Rush is a Band

A blog devoted to RUSH:
Neil Peart, Geddy Lee & Alex Lifeson

Thu, May 30, 2024

Updates and other random Rush stuff

Fri, Feb 5, 2021@11:08AM | comments

This past Saturday night, Andre Cholmondeley (@guitartour) hosted a new, live interview with Alex Lifeson on the Make Weird Music YouTube channel. Topics included the 25th anniversary of Lifeson's 1996 solo album Victor, the 40th anniversary of Rush's Moving Pictures album, his many side projects, future plans and much, much more. Here's what he said about making music in the future, either on his own or with Geddy Lee:

... After [Rush] finished the last tour in 2015, I couldn't sit still so I just started writing on my own, and doing some stuff. Geddy was working on his book. We talked about getting together and doing some stuff together, but it got very, very busy for him even after he finished writing the book, and taking it on the road. So we never got a chance to sit down and start working or just having some fun together. We still talk about it and I'm sure we will [get together]. But now with the Pandemic it's kind of wrecked things for a bit. We're both eager to get back together and kind of get back into that thing that we've done since we were 14 years old that we love to do, and we work really, really well together. So we'll see what happens with that ... I go back and forth - I'm kind of a lazy person, and the prospect of doing a record after doing Victor and spending a year on it and knowing what it took... I don't know if I'm in a big hurry to go through that kind of thing again. The advantage of working on my own, in my own place, is that I can work whenever I want to. And it takes the pressure off a big release. Those days of sort of over anyways. I would just love to share some of my music if anyone's interested in hearing it, at some point in the future ...

Alex addressed the death of his friend and bandmate Neil Peart as well:

... You know after Neil passed it was very difficult to get inspired or motivated to play. As you could imagine, we were very, very close. You lose anybody that's close, it's a profound thing. I think both Geddy and I expected it to be better with it. Neil was sick for three-and-a-half years ... we thought that we would be prepared for the end when it came and we weren't. We both really struggled with it. ... That first year of grieving is the milestone and once you get past that. It's an anniversary that you process and it gets easier for you to handle. With Neil, I'm always reminded of that it's a year, I find that I think of the good times that we had together more than the sadness - and we had so many great times and we laughed, aside from all of the work that we did. ...

Alex also spoke a bit about a previously planned Victor 25th anniversary re-release. Apparently the project was shelved by the record company, and it's not clear whether it will ever see the light of day. Although Alex talked about the upcoming 40th anniversary of Moving Pictures, there was no mention of any plans for a 40th anniversary box set to commemorate the milestone. Over the past few years, Rush has released 40th anniversary editions of 2112, A Farewell to Kings, Hemispheres, and Permanent Waves. You can listen back to the entire 1 hour and twenty minute interview below or on YouTube at this location.

Speaking of Alex, Lerxst made a guest appearance on the most recent episode of Swearnet's Trailer Park Boys: Jail. Episode 6 of the series is titled RASH and premiered yesterday on and the Swearnet app (subscription required). A short preview video starring Alex can be seen on the Trailer Park Boys YouTube channel, and here's the episode description:

Bubbles gets some bad news - are his hopes and dreams fackin' dashed? But on the upside, the Sunnyvale Correctional Facility has a new inmate [Alex Lifeson], and he knows how to get things done...

Over the past two decades Lifeson has made several guest appearances in the Trailer Park Boys TV shows, movies and live shows, starting with his infamous cameo in the original Trailer Park Boys Season 3 episode Closer to the Heart, where Ricky and Julian kidnap Alex.

Back in October Rush released the Missing Tourbooks Collection; newly-created tourbooks for the band's first 3 tours which didn't originally have a tourbook created. From the product description:

While leafing through your Rush tourbook collection, have you ever noticed there are three studio album tours with no tourbook? We had to correct this! And correct we have done, with The Missing Tourbooks Collection. We went back in time, collecting photos, artwork, gear lists and much more from the tours for RUSH, Fly By Night, and Caress Of Steel. One benefit we had with this project is the ability to use modern 2020 printing techniques and materials, resulting in three unique tourbooks. The Fly By Night tourbook is HUGE, the RUSH tourbook feels great, and the Caress tourbook, well it just shines. ...

The collection can be purchased as a set of three for $79.99, which includes a bonus lithograph of the Fly By Night tourbook cover. You can also purchase each individually for $29.99 (Rush, Fly By Night, Caress of Steel). Last week John over at made scans/transcriptions available for the debut album tourbook online (scans, transcript). This past week John also scanned/transcribed the Fly By Night tourbook and made those available as well (transcript, scans).

Next Friday, February 12 is the 40th anniversary of the release of Rush's landmark Moving Pictures album. In celebration of the occasion, In the Studio with Redbeard will be airing an episode with past interviews with Geddy and Alex where they talk about the album. You can listen in the week of February 15th online at this location.

Dream Theater drummer Mike Mangini was recently interviewed on the Mistress Carrie podcast and spoke a bit about Neil Peart's death and his influence (transcript by UG):

... It's a heart-wrenching thing. The amount of influence that he had on me was profound. I remember different moments in my life. For example, remember the Columbia Record Club you could rent all kinds of records for a penny, what you thought was a penny? I was at the Columbia Record Club, I had to be 16 because I was at Cape Cod, my family had a place there while I was still in high school; I ordered it and I got Rush, [1977's] 'A Farewell to Kings' album. And I didn't even have proper headphones, I had two car speakers that I would put on my bed to listen to music just the way I wanted to hear it. I put that album on, and I can still picture myself at that moment - it was quite profound. Plus, I'll be specific, what he did was so amazing to me is - because I was in a school band, nobody wants to play the glockenspiel, the bells, so I did the marching band for the football team, that was fun. But Neil made those percussion instruments cool. He made them cool, and he used the greatest instruments in history. I think it's on 'Cinderella Man,' he used a vibraslap. I'm like, 'What is a vibraslap?' I'll never forget it. I'm reading the back of the LP record, I would just keep reading it over and over, and I look at the two pictures that were there, and so I'm like, 'What is that?' And when I got back to the school band, they had a vibraslap. I just sat there and hit it like 800 times. Anyway, it was profound. ... posted an article this past week titled Grand Designs: What Makes Epic Music and Rush's 2112 gets a mention (thanks RushFanForever):

... Literary inspiration has led to some fine "high art" albums. Among the successes have been ... Rush's 2112 (the credits contain a nod to "the genius of Ayn Rand", while elements of the album have parallels in her novella Anthem; in turn, the entirety of 2112 was later turned into a graphic-novel-inspired lyric video) ... posted their list of 25 Artists We Need New Music From the Most Right Now this past Friday and Lee/Lifeson made the cut at #15:

15. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson - After Neil Peart's passing, it was obvious that we'll not be hearing any new Rush material. But although the band is gone, it wouldn't be a bad idea to have Alex and Geddy record and release a collaborative album.

Associate Professor of Philosophy Dr. Court Lewis and Associate Professor of History Matt Alschbach have a podcast called The Rock and Metal Profs where the pair discuss the history and philosophy of popular rock and metal acts of the last 50+ years (thanks RushFanForever). Over the past 2 months they ran a 3-part series on Rush which you can listen to via your favorite podcast app or online here (part 1, part 2, part 3).

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