealed a partial list of the film schedule yesterday which did not include the Rush documentary, but the full list will not be revealed until this coming Monday, March 15th. This leads me to believe that our big tour/documentary announcement will be on Monday.

In late January we received confirmation via a post to the official Banger Films Facebook page that the long-anticipated Rush documentary had finally been completed and would be released this Spring. Then about a month ago we heard via TNMS member Oz that the theatrical premier would occur at the Tribeca Film Festival in New York. And Power Windows reported a couple of weeks ago that Rounder films has a tentative release date of May 18th. I can now confirm via an inside source that the documentary will indeed receive a red carpet premier at the Tribeca Film Festival on Saturday, April 24th and that all 3 members of Rush will be on hand. Apparently the band have been busily involved with finalizing the film for the festival and this is part of the reason for the tour announcement delay. It sounds like they plan on announcing the tour and the documentary release all in one fell swoop - most likely early next week.

Related Posts:
[Rush: The Documentary: tentative May 18th DVD release]
[Rush documentary update]
[Rush featured in the latest issue of The Walrus]
[Rush documentary reportedly finished]
[Rush: The Documentary sneak peek shown at Windsor film festival]
[Behind-the-scenes Rush documentary pics]
[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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Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Alexisonfire, Les Claypool, Jacob Moon to honor Rush at Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame Gala
5:37PM EST | link | comments (35) |

UPDATE - 3/19@6:14PM: Tickets are now available for the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th Annual Gala where Rush will be honored on Sunday, March 28th at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. You can purchase tickets via ticketmaster at this link. There is a special offer for Rush fans; simply enter the pass code SONGS when requesting tickets. It looks like regular tickets start from $140.50 CND, but with the special offer they are $100.50 CND.

UPDATE - 3/10@12:22PM: I added this video of the announcement of the inductees from back in January to the bottom of the post (thanks random_sample).

UPDATE - 3/10@10:25AM: The Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame website indicates that Alexisonfire will perform Tom Sawyer while the press release states (thanks RushFanForever) that they'll be performing Closer to the Heart.

A couple of months ago it was announced that Rush along with Quebec musician Robert Charlebois would be the 2010 songwriter inductees into the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame. Rush will be recognized for their songs Limelight, Closer to the Heart, The Spirit of Radio, Tom Sawyer and Subdivisions. The 2010 inductees will be honored at the Canadian Songwriters Hall of Fame 6th annual Gala on Sunday, March 28th at the George Weston Recital Hall, Toronto Centre for the Arts. The performers for the gala were announced this afternoon and will include Canadian hardcore rockers Alexisonfire performing Tom Sawyer; Primus frontman Les Claypool playing a version of The Spirit of Radio; and Canadian folk singer/songwriter Jacob Moon doing his rendition of Subdivisions. Thanks to Brad Hirsch of Used Bin Radio for the heads up.

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Sunday, March 7, 2010

Rush 2010 tour update: a few rumored dates/venues
10:29PM EST | link | comments (157) |

UPDATE - 3/13@10:42PM: I'm now hearing that the Casino Rama show won't be happening. There may have been discussions at some point, but as of right now it doesn't look likely. I'm crossing that one off the list. But to replace it, I'm adding the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT. I've heard from a source at the venue that Rush will is tentatively scheduled to play there on July 19th.

UPDATE - 3/12@1:03PM: I have another one that I'm pretty sure of now: August 5th at the USANA Amphitheatre in Salt Lake City, UT. I added it below too.

UPDATE - 3/10@9:53PM: The PNC date is not correct. It's a mixup from the 2008 tour (they played there on the '08 leg on July 12th).

UPDATE - 3/10@8:36PM: Not so sure about that PNC date right now. I'll keep it, but with a question mark. Earlier I mentioned that they'd be starting in the Southwest. I'm starting to narrow that down and it looks like it'll be Albuquerque, NM. Not sure of the venue but I assume it's The Pavilion.

UPDATE - 3/10@4:27PM: According to rushdude38 who cites a venue source, there will be a show at the PNC Bank Arts Center in Holmdel, NJ on July 12th. I've added it below.

UPDATE - 3/10@10:57AM: It looks like the Atlanta opening in early June is unlikely to happen. I was a little hesitant about that information to begin with and now I'm hearing conflicting reports putting the opening date more towards mid-late June in the Southwest rather than the Southeast. The good news is that the rest of my information regarding Milwaukee, St. Louis, San Francisco and the Casino Rama seems to be pretty solid. They'll still probably hit Atlanta at some point but it looks like it'll be more towards the end of the tour. And for anyone worried about the Casino Rama date meaning that they won't play Toronto, don't be; I've heard that they are confirmed to play the Molson Amphitheatre but I'm not sure of the date yet. Speculating on the tour announcement; I don't expect any kind of tour announcement this week, but I think next week is a good bet - likely early in the week. I would anticipate an initial announcement that the tour is happening - probably with some general information (number of dates, duration, opening city, etc.). Then a week or so after that we'd get the full list.

UPDATE - 3/8@6:46PM: It looks like the major concert announcement from 103.5 The Arrow for tomorrow will be regarding Sting - not Rush.

And this just in! ... (added down below as well)

Aug 22nd: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

* This comes from a source at the venue (thanks lifesonfan). This is around the same time they played this venue on the 2007 tour. So it's starting to look like the tour route will be very similar to the '07 leg of the Snakes & Arrows tour.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/8@2:22PM: This may be a bit of a stretch, but reader hermy noticed that the Xcel Energy Center had the date of July 5th grayed out on their calendar which means that the date is on hold. He confirmed this with the venue but they would not give any details as to who may be scheduled. Rush played the Xcel Energy Center in St. Paul, MN on both the 2007 and 2008 legs of the Snakes & Arrows tour and - assuming the July 3rd Summerfest date is confirmed - they'll be close by in Milwaukee just 2 days prior. Interesting...

In other news, Jason R let me know that Utah classic rock station 103.5 The Arrow is advertising a major concert announcement for tomorrow morning at 9AM EST. This of course could have nothing to do with Rush, but it's worth keeping an eye on I suppose.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/8@11:28AM: Reader robertkincaid96 noticed that the Gwinnett Center Arena now has a show booked on June 6th (June 3rd and June 5th too) so if the opening show is at the Gwinnett Center it won't by on June 6th. Nothing is officially scheduled at Encore Park for June yet.

I've been gathering a few scraps of information regarding Rush's expected 2010 tour since my update on Friday. I'll first repeat what I'd mentioned on Friday; that I continue to hear from multiple reliable sources that the tour is happening, and have not heard any news to the contrary. The general consensus is that the North American portion of the tour will kick off in early-mid June and run through September - much like the 2007 leg of the Snakes & Arrows tour. Dates are still being finalized which is why we haven't had an announcement yet. There are also several side rumors that I'm less sure of including whether South America and/or Atlantic Canada will be included, whether the rumored European leg in 2011 will happen, whether the tour will contain some kind of nod/celebration to the 30th anniversary of Permanent Waves and whether the tour will kick off in the Southeast US (more on this below). Those are all rumors I've heard but have not been able to corroborate. Remember, these rumors did not materialize out of nowhere; Alex Lifeson kicked off the tour rumors back in September when he said hopefully by next summer, [Rush would] be ready to tour in this NoiseCreep.com interview. Since then, both Geddy Lee and Neil Peart have chimed in with similar statements. And let's not forget that back in December several major radio stations across the country ran contests to promote the release of the Working Men live compilation and gave away chances to win tickets to Rush's next tour. And at the end of January 105.7 WAPL out of Appleton, WI announced on the air that Rush would be playing Summerfest in Milwaukee on July 3rd. They even had a page up on their website promoting the event that has since been taken down. Radio stations do not do this kind of thing unless they have been given some kind of assurance that a band will be touring. I know and understand that everyone is getting a little antsy for an announcement, but to put things in perspective - the dates for the 2007 Snakes & Arrows tour were not announced until March 26th with tickets going on sale the following day. The only official mention of a tour prior to that occurred on February 14, 2007 with the official announcement of the Snakes & Arrows album - and all they said at that time was on tour this summer. details coming soon. So we still may be waiting a couple weeks before we get any official tour dates, although I'm hoping to get some leaked dates prior to that. Speaking of which, here a few of the scraps of information I spoke of earlier:

June ?? (mid-late June): tour kick-off in Albuquerque, NM - The Pavilion? (unsure of the venue)

June 6th: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater at Encore Park - Alpharetta, GA OR Gwinnett Arena - Duluth, GA

UPDATE - 3/10@10:57AM: It looks like the Atlanta opening in early June is unlikely to happen. I was a little hesitant about that information to begin with and now I'm hearing conflicting reports putting the opening date more towards mid-late June in the Southwest rather than the Southeast. They'll still probably hit Atlanta at some point but it looks like it'll be more towards the end of the tour.

UPDATE - 3/8@11:28AM: Reader robertkincaid96 noticed that the Gwinnett Center Arena now has a show booked on June 6th (June 3rd and June 5th too) so if the opening show is at the Gwinnett Center it won't by on June 6th. Nothing is officially scheduled at Encore Park for June yet.

* It looks like they are/were attempting to book the Alpharetta show as the opening date on the tour but ran into potential scheduling conflicts. So the Gwinnett Arena was one alternative venue they were looking at. If the conflicts could not be worked out, it's likely they would still kick-off the tour somewhere in the Southeast US at some other venue, but this may still end up being the opening date.

July 3rd: Summerfest - Milwaukee, WI

* As I'd mentioned above, at the end of January 105.7 WAPL out of Appleton, WI announced on the air that Rush would be playing Summerfest in Milwaukee on July 3rd. They prematurely announced the show and even had a page up on their website promoting the event for a short time. I was informed by sources at the venue that this date has indeed been confirmed, although there has still been no official announcement.

July 19th: Mohegan Sun Arena - Uncasville, CT

*I've heard from a source at the venue that Rush will is tentatively scheduled.

July ??: 2 shows at the Casino Rama - Rama, Ontario (60 miles north of Toronto)

* This is an interesting one! I received word that Rush is booked to play two shows in July at the Casino Rama about 60 miles north of Toronto. The venue seats about 5000 and KISS played 2 back-to-back shows there last summer (July 20,21), so it's certainly plausible. The dates have not been announced yet but I assume they'd be back-to-back shows sometime in mid-late July. If true, it would seem to suggest that Rush plans to hit several more Canadian dates than on the 2007/08 tour - including Atlantic Canada hopefully.

Aug ??: Shoreline Amphitheater - Mountain View, CA
Aug ??: Sleep Train Pavillion - Concord, CA

* The word is that Rush has been confirmed for both of these venues sometime in early August. I'm not sure of the exact dates yet.

Aug 5th: USANA Amphitheatre - Salt Lake City, UT

Aug 22nd: Verizon Wireless Amphitheater St. Louis - Maryland Heights, MO (outside St. Louis)

* This comes from a source at the venue (thanks lifesonfan). This is around the same time they played this venue on the 2007 tour. So it's starting to look like the tour route will be very similar to the '07 leg of the Snakes & Arrows tour.

Date Unknown: Molson Amphitheatre - Toronto, ON

Remember that until Rush confirms any of this information, it's not official. If anyone has any industry connections or contacts at the various concert venues, find out what you can and let us know. I'll continue updating the site as I receive more information.

Related Posts:
[Rush 2010 tour update]
[Neil Peart: new Rush project may not be a full-length album]
[Rush 2010 tour and album update]
[Radio stations giving away Rush 2010 tour tickets?]
[Geddy Lee: Rush in the studio soon, Summer 2010 tour possible]
[Neil Peart news update: Rush to discuss future plans this month]
[Alex Lifeson: new Rush album, tour possible in 2010]

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Friday, March 5, 2010

Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:42AM EST | link | comments (110) |

UPDATE - 3/6@11:36AM: It looks like the Snakes & Arrows concert on Direct TV will actually begin airing this evening at 9PM and re-air periodically over the next week. Just check you local guide for times. Thanks to Im a Rushfan and afansince74 for the heads up.

We're a week into March and still no official tour announcement from Rush. Despite this, I continue to hear from multiple reliable sources that the tour is happening, and have not heard any news to the contrary. The general consensus is that the North American portion of the tour will kick off in early-mid June and run through September - much like the 2007 leg of the Snakes & Arrows tour. Dates are still being finalized which is why we haven't had an announcement yet, although it'd be nice to at least get a tour details coming soon. Throw us a bone Rush! There are also several side rumors that I'm less sure of including whether South America and/or Atlantic Canada will be included, whether the rumored European leg in 2011 will happen, whether the tour will contain some kind of nod/celebration to the 30th anniversary of Permanent Waves and whether the tour will kick off in the Southeast US. Those are all rumors I've heard but have not been able to corroborate. Remember, these rumors did not materialize out of nowhere; Alex Lifeson kicked off the tour rumors back in September when he said hopefully by next summer, [Rush would] be ready to tour in this NoiseCreep.com interview. Since then, both Geddy Lee and Neil Peart have chimed in with similar statements. And let's not forget that back in December several major radio stations across the country ran contests to promote the release of the Working Men live compilation and gave away chances to win tickets to Rush's next tour. And at the end of January 105.7 WAPL out of Appleton, WI announced on the air that Rush would be playing Summerfest in Milwaukee on July 3rd. They even had a page up on their website promoting the event that has since been taken down. Radio stations do not do this kind of thing unless they have been given some kind of assurance that a band will be touring. I know and understand that everyone is getting a little antsy for an announcement, but to put things in perspective - the dates for the 2007 Snakes & Arrows tour were not announced until March 26th with tickets going on sale the following day. The only official mention of a tour prior to that occurred on February 14, 2007 with the official announcement of the Snakes & Arrows album - and all they said at that time was on tour this summer. details coming soon. So we still may be waiting a couple weeks before we get any official tour dates, although I'm hoping to get some leaked dates prior to that. If anyone has any industry connections or contacts at the various concert venues, find out what you can and let us know. Hang in there everyone! :)

VH1 periodically run a series of Classic Albums documentary specials put out by Eagle Rock Entertainment where they celebrate important albums in rock -n- roll history. I'd first heard a rumor in December of 2008 that Moving Pictures and possibly one or more Rush albums would be getting the Classic Albums treatment. Then a few months ago the Drum Channel posted the following to their Twitter page:

Neil Peart was in the DC Studios again yesterday filming a special on Classic Rush albums for VH1... look for it soon!

Since then I've also confirmed that a few other folks in the Rush camp have been interviewed for this series and - better yet - that specials covering both Moving Pictures and 2112 are currently in production. Hopefully this means they'll be released sometime this year.

On Wednesday the list of 2010 Juno Award nominees was announced and Rush's Snakes & Arrows Live DVD (also on Blu-ray) was nominated for Music DVD of the Year. Rush won a Juno award in this category for Rush in Rio back in 2004. Winners will be announced at the Juno Gala Dinner & Awards on Saturday, April 17 at the St. John's Convention Centre, as well as at The 2010 Juno Awards broadcast on CTV on Sunday, April 18 at Mile One Centre in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador.

Speaking of the Snakes & Arrows Live DVD, DirectTV satellite television channel 101 will be broadcasting the Snakes & Arrows Live concert on March 13th at 9PM with an encore on March 22nd (thanks Snowdog2112).

Rock BandEarlier today the Rock Band website announced that Neil Peart's version of The Hockey Theme will be made available for download next week. For all the details check out this post.

John at Cygnus-X1.net recently posted the fourth installment of his Rush: A Brief History of Time series where he compiles scans of old Rush articles. You can check this latest batch out at this link. He has also combined all the items from the 4 installments and presented them on one page here. This batch contains a bunch of great articles - mostly from 1978 - including an article from the March 22, 1978 edition of Dutch magazine Muziekkrant OOR titled Rush Met Voetversnelling which features a very interesting photo of Geddy (click on thumbnail above). In total there are 16 articles from 1978, a couple from both 1977 and 1979, and 7 or so from the '80s/'90s/'00s. This is fascinating stuff; I highly suggest you check it out when you get a chance.

Axe Heaven now has a 1:4-scale miniature replica of Geddy Lee's Rickenbacker 4001 bass guitar available for purchase. They sell for $24.99 and you can purchase yours at this link. For details on a getting a discount via the Power Windows site, click here.

Andrew Olson has added three new kits to his Replicas and drum kits inspired by Neil Peart page. They are Chainsaw's Thunderdrums, Sander Viller's Premier Cabria kit and Jamie's Mapex Voyager kit.

This article in The Mark discusses how Google and The Author's Guild recently reached a settlement on digital books. The author is not happy about the settlement and uses some Rush lyrics to make his point, comparing Google to the Priests of the Temples of Syrinx:

... As for me, I'm going to continue contemplating this while I listen to the Rush album 2112. Perhaps you're familiar with it. Lyricist Neil Peart acknowledged Ayn Rand (author of Anthem) in the liner notes to the album, a futuristic tale about a single ruling power that controls "all the gifts of life" - in other words, all literature, music, and art.

Reader Thomas P located this website where you can browse and purchase laminated backstage passes from concerts including several from Rush shows.

Technology consultant, author, Rush fan and RIAB reader Phil Simon recently put up a post to his blog featuring a comic strip starring Geddy Lee. And if you are interested, check out Phil's book Why New Systems Fail: Theory and Practice Collide. While the subject matter is not directly Rush-related (obviously), Phil intersperses Rush references throughout the book.

A few weeks ago I let you know that the UK's Planet Rock digital radio station was conducting a poll to determine the Greatest Live Album of All Time. The results are in and Rush had 3 albums in the top 40; All the World's a Stage at #19, Exit ... Stage Left at #20 and Rush in Rio at #35. You can check out the complete top 40 list at this link. Thanks to camvek for the heads up. Planet Rock's poll this month is asking for the Most Classic Classic Rock Song. Vote for Rush!.

Geddy Lee is featured in this Fender.com article titled Singing While You're Playing. Thanks to RushFanForever for the link.

Geddy Lee saves the day in issue #23 of web comic Procrastination. You can check it out at this link. Thanks to cschnebe for the heads up.

Reader Dave S located this really interesting article at the Performing Musician website on Alex Lifeson's former guitar tech Jimmy Johnson. On working with Alex:

... "Alex is the funniest man I've ever met and he's also a mad professor!" says Jimmy. "When it was time to go on tour, he would start talking and he had very specific ideas on what he wanted. And it would be nothing like the last time we went out. He'd say, 'This is what I'd like to make happen. What do you think?' When I had something that was close, I'd give him a call and he would come by and play through it, and we'd polish it a little bit. And he'd say, 'That's close, but maybe if we can do this' So over the course of anything from a week to a month, we'd get a guitar rig together that was suitable for him.

"Working with Rush was fabulous and I was very fortunate also to be asked to join them for their studio sessions, whether it was at the pre-production stage or the recordings. I was always there doing anything from making lunches to rewiring things or coming up with goofy new ways to make things happen!"...

Reader and blogger Jaybird put up a series of blog posts over the past couple weeks covering Rush's many tours over the years with the help of the Power Windows tour archive. Jay includes the tour details, pictures of some of his own Rush memorabilia, the number of shows per tour, a total shows running tally and a ticket price range for each tour. It looks like Rush has played at least 1,790 shows! Here's the first post and here's the last one.

Reader The Clansman 2112 wanted me to let you all know that there are 10 spots open in his 3rd annual rushisaband Fantasy Baseball League. It's free to join and he's offering up prizes again for the top 3 spots. It's a 20 team Roto league that will be using an Auto-Draft to get the teams. Only serious managers need apply! To join up go to this link and use the League ID 297025 with Password atmsite.

Rush did not end up performing at the Olympics closing ceremony this past Sunday. The initial rumors surrounding their involvement with the opening/closing ceremonies seem to have been rooted in the fact that they were invited to perform in some capacity by VANOC - Anthem confirmed this much to me. They even went so far as to sign a non-disclosure agreement which tells me that they didn't immediately shut the door on VANOC, but likely seriously considered performing. At some point after being asked and prior to the start of dress rehearsals, Rush decided against participating although it's not known exactly why. It's now clear that they were never bumped from the opening ceremony and never participated in any rehearsals - these were simply rumors. Because of the non-disclosure agreement and the absurd amount of secrecy surrounding the ceremonies on VANOC's part, it was impossible to prove/disprove any of the rumors until after the fact - which made for a very frustrating situation. Ultimately it looks like Rush's non-participation in the ceremonies was their decision and VANOC can't really be held accountable. Seattle Times reporter Bob Condotta liveblogged the closing ceremony and complained a couple of times about Rush not being involved (thanks Doug from Seattle):

7:23 Bob Condotta: Sadly, no mention of Rush so far.
...
7:29 Bob Condotta: I'll have to say it again, where's Rush?
...

And Entertainment Weekly's Annie Barrett posted a closing ceremony wrap-up and said the following (thanks Dave R):

... Simple Plan and Hedley, really? Where's Celine? Arcade Fire? Metric? Stars? Where is Rush? Be cool or be cast out, Canada...

Maybe the band will have something to say regarding the details of why they opted out of participation in the ceremonies in coming interviews, but until then we can only speculate.

Since many of us have had to dig out of snowstorms in the past few weeks, here's some celebrity winter advice from our own Geddy Lee. This humorous video piece is from the CBC's Rick Mercer report and aired in January of 2004. In it Geddy Lee gives some togogganing safety tips including the following ... small children and people worried about their brain should always wear a helmet.... Good advice Geddy.

Have a great weekend everybody!

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Neil Peart's The Hockey Theme soon available for Rock Band
10:45AM EST | link | comments (4) |

Rock BandThe Rock Band website announced this morning that Neil Peart's version of The Hockey Theme will be made available for download next week (thanks Brian C):

Here's your DLC for the week of 3/9/2010! There's an all-star three pack from The White Stripes, the return of Shaimus to rhythm gaming, some Canadian hockey love and more! Enjoy!

Available on Xbox 360 and Wii (March 9) and PlayStation 3 system (March 11):

The Futureheads - "Decent Days & Nights" +
The Futureheads - "Hounds of Love" +
The James Gang - "Walk Away" +
Neil Peart - "The Hockey Theme" + *
Shaimus - "All of This" + *
Shaimus - "Tie You Down" + *
The White Stripes - "Fell in Love with a Girl" +
The White Stripes - "Seven Nation Army"
The White Stripes - "You Don't Know What Love Is (You Just Do As You're Told)" +

(All tracks are original master recordings)

These tracks will be available for purchase as "The White Stripes Pack 02" as well as individual tracks on Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 system, and as individual tracks only on Wii. Tracks marked with "+" are also available for download in the family-friendly LEGO® Rock Band Music Store.

Price:

$1.99 USD, £.99 UK, 1.49 EU (160 Microsoft Points for Xbox 360) per track

$5.49, £2.49 UK, 3.99 EU (440 Microsoft Points for Xbox 360) for "The White Stripes Pack 02"

$2.00 USD (200 Wii Points) per track ...

Neil Peart's percussive-centric version of The Hockey Theme debuted back in January during a Philadelphia Flyers at Toronto Maple Leafs game on The Sports Network (TSN). The video of the song can be seen on YouTube and runs about 1-minute long. It features Neil pounding away on his custom NHL kit along with hockey video highlights interspersed throughout. There's also a version of the video with just Neil playing. The song is also available for purchase on iTunes at this link. Neil Peart wrote extensively regarding his experience recording the song in his most recent news update at NeilPeart.net.

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Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Rush's Snakes & Arrows Live DVD nominated for Juno Award
12:09PM EST | link | comments (76) |

UPDATE - 3/4@10:19AM: Here's a nice article in the Montreal Gazette on Snakes & Arrows Live directors Pierre and François Lamoureux of FogoLabs (thanks RushFanForever).

The list of 2010 Juno Award nominees (the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards) was announced this morning. Rush's Snakes & Arrows Live DVD (also on Blu-ray) was nominated for Music DVD of the Year. Here's the full list of nominees in that category:

MUSIC DVD OF THE YEAR
Miroir Noir
Vincent Morisset, Vincent Morisset & Arcade Fire ARCADE FIRE
Merge*F>A>B

Snakes & Arrows Live
Pierre & François Lamoureaux Allan Weinrib, Pegi Cecconi, Ray Daniels RUSH
Anthem*Universal

Iron Maiden Flight 666
Sam Dunn, Scott McFadyen Ron Smallwood, Stefan Demetriou, Andy Taylor IRON MAIDEN
EMI

The Trews Acoustic - Friends & Total Strangers
Tim Martin, John-Angus MacDonald, Larry Wanagas THE TREWS
Bumstead*Universal

DRUM! Live
Aaron Young, Doris Mason, Colin Smeltzer, Daniel Brooker Brookes Diamond DRUM!
Independent*Fontana North

Rush won a Juno award in this category for Rush in Rio back in 2004. Winners will be announced at the Juno Gala Dinner & Awards on Saturday, April 17 at the St. John's Convention Centre, as well as at The 2010 Juno Awards broadcast on CTV on Sunday, April 18 at Mile One Centre in St. John's, Newfoundland and Labrador. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Rush: A Brief History of Time, Part IV
10:23AM EST | link | comments (22) |

John at Cygnus-X1.net recently posted the fourth installment of his Rush: A Brief History of Time series where he compiles scans of old Rush articles. You can check this latest batch out at this link. He has also combined all the items from the 4 installments and presented them on one page here. This batch contains a bunch of great articles - mostly from 1978 - including an article from the March 22, 1978 edition of Dutch magazine Muziekkrant OOR titled Rush Met Voetversnelling which features a very interesting photo of Geddy (click on thumbnail above). If you happen to speak the language, John would love to get a translation. In total there are 16 articles from 1978, a couple from both 1977 and 1979, and 7 or so from the '80s/'90s/'00s. This is fascinating stuff; I highly suggest you check it out when you get a chance. Thanks John!

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Monday, March 1, 2010

Geddy Lee Rickenbacker 4001 miniature replica
1:23PM EST | link | comments (81) |

Geddy Lee Rickenbacker 4001 mini replicaFrom the Power Windows site:

You've asked for it, and now it's here: a precise recreation of Geddy Lee's Rickenbacker 4001 bass. His primary instrument of the 70's, first seen during RUSH's first tour in 1974, Geddy effectively retired this bass after the Signals tour until bringing it back on tour in 2007.

This 1:4-scale replica miniature bass collectible is made of solid mahogany wood, hand crafted and airbrushed with outstanding detail. As these guitars are hand made, please allow 3-4 weeks for delivery as supplies are limited.

This bass guitar sells for $24.99. Click here to order. For the complete RUSH miniature instruments collection, click here. Axeheaven is providing a special discount for Power Windows Website Users. To receive the discount, just enter the below coupon code while checking out at AxeHeaven.com:

* For free shipping for all domestic orders: coupon code
* For an overall 10% discount off of international orders: coupon code TEN2010

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