Rush is a Band

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

Sun, Jun 16, 2024

Updates and other random Rush stuff

Fri, May 17, 2024@10:12AM | comments

Despite Geddy Lee's My Effin' Life: In Conversation spoken word tour ending this past December, Ged announced last month that he'd be doing a special one-off show at the Grand Théâtre de Québec as part of the Quebec City Summer Festival on July 13th. He also mentioned the possibility of adding a second show if there was a demand, and earlier this week he did just that. The first show was scheduled for 1PM, and the second will take place shortly after the first at 4PM. The shows will take place in the 500-seat Salle Octave-Crémazie room, and some VIP tickets that include an autographed copy of his memoir have been made available (although there aren't many left). Tickets are $57 CAD ($140 VIP) and are on sale at this location. There aren't a lot of details yet, but from the information available, it looks like the shows will be similar to Geddy's prior appearances, with a guest interviewer, Fan Q&A and fans receiving a copy of the book.

The Post-Traumatic Growth Association (PTGA) is a not-for-profit organization that provides support for veterans and first responders suffering from PTSD and Operational Stress Injuries. The organization is running a silent auction all this month where the winning bid receives a golf outing with Alex Lifeson. The winner and 2 friends will get to play 18 holes of golf with Lerxst at the Firerock Golf Club in London, ON on June 6th. To place your bid, call 1-902-314-9572 or send an email to rebecca.murphy@ptga.ca before 9AM EST on May 31st, after which the winner will be announced. For all the details visit the PTGA website.

A new book from author Daniel Bukszpan celebrating Rush's 50 year career will be released this coming fall. Rush at 50 comes in at 192 pages and is slated for release on September 17th. It will examine the history of Rush through the lens of 50 milestone events and an illustrated gatefold timeline. From the product description:

... This richly illustrated and entertainingly written book from Rush expert and music journalist Dan Bukszpan pays tribute to the trio on the 50th anniversary of their debut album by curating and examining 50 of the most significant milestones in their career.

Bukszpan covers everything down through the decades:
* The band's formation by bassist Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson in suburban Toronto and their early gigs and tours opening for the likes of Kiss
* Their breakthrough in the United States thanks to a Cleveland DJ
* The role of co-founding drummer John Rutsey
* Rush's early Led Zeppelin-influenced efforts and their breakthrough, 2112
* The band's ever-evolving musical style through the 1970s and 1980s
* The controversial influence of novelist Ayn Rand on Neil Peart's lyrics
* Geddy Lee's instantly recognizable vocal style
* Recording sessions with various producers in Wales, Quebec, and elsewhere

In examining 50 touchstones, Buszpan presents a unique look at Rush's career arc from Toronto bar band to international mega-platinum stadium fillers. Every page is illustrated with stunning concert and candid offstage photography, including gig posters, 7-inch picture sleeves, ticket stubs, and more. ...

Author Bukszpan wrote an article this past week on his patreon site explaining why he wrote the book which you can check out here (thanks RushFanForever).

... I have found at least one reason why my forthcoming book, Rush @ 50, needed to be written. In the introduction, I talk about what they've meant to me over the years, and it is really my fervent hope that young people just getting familiar with the band today will see my book as an entry point to greater fandom. I see the book as a stepping stone in a lot of ways, a method for new people who like them to get more invested.

But the third and final reason why this book was necessary is for the Rush haters. Simply put, my book hates them back, and I'm not sure there's another one out there that gives as good as the band got.

They were absolutely hated and pilloried for their entire career, and they shouldered that admirably and never got mired in it, at least not that I could see. They were too busy being awesome. ...

The book is currently available for pre-order via Amazon at this location.

The Times posted an article this past week featuring an interview with Tiffany Murray - who grew up at Rockfield Studios in Wales where several famous rock acts, including Rush, recorded some of the most iconic albums of the '70s/'80s (thanks Duncan C). Murray, now in her 50s, was the daughter of Rockfield's resident cordon bleu chef, Joan Murray, which meant she helped out in the kitchen and served guests. So she had several interesting interactions with famous rock stars over the years, and just recently released a memoir describing her time growing up at Rockfield titled My Family and Other Rock Stars. The article makes mention of Rush in a couple of places; apparently Rush had more refined food tastes than most of her guests:

... "Some bands were sophisticated and knew a bit about food. For example, despite this being the mid-Seventies, Queen knew what calamari was. And Rush and Ian Gillan [from Deep Purple] were gourmands too." ...

And this passage talks about all the fans who make pilgrimages to the studio:

... "We also do very well with Rush fans wanting to know where they recorded A Farewell to Kings," says Ward. "I can see Geddy [Lee] and the boys outside in the courtyard now in their tiny satin shorts." ...

Fashion Model & International Violinist/Composer Abigail Stahlschmidt is working on her new EP and revealed in a social media post this past week that the bonus track on the EP will be a Rush medley.

CFNYA new documentary on iconic Toronto radio station CFNY (The Spirit of Radio) is in the works, and former DJ Alan Cross (one of the film's producers) gave an update on the film's progress via a recent post to his A Journal of Musical Things blog (thanks RushFanForever). The station and their slogan was the direct inspiration for Rush's The Spirit of Radio from 1980's Permanent Waves album. From the update:

... Where are we now? The film is pretty much done with the exception of nailing down the rights to ONE song that we'd really like to have in the movie and ONE more photo that needs to be licensed. Both issues should be resolved very soon. What's next? Finding a distributor. Applying to film festivals (including TIFF). And arranging the promotion and marketing campaigns which should include a limited theatrical release. Hang in there. A few more months and you'll get to see it.

In previous blog posts, Cross mentioned that both Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson were slated to appear in the documentary, and the Hollywood Reporter confirmed earlier today that at least Geddy would be appearing:

Rush frontman-bassist Geddy Lee, Simple Minds lead singer Jim Kerr and Sum 41 frontman Deryck Whibley appear in a new documentary about the origins and high points of pioneering Toronto radio station CFNY. ... Geddy in the documentary recalls growing up in Toronto and the contribution of CFNY program director David Marsden in the 1980s. Earlier, in 1965, Marsden, using the pseudonym Dave Mickie, succeeded the late Alex Trebek of Jeopardy! fame as host of CBC TV's Music Hop, a Canadian teen music show modeled after American Bandstand stateside. ...

Here's Rush's official animated lyric video for The Spirit of Radio that the band released a few years ago, which includes several nods to CFNY contained within:

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

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