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Neil Peart, Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson

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New interview with SRO/Anthem's Pegi Cecconi for FYI Music News Industry Profile

Wed, Aug 3, 2016@3:01PM | comments

Longtime SRO/Anthem Vice President Pegi Cecconi is the subject of the latest FYI Industry Profile for FYI Music News. Cecconi talks about her long history in the Canadian music business, focusing primarily on her work with Rush. Here's Cecconi talking about her first dealings with Rush and Ray Danniels:

... "Rush are as big as they are because of Ray Danniels' total loyalty. I was brought under that wing. When I fight for fuckin Rush, as far as I'm concerned they're the Beatles, there's nothing else. You sit there with people having big stars, and we'd be the pain in the ass- 'you're not getting this or that.' That part was fun. Ray's thing was I want more so you'd figure out what more you could give them." ... "I met Ray when I was booking bands at my high school, Roland Michener Secondary School in South Porcupine, Ontario. He was my agent and he used to try to sell me Rush. I'd say' no way. I can get a four-piece band for the same price as a trio. If Rush had ever played my high school the shit would have been beaten out of them!' ...

Here's Cecconi describing her relationship with Rush and her current role with the band:

... [Cecconi] describes the management relationship with Rush as both easy and efficient. "They had complete faith in the way we would do the business. Geddy [Lee] will say 'call the office. I don't know what you're talking about.' Geddy is very smart though. Alex [Lifeson] is way too nice. I remember one time calling him and going 'Alex, I'm reading whatever magazine it was, and you have three exclusive ads for different amplifiers. You can't do that! Send them to me.'"

"In terms of the machine they created to go on the road, that is very much the band. No-one quite knows how it works, but somebody has the key and it gets turned and it is one of the most efficient crews around. Ray hired very good people that would babysit them on the road, like Val Azzoli, Kim Garner, and most recently Megan Symsyk. She has moved to eOne but is still on retainer with Rush. eOne is lucky to have her."

Cecconi acknowledges that "Rush won't be onstage for ever." Similarly, her own role and workload with the company has changed significantly with ole's takeover of Anthem Entertainment Group in late 2015. "We sold my job, and I'm a consultant to ole now. I go in once a week there.

"I have a lot of knowledge, but they're like a giant company and we're like a cottage industry. It is definitely a reduced workload. I have one more year and if Rush goes out again I have another year. ...

You can read the entire interview/profile online here.