Archive: Blog Entries from March, 2011

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Geddy Lee makes Rolling Stone's Top Ten Bassists of All Time list
10:20PM EST | link | comments (28) |

Last Friday RollingStone.com asked its readers to name the best bass player of all time. The results are in and Geddy Lee came in at #4 behind Paul McCartney, Flea and John Entwhistle. They even had some nice things to say about him:

If Geddy Lee's only role in Rush was to play the bass he'd be unbelievably accomplished. The fact that he does it while singing and playing keyboards proves that the man is almost a freak of nature. Few singers in the history of rock could have handled this triple duty. The group has occasionally flirted with the idea of adding a fourth member to their stage show to ease Lee's load, but they always decide that fans only want to see the three members of Rush onstage. He manages it all by playing bass pedals during his keyboard parts. The band is currently performing their 1980 LP Moving Pictures on a world tour.

Thanks to Mr. K for the heads up.

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Geddy Lee talks baseball in today's Toronto Star
10:09PM EST | link | comments (5) |

[The old ball game brings together Canadians of all stripes]

Today was opening day of professional baseball here in the US and Canada so the Toronto Star ran an article titled The old ball game brings together Canadians of all stripes where they asked Geddy Lee and several other famous Canadians about their favorite baseball game ever. Here's what Geddy said:

... Rush lead vocalist Geddy Lee is no stranger to Blue Jays fans. He's been a longtime fan himself, and has attended hundreds of games through the good and not-so-good times.

When asked about his fave game, the Toronto native knew right away:

"Game 6 of the 1992 World Series in Atlanta," Lee said this week, just as the band was leaving Toronto for Tampa to open a tour.

"Sitting with my brother Allan and beside Candy Maldonado's dentist from Puerto Rico and the wives of the Blue Jay coaches ... an island of Jays fans in a sea of Braves T-shirts, cheering in the top of the 11th inning as Dave Winfield hit a double off of Charlie Liebrandt to drive in two runs, which would lead to the Blue Jays capturing the Holy Grail, a long-awaited World Series championship.

"Truly the greatest Blue Jay play for me ... Even the 1993 championship and Joe Carter's jaw-dropping home run could not compare to that spectacular moment in Atlanta." ...

Thanks to Power Windows for the heads up. And one other thing ... go Tribe!

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New Geddy Lee radio interview at the UK's 106.1 Rock Radio
8:50PM EST | link | comments (7) |

A new interview with Geddy Lee aired last night on UK radio station 106.1 Rock Radio. Geddy talked a lot about Rush's recent Classic Rock Living Legend award, their Hollywood Walk of Fame star, their involvement with the film I Love You Man, the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage, the Moving Pictures 30th anniversary deluxe edition, and - of course - their impending journey across the pond in May to bring the Time Machine over to Europe. He also touched on their progress on the upcoming Clockwork Angels album:

... We've got about - I guess - 3/4 of the record written and are kind of ready to go. We've got 2 or 3 more tracks we'd like to write. We've kind of run out of time now. We're gonna have to go on tour so when this tour is over we'll get back to writing and hopefully finish the record in the Fall. ... We're having fun with it. I mean - you know - there are some very complex moments. There are some very beautiful moments. It's kind of what you'd expect from Rush I guess - a little bit of everything. Now the indication you can get from the first 2 songs kind of sets the tone for where we're going with this record. But there are a few surprises as you get deeper into the record.

So it sounds as if they still have a little more writing to do but still plan on finishing up this Fall. The interview runs about 11 minutes and you can listen to it at this link. Thanks to Flygaricdrummer for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Short Rush Clockwork Angels feature in March issue of Mojo]
[New Alex Lifeson interview in Guitarist magazine]
[Rush's Caravan makes Amazon's 100 Bestselling Songs of 2010]
[Alex Lifeson interview with Chile's Radio Futuro]
[New interviews with Geddy and Alex from the Brazilian press]
[New Geddy Lee interview with Brazil's TV UOL]
[Geddy Lee interview with the UK's Rock Radio]
[New Alex Lifeson interview at Billboard.com]
[Caravan/BU2B CD single now available for pre-order]
[Rush Caravan release open thread]
[Rush reveal new album title as Clockwork Angels]
[Two new Rush tracks available for digital download June 1st]

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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Rush 2011 Time Machine Tour: opening night in Florida open thread
12:53PM EST | link | comments (143) |

UPDATE - 4/7@4:16PM: From The Miami Herald (thanks RushFanForever):

Following their Wednesday night show at BankAtlantic Center, members of Rush had dinner Thursday night at Michael's Genuine Food & Drink. Vocalist Geddy Lee, guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart were seen sitting outdoors enjoying the food and scenery.

----- snip -----

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011Date/Time: Wednesday, March 30th @ 7:30PM
Show Number: 1
Venue: Bank Atlantic Center
Place: Sunrise, FL (outside Ft. Lauderdale)

gallery: [view] [upload] [YouTube videos]
reviews: [reviews]

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 4/1@8:20AM: Official photos are now posted at the Rush on the Road Photo Store website, which no longer seems to be linked from the new Rush.com for some reason (thanks Agent Rush.v2).

UPDATE - 3/31@7:38PM: Here's a review from the Palm Beach Post and another from the Broward Palm-Beach New Times (thanks Power Windows).

UPDATE - 3/31@8:55PM: Correction: I guess those Slobovich t-shirts are not new - they were around on the 2010 leg too. New to me though! Shows you how much I know ... :)

UPDATE - 3/31@7:31PM: Reader reillygolfpro shot over 200 great photos from front row center which you can check out here and here.

UPDATE - 3/31@12:39PM: Lance Armstrong was at the show last night according to this Twitter post (thanks Thomas P):

4 days in St Barths for The Bucket, 2 in the Abacos, finishing in Florida for the kick off of the @rushtheband tour. #ultimateboystrip
11 hours ago

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/31@10:55AM: Here's another Facebook gallery (thanks fattony77).

UPDATE - 3/31@10:02AM: For those of you on Facebook, here's a big gallery of photos courtesy rosmakloma.

UPDATE - 3/31@9:51AM: Here's a photo gallery of last night's show from a local news station (thanks Power Windows).

UPDATE - 3/31@7:53AM: One new thing from last night were the t-shirts that get thrown out to the audience towards the end of the show. Alex did the honors this time and the shirt has his character from the concert videos - Slobovich - on them with the slogan, Slobovich says... (front) the last time someone grabbed my sausage ... (back). You can check out some photos sent in by reader angiodan by clicking on the thumbnails.

UPDATE - 3/30@11:12PM: The show's over and no setlist changes or new videos. As expected, it was the exact same show as on the 2010 tour.

UPDATE - 3/30@9:57PM: Rush.com has launched a newly refreshed website to celebrate the kickoff of the 2011 Time Machine Tour. Still no setlist changes or show surprises. It sounds like Alex wasn't lying.

UPDATE - 3/30@9:39PM: RIAB is having issues due to heavy traffic - it's up and down. But I've been told that there were NO setlist changes/surprises through intermission (thanks Mary Jo).

Rush will be kicking off the 2011 leg of the Time Machine Tour tonight at 7:30PM in Sunrise, FL at the Bank Atlantic Center. The band has stated in interviews that the show and setlist won't be changing from the 2010 tour, but if there are any surprises I'll post them here. And if you are going tonight and notice any changes, please let us know. For everyone going to the show, have fun, be safe and make sure to share your reports, reviews, and photos with us. Rush on!!!

As I'd reported yesterday, the Rush Backstage Club is running a weekly meet and greet contest where you could win 2 meet and greet passes with Rush! For all the details and to enter go to this link.

If you hadn't already heard, both the Greensboro and Toledo shows have been rescheduled due to unforeseen circumstances. The April 1st Rush concert in Greensboro for this Friday has been pushed back one day to Saturday, April 2nd; and the April 6th show in Toledo has been rescheduled to Wednesday, April 13th.

For those of you who'd like to follow the tour on your mobile device, laptop or PC - Eric at Power Windows has created a special Google iCalendar for the 2011 leg of the tour. Click here for more information.

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2011 Time Machine Tour VIP ticket package swag details and photo
10:18AM EST | link | comments (22) |

2011 Time Machine Tour VIP ticket package swagI've gotten my first report from someone who has actually received their 2011 Time Machine Tour VIP ticket package swag, and they were also kind enough to snap this great photo. Here are the package contents as listed at Ticketmaster:

  • Copy of "Rush - Classic Albums - 2112 and Moving Pictures" DVD (the making of "2112" and "Moving Pictures")
  • Rush "Caravan/BU2B" CD single
  • Specially Designed Tour Shirt (exclusive design, available to ticket packages only)
  • Exclusive Tour Poster (numbered, limited)
  • Official Time Machine Tour Program
  • Set of Official Rush Guitar Picks

The Rush 2112/Moving Pictures Classic Albums DVD and the Caravan/BU2B CD single were the only 2 items on the list where it was clear as to what would be included in the package. The tour shirt this time around is a white jersey-style t-shirt with black sleeves and a movie cue card Time Machine Tour logo. The poster is a retro-style Rush live tour poster. The guitar picks come in a little black and white metal case with the classic RUSH logo on it that has sliding lid. Inside are two white picks with the classic RUSH logo, two red picks with the Starman logo, and two black ones with both the classic RUSH logo and Starman logo. The white ones have Alex's signature on the back of one, and Geddy's on the back of the other. The big disappointment is that the Tourbook looks to be the 2010 Tourbook rather than the updated version for the 2011 Tour. Many thanks to RestlessOldRomantic for the information and the photo.

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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Rush Backstage Club weekly meet and greet contest
11:26PM EST | link | comments (23) |

Rush Meet & Greet[Win A Meet and Greet With Rush!]

The Rush Backstage Club just kicked off a weekly meet and greet contest where you could win 2 meet and greet passes with Rush! Here are the details:

Win A Meet and Greet With Rush!

Check it out: every week RUSH BACKSTAGE will draw two winners to win a pair of Meet and Greet passes to meet RUSH during the Time Machine 2011 tour. The winners will meet members of the band, before the show. These lucky people will have the opportunity to say hello and have their picture taken with the guys!

In order to qualify to win the prize, entrants MUST already have in their possession tickets to a Rush Time Machine concert during the Time Machine 2011 tour. Rush Backstage will not be providing concert tickets to the winners. Good luck!

The first drawing will be made in 2 days on Thursday, March 31st so enter now at this link! Thanks to ReGorLaTroy for the heads up.

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Moving Pictures 30th anniversary deluxe edition trailer, contest
3:23PM EST | link | comments (10) |

A 30-second video trailer for the Moving Pictures 30th anniversary deluxe edition is now available online. You can watch it below or at this location (thanks rosmakloma). Both the DVD and Blu-ray versions of the remix will release this coming Tuesday, April 5th, but the Blu-ray will only be sold exclusively through Best Buy for the first 30 days; other retailers will have the Blu-ray version on May 3rd. In celebration of the release, John at Cygnus-X1.net is holding a contest to give away five copies of the CD/DVD version - one per week starting this Friday, April 1st. To enter just go to this link.

Here are some details regarding the remix from Rush.com:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme ...

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray).

Related Posts:
[First review in for the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release update]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release delayed]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix details from Rush.com]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix available for pre-order]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix to be released April 5th]
[Richard Chycki on the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix]
[Alex Lifeson on UK digital radio station Planet Rock today]

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Monday, March 28, 2011

April 1st Rush concert in Greensboro rescheduled for April 2nd, April 6th show in Toledo rescheduled for April 13th
5:29PM EST | link | comments (70) |

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011UPDATE - 3/28@7:27PM: More details and confirmation from Rush.com:

Live Nation announced today that due to unforeseen circumstances the Rush performance previously scheduled for this Friday, April 1st in Greensboro has been postponed one day and will now take place on Saturday, April 2nd at the Greensboro Coliseum. Doors remain 6:30 pm with show time at 7:30 pm.

After much consideration, as the Toledo performance would have been the 4th show in 5 days the decision was made to delay the show rather than move forward as previously scheduled. The added time between shows will ensure that fans in Toledo are treated to the best performance that Rush can deliver. As a result, the Toledo performance previously scheduled for Wednesday, April 6th will be postponed one week and will now take place on Wednesday, April 13th at Huntington Center.

Tickets for both of the previously scheduled performance will be honored at the rescheduled dates. Fans requiring a refund may do so at point of purchase. ...

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/28@5:44PM: What the hell? The Toledo date has been rescheduled too (thanks mike). It's been pushed back one week from Wednesday, April 6th to Wednesday, April 13th.

It looks like the Friday, April 1st Rush show at the Greensboro Coliseum has been pushed back one day to Saturday, April 2nd. From the venue's website:

Live Nation announced today that due to unforeseen circumstances the Rush performance previously scheduled for this Friday, April 1st in Greensboro has been postponed one day and will now take place on Saturday, April 2nd at the Greensboro Coliseum.

Doors remain 6:30 pm with show time at 7:30 pm.

Tickets for the previously scheduled performance will be honored at the rescheduled date. Fans requiring a refund may do so at point of purchase. ...

This had better not be an elaborate April Fool's joke! Thanks to RammsteinSkins for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Rush kicks off rehearsals for the 2011 Time Machine Tour]

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Rush 2011 Time Machine Tour merchandise now available at the Rush Backstage Club
2:35PM EST | link | comments (8) |

2011 Time Machine TourbookThe 2011 Time Machine Tour kicks off in 2 days and the Rush Backstage Club is ready with all the new 2011 Time Machine Tour merchandise. There are several new apparel options available along with an updated Time Machine tourbook for 2011 complete with several new photos of the band from the 2010 Time Machine Tour:

As always, here is another beautiful Rush tourbook with laminated covers and high quality photography of the band. This book also features a passage written by Neil Peart and band gear lists with a twist (you'll see what we mean if you get the book!). This new tourbook features brand new photos of the band from the Time Machine 2010 tour. Available on tour and right here in the webstore, this is a must have keepsake for any avid Rush fan.

Thanks to rushfan82 for the heads up.

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Hearts's Nancy Wilson discusses Geddy Lee credit on Red Velvet Car
10:27AM EST | link | comments (4) |

Last August Heart released their new album Red Velvet Car which was produced and engineered by Ben Mink and David Leonard respectively, both of whom had the same credits on Geddy Lee's 2000 solo album My Favorite Headache. One of the tracks on the album is called Death Valley and the following appears in the credits: Geddy Lee - Whistle on 'Death Valley,' Mazel. The Mazel part simply means good luck or congratulations in Yiddish. Other musicians on the album also have their names listed with the instrument they performed on along with a phrase that represents who they are by heritage, character, and/or personality. At the time it wasn't initially clear what Geddy's contribution was, but after some intrepid research by RushFanForever - who emailed sound engineer David Leonard - it was revealed as simply an inside joke between Ben and Nancy Wilson:

I just heard back from Mr. Mink. Kudos to you for picking up on an inside joke between Ben and Nancy Wilson. Ben says "Nancy (Wilson) heard some hi pitched thing in "Death Valley" and he (Ben) said "it's probably Geddy whistling". They gave Geddy credit. That's the story.

But apparently there's more to the story. Nancy Wilson was recently interviewed for New Mexico's KZZR radio and had the following to say:

... When Ben was mixing Red Velvet Car, Geddy Lee was around, and he got the voice of Geddy Lee hidden in the beginning of the "Death Valley" song. It's sort of a secret signal from Geddy." ...

You can listen to the interview at this link - it starts around the 3:30 mark. Thanks to Eric at Power Windows for the heads up.

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Saturday, March 26, 2011

Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage wins Juno for Music DVD of the Year!
10:44PM EST | link | comments (49) |

UPDATE - 4/1@10:08AM: Here's video of Geddy and Alex presenting Arcade Fire with their Album of the Year award (thanks RushFanForever):

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/28@10:18AM: There is video available online but apparently it's only viewable from Canada. It's in this clip at about the 1:40 mark (thanks The Clansman 2112).

UPDATE - 3/28@9:52AM: And here's a photo of Scot McFadyen, Pegi Cecconi (of Anthem) and Sam Dunn with their Juno for Music DVD of the Year! (thanks RushFanForever).

UPDATE - 3/28@9:43AM: Here is an audio clip of Alex and Geddy presenting the Album of the Year award courtesy Eric at Power Windows, and here's a transcript:

Announcer: Please welcome from the legendary rock group Rush - Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson! (applause)

Alex: And the winner is ... Oh - wait a second. We are honored to present the final Juno tonight - Album of the Year - sponsored by the Canadian Recording Industry Association. This award represents the best Canada has to offer.

Geddy: One of the things you learn quickly when you start out in the music business is that there are many different roads to success. These nominees illustrate that perfectly.

Alex: The routes these artists took vary from a major label to an independent path.

Geddy: From constant national tours to the global power of the internet.

Alex: But no matter what the business approach is, the music always has to be great. That's the other rule you'll learn quickly Geddy.

Geddy: Thanks Al. The nominees for Album of the Year are (announcer lists nominees)

Alex: And the Juno goes to.... The Suburbs, Arcade Fire!

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/28@9:22AM: The Canadian Music Scene has this photo posted of Geddy and Alex getting ready to present Arcade Fire with their Juno. Apparently you can watch the entire show at the CTV website, but as of right now the feed doesn't seem to be working (at least not for me).

UPDATE - 3/28@7:04AM: ... and yet another photo - this one from CTV (thanks double-agent). And one from the Toronto Sun (thanks Power Windows).

UPDATE - 3/27@10:44PM: Geddy and Alex were just on and presented Arcade Fire with the Album of the Year award for The Suburbs (thanks limelighter).

UPDATE - 3/27@10:02PM: The Canadian Music Scene posted this great red carpet photo of Geddy and Alex which you can check out on their homepage.

UPDATE - 3/27@9:00PM: ... And another. This one from the CTV website.

UPDATE - 3/27@8:39PM: Here's another photo of Alex and Geddy on the Junos red carpet from the Toronto Globe and Mail. Alex looks a little cold. :)

UPDATE - 3/27@8:01PM: Geddy and Alex appeared on the CTV eTalk web broadcast of the Junos red carpet and reader Don C was able to get a screen grab. Ed Robertson of the Barenaked Ladies joined them just after this photo was taken and said he was Neil Peart. :)

UPDATE - 3/27@9:12AM: Broken Social Scene's This Movie is Broken was also up for Music DVD of the Year and founding member Brendan Canning was rooting for Rush too. From the Toronto Sun (thanks RushFanForever):

... [Canning] also thinks Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage will trump This Movie Is Broken for music DVD of the year. "As much as I like our film and our concert DVD, you gotta give credence and credit. What are you going to do? You can't take Rush, you can't knock them off the podium. And video, I honestly haven't looked at the other nominees in video."

Back in 2006 Geddy Lee had a cameo in Broken Social Scene's music video for their song Fire Eye'd Boy.

----- snip -----

The 2011 Juno Gala and Awards was held in Toronto this evening hosted by Jian Ghomeshi and Seamus O'Regan where Juno Awards in 32 of the 40 categories were awarded. The remaining 8 will be announced tomorrow during the 2011 Juno Awards Ceremony broadcast on CTV live from the Air Canada Centre starting at 8PM EST where Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson will be presenters. The Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage was one of the lucky winners and brought home the Juno for Music DVD of the Year! A big congratulations to Rush and the filmmakers Sam Dunn and Scot McFadyen. This is Rush's first Juno since 2004 when they won Music DVD of the Year for Rush in Rio. For more history on Rush and the Juno Awards see this post. Thanks to Paul at The Canadian Music Scene for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Juno Awards this weekend; history of Rush and the Junos]
[Geddy Lee talks about Canadian music industry at VIP Juno Luncheon]
[Special Juno Screening of Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage]
[Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee to attend 2011 Juno Awards Ceremony]
[Vote For Rush in Juno Awards' Canadian Top 40 Songs of 40 Years]
[Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage nominated for Juno Award]

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Rush's BU2B quietly released as radio single
6:38PM EST | link | comments (10) |

Rush BU2BJust over three weeks ago in the first week of March Rush's BU2B was quietly released as a radio single, and almost nobody even noticed. The song had already been released on June 1st of last year as the side B to the Caravan single that was released for mp3 download. So most stations had already been playing it for some time and it even emerged onto a few of the radio charts last summer. Not to mention the fact that Rush included it as part of their setlist on the Time Machine Tour. Sirius/XM satellite radio made a relatively big deal out of it and premiered it as their Breaking Bone track on Sunday, March 6th (thanks Sean). It's now in its 4th week of release and has moved into the top 40 on the Mediabase Rock Charts; at the time of this post it's sitting at #27. So if you are so inclined, call your local rock radio station and request the track. There also will be a 7" vinyl limited edition version of the song available for the UK's Record Store Day on Saturday, April 16; and a 7" vinyl Caravan/BU2B available for the US and Canadian Record Store Day on the same day.

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Rush's Red Barchetta named top Canadian car tune
9:18AM EST | link | comments (18) |

The Toronto Globe and Mail's Globe Drive section celebrated Juno weekend by naming the Top 10 Canadian car tunes in today's edition. At the top of their list is Rush's Red Barchetta, which we'll soon get to hear in glorious 5.1 Surround Sound (and on tour of course). From the article:

1. Red Barchetta
Album: Moving Pictures (1981)
Artist: Rush
Canadian content: Bassist Geddy Lee is from Toronto; guitarist Alex Lifeson was born in Fernie, B.C.; drummer Neil Peart grew up in Port Dalhousie, Ont.

Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up. On a completely self-indulgent but related note, here's a photo of my son's Rush-mobile pinewood derby car. :)

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Friday, March 25, 2011

Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:51PM EST | link | comments (29) |

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011Rush wraps up rehearsals for the 2011 leg of the Time Machine Tour this weekend in Toronto, while Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson get ready for the 2011 Juno Awards at the Air Canada Centre on Sunday where they will be presenters. Then it's on to Sunrise, Florida to get ready for the tour kick off on Wednesday of next week at the Bank Atlantic Center. The band will likely perform a full-scale rehearsal at the venue either Monday or Tuesday night - no other events are going on either day. Fans have been happily receiving their Music Today fan pre-sale tickets over the last couple of weeks, and VIP ticket packages should be going out soon. Reader Wendel inquired about the packages with FanFire a couple of weeks ago and was told that they do expect to begin shipping them out before the tour starts. They have less than one week, so let's hope so. I haven't heard from anyone who has actually received a package yet. If anyone does, please let us know. The news from across the pond is good too; tickets have begun shipping for the UK shows as well according to UK reader ByTorUK. Rush was also featured in yesterday's edition of the UK's Guardian Newspaper for a piece by Rob Fitzpatrick titled Rush: Our fans feel vindicated. The article talks about the resurgence in popularity of Rush in recent years and how it's no longer uncool to be a Rush fan. It contains interview snippets from Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson from around the time of the November 8, 2010 London screening of the documentary where Geddy Lee made an appearance and answered questions from the audience.

The 2011 Juno Awards ceremony takes place this weekend at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee will attend the ceremony where they will be presenters and the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage is nominated for Music DVD of the Year. On Tuesday the Ontario Media Development Corporation held their VIP Juno luncheon and Geddy Lee along with Rush documentary filmmakers Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn were in attendance. Here's a news story covering the Luncheon from CHCH News which includes some interview clips with Sam and Scot. Geddy did not appear in that clip but spoke a little about the state of the Canadian rock music industry as reported in this National Post article. Here's a CTV news story covering the history of the Junos which prominently features Rush. In one scene they show a rare Bruce Cole photograph of Geddy and Alex in the CHUM radio studios. They also talk about how Rush along with Bachman Turner Overdrive were instrumental in reshaping Canadian rock music in the 70s and show footage of Rush performing Closer To The Heart live in 1987. You can check out the video at this link. Larry Fedoruk of New Talk 610 CKTB probably is not rooting for the documentary to win. He wrote this scathing piece in his blog last week describing how much he hates Rush. At least he accepts the fact that he'll be getting a lot of email and angry comments from Rush fans because of his jerkitude.

iDrum Magazine debut issueOn Monday Neil Peart was interviewed for a future appearance on the CBC's Strombo (formerly The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos). The interview should air in a week or two but no specific date has yet been given. Neil also was interviewed for the debut issue of the new interactive online drumming magazine iDrum where he is featured on the cover. Neil covers a wide range of subjects in this 5-part, 55-minute in-depth video interview. You can check out iDrum and Neil's complete interview at this link. There's also a 3-minute preview video that was posted to iDrum's YouTube channel. They are also running a contest for a cool Neil Peart package where all you need to do to enter is sign up for their FREE subscription.

Speaking of Neil, his 5th full-length book - Far and Away: A Prize Every Time - will release in May. I've received the official sell sheet for the book which you can check out at this link (PDF 180KB). Here are the technical details:

ISBN: 978-1-77041-058-9
8 x 10'', 260 pages, cloth
4-colour throughout, 150 photos
$32.95 CDN, $29.95 U.S.
May 2011
Memoir / Travel / Music

Earlier this week Musician's Friend launched an extensive mini-site highlighting the Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess. It features their Alex Lifeson video interview from last week along with detailed specs, high-res photos, Alex's gear list, purchase information and they also just yesterday added details regarding a very cool sweepstakes where you could Win The Ultimate Concert Experience With Alex Lifeson; a trip for 2 to Las Vegas along with concert tickets, a meet-and-greet with Alex Lifeson and a signed Les Paul Axcess. You can enter the sweepstakes at this link.

The first review for Rush's Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix came in a couple of days ago via a blog posting on Rush sound engineer Richard Chychi's website. Sound & Vision Magazine Editor-in-Chief Mike Mettler had the following to say:

... "First impressions: W-O-W. It's going to be really, really HARD to ever listen to this album "only" in stereo ever again! THIS is what surround was built for, so to speak ... Living inside it and loving it! ... Everyone needs to know how GREAT this 5.1 mix is!"

... "One of my favorite albums of all time is now better than ever. I look forward to listening to it again and again and getting more out of it each time I do ... Each song has its own individual sense of space ... It's such a rewarding listening experience." ...

Chycki also remarks that he is busily planning for the recording of the Cleveland show on April 15th. Both the DVD and Blu-ray versions of the remix will release on April 5th, but the Blu-ray will only be sold exclusively through Best Buy for the first 30 days; other retailers will have the Blu-ray version on May 3rd. Rush.com sent out a newsletter on Wednesday confirming this and providing some more details regarding the release. Reader PhillyMike also let me know that in the latest issue of Entertainment Weekly (April 1, 2011), there is a pullout titled Stuff We're Looking Forward to in April and under the April 5th they list the Moving Pictures 5.1 remix. For my next poll I thought I'd ask everyone what Rush album that they think should be next to get the 5.1 Surround Sound treatment. Take the poll and let us know. On a related note, Amazon.com is running a deal where you can download the Moving Pictures album on mp3 for just $3.99 (thanks plunge).

Earlier this week Universal Music Group released iPad app versions of some of the Classic Albums series including Rush's 2112/Moving Pictures. The apps are billed as interactive, socially aware, and Internet connected and include video interviews, extensive liner notes and comment sections. The Rush app can be downloaded at this link for $6.99.

Speaking of apps, Reader Alec P let me know that
BlackBerry App World has hit version 2.1.1.2. :)

In that same newsletter from Wednesday I mentioned above, Rush.com provided confirmation and some more details regarding the 7-inch limited edition vinyl release of Rush's Caravan/BU2B for Record Store Day which I'd reported earlier in the week:

Record Store Day - April 16 BU2B/Caravan will be released as a limited edition 7" vinyl for Record Store Day in the US & Canada. The 7" will be on colour vinyl - with either red or white along with a lyric insert.

To find a list of participating stores in the US check out this link and in Canada go to this link. To learn more about Record Store Day check out their website at RecordStoreDay.com.

April, 2011 RhythmDrumming legend and former Genesis frontman Phil Collins is featured in the April, 2011 issue of UK drum magazine Rhythm and they ask Neil Peart along with Mike Portnoy and Brann Dailor their opinions on why they hold Collins in such high esteem. The Rhythm Magazine website is also currently featuring an up close look at Neil's Time Machine Tour kit complete with some great photos and detailed captions. You can check it out here and get more details about the April, 2011 issue of Rhythm at this link.

Alex Lifeson was featured at the Terry Fox Foundation website last Friday where he asked the Terry Fox Video Trivia question of the day: In 1980 we presented Terry with an album. Which album was that? He then gives the possible 3 answers as 2112, Permanent Waves or Power Windows. You can watch the video at this link (the answer by the way is Permanent Waves).

David Barrett Trio - HollowbodyWhile on the subject of Alex Lifeson, back in January I'd mentioned that Lerxst had lent his studio and production expertise to the Toronto-based David Barrett Trio. Late last year after the Time Machine tour the Trio went into Alex's home studio and recorded three tunes: Hollowbody, Sonar, and Disappearance with Alex producing and Rich Chycki handling the engineering duties. Hollowbody was made available as an MP3 download via Amazon.com and iTunes last week for just $0.99 and the other 2 tracks should also soon be available as well. Hollowbody is a rocking, 2½-minute instrumental track with a bunch of crazy guitar riffs that any Rush fan should really appreciate. You can listen to a short preview of the track at this link and here's a promotional video of the band playing a live version of the song in studio. There will be a concert and cd release party this coming Thursday, March 31st at 8PM (doors open at 7PM), at the Gibson Guitar Artist Showroom (1205 King West, Toronto, ON). They'll have a special EP available for sale which will have the three aforementioned tunes on it. They'll also be recording some more tunes after the 2011 leg of the Time Machine tour. David talks about the songs and his collaboration with Lifeson came about in this January post on his blog. David will also be In The Studio with Bob and Blair this Saturday at 8pm, and Sunday at 10PM where they'll be playing the 3 new tunes for the first time on radio.

Back in June I'd mentioned that Canadian environmentalist organization the David Suzuki Foundation would be celebrating their 20th anniversary by launching a project that would bring together Rush and several other Canadian songwriters and performers for a compilation album called Playlist for the Planet. They also ran a songwriting contest over the past several months for environmentally-themed songs to include on the compilation. The compilation features Rush's Second Nature from the Hold Your Fire album. It was just released in Canada this past Tuesday and will release in the US next week. All proceeds from the sales of the compilation go to the David Suzuki Foundation.

Bass player extraordinaire Billy Sheehan was recently interviewed for MusicRadar.com to talk about the new Mr. Big album What If along with other subjects. When asked about how hard it is to both sing and play bass at the same time, Geddy Lee's name comes up:

... "It's pretty tricky. I work at it a lot. I can strum the guitar and sing all day long. But to play bass and sing at the same time, especially with some of the things I do with my right hand, it's hard. It doesn't come naturally, but it can be done. You just have to sit down and work out your parts. ... "I remember when we had the great honor of touring the Rush at one point, and I'd sit and talk to Geddy Lee about it. He's one of the sweetest guys around, by the way. But he told me that he has to work at it big-time. I don't know anybody who does it better than him. Sting, he drifts through his bass playing by dropping time while still keeping time. It's quite an art." ...

You can read the entire interview at this link. Sheehan also spoke about touring with Rush in a recent Examiner.com article which you can check out at this link.

Speaking of Geddy, he came in at #12 on XM radio's The Boneyard Top 19 Best Voices of Rock Countdown. The top 3 were Axl Rose, Bon Scott and Ronnie James Dio at #1. Thanks to Sniglets at Counterparts for the heads up.

In a recent interview with the Montreal Gazette (thanks Power Windows) Pixies drummer David Lovering describes Neil Peart as one of his biggest influences:

... A bigger surprise comes when the subject of their influences is raised. Lovering acknowledged reverence for John Bonham, "any drummer who played for Steely Dan" and especially Rush's Neil Peart. "When I first started playing for the Pixies, I was doing a lot of fills, believe me, just like Neil would do. It took a long time and a lot of concentration to keep it toned down," he said. ...

Here's a photo of Lovering behind his kit at a Santiago, Chile show this past summer sporting a Rush Fly By Night t-shirt.

Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins has also cited Peart as a huge influence in many interviews along with appearing in the Rush documentary to sing the praises of Rush. The new Foo Fighters single Rope has been garnering many comparisons to Rush since even before its release back on March 1st. In a recent Foo Fighters interview with MTV debuting the video for Rope Hawkins joked about the drum pattern in the chorus of the song saying he had thrown a Neil Peart lick in and then went on to say:

I owe Neil Peart a lot of money for the chorus of Rope. I'm splitting my royalties on that song with Neil Peart.

You can watch the video from this portion of the interview at this link.

Another rocker who cites Rush's influence in his playing is Maroon 5 guitarist James Valentine. In a recent feature with Guitar World (thanks RushFanForever) Valentine discusses his current playlist which includes Rush's YYZ:

"My older brother played me this when I was 10, and the hairs on the back of my neck stood up. I knew then that I wanted to play the guitar."

Valentine had also been spotted on an episode of MTV Cribs back in 2004 sporting a Power Windows t-shirt.

Last week Eric over at Power Windows posted this interesting bit about how some foreign pressings of Rush albums are censored in different ways. For instance, the iconic red star was censored from the cover of the original Korean pressing of 2112 because the red star is the on the iconic flag of North Korea.

There was a Rush reference on this past week's episode of the NBC action/comedy Chuck (Season 4, Episode 19: Chuck Versus the Muuurder). The character Morgan Grimes is interviewing potential new agents and after asking a series of serious questions to a group of candidates, he asks one of them Quick! What is Rush's best album?! to which the candidate replies Caress of Steel. Morgan then makes a buzzer noise, looks at the candidate with disappointment and says nope... next!. This is the second major Rush reference on Chuck. The first occurred in Episode 5 of Season 2: Chuck vs. Tom Sawyer back on October 27, 2008. You can watch Chuck Versus the Muuurder below or at this link. The Rush reference occurs at about the 5:40 mark.

What a crazy week it's been for Rush news! Have a great weekend. Only 5 more days until the Time Machine returns!

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Thursday, March 24, 2011

Rush feature in today's Guardian
10:52PM EST | link | comments (12) |

[Rush: Our fans feel vindicated]

Rush is featured in today's edition of the UK's Guardian Newspaper for a piece by Rob Fitzpatrick titled Rush: Our fans feel vindicated. The article talks about the resurgence in popularity of Rush in recent years and how it's no longer uncool to be a Rush fan. It contains interview snippets from Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson from around the time of the November 8, 2010 London screening of the documentary where Geddy Lee made an appearance and answered questions from the audience. From the article:

... Rush, and Rush fans, are long used to being the butt of the joke - kimono-wearing, book-learning, heavily moustachioed Canadian prog-rock overlords never seemed likely to be at the cutting edge of cool. But what's really interesting is how their fan archetype - that nerdy, computer-club, Dungeons and Dragons-playing, comic-reading, sci-fi geek - has moved from the margins right into the very heart of the mainstream. Rush have been uncool for so long that they are, finally, perhaps the coolest band in the world.

"We've been vindicated!" laughs guitarist Alex Lifeson ... "A lot of fans feel vindicated, too. There is a segment of our audience that are outsiders and some have grown into power and influence, but that bond they feel to us is still there. It's very, very deep and I don't think it's like that for a lot of other bands." ...

... After 37 years, Rush are still recording new material and still finding new places to play ("In South America they cry when they meet you," Lee says). More importantly, they're still friends.

"That's totally it," Lee says. "That's what Rush means, and that's the satisfying thing for all of us."

Back in his home office high above Toronto, Lifeson laughs out loud. "There are very, very few bands that get along anything like as well as we do. In fact, thinking about all the bands I've ever met, I really don't think there are any."

The article goes on to describe The Many Faces of Rush, one song at a time by showcasing the evolution of their songwriting over the years; Finding My Way, Xanadu, Rec Barchetta, Distant Early Warning and One Little Victory are profiled. The article also includes a piece from Neil Peart discussing Samuel Taylor Coleridge, whose poem Kubla Khan was the inspiration for Rush's Xanadu that had appeared in a Guardian article back in October, 2010. You can read the entire article at this link. Thanks to Tony R for the heads up.

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Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess Musician's Friend Sweepstakes
5:21PM EST | link | comments (10) |

Gibson Guitars unveiled their new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess at the 2011 Winter NAMM show back in January and later launched a detailed website featuring the guitar. Earlier this week Musician's Friend launched an even more extensive mini-site of their own highlighting the Axcess. It features their Alex Lifeson video interview from last week along with detailed specs, high-res photos, Alex's gear list, purchase information and they also just today added details regarding a very cool sweepstakes where you could Win The Ultimate Concert Experience With Alex Lifeson:

... The Grand Prize winner gets a pair of VIP tickets to see Rush live in Las Vegas, meet Alex, and take home a signed Gibson Alex Lifeson Axcess guitar. Musician's Friend will provide you and your guest with airfare, lodging, meals, local transportation, and premium concert seating in Las Vegas on June 24, 2011!

The Grand Prize has an approximate cash value of $5,999.00.

The winner will be selected in a random drawing on or around June 1, 2011. You're automatically entered every time you place an order with Musician's Friend between March 24, 2011, and May 31, 2011. No purchase necessary to enter.

You can enter the sweepstakes at this link. Alex is the Musician's Friend cover artist for their April, 2011 issue. In addition to the Musician's Friend video interview, there's also this Gibson.com interview from a few weeks ago where Alex talks about the Axcess. Here's the Musician's Friend video interview:

Thanks to Skip D for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[New Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess mini-site at Musician's Friend]
[Gibson Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess website launched]
[Gibson Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess now available for purchase]
[2011 Winter NAMM Show: Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess, Neil's kit]

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New Neil Peart interview with debut launch of iDrum Magazine
1:42PM EST | link | comments (15) |

UPDATE - 3/24@7:29PM: Here's a 3-minute preview video that was posted to iDrum's YouTube channel (thanks RushFanForever):

----- snip -----

iDrum Magazine debut issueUPDATE - 3/24@3:56PM: I just realized that all 5 parts of the interview are in the issue! I'd been confused because they initially mentioned that only part one was contained in this issue: ...The launch issue of iDrum features part one of an exclusive in-depth 40-minute video interview.... Anyways, just flip through to the next 3 pages in the issue and you'll see the other 4 parts to the interview. In total, all 5 parts add up to around 55 minutes of interview time! They are also running a contest for a cool Neil Peart package where all you need to do is sign up for their FREE subscription:

As if that wasn't enough the first issue will also feature a massive competition, giving readers the extraordinary opportunity to win the ultimate Neil Peart package. Worth in excess of $15,000, this piece of drumming history includes a set of four of Neil's favourite DW touring snares in a red velvet lined road style display case, plus a set of Sabian Paragon Cymbals and a brick of Neil's custom designed ProMark sticks. This is a once in a lifetime chance to own some seriously collectable Neil Peart signature products, all you need to do to enter is subscribe for FREE!

----- snip -----

Lick Library just launched a very cool and unique new interactive online drumming magazine called iDrum. Neil Peart graces the cover of their debut issue which also contains part 1 of an in-depth interview with Pratt. In this 8-minute portion of the 55-minute interview Neil talks a lot about his motorcycling adventures on the last tour, specifically his travels in South America. From the magazine:

Two Wheels Good

Honoured by the AMA (American Motorcycle Association) making him a motorcycle ambassador, is something that Neil is clearly very proud of, particularly as it was an unexpected honour from a field outside of music. His desire to combine adventure travel and business travel is renowned and the fact that Neil then transmits those adventures into books, interviews and of course into the musical world of Rush cannot be underestimated. Enjoy this fascinating and completely absorbing insight into the world of Neil Peart.

Rhythmic Ideas

Neil recalls sitting in a restaurant in Brazil hearing a beautiful hybrid rhythm that mixed Brazilian and West African music and the profound effect it was to have upon him. All this, plus his live of discovering musical and cultural influences whilst traveling, makes for a fascinating insight.

You can check out iDrum and Neil's interview at this link. Thanks to Power Windows for the heads up.

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Juno Awards this weekend; history of Rush and the Junos
11:51AM EST | link | comments (5) |

Juno Awards 40thUPDATE - 3/27@11:13AM: The Bare Naked Ladies' Ed Robertson talks about meeting Geddy Lee backstage at a past Juno Awards (thanks RushFanForever):

"I met Geddy Lee for the first time at the Junos. Now, this is back a million years ago at the Hummingbird Centre [in Toronto], but it speaks to the fact that it's a chance for a lot of us to meet, run into and have a conversation with our idols. Despite our own successes and what we've gone on to do, we were all teenagers with our walls plastered with music posters and we were fans like everybody else. And it's an opportunity for us to not just go hang out with friends, but our idols are there and it's an opportunity to walk up to - for me, Rush and Kim Mitchell and say 'I know you know that I'm a fan because I've talked about it for years, but I need to tell you that.' It's an opportunity to get to be that 15 year old kid who always wanted to meet that person."

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/25@9:51PM: In today's Globe and Mail, Juno Award winner Dan Hill - whom I mentioned below - describes how he recently discovered that his Juno had been stolen just before he needed it for a photo shoot with Caitlin Cronenberg. At one point he mentions possibly borrowing Alex Lifeson's for the shoot:

... "You lost your Juno award?" Suspicion curled round the edges of Caitlin's usually friendly voice, leaving me with the sinking feeling that she suspected I'd never actually won a Juno. That for decades I'd been making false claims and finally my bluff had been called. "If you don't have your Juno, I can't photograph you," Caitlin explained. "Well, can I borrow, say, one of Gordon Lightfoot's Junos, or Alex Lifeson's? They both live pretty close by." ...

You can read the entire article at this link and see a photo of Dan with his Juno (thanks RushFanForever)

----- snip -----

The 2011 Juno Awards ceremony takes place this weekend at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto - the first time in over 10 years in which they will be held in that city. It's the 40th anniversary of the Awards so they are pulling out all the stops to celebrate. The Juno Awards are the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards and Rush has been nominated several times over the years and even won a few (unlike the Grammys). Their first Juno Award occurred exactly 36 years ago today on March 24, 1975 when they won for Most Promising Group (they really got it right with that one!). In 1978 they were named Group of the Year and here's a photo of Geddy and Alex accepting that award. Alex made the funny comment We'd like to thank Dan Hill for not being a group (Dan Hill had been nominated for his hit Sometimes When We Touch) when accepting the award. Photographer Bruce Cole took that photo and talks about his work with Rush and other bands in this recent Q&A interview with Cashbox Magazine (thanks RushFanForever for the info and links). They won another award for Group of the Year the following year in 1979 and didn't win any others until 1990 when they were named Artist of the Decade for the 1980s. For that award they were introduced by Sam the Record Man himself and you can watch a video of the presentation at this link. In 1991 their Presto album won Best Hard Rock/Metal Album and the following year in 1992 Roll the Bones won for Hard Rock Album of the Year. Then in 1994 they were inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame and you can watch that presentation at this link. After a 10-year Juno dry spell, they were back in 2004 where they won Music DVD of the Year for Rush in Rio. This year the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage is also nominated in that same category. Let's hope they can chalk up another Juno win with this nomination. In 1983 their single New World Man from Signals was nominated for Single of the Year but didn't win. Last month as part of the 40th anniversary Juno celebration the Junos ran a contest where they asked folks to vote on their Top 40 Canadian Songs that had been nominated over the history of the Awards. New World Man ended up making the list at #30 (thanks Sean). In addition to Rush being nominated for several Junos over the years, their album artist Hugh Syme was also nominated several times over the years for work he had done on various Rush albums, and won for Moving Pictures in 1982, Power Windows in 1986, Presto in 1990 and Roll the Bones in 1992. On Tuesday the Ontario Media Development Corporation held their VIP Juno luncheon celebrating Ontario Juno nominees and the companies supporting them, including record labels, music publishers, artist managers and agents. Geddy Lee along with Rush documentary filmmakers Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn were in attendance. Here's a news story covering the Luncheon from CHCH News which includes some interview clips with Sam and Scot. Geddy did not appear in that clip but spoke a little about the state of the Canadian rock music industry as reported in this National Post article:

... Talking about the current state of Canadian rock, Lee said, "Metal didn't ever rely on huge mainstream support. And so the fact that the mainstream music industry has been hit so hard hasn't affected a lot of the more underground rock and metal scene as it has most of the other genres." ...

Both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson will be presenters at the Juno Awards ceremony Sunday night which airs on CTV at 8PM EST. Here's a CTV news story (thanks bucklemyshoe) covering the history of the Junos which prominently features Rush. In one scene they show a rare Bruce Cole photograph of Geddy and Alex (thanks Power Windows) in the CHUM radio studios. They also talk about Rush along with Bachman Turner Overdrive being instrumental in reshaping Canadian rock music in the 70s and show footage of Rush performing Closer To The Heart live in 1987. You can check out the video at this link. Here's the video of Rush's presentation as Artist of the Decade back in 1990:

Related Posts:
[Geddy Lee talks about Canadian music industry at VIP Juno Luncheon]
[Special Juno Screening of Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage]
[Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee to attend 2011 Juno Awards Ceremony]
[Vote For Rush in Juno Awards' Canadian Top 40 Songs of 40 Years]
[Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage nominated for Juno Award]

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Wednesday, March 23, 2011

More details on Record Store Day release of Caravan/BU2B 7" vinyl
9:56PM EST | link | comments (9) |

UPDATE - 4/14@5:55PM: Here's the official listing from the Record Store Day website (thanks Kelly M).

Rush.com just sent out a newsletter which confirms the 7-inch limited edition vinyl release of Rush's Caravan/BU2B for Record Store Day which I'd reported yesterday, along with a few more details:

Record Store Day - April 16 BU2B/Caravan will be released as a limited edition 7" vinyl for Record Store Day in the US & Canada. The 7" will be on colour vinyl - with either red or white along with a lyric insert.

To find a list of participating stores in the US check out this link and in Canada go to this link. To learn more about Record Store Day check out their website at RecordStoreDay.com.

Related Posts:
[Caravan/BU2B 7" vinyl available for Record Store Day]
[Rush BU2B 7" vinyl to be available at UK Record Store Day April 16]

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Geddy Lee talks about Canadian music industry at VIP Juno Luncheon
6:14PM EST | link | comments (6) |

UPDATE - 3/23@9:14PM: Here's a news story covering the Luncheon from CHCH News (thanks RushFanForever). Geddy doesn't appear in the video but Rush documentary filmmakers Scot McFadyen and Sam Dunn do and even say a few words.

The Ontario Media Development Corporation held their VIP Juno luncheon yesterday in the run-up to this weekend's Juno Awards. The luncheon celebrated Ontario Juno nominees and the companies supporting them, including record labels, music publishers, artist managers and agents. Geddy Lee was in attendance and spoke a little about the state of the Canadian rock music industry. From the National Post:

... Talking about the current state of Canadian rock, Lee said, "Metal didn't ever rely on huge mainstream support. And so the fact that the mainstream music industry has been hit so hard hasn't affected a lot of the more underground rock and metal scene as it has most of the other genres." ...

The 2011 Juno Awards (the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards) take place this coming Sunday, March 27th at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson will be presenters at the ceremony and the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage is nominated for Music DVD of the Year. TIFF Bell Lightbox will be presenting a special Juno screening of the documentary this evening at 9:45PM with introductions by directors Sam Dunn & Scot McFayden. You can get your tickets at this link. Rush previously won a Juno award for Music DVD of the Year back in 2004 for Rush in Rio. The documentary had also been nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Long Form Music Video category but ended up losing to The Doors documentary.

Related Posts:
[Special Juno Screening of Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage]
[Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee to attend 2011 Juno Awards Ceremony]
[Vote For Rush in Juno Awards' Canadian Top 40 Songs of 40 Years]
[Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage nominated for Juno Award]

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First review in for the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix
12:35PM EST | link | comments (10) |

UPDATE - 3/28@10:36AM: In celebration of the release of the Moving Pictures 5.1 remix, John at Cygnus-X1.net is holding a contest to give away five copies of the CD/DVD version - one per week starting this Friday, April 1st. To enter just go to this link.

UPDATE - 3/23@9:44PM: Rush.com just sent out a newsletter which confirms the Best Buy exclusive offer:

... Please note: For US fans: The CD+BLURAY edition will be available in the US exclusively at Best Buy for the first 4 weeks and the CD + DVD version will be available to all retailers in the US starting April 5th!...

----- snip -----

The first review for Rush's Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix just came in via a blog posting on Rush sound engineer Richard Chychi's website:

... So I guess the review pre-release copies of Rush's Blu-Ray Moving Pictures 5.1 remix/remaster are making the rounds. It's so exciting to get feedback from people enjoying something that I had so much fun working on. With permission, I'm sharing pieces of a recent email here from a guy that listens to A LOT of 5.1:

... "First impressions: W-O-W. It's going to be really, really HARD to ever listen to this album "only" in stereo ever again! THIS is what surround was built for, so to speak ... Living inside it and loving it! ... Everyone needs to know how GREAT this 5.1 mix is!"

... "One of my favorite albums of all time is now better than ever. I look forward to listening to it again and again and getting more out of it each time I do ... Each song has its own individual sense of space ... It's such a rewarding listening experience."

Mike Mettler - Editor-in-Chief, Sound & Vision Magazine.

Chycki also remarks that he is busily planning for the recording of the Cleveland show on April 15th. Both the DVD and Blu-ray versions of the remix will release on April 5th, but the Blu-ray will only be sold exclusively through Best Buy for the first 30 days; other retailers will have the Blu-ray version on May 3rd. Here are some details regarding the remix from Rush.com:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme ...

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray).

Related Posts:
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release update]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release delayed]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix details from Rush.com]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix available for pre-order]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix to be released April 5th]
[Richard Chycki on the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix]
[Alex Lifeson on UK digital radio station Planet Rock today]

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Billy Sheehan on Geddy Lee in new MusicRadar.com interview
11:56AM EST | link | comments (7) |

Bill Sheehan - MusicRadar.comBass player extraordinaire Billy Sheehan was recently interviewed for MusicRadar.com to talk about the new Mr. Big album What If along with other subjects. When asked about how hard it is to both sing and play bass at the same time, Geddy Lee's name comes up:

... "It's pretty tricky. I work at it a lot. I can strum the guitar and sing all day long. But to play bass and sing at the same time, especially with some of the things I do with my right hand, it's hard. It doesn't come naturally, but it can be done. You just have to sit down and work out your parts. ... "I remember when we had the great honor of touring the Rush at one point, and I'd sit and talk to Geddy Lee about it. He's one of the sweetest guys around, by the way. But he told me that he has to work at it big-time. I don't know anybody who does it better than him. Sting, he drifts through his bass playing by dropping time while still keeping time. It's quite an art." ...

You can read the entire interview at this link. Sheehan also spoke about touring with Rush in a recent Examiner.com article which you can check out at this link. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Tuesday, March 22, 2011

New Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess mini-site at Musician's Friend
4:43PM EST | link | comments (15) |

Gibson Guitars unveiled their new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess at the 2011 Winter NAMM show back in January and later launched a detailed website featuring the guitar. Now Musician's Friend just launched an even more extensive mini-site of their own highlighting the Axcess. It features their Alex Lifeson video interview from last week along with detailed specs, high-res photos, Alex's gear list, purchase information and more. You can check it out at this link. Alex is the Musician's Friend cover artist for their April, 2011 issue. In addition to the Musician's Friend video interview, there's also this Gibson.com interview from a few weeks ago where Alex talks about the Axcess. Here's the Musician's Friend video interview:

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Caravan/BU2B 7" vinyl available for Record Store Day
11:40AM EST | link | comments (5) |

UPDATE - 3/23@9:47PM: Rush.com just sent out a newsletter which confirms the release:

Record Store Day - April 16 BU2B/Caravan will be released as a limited edition 7" vinyl for Record Store Day in the US & Canada. The 7" will be on colour vinyl - with either red or white along with a lyric insert.

----- snip -----

Last month we learned that a 7-inch limited edition vinyl release of Rush's BU2B would be made available for the UK's Record Store Day which takes place on Saturday, April 16th. Now Canadian music store Sunrise Records is listing that they'll have a 7-inch limited edition vinyl release of Rush's Caravan/BU2B for Record Store Day. For more information check out their website. It's also possible that other participating stores may have the release available. To find a list of participating stores in the US check out this link and in Canada go to this link. To learn more about Record Store Day check out their website at RecordStoreDay.com.

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Playlist for the Planet compilation featuring Rush's Second Nature
11:10AM EST | link | comments (14) |

UPDATE - 3/22@11:47AM: Note: the compilation releases today in Canada but in the US it won't release until next Tuesday, March 29th.

Back in June I'd mentioned that Canadian environmentalist organization the David Suzuki Foundation would be celebrating their 20th anniversary by launching a project that would bring together Rush and several other Canadian songwriters and performers for a compilation album called Playlist for the Planet. They also ran a songwriting contest over the past several months for environmentally-themed songs to include on the compilation. The compilation features Rush's Second Nature from the Hold Your Fire album and was released today via Amazon, iTunes and to stores across Canada. You can purchase a copy at this link with all proceeds going to the David Suzuki Foundation. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Monday, March 21, 2011

Rush reference on NBC's Chuck
10:43PM EST | link | comments (20) |

UPDATE - 3/22@8:32AM: The episode is now available online at this link. The Rush reference occurs at about the 5:40 mark.

----- snip -----

There was a Rush reference on tonight's episode of the NBC action/comedy Chuck (Season 4, Episode 19: Chuck Versus the Muuurder). The character Morgan Grimes is interviewing potential new agents and after asking a series of serious questions to a group of candidates, he asks one of them Quick! What is Rush's best album?! to which the candidate replies Caress of Steel. Morgan then makes a buzzer noise, looks at the candidate with disappointment and says nope... next!. This is the second major Rush reference on Chuck. The first occurred in Episode 5 of Season 2: Chuck vs. Tom Sawyer back on October 27, 2008. Thanks to drmdawg13 and Falcon for the heads up.

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Reminder: Neil Peart on CBC's Strombo tonight
9:43PM EST | link | comments (12) |

UPDATE - 3/22@10:43AM: pt2112 over at the Rush Forum was at the taping and posted the following (thanks nobodys hero):

It was taped today, but it won't be actually on TV for another week or two. I was in the audience. It was absolutely incredible to see Neil up close about 10-15 feet away in an intimate setting.

He talked about touring, his new book and then dissected Moving Pictures track by track among other things. It was an unbelievable experience that I will never forget.

----- snip -----

UPDATE - 3/22@9:08AM: RushFanForever confirmed with Bruce Cockburn's management that both Neil Peart and Cockburn did tape their respective appearances on Strombo yesterday. They even chatted backstage he said. But apparently Strombo tapes multiple shows on any given day for air at a later date. There's no word exactly when the show with Neil will air, but he was definitely interviewed.

UPDATE - 3/21@11:50PM: It doesn't sound as if Neil's interview appeared on tonight's show, although there's plenty of evidence supporting that his interview was taped earlier today. I've received reports from people who attended the taping and an email was definitely sent out last week announcing that Neil Peart and Bruce Cockburn would be appearing tonight. Perhaps they pre-record some interviews for a later airdate? I'm thoroughly confused here so if anyone has any insight, please let us know. The featured guest on tonight was Jay Baruchel.

As I'd reported over the weekend, Neil Peart will appear on the CBC's Strombo (formerly The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos) tonight. The show has already been taped and will air later tonight at 11:05PM EST. Reader ghostrider_2112 attended the taping and confirms that Neil appeared on the show, and the Edmonton Journal also is listing Neil as a guest. For those of you without access to the CBC, the episode will be posted to the show's website soon after it airs and excerpts may be posted to their YouTube channel at some point this evening. Although both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson have been guests on the show multiple times, this is Neil Peart's first appearance. Neil was also recently interviewed by DJ Jim Ladd for close to 2 hours to discuss the Moving Pictures 5.1 remix. That interview will air in 2 or 3 weeks on Ladd's KLOS radio show which airs Sunday through Thursday.

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Special Juno Screening of Rush: Beyond The Lighted Stage
8:18PM EST | link | comments (5) |

The 2011 Juno Awards (the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards) takes place this coming Sunday, March 27th at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson will be presenters at the ceremony and the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage is nominated for Music DVD of the Year. The Rush Facebook page reported earlier today that TIFF Bell Lightbox will be presenting a special Juno screening of the documentary on Wednesday, March 23rd at 9:45PM with introductions by directors Sam Dunn & Scot McFayden. You can get your tickets at this link. Rush previously won a Juno award for Music DVD of the Year back in 2004 for Rush in Rio. The documentary had also been nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Long Form Music Video category but ended up losing to The Doors documentary.

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Rush 2112/Moving Pictures Classic Albums iPad app now available
6:30PM EST | link | comments (9) |

Switched.com reported earlier today that Universal Music Group has made available iPad app versions of some of the Classic Albums series including Rush's 2112/Moving Pictures. The apps are billed as interactive, socially aware, and Internet connected and include video interviews, extensive liner notes and comment sections. The Rush app can be downloaded at this link for $6.99. Thanks to John at Cygnus-X1.net for the heads up.

Related Posts:
[Rush 2112/Moving Pictures documentary release preview]
[Rush Hashanah and Rush Classic Albums tonight on VH1 Classic]
[Celebrate Rush Hashanah on VH1 Classic next month]
[Rush 2112/Moving Pictures documentary available for pre-order]
[Rush 2112/Moving Pictures Classic Albums preview]
[Rush Classic Albums special to air on TV before Rush documentary]
[Moving Pictures, 2112 Classic Album DVD due September 28th]
[Moving Pictures, 2112 Classic Album DVDs due in September]
[Rush Classic Albums special to air on VH1?]

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RushCon 2011 location and dates announced
1:16PM EST | link | comments (9) |

The folks at RushCon announced the location and dates for this year's convention earlier today. RushCon X1 as it has been dubbed will take place the weekend of June 24-25th at the MGM Grand/Hooters Hotel in Las Vegas and coincide with the Rush concert on June 24th. From the RushCon website:

Ahhh 2011. Where has the time gone?

So, here at RushCon camp we've been doing a lot of thinking. Where to have this year's convention? What to do?

We have the Time Machine tour embarking in weeks, and we know we needed to make some decisions. As always, we want to give our attendees the best possible convention, filled with the best events. We have found, over the past years, that we usually get a great turnout when our event coincides with an actual Rush concert. It's the perfect way to celebrate this band that we love, with the fans that we cherish.
Without a Toronto show this summer, combined with the incredible time we had in Las Vegas last year, we thought it would be best to keep the con around the same time as a concert.

So we are back in Vegas this summer.
We will do 2 days of events: Friday, June 24th after the concert, and a full day of events Saturday June 25th.

What does this mean for you, dear Toronto? It means that in 2012, we will be coming back at you in a MAJOR way. RushCon will explode onto Toronto next summer.

But this year... here's looking at you, Vegas...

More details to come.

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Foo Fighters discuss Rush influence on new single Rope
11:33AM EST | link | comments (17) |

The new Foo Fighters single Rope has been garnering a few comparisons to Rush since even before its release back on March 1st. Back in early February Alan Cross of ExploreMusic.com described the track as follows:

... So what does it sound like? In a word, Rush. The interplay between guitars, bass and drums could be an instrumental bit from A Farewell to Kings or bits of "La Villa Strangiato" from Hemispheres, complete with multi-park drum breaks and quick shifts in time signature. (YFI: Taylor Hawkins is a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGGGGGEEEE Rush fan. Dave is, too.) ...

In my Friday updates post a couple of weeks ago I had mentioned how Neil Peart's name had come up a couple of times in a recent Foo Fighters interview with MTV debuting the video for the song. Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins joked about the drum pattern in the chorus of the song saying he had thrown a Neil Peart lick in and then went on to say:

I owe Neil Peart a lot of money for the chorus of Rope. I'm splitting my royalties on that song with Neil Peart.

The video from this portion of the interview was just recently posted online to the MTV website. You can check it out below or at this link (thanks Power Windows):

You can listen to the Rope single at this link and watch the video here.

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Benedictum's cover of Rush's 2112 now available for streaming
9:13AM EST | link | comments (20) |

As I'd mentioned in a recent Friday Rush updates post, heavy metal band Benedictum's latest album Dominion contains a cover of Rush's 2112: Overture/The Temples of Syrinx as a bonus track on the international release. The album was released a few weeks ago via Frontiers Records and you can order a copy at this link. A full length clip of the cover was recently made available for streaming on YouTube and you can give it a listen below or at this link.

Thanks to BW&BK for the heads up.

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Saturday, March 19, 2011

Neil Peart talks Phil Collins in latest Rhythm Magazine
7:42PM EST | link | comments (11) |

April, 2011 RhythmDrumming legend and former Genesis frontman Phil Collins is featured in the April, 2011 issue of UK drum magazine Rhythm and they ask Neil Peart along with Mike Portnoy and Brann Dailor their opinions on why they hold Collins in such high esteem. The Rhythm Magazine website is also currently featuring an up close look at Neil's Time Machine Tour kit complete with some great photos and detailed captions. You can check it out here and get more details about the April, 2011 issue of Rhythm at this link. If anyone has a copy of the issue and can scan or transcribe the piece with Neil, please let us know. Thanks to africadrum2000 for the heads up.

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Neil Peart to appear on CBC's Strombo this coming Monday
9:48AM EST | link | comments (19) |

UPDATE - 3/19@4:00PM: The show will air Monday night at 11:05PM EST but will also be posted to the show's website and excerpts posted to their YouTube channel.

Neil Peart and Bruce Cockburn will be guests on the CBC's Strombo (formerly The Hour with George Stroumboulopoulos) this coming Monday, March 21st. Although not yet officially listed on the show's website, Superconductor at Counterparts received an email announcing the appearance. Counterparts member RUSHGIRL then called the show and confirmed the appearance along with the fact that there are no tickets currently available with a waiting list of 90 people. Although both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson have been guests on the show multiple times, this will be Neil Peart's first appearance. Neil was also recently interviewed by DJ Jim Ladd for close to 2 hours to discuss the Moving Pictures 5.1 remix. That interview will air in 2 or 3 weeks on Ladd's KLOS radio show which airs Sunday through Thursday. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Friday, March 18, 2011

Alex Lifeson asks the Terry Fox Video Trivia question of the day
3:09PM EST | link | comments (18) |

Alex Lifeson was featured at the Terry Fox Foundation website yesterday where he asked the Terry Fox Video Trivia question of the day: In 1980 we presented Terry with an album. Which album was that? He then gives the possible 3 answers as 2112, Permanent Waves or Power Windows. You can watch the video at this link:

If you aren't familiar with Terry Fox, here's some information from wikipedia:

Terrance Stanley "Terry" Fox CC OD, (July 28, 1958 - June 28, 1981) was a Canadian humanitarian, athlete, and cancer research activist. In 1980, with one leg having been amputated, he embarked on a cross-Canada run to raise money and awareness for cancer research. Although the spread of his cancer eventually forced him to end his quest after 143 days and 5,373 kilometres (3,339 mi), and ultimately cost him his life, his efforts resulted in a lasting, worldwide legacy. The annual Terry Fox Run, first held in 1981, has grown to involve millions of participants in over 60 countries and is now the world's largest one-day fundraiser for cancer research; over C$500 million has been raised in his name. ...

The Terry Fox Foundation organizes the Terry Fox Run every year. For more information and to donate, go to this link. Rush's Limelight was featured on the soundtrack of the 2005 TV movie Terry, which told the story of Terry's run. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Updates and other random Rush stuff
11:27AM EST | link | comments (15) |

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011As I'd mentioned yesterday, Rush began band rehearsals for the 2011 leg of the Time Machine Tour this past Wednesday in Toronto. They'll be rehearsing through next week before heading down to Florida for the tour kickoff on March 30th. We know that Alex and Geddy at least will remain in Toronto through next weekend since they are presenters at the 2011 Juno Awards ceremony at the Air Canada Centre on Sunday, March 27th. I've received several reports from fans saying that they have received their tickets that were ordered via the Music Today pre-sales. Music Today tickets typically mail out at least 2 weeks prior to the show date and that seems to be the way things are playing out so far. However, there are no reports of anyone having yet received their VIP ticket package. Those should start going out in the next few weeks but judging by the last tour it's really anybody's guess. If anyone receives any information regarding the VIP packages, please let us know. For anyone in the market for some discounted Time Machine Tour apparel, the Rush Backstage Club is having a closeout sale on a number of t-shirts along with a windbreaker for just $9.99. This probably means that we can expect some updated merchandise options on the 2011 leg of the tour. And while there's been no official word, from what I've been hearing there should be an updated version of the Time Machine Tourbook available on the upcoming 2011 leg.

Some more details regarding the CD+Blu-ray release of the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix came out earlier this week. Last week Amazon.com began listing just the Blu-ray version with a release date of May 3rd rather than April 5th. It was initially assumed that this was due to some delay related to the format. But on Wednesday we learned that it will still be released on April 5th but that Best Buy will be the exclusive retailer for the first 30 days. So you won't be able to purchase the Blu-ray version anywhere else until May 3rd.

Speaking of the Moving Pictures 5.1 remix, Tuesday night on his KLOS radio show DJ Jim Ladd announced that he had interviewed Neil Peart earlier in the day for close to 2 hours to discuss the release. The interview will air in 2 or 3 weeks on Ladd's KLOS radio show which airs Sunday through Thursday. More information as we learn it.

Alex Lifeson is featured on the cover of the April, 2011 issue of the Musician's Friend catalog to promote his new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess. Earlier this week Musician's Friend posted a 5-minute video interview to their website where Alex talks about the guitar. You can check out the interview at this link. Gibson Guitars unveiled their new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess at the 2011 Winter NAMM show back in January and last month launched a detailed website highlighting the guitar complete with detailed specs, a bunch of closeup photos, and purchase information. You can check out the website at this link. Alex also spoke a little about the Axcess in his Gibson interview from a few weeks ago.

David Barrett Trio - HollowbodyWhile on the subject of Alex Lifeson, back in January I'd mentioned that Lerxst had lent his studio and production expertise to the Toronto-based David Barrett Trio. Late last year after the Time Machine tour the Trio went into Alex's home studio and recorded three tunes: Hollowbody, Sonar, and Disappearance with Alex producing and Rich Chycki handling the engineering duties. Hollowbody was made available as an MP3 download via Amazon.com and iTunes earlier this week for just $0.99 and the other 2 tracks should also soon be available as well. Hollowbody is a rocking, 2½-minute instrumental track with a bunch of crazy guitar riffs that any Rush fan should really appreciate. You can listen to a short preview of the track at this link and here's a promotional video of the band playing a live version of the song in studio. There will be a concert and cd release party on Thursday, March 31st at 8PM (doors open at 7PM), at the Gibson Guitar Artist Showroom (1205 King West, Toronto, ON). They'll have a special EP available for sale which will have the three aforementioned tunes on it. They'll also be recording some more tunes after the 2011 leg of the Time Machine tour. David talks about the songs and his collaboration with Lifeson came about in this January post on his blog.

Speaking of Alex and his collaborations with other artists, back in 1985 Alex played guitar on Platinum Blonde's track Crying Over You from their album Alien Shores. Reader tignish located this hilarious old video interview with the band which includes a guest appearance from Alex being his goofy self. You can check it out at this link.

Eddie Trunk's debut book Eddie Trunk's Essential Hard Rock and Heavy Metal releases in 2 weeks on Friday, April 1st. The book discusses Trunk's most essential hard rock and heavy metal artists and includes an entire chapter devoted to Rush. Eddie Trunk has been a radio and TV personality in the world of hard rock and heavy metal for more than twenty-five years. He is currently the host of VH1 Classic's That Metal Show and also has two weekly radio shows; Eddie Trunk Live on Sirius/XM radio's Boneyard channel, and the FM-syndicated Eddie Trunk Rocks. Trunk is a huge Rush fan and has been one of the loudest proponents for getting them inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He interviewed Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson for VH1 Hangin' With back in 2005 and Neil Peart for the same program back in 2006. Geddy and Alex were also guests on the first season of That Metal Show back in 2009. You can pre-order a copy of the book at this link and check out a video preview here.

The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony took place earlier this week in New York City. As it usually does, the latest batch of inductees 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. Rush gets a mention in this article from the Daily Aztec and in this Cleveland Plain Dealer article. Chesapeake, Virginia radio station 106.9 The Fox is running a contest to determine which artists most deserve to be inducted into the Rock Hall. Rush is in the running and you can vote for them at this link (thanks Rebecca B). And John Basso penned this article at Technorati.com earlier in the week discussing how both Rush and KISS are repeatedly snubbed by the Rock Hall.

Back in September of 1970 Rush performed for a mere $250 at Stayner Collegiate Institute in central Ontario. In this Simcoe.com article from yesterday, then student council president Jeff Parton recounts his experience of hiring the band and his memories of that show and another Rush show at the college in April, 1971:

... "Well I was voted in as student council president in May 1970. And we had a meeting, I believe in June, and my social convener was a Daiva Kryzanauskas. She was the pin to how it all happened. She'd moved up here a few years before. And at the meeting she mentioned she had a connection to Rush," Parton said. He can't remember exactly what the connection was. Possibly she knew the manager. At any rate, Parton said she was able to get the band to come to Stayner. "Nobody else in the area got them at that time," he said. "They rarely came north of the city. But we had the connection. So we paid $250 for them in September. We paid $600 for them in April because they were just getting more popular." Parton said that at the time Rush was well known but the group hadn't put out any albums. It was still an up and coming band. "But we all knew about them. They didn't have a lot of their own material but they had some. Their clone songs though were unbelievable," he said. That September afternoon when the band arrived in town, Parton said they had only a small number of "roadies" - mostly friends he suspects - and very little equipment. In the evening, when they walked out on the stage in the gymnasium, they were met by 350 screaming teenagers. "There was a lot of yelling. The place just went wild," he said, laughing at the memory. "They did predominantly covers. The Rolling Stones, some heavier stuff. I think they did some Grand Funk Railroad. I can't remember exactly what tunes because I was doing a bunch of running around, making sure the night was running smoothly." The band - Geddy Lee on lead vocals and bass, Alex Lifeson on guitar and John Rutsey on drums - played for about two hours. "I'm pretty sure it wrapped up around 10:30 or so," Parton said. "People just loved it." Asked if people knew back then the band was going places, Parton gives a mixed answer. "I think some people thought that," he said. "I don't know if I did - not knowing my music as well as some people. But you could definitely tell they had talent." Parton noted that when he met the band back stage they were all "extremely" nice. "The neat thing was I thought - because of the long hair - they were much older but they were my age," he said. Lee, Lifeson and Rutsey were all 17 at the time. ...

There's also a great rare promotional photo of the band included with the article. Thanks to John at Cygnus-X1.net for the heads up.

Eric Wedum has a website called F*ck Yeah Headlines where each weekday he finds a headline on a major news site and illustrates it without reading a word of the story. Yesterday's headline was taken from the Wall Street Journal and read Rush to Fix Quake-Damaged Undersea Cables. You can check out his very funny Rush-related illustration at this link (thanks Craig).

Reader Professordrums let me know that Sammy Hagar was a guest on Howard Stern's radio show this past week to discuss his new book Red: My Uncensored Life in Rock. They got on the subject of Michael Anthony and Sammy went on to say that Michael Anthony may be the best rock bassist/vocalist ever, second only to Geddy Lee. In chapter 11 (titled Father's Day) of Sammy's book he talks a bit about Rush and manager Ray Danniels. Ray was once married to Alex Van Halen's sister-in-law and Sammy partially blames Ray for Van Halen's breakup as outlined in this Guitars 101 forum post (thanks RushFanForever).

Rush and the Rush documentary get a mention in this recent Globe and Mail article on rare California red wines:

A woman wrote me recently to say that she and her husband had just watched the documentary Beyond the Lighted Stage, which is about the Canadian rock trio Rush. In one scene on the DVD, lead singer Geddy Lee orders a wine called Jonata. The woman, a big Rush fan, couldn't find the wine here and wanted to know if it was worth buying direct from California and privately shipping it here. "It's quite pricey," she said. Yes, it is. How about $50 (U.S.) for the least expensive in the lineup - if you're lucky enough to score a bottle or two from the tiny quantities produced. Some of the wines cost $125. ...

Former Skid Row frontman Sebastian Bach recently entered the studio with his new three-piece band and posted the following to his Facebook Page earlier in the week:

Today we begin recording the bass guitar on the record! This record will be the first I have ever done as a three-piece [Bach on vocals, Nick Sterling on guitar and bass, and Bobby Jarzombek on drums]. Nick Sterling is a monster bass player and if anyone else played on the record, I would just say 'play it like Nick did,' so hey, why not let the man himself handle the low end?! Maybe the back cover will feature us three in kimonos ala RUSH '2112'. I can see it now, hahaha! Everything is sounding killer!

Enter Music Publishing are publishers of drum and percussion magazines worldwide including DRUM! Magazine Their annual Drummies readers poll has been gaining in popularity year after year and in 2010 had over 6500 ballots cast. Voting for this year's Drummies is now open and you can place your vote until May 1st at this link. Neil Peart has won Drummer of the Year multiple times including the last four years running along with many other awards. This year Enter Music Publishing will have its 20th anniversary and in celebration launched a Drummies Hall Of Fame where Neil Peart along with 10 other famous drummers who have won 5 or more total Drummie awards were inducted. Hall of Fame members are no longer eligible to win in the category for which they were inducted, so Neil Peart can no longer win in the Drummer of the Year category. He can still win in any of the other categories though, so go vote for Neil!

Reader The Clansman 2112 wanted me to let you all know that there is 1 spot open in his 4th annual rushisaband Fantasy Baseball League. It's free to join but only serious managers need apply! To join up go to this link and use the League ID 66957 with Password atmsite.

Here's the video of the David Barrett Trio performing their Lifeson-produced track Hollowbody:

That's it for this week. Have a great weekend! Only 12 days until the tour!!

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Thursday, March 17, 2011

Rush kicks off rehearsals for the 2011 Time Machine Tour
3:00PM EST | link | comments (30) |

UPDATE - 3/23@11:15AM: Not that there was any doubt, but Eyeweekly confirms that it definitely was Geddy in line at the airport.

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011Rush began band rehearsals for the 2011 leg of the Time Machine Tour yesterday in Toronto. It looks like Neil Peart drum tech Lorne Wheaton arrived in YYZ on Monday and will remain there until next weekend according to a post on his MySpace page. Neil Peart himself followed shortly thereafter; Pratt was spotted by a lucky fan at LAX on Wednesday en route to Toronto to join his bandmates. And Driven over at Counterparts spotted what looks to be Geddy Lee pictured in a photo (click on thumbnail above left) accompanying this Toronto Star article. The article talks about high volume issues that the Toronto Airport was experiencing on Wednesday. Assuming it is Geddy in the picture (looks like he's with his wife Nancy too), perhaps he was off taking a little R&R somewhere before rehearsals. Hopefully this didn't cause him to be late! Then there were a few postings from members of the road crew yesterday indicating that rehearsals have begun; Lorne Wheaton posted a simple Starting in YYZ message to his MySpace page yesterday afternoon, and Tony Gerianos (aka Jack Secret) posted Rehearsals about to start to his Facebook page early yesterday evening. So it sounds as if the boys will be rehearsing through next week before heading down to Florida for the tour kickoff on March 30th. Considering that the show and setlist will remain identical to the 2010 tour, I guess a week and a half of rehearsals is more than enough. We know that Alex and Geddy at least will remain in Toronto through next weekend since they are presenters at the 2011 Juno Awards ceremony at the Air Canada Centre on Sunday, March 27th. I hope everyone is enjoying my green St. Patty's day theme. The Rush Starman shamrock image I'm using is courtesy Eric at the Power Windows site. Eric is much better at that kind of thing than me. :) Only 13 days until the tour!!

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Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release update
4:38PM EST | link | comments (16) |

UPDATE - 3/23@9:45PM: Rush.com just sent out a newsletter which confirms the Best Buy exclusive offer:

... Please note: For US fans: The CD+BLURAY edition will be available in the US exclusively at Best Buy for the first 4 weeks and the CD + DVD version will be available to all retailers in the US starting April 5th!...

----- snip -----

Last week Amazon.com began listing the Blu-ray version of the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix with a release date of May 3rd rather than April 5th, and sent out notices to those who had already pre-ordered the package. However, the DVD version is still listed as releasing on April 5th. Now Power Windows is reporting the following updated information regarding the Blu-ray release:

Delay Update: It has been learned that the Moving Pictures - Deluxe Edition is still slated for an April 5th release. However, although nothing has yet been officially announced, it is rumored that while the CD/DVD edition will be available both in retail stores and via online retailers on April 5th, Best Buy will be the exclusive retailer for 30 days of the CD/Blu-Ray edition, i.e. it cannot be purchased elsewhere until May 3rd. It is unknown if the Best Buy edition will any additional content, stay tuned...

Rush.com had posted several details regarding the remix a few weeks ago including the following information:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme.

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray).

Related Posts:
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release delayed]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix details from Rush.com]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix available for pre-order]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix to be released April 5th]
[Richard Chycki on the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix]
[Alex Lifeson on UK digital radio station Planet Rock today]

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Jim Ladd interviews Neil Peart for KLOS radio show
10:11AM EST | link | comments (11) |

Last night on his KLOS radio show DJ Jim Ladd announced that he had interviewed Neil Peart earlier in the day for close to 2 hours to discuss the upcoming release of the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix. The interview will air in about 3 weeks on Ladd's KLOS radio show which airs Sunday through Thursday. More information as we learn it. Thanks to Moving-Pictures91 for the heads up.

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Rush featured in Eddie Trunk's Essential Hard Rock and Heavy Metal
9:02AM EST | link | comments (5) |

Eddie Trunk's debut book Eddie Trunk's Essential Hard Rock and Heavy Metal releases in 2 weeks on Friday, April 1st. The book discusses Trunk's most essential hard rock and heavy metal artists and includes an entire chapter devoted to Rush. Eddie Trunk has been a radio and TV personality in the world of hard rock and heavy metal for more than twenty-five years. He is currently the host of VH1 Classic's That Metal Show and also has two weekly radio shows; Eddie Trunk Live on Sirius/XM radio's Boneyard channel, and the FM-syndicated Eddie Trunk Rocks. Trunk is a huge Rush fan and has been one of the loudest proponents for getting them inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. He interviewed Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson for VH1 Hangin' With back in 2005 and Neil Peart for the same program back in 2006. Geddy and Alex were also guests on the first season of That Metal Show back in 2009. You can pre-order a copy of the book at this link and check out a video preview here. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up.

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Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Lifeson-produced David Barrett Trio track Hollowbody now available
11:58AM EST | link | comments (20) |

UPDATE - 3/16@9:36AM: Here's a promotional video of the band playing a live version of the track (thank Power Windows). I've also embedded the video at the bottom of the post.

David Barrett Trio - HollowbodyBack in January I'd mentioned that Alex Lifeson had lent his studio and production expertise to the Toronto-based David Barrett Trio. Late last year after the Time Machine tour the Trio went into Alex's home studio and recorded three tunes: Hollowbody, Sonar, and Disappearance with Alex producing and Rich Chycki handling the engineering duties. Hollowbody is now available as an MP3 download via Amazon.com and iTunes for just $0.99 and the other 2 tracks should also soon be available as well. Hollowbody is a rocking, 2½-minute instrumental track with a bunch of crazy guitar riffs that any Rush fan should really appreciate. You can listen to a short preview of the track at this link. There will be a concert and cd release party on Thursday, March 31st at 8PM (doors open at 7PM), at the Gibson Guitar Artist Showroom (1205 King West, Toronto, ON). They'll have a special EP available for sale which will have the three aforementioned tunes on it. They'll also be recording some more tunes after the 2011 leg of the Time Machine tour. From a January post on David Barrett's blog:

Exactly a year ago, I played my new solo album The Dead Arm for guitar hero and mentor Alex Lifeson. He liked it and mentioned that maybe we should consider doing something together in the future. I agreed. He advised me to write a ton of music which we would then later sift through and pick the best tunes to develop. His other advice was to include some other musicians to further develop the songs. I asked Sascha Tukatsch to play drums and Jason Farrar to play bass. We arranged the music and worked really hard on it. Their contributions and enthusiasm have been truly outstanding! After the Rush Time Machine tour ended and Big Al was rested, we went into his studio and recorded three tunes: Hollowbody, Sonar, and Disappearance. Rich Chycki engineered. Rich produced my first solo album back in 1995, everything I've learned about recording I've learned from Rich, I don't think there's anyone better. And Big Al's approach to arranging, performance, and production was truly illuminating. We also had a lot of laughs in the studio, more than I can remember on any sessions I've ever done. We've finished these three and will release them soon, once we figure out the details. I just wanted to let everyone know that we've got some new music ready to be released and that we're very excited about the whole thing!

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Monday, March 14, 2011

New Alex Lifeson video interview with Musician's Friend
9:33PM EST | link | comments (25) |

UPDATE - 3/22@4:29PM: Musician's Friend just launched a really cool mini-site of their own highlighting the Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess. It features their Alex Lifeson video interview along with detailed specs, high-res photos, Alex's gear list and more. You can check it out at this link.

UPDATE - 3/18@8:00PM: The interview is up on YouTube too (thanks RushFanForever):

----- snip -----

April 2011 Musician's FriendAlex Lifeson graces the cover of the April, 2011 issue of the Musician's Friend catalog to promote his new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess. They've also uploaded a 5-minute video interview to their website where Alex talks about the guitar. You can check out the interview at this link (thanks Power Windows).

Gibson Guitars unveiled their new Alex Lifeson Les Paul Axcess at the 2011 Winter NAMM show back in January and last month launched a detailed website highlighting the guitar complete with detailed specs, a bunch of closeup photos, and purchase information. You can check out the website at this link. Alex also spoke a little about the Axcess in his Gibson interview from a few weeks ago.

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Friday, March 11, 2011

Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:19PM EST | link | comments (34) |

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011Rush's Time Machine Tour kicks off in less than 3 weeks on March 30th in Florida and Rush are busily rehearsing as we speak. In my last update I had assumed that they had already gotten together for group rehearsals, but that doesn't necessarily seem to be the case. Neil Peart drum tech Lorne Wheaton posted the following short message to his MySpace page Wednesday (thanks audiblesignals): 3 more days then off to YYZ. So it looks like the guys are probably still rehearsing individually (at least Neil is) this week but will get together next week in Toronto for band rehearsals. Lorne also posted this photo of Neil rehearsing in SoCal over the weekend (thanks Gornhay). I've been getting several questions regarding when people can expect to start receiving tickets that were ordered via the Music Today pre-sales. Music Today indicates upon purchase that all tickets are mailed out no later than 2 weeks prior to the show and they generally stick to this promise, so tickets should begin going out for the earlier shows this upcoming week. Indeed, I've already heard from a few folks who recently received notice that their tickets are being shipped. There have also been several questions regarding the VIP ticket packages and when those would get sent out. Those should start going out in the next few weeks but judging by the last tour it's really anybody's guess. If anyone has received their tickets or their VIP package already, please let us know.

A new Alex Lifeson interview with the UK's Express & Star was posted earlier this week. Alex touched on all the usual subjects including the upcoming tour and album. He also recalled the first time Rush ever played the UK and discussed the huge impact that all the great British bands of the 60s had on himself and Rush, particularly The Who and Pete Townsend. He didn't reveal much in the way of new information regarding the tour and upcoming Clockwork Angels album, but when asked if the experience of taking a couple of their new songs out on the road for this past tour changed how the album will turn out, Alex had the following to say:

... I think once we get into recording we'll see. I mean we record every concert and we reference those recording every week or every second week, just to see where we're going, to see where we're maybe slowing down or speeding up, those sort of things. It's a very analytical listen. But I have to say that those two songs sound really good and they sound a little more vibrant, that's to be expected I think. I wish we could do that with the whole record, write the whole record and then just go out and play it for a month or two and then record it. But it's just impossible to find the time to do something like that. But I think it would be a great benefit in how the songs develop. ...

You can read the entire interview at this link.

Mojo, March 2011Mojo Magazine has a short, one-page Rush article in the March, 2011 issue of the magazine for their Mojo Working feature. It's titled The High Priests of Conceptual Metal Go Steampunk for LP 19! and focuses on the band's upcoming Clockwork Angels album. It features a couple of interesting interview snippets with Geddy Lee including this one:

"Rush fans want those 20-minute songs, and a couple of tracks are pretty promising in terms of their scope - they're quite long and complex. We haven't hit 20 minutes yet, but it'll be interesting to see where it ends up."

Geddy also describes the Steampunk theme of the album:

"It's a utopian vision of the future yet trapped in a Victorian past. We were inspired by the visual aesthetic, and this concept lent itself to creating a story. So," he laughs, "I guess you could say it's a concept album!"

And talks a little about producer Nick Raskulinecz, including some quotes from Nick that were taken from a November, 2010 interview he gave to MusicRadar.com:

I told them, 'Give me Rush from back in the day.' Killer riffs, solos, pounding drums and Geddy singing up high the way he should - that, to me, is the sound of Rush.

The article also mentions some information that we already knew. Namely the fact that they plan to finish up writing for the album before the 2011 tour but won't get into the studio until the Fall, giving the album a likely release date of early 2012. You can check out a scan of the article here or by clicking on the thumbnail above.

Early last month we learned that the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage had been nominated for a Juno Award (the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards) for Music DVD of the Year. We learned yesterday that Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee will be presenting at the ceremony which takes place Sunday, March 27th at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. From JAM! Showbiz:

Bryan Adams, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Daniel Lanois, Robbie Robertson, and Rush's Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee are among the first group of presenters announced for the March 27 Juno Awards to be broadcast from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. They will be joined by Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley, deadmau5, K'Naan, Shad, Tokyo Police Club, Barenaked Ladies (the hosts of CTV's first Juno broadcast in 2002) and the minister of Canadian heritage and official languages, the Honorourable James Moore. Juno organizers have also announced the awards will air in a special two-and-a-half-hour broadcast for the first time in honour of the show's 40th anniversary.

Rush previously won a Juno award for Music DVD of the Year back in 2004 for Rush in Rio. The documentary had also been nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Long Form Music Video category but ended up losing to The Doors documentary.

Earlier this week Amazon.com began listing the Blu-ray version of the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix with a release date of May 3rd rather than April 5th, and sent out notices to those who have already pre-ordered the package. The DVD version is still listed as releasing on April 5th however. Rush.com posted some more information regarding the remix a couple of weeks ago including the following details:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme.

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray).

Enter Music Publishing are publishers of drum and percussion magazines worldwide including DRUM! Magazine Their annual Drummies readers poll has been gaining in popularity year after year and in 2010 had over 6500 ballots cast. Voting for this year's Drummies is now open and you can place your vote until May 1st at this link. Neil Peart has won Drummer of the Year multiple times including the last four years running along with many other awards. This year Enter Music Publishing will have its 20th anniversary and in celebration launched a Drummies Hall Of Fame where Neil Peart along with 10 other famous drummers who have won 5 or more total Drummie awards were inducted. Hall of Fame members are no longer eligible to win in the category for which they were inducted, so Neil Peart can no longer win in the Drummer of the Year category. He can still win in any of the other categories though, so go vote for Neil!

Herd Rock BandSpeaking of voting, there are a few other polls going on where Rush is in the running. The Herd with Colin Cowherd is one of the most listened to sports talk radio shows in the US. It's hosted by Colin Cowherd and broadcast on ESPN Radio weekdays from 10AM to 1PM EST. In celebration of March Madness they kicked off round 1 of their Herd Rock Band Bracket contest earlier this week to determine the greatest rock band of all time. Rush was the #5 seed in the Cleveland bracket and ended up handily defeating Styx to make it to round 2 which kicked off this morning. This next match is a bit tougher as they are up against heavy metal juggernaut Metallica and are losing so far. So go vote for Rush! Goldmine Magazine is running a poll on their home page (scroll down and it'll be on the right side) where they ask the question If the only available music was 1970s prog and you ONLY could pick one band's catalog (and had to listen to every album at least once) what would you choose? Rush is one of the options and thanks to RIAB readers is currently in the lead. To help keep them on top, go vote for Rush! Milwaukee Brewers closing pitcher John Axford posted a poll on his Facebook page a couple weeks ago to let fans choose his entrance music for 2011. Rush's Working Man was one of the selections and has made it to round 2 of the voting. So go vote for Rush!.

A new book from Russ DiBella was released earlier this month titled From the Inside. It's about the author's life of looking inside the world of live music, going backstage and collecting drumsticks over the past few decades. Rush is heavily covered in the book including detailed stories from the three most recent Rush tours. The author recounts a chance meeting with Alex, Geddy and Neil and also the experience of catching a soundcheck during the Snakes & Arrows tour. You can purchase a copy of the book at this link. Thanks to Power Windows for the heads up.

The new Foo Fighters single Rope has been garnering some comparisons to Rush since its release a few weeks ago. Alan Cross of ExploreMusic.com described the track as follows:

... So what does it sound like? In a word, Rush. The interplay between guitars, bass and drums could be an instrumental bit from A Farewell to Kings or bits of "La Villa Strangiato" from Hemispheres, complete with multi-park drum breaks and quick shifts in time signature. (YFI: Taylor Hawkins is a HUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUGGGGGGGGGGGGGEEEE Rush fan. Dave is, too.) ...

Indeed they are. In an MTV interview yesterday Neil Peart's name came up a couple of times. The complete interview is not currently posted online but reader Kevin was able to watch it and gave me a brief report. Taylor Hawkins joked about the drum pattern in the chorus of the song saying that he would be splitting royalties with Neil because it has Neil's signature sound all over it. Taylor then went on to explain what a big influence Neil has been on him through the years.

Earlier this week, solid-state-logic.com posted a video interview with producer Kevin Caveman Shirley where he recounts the very interesting story of how he got the sound engineer gig with Rush on the Counterparts album. You can check out the interview at this link. Thanks to Power Windows for the heads up.

Longtime riab reader and blogger Jaybird recently conducted an interview with yours truly for his blog Jaybird's Jottings. Jay asks me about how I got into Rush, how rushisaband.com came about, my thoughts on Rush and the Rock Hall, and many other subjects. You can check out the interview at this link.

Rush gets a mention in an article from Jason Heller at The A.V. Club (thanks Ajax5) highlighting the author's favorite music year - 1977:

... Prog still had its holdouts, though, including Canada's Rush, whose A Farewell To Kings is one of the band's (and the genre's) best, and even yielded a fluke hit single, "Closer To The Heart."...

A couple of months ago I let you know that heavy metal band Benedictum's new album Dominion contains a cover of Rush's 2112: Overture/The Temples of Syrinx as a bonus track on the international release. The album was just released earlier this week and you can order a copy at this link. There's a short preview of the track at this link.

Reader rosmakloma let me know about yet another 2112 reference in a computer game. It's a new universal game app for iPods, iPhones, iPads from game designer Jeff Minter called Minotron: 2112. It's based on the classic 1982 Williams arcade game Robotron: 2084. This makes me wonder what year will game designers from the post-2112 world reference in their games? :)

Jesse Quin is the bassist/percussionist of British alt-rock band Keane and he has a blog called The Capricious Chronicle. Earlier this week he put up a post containing Rush's early Fly By Night video (thanks patti) with the following caption:

Neil Peart is the greatest drummer of all time and Rush are the greatest band of all time and if you do not agree, I will fight you in a Canadian mall parking lot, and I will win and then I will make you pay for me to have my mullet permed.

Ok. :)

Reader anologkid9 let me know about a very cool contest sponsored by Ontario radio station CanadasRock 95.1-100.7 where they are giving away a 5-day trip for 2 to Montreal to see Rush's April 20th show at the Bell Centre as the grand prize. There are also 10 secondary prizes for a pair of tickets to Rush's April 17th show in Detroit. For more information and to enter just go to this link.

Back in late January the 2008 comedy/drama Adventures of Power was released to DVD. Adventures of Power chronicles the adventures of air-drummer extraordinaire Power (played by filmmaker Ari Gold) and contains a cameo from Neil Peart along with a slew of Rush references including a Tom Sawyer air drum-off. It first hit the film festival circuit back in early 2008 and made its theatrical debut last fall. Back in 2009 Neil Peart and Ari Gold paid a visit to the Drum Channel studios to film an air drum-off video which you can check out here. The DVD contains over 60 minutes of bonus material including deleted scenes with Jane Lynch, a rare music video with Adrian Grenier, and the 25-minute Drum Channel interview and air drum-off with Neil Peart. Here's the film's official trailer. There's a charity auction currently underway supporting music education via VH1 Save the Music which runs through next Wednesday, March 16th. It features drums from Ringo Starr, Neil Peart, Lars Ulrich, Marky Ramone, Ween, Weezer, Judas Priest, Dresden Dolls, and many more. For more information and to bid on items visit PowerSavesTheMusic.com. Here's a video promoting the auction which features a few snippets of Neil Peart from the film and the DVD:

That's all for this week. Only 19 more days until Time Machine Tour 2011! Have a great weekend!

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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee to attend 2011 Juno Awards Ceremony
8:54AM EST | link | comments (32) |

UPDATE - 3/10@1:30PM: Not only are Geddy and Alex attending, it looks like they'll be presenting as well:

Bryan Adams, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Daniel Lanois, Robbie Robertson, and Rush's Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee are among the first group of presenters announced for the March 27 Juno Awards to be broadcast from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto. ...

----- snip -----

Early last month we learned that the Rush documentary Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage was nominated for a Juno Award (the Canadian equivalent of the US Grammy Awards) for Music DVD of the Year. Winners will be announced at the Juno Awards Ceremony at the Air Canada Centre on March 27th which will air on CTV. More details regarding the ceremony were released this morning including the news that both Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee will be in attendance:

... Helping to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of the JUNO Awards are iconic Canadian musicians Bryan Adams, Buffy Sainte-Marie, Daniel Lanois, Robbie Robertson, and Rush's Alex Lifeson and Geddy Lee. They will be joined by Lady Antebellum's Charles Kelley, deadmau5, the Honourable James Moore, K'Naan, Shad, Tokyo Police Club and the hosts of CTV's first JUNO broadcast in 2002, Barenaked Ladies. ...

Rush won a Juno award in this same category for Rush in Rio back in 2004. The documentary had also been nominated for a Grammy Award in the Best Long Form Music Video category but ended up losing to The Doors documentary. Thanks to Eric at Power Windows for the heads up.

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Tuesday, March 8, 2011

New Alex Lifeson interview in the UK's Express & Star
1:31PM EST | link | comments (20) |

[Rush bringing the Time Machine to Birmingham]

A new Alex Lifeson interview with the UK's Express & Star was posted earlier today. Alex touches on all the usual subjects including the upcoming tour and album. He also recalls the first time Rush ever played the UK and discusses the huge impact that all the great British bands of the 60s had on himself and Rush:

... "The first time was, I guess in '76, when we were a relatively unknown band. I remember how exciting it was to come to the root of where our hearts lay in terms of music. There was The Who, for sure, and earlier on The Stones. For me it was always more The Stones than, say, The Beatles.

"But there were all those other great bands from the 60s. The Searchers were amazing, The Zombies were incredible. And then over the years came Cream, The Who, Zeppelin of course, Jeff Beck and then Yes - it just goes on and on and on.

"That really was where our musical tastes were centred. And I think that was more a Canadian thing as well. I think generally Canadians lean more towards the UK than they did to America. We had the benefit of absorbing from both sides.

"Pete Townsend for me was a huge influence. Because essentially they were a three-piece band and the way he structured his chords and took up a lot of space musically in the songs was really important to the way Rush developed. Geddy and Neil both were such active players and lot of the time we were all playing like crazy and it was too much and somebody had to reel it in and me being the faceless guy, I would do that," he laughs. ...

He didn't reveal much in the way of new information regarding the tour and upcoming Clockwork Angels album, but when asked if the experience of taking a couple of their new songs out on the road for this past tour changed how the album will turn out, Alex had the following to say:

... "Well, we'll see . . . I think once we get into recording we'll see. I mean we record every concert and we reference those recording every week or every second week, just to see where we're going, to see where we're maybe slowing down or speeding up, those sort of things. It's a very analytical listen.

"But I have to say that those two songs sound really good and they sound a little more vibrant, that's to be expected I think. I wish we could do that with the whole record, write the whole record and then just go out and play it for a month or two and then record it. But it's just impossible to find the time to do something like that. But I think it would be a great benefit in how the songs develop." ...

You can read the entire interview at this link. Thanks to BW&BK for the heads up.

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Monday, March 7, 2011

Vote for Rush in ESPN Radio's Herd Rock Band Bracket
12:00PM EST | link | comments (41) |

Herd Rock BandUPDATE - 3/11@10:11AM: Rush has handily defeated Styx and made it to round 2 which kicked off this morning. This next match is a bit tougher as they are up against heavy metal juggernaut Metallica. So go vote for Rush! They are now comfortably in the lead in the Goldmine poll. Keep voting!

UPDATE - 3/8@10:56AM: Reader Kelly M let me know of another poll going on where we can vote for Rush. Goldmine Magazine is running a poll on their home page (scroll down and it'll be on the right side). The poll asks the question If the only available music was 1970s prog and you ONLY could pick one band's catalog (and had to listen to every album at least once) what would you choose? Rush is one of the options and currently is losing with 5% of the vote. So go vote for Rush!

The Herd with Colin Cowherd is one of the most listened to sports talk radio shows in the US. It's hosted by Colin Cowherd and broadcast on ESPN Radio weekdays from 10AM to 1PM EST. Last month the show announced that in celebration of March Madness they'd be running a NCAA bracket-like contest in March to determine the greatest rock band of all time. Through feedback from listeners, Colin Cowherd and The Herd team have chosen the top 64 rock bands and put them in brackets for folks to vote on. They just revealed the brackets this morning and Rush is the #5 seed in the Cleveland bracket. They are currently up against Styx and winning handily. So go vote for Rush! Thanks to Bill M and kevin for the heads up.

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Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix Blu-ray release delayed
10:11AM EST | link | comments (8) |

Amazon.com is now listing the Blu-ray version of the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix with a release date of May 3rd rather than April 5th, and has sent out notices to those who have already pre-ordered the package (thanks ReGorLaTroy). The DVD version is still listed as releasing on April 5th however, although it's still possible that it will also be delayed. Rush.com posted some more information regarding the remix a couple of weeks ago including the following details:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme.

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray).

Related Posts:
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix details from Rush.com]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix available for pre-order]
[Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix to be released April 5th]
[Richard Chycki on the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix]
[Alex Lifeson on UK digital radio station Planet Rock today]

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Friday, March 4, 2011

Short Rush Clockwork Angels feature in March issue of Mojo
4:54PM EST | link | comments (34) |

Mojo, March 2011Mojo Magazine has a short, one-page Rush article in the March, 2011 issue of the magazine for their Mojo Working feature. It's titled The High Priests of Conceptual Metal Go Steampunk for LP 19! and focuses on the band's upcoming Clockwork Angels album. It features a couple of interesting interview snippets with Geddy Lee including this one:

"Rush fans want those 20-minute songs, and a couple of tracks are pretty promising in terms of their scope - they're quite long and complex. We haven't hit 20 minutes yet, but it'll be interesting to see where it ends up."

Geddy also describes the Steampunk theme of the album:

"It's a utopian vision of the future yet trapped in a Victorian past. We were inspired by the visual aesthetic, and this concept lent itself to creating a story. So," he laughs, "I guess you could say it's a concept album!"

And talks a little about producer Nick Raskulinecz, including some quotes from Nick that were taken from a November, 2010 interview he gave to MusicRadar.com:

I told them, 'Give me Rush from back in the day.' Killer riffs, solos, pounding drums and Geddy singing up high the way he should - that, to me, is the sound of Rush.

The article also mentions some information that we already knew. Namely the fact that they plan to finish up writing for the album before the 2011 tour but won't get into the studio until the Fall, giving the album a likely release date of early 2012. You can check out a scan of the article here or by clicking on the thumbnail above. Thanks to RushFanForever for the heads up and the scan.

Related Posts:
[New Alex Lifeson interview in Guitarist magazine]
[Rush's Caravan makes Amazon's 100 Bestselling Songs of 2010]
[Alex Lifeson interview with Chile's Radio Futuro]
[New interviews with Geddy and Alex from the Brazilian press]
[New Geddy Lee interview with Brazil's TV UOL]
[Geddy Lee interview with the UK's Rock Radio]
[New Alex Lifeson interview at Billboard.com]
[Caravan/BU2B CD single now available for pre-order]
[Rush Caravan release open thread]
[Rush reveal new album title as Clockwork Angels]
[Two new Rush tracks available for digital download June 1st]

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Updates and other random Rush stuff
12:16PM EST | link | comments (12) |

Rush Time Machine Tour 2011Rehearsal preparations are currently underway for the 2011 leg of the Time Machine Tour which kicks off on March 30th in Florida. Neil Peart drum tech Lorne Wheaton posted that he was in drum rehearsals in SoCal to his MySpace page on Saturday, and Sabian posted this grainy photo of Neil behind his kit to their Facebook page on Tuesday with the caption Guess who's rehearsing to hit the road!? (thanks rosmakloma). So it looks like this week the guys are all separately rehearsing to rehearse and that the whole band will be getting together next week in some undisclosed location to begin full rehearsals. They'll need to be in top form come April 15th when they will be recording their Cleveland show at Quicken Loans Arena for a live DVD. Not surprisingly, Rush sound engineer Richard Chycki looks like he'll be involved with this in some capacity as demonstrated by this post on his Twitter feed from over the weekend:

Planning in the works for Cleveland recording of #Rush for a live DVD of the upcoming continuation of the #TimeMachine tour. Off we go!
27 Feb

Chycki could almost be called the fourth member of Rush considering all the work he's been doing on behalf of the band lately. He's also been working on the remix of Vapor Trails and did most of the heavy lifting on the Moving Pictures 5.1 surround sound remix which is due for release on April 5th in both CD plus DVD and CD plus Blu-ray formats. Rush.com posted several details regarding the 5.1 mix last Friday including the following:

... Both DVD & Blu-ray formats will boast the 5.1 surround sound and stereo audio in 96kHz/24-bit high-resolution audiophile playback which offers 256 times more resolution than CD audio, providing the listener with the closest experience you can have to what the artists hear in the studio. The DVD is playable on both DVD-Audio and DVD-Video players, the latter players will include Dolby Digital 5.1 surround sound and PCM stereo playback. Blu-ray discs will also feature DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1 surround sound in addition to 96kHz/24-bit PCM 5.1 surround sound and stereo. ... Also included in the package is an extensive gallery with previously unreleased photos from the original recording sessions, new liner notes by renowned music journalist David Fricke and 30th anniversary artwork by original album designer Hugh Syme.

You can read all the details from Rush.com at this link and pre-order your copy of the remix at Amazon (CD+DVD, CD+Blu-ray)

One of the many side projects that Alex Lifeson has been working on recently is a score for a film starring Martin Sheen and Richard Gere titled The Double. The movie features original music by film composer John Debney and Alex first mentioned his involvement with the film in his VH1 Classic Rock Nights interview a few weeks ago. Over the course of the last few weeks we've also learned that Skinny Puppy founding member cEvin Key and former Scarlet Sins vocalist Sylvya NuVynska were also collaborating on the score. Key posted the following to his Facebook page last week:

collaboration is cool, who would ever guess John Debney, cEvin Key
w Alex Lifeson from Rush and Martin Sheen.

And NuVynska tweeted the following on Sunday:

Sang and wrote lyrics for the outro song for the new Richard Gere movie #TheDouble coming out soon...

And - of course - Richard Chycki is doing the mixing. He posted this to his Twitter feed last Friday:

Soundtrack for Richard Gere movie 'Double' done and in the can, including the groovy out credit piece. Well, our part any way ...
25 Feb via web

The film is written and directed by Michael Brandt and centers around a retired CIA operative who is paired with a young FBI agent to unravel the mystery of a senator's murder. It's due out later this year but no specific release date has been given yet.

YYZ played at iPad 2 unveilingDuring Apple's public unveiling of the iPad 2 Wednesday, Apple's Director of Music Marketing - Xander Soren - briefly but unmistakably played the cymbal pattern intro to Rush's YYZ while introducing GarageBand for the iPad. You can watch the video of the event at this link. The YYZ part occurs around the 53:30 mark. GarageBand is a software application for Mac OS X and iPad that allows users to create music or podcasts as a part of Apples's iLife software package.

Sabian Paragon cymbal packSabian has made available a Limited Edition Paragon cymbal pack with a splash autographed by Neil Peart. It comes with an 8" and two 10" splashes (one autographed by Neil Peart), two 16" crashes, 18" crash, 20" crash, 22" ride, 19" and 20" Chinese, 20" Diamondback Chinese, and 13" and 14" hi-hat sets, each featuring a brilliant finish. The cymbal pack is shipped in a free flight case featuring custom Time Machine tour artwork and a portion of the proceeds from the sale will benefit Little Kids Rock, a nonprofit organization that transforms children's lives by restoring and revitalizing music education in our public schools. The Paragon series was designed in collaboration with Neil Peart and blends 2 styles of lathing for a very balanced cymbal tone. Pinpoint lathing creates a narrower groove for a fast, lively response on the top, while the traditional AA lathing creates a wider groove for a fuller, richer tone on the bottom side. The pack can be purchased through Musician's Friend for $3,199.99 at this link. You can read a recent interview in The Daily Gleaner with Wendy Cosman - the designer of Neil Peart's Time Machine tour cymbals - at this link, and read Neil Peart's story of the creation of these cymbals at the Sabian website here.

David Barrett Trio - HollowbodyBack in January I'd mentioned that Alex Lifeson had lent his studio and production expertise to the David Barrett Trio. Late last year after the Time Machine tour the Trio went into Alex's home studio and recorded three tunes: Hollowbody, Sonar, and Disappearance with Alex producing and Rich Chycki handling the engineering duties. David wanted me to let everyone know that there will be a concert and cd release party on Thursday, March 31st at 8PM (doors open at 7PM), at the Gibson Guitar Artist Showroom (1205 King West, Toronto, ON). They'll have a special EP available for sale which will have the three aforementioned tunes on it. They'll be recording some more tunes after the 2011 leg of the Time Machine tour, and they'll be releasing the 3 Lerxst-produced tunes as singles one at a time on iTunes starting later this month with Hollowbody.

Bass player extraordinaire Billy Sheehan was recently interviewed for Examiner.com to talk about the new Mr. Big album What If along with other subjects. When asked about what groups he'd like to tour with he said the following:

Well, we did a lot of touring with Rush in the old days; a tour with Rush would be great, because they are such wonderful people. I didn't really know them that well before we toured with them, but getting to know the guys from Rush, they are just wonderful, wonderful people. We also toured with Bryan Adams; that was pretty cool, too, because he's got a zillion hits, and that was a lot of fun, too; a great tour.

Mr. Big opened for Rush on both the Presto and Roll The Bones tours.

We learned earlier this week that Vancouver-based heavy metal band 3 Inches of Blood have recorded a cover version of Rush's Anthem for their as-yet-unnamed forthcoming album. Guitarist Shane Clark spoke about Rush and their upcoming album in a RockStarWeekly.com interview which you can check out at this link. Canadian thrash metal band Sacrifice also recorded a cover of Anthem on the Canadian release of their 2009 album The Ones I Condemn. The track was included on a recent limited release 7" vinyl split with Canadian thrash punk band Propagandhi who covers Corrosion of Conformity's Technocracy on the flip side. The first pressing of the 7" vinyl had sold out quickly but due to overwhelming demand, War On Music Records announced a second and final pressing last month and copies are still available. You can listen to the Sacrifice cover on YouTube at this link.

This past September, Bob Mersereau's book The Top 100 Canadian Singles was released. The book compiles a list of the best Canadian songs as chosen by around 800 musicians, broadcasters, members of the music industry and fans. A few Rush songs made the cut including Tom Sawyer at #12, The Spirit of Radio at #25, and Closer to the Heart at #35. Reader RushFanForever picked up the book recently and scanned the relative Rush excerpts for us. You can check them out in this post and purchase a copy of the book at this link.

RushFanForever also made some scans from Mersereau's 2007 book The Top 100 Canadian Albums which featured 3 Rush albums: Moving Pictures, 2112 and A Farewell to Kings. You can check out the parts of the book that discuss these three albums by clicking on the thumbnails above. The book also features a sidebar with Randy Bachman's favorite Canadian artists which include Alex Lifeson; a sidebar with Andy Curran's favorite Canadian hard rock albums featuring 2112 at #1; a page discussing the top Canadian drummers that features Neil Peart; and a page with Bubbles's top Canadian albums featuring A Farewell to Kings at #1. You can purchase a copy of this book at this link.

Last week Chris Lindsay of the Michigan Skeptics Association posted a podcast interview he conducted with Dr. Robert M. Price, author of the 1999 book Mystic Rhythms: The Philosophical Vision of Rush. You can listen to the podcast at this link.

Stone Temple Pilots drummer Eric Kretz was recently interviewed for the Las Vegas Review-Journal and spoke a little about his favorite drummers:

... Kretz says it's hard not to pick one of three obvious choices as the best of all time, especially Neil Peart of Rush; but also John Bonham of Led Zeppelin; and Bill Bruford of Yes, King Crimson and Genesis. "Neil -- he's so great and precise. What is he, 60? He's still doing a huge drum solo toward the end of (a Rush) set, after two hours. ...

Not quite 60 yet, but close!

Eric at Power Windows let me know about a recent commercial for the Czech automaker Skoda Auto featuring a street drummer and advertising the fact that their Skoda Fabia car is offered in 2112 color combinations. You can watch the commercial at this link.

Reader PaulTheRushGeek noticed a feature at literary site McSweeney's titled What Your Favorite Classic Rock Band Says About You and here's what they say about Rush fans:

You carry a small flashlight everywhere, and use it at least three times a day.

I don't get it.

Brazilian reader and English teacher Marco André Rodrigues has created a website which aims to translate all of Rush's lyrics into Brazilian Portuguese. You can check out his site at this link. And reader Rob F has created a new rush site at RushVault.com which aims to organize in a systematic way as much information as possible for each and every Rush song. You can check it out at this link.

Reader The Clansman 2112 wanted me to let you all know that there are 7 spots open in his 4th annual rushisaband Fantasy Baseball League. It's free to join but only serious managers need apply! To join up go to this link and use the League ID 66957 with Password atmsite.

To get us geared up for the upcoming tour, here's a nice quality live bootleg video of Rush performing The Camera Eye in San Antonio, TX last September 23rd (thanks ted1001001):

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

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Thursday, March 3, 2011

Limited Edition Sabian Paragon Cymbal Pack signed by Neil Peart
2:59PM EST | link | comments (20) |

Sabian Paragon cymbal packSabian has made available a Limited Edition Paragon cymbal pack with a splash autographed by Neil Peart. It comes with an 8" and two 10" splashes (one autographed by Neil Peart), two 16" crashes, 18" crash, 20" crash, 22" ride, 19" and 20" Chinese, 20" Diamondback Chinese, and 13" and 14" hi-hat sets, each featuring a brilliant finish. The cymbal pack is shipped in a free flight case featuring custom Time Machine tour artwork and a portion of the proceeds from the sale will benefit Little Kids Rock, a nonprofit organization that transforms children's lives by restoring and revitalizing music education in our public schools. The Paragon series was designed in collaboration with Neil Peart and blends 2 styles of lathing for a very balanced cymbal tone. Pinpoint lathing creates a narrower groove for a fast, lively response on the top, while the traditional AA lathing creates a wider groove for a fuller, richer tone on the bottom side. The pack can be purchased through Musician's Friend for $3,199.99 at this link. You can read a recent interview in The Daily Gleaner with Wendy Cosman - the designer of Neil Peart's Time Machine tour cymbals - at this link, and read Neil Peart's story of the creation of these cymbals at the Sabian website here.

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Rush's YYZ played at unveiling of Apple's iPad 2 yesterday
11:00AM EST | link | comments (7) |

YYZ played at iPad 2 unveilingDuring Apple's public unveiling of the iPad 2 yesterday, Apple's Director of Music Marketing - Xander Soren - briefly but unmistakably played the cymbal pattern intro to Rush's YYZ while introducing GarageBand for the iPad. You can watch the video of the event at this link. The YYZ part occurs around the 53:30 mark. GarageBand is a software application for Mac OS X and iPad that allows users to create music or podcasts as a part of Apples's iLife software package. Thanks to A Digital Fan in Silicon Valley for the heads up.

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Mr. Big bassist Billy Sheehan talks Rush in recent interview
9:07AM EST | link | comments (12) |

Billy SheehanBass player extraordinaire Billy Sheehan was recently interviewed for Examiner.com to talk about the new Mr. Big album What If along with other subjects. When asked about what groups he'd like to tour with he said the following:

Well, we did a lot of touring with Rush in the old days; a tour with Rush would be great, because they are such wonderful people. I didn't really know them that well before we toured with them, but getting to know the guys from Rush, they are just wonderful, wonderful people. We also toured with Bryan Adams; that was pretty cool, too, because he's got a zillion hits, and that was a lot of fun, too; a great tour.

Mr. Big opened for Rush on both the Presto and Roll The Bones tours. Thanks to chutch15 for the heads up.

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