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New Neil Peart news update: new instructional DVD, new book

Fri, Feb 4, 2011@9:48PM | comments removed/disabled

[[NEWS, WEATHER, and SPORTS: February, 2011 - Talking Drums in Death Valley]]

UPDATE - 2/7@9:11AM: There's a website set up for the instructional DVD at although there's no content there yet (thanks Power Windows).

Neil Peart has updated the News page on his website with a story titled Talking Drums in Death Valley. In this latest installment Neil reveals that - in addition to his new book Far and Away - he'll soon be releasing his third instructional DVD which will focus on live performance. The working title for the DVD is Taking Center Stage: A Lifetime of Live Performance. From the update:

... The theme for our next collaboration seemed obvious: live performance, preparing for it and surviving it. In early 2010 we began collecting material ... In April, 2010, the Hudson Music crew joined me at Drum Channel in Oxnard, California, and filmed several days of my rehearsals for the Time Machine tour. In July they filmed an entire Rush show, in Saratoga Springs, New York, with supplementary “drum-cams” on me. They also captured the soundcheck and pre-show warmup, when I did a bit of talking to the camera, as I had during the Drum Channel filming in April. However, we would need to shoot some more “talkie bits” to go before each of the songs from the live show, explaining about special problems or challenges in a particular song, and technical highlights. ...

Neil then describes how he decided to film these talkie bits in one of his favorite locations - Death Valley:

... It seemed to me that if we could combine such splendid natural backgrounds with the existing rehearsal and stage footage, it would elevate the show enormously. I was glad when the Hudson Music guys agreed, and set about getting the necessary permits (filming in a national park has certain “conditions”), and making the arrangements. ...

Neil also talks about his other big project; his 5th full-length book - Far and Away: A Prize Every Time - where much of the content would be taken from the many road stories he has written for his website over the past few years:

... I have long wanted the stories I write for this department to be “dignified” and made permanent by appearing in print, and at last I made it happen. ... I needed a title and subtitle, which would help direct the design of a cover, which I would develop with Hugh Syme, as usual. ... All in all, it was a solid two months of work, but I was delighted to see it truly coming together—a collection of stories that had been written and published independently now took on a unity, a single narrative span, that covered almost four years of my life. At first I had been daunted by having to write the “Intro” and “Outro,” but they proved to be the keystones in framing the twenty-two individual stories, to make it feel like one. ...

He gives some background on the cover photograph in this passage:

... The cover photograph I chose was taken by our Master of All Things Creative, Greg Russell, while he and I were riding together in Central California in 2008, on the Snakes and Arrows tour. The setting is the Westgard Pass, between Nevada and California, and at the time of using the photograph in a story called “South by Southwest,” I remarked that it was the kind of spacious photo you didn’t often see in motorcycling magazines. (They tend to focus on the hardware.) However, this panorama certainly captured an element of what I love about motorcycling, and nicely exemplified the title, and the subtitle. ...

He ends by talking a bit about the recent charitable endeavor involving his site where he and his readers raised $10,000 for the Red Cross. You can read the entire update at this link.

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