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 24, 2024@10:39AM | comments

UPDATE - 5/25@10:35AM: Here are a couple of Facebook photo galleries along with better quality video of both The Way I Feel and the all-star jam (thanks RushFanForever). There's also this Variety article with some quotes from Geddy:

... Lee and Lifeson, billed on the private performer rundown and setlist only as "L+L," were backed by Canadian Music Hall of Famers (and the evening's house band) Blue Rodeo on Lightfoot's song "The Way I Feel," complete with an acoustic guitar solo from Lifeson. ... "It was important for us to pay tribute to Gordon," Lee told Variety. "Not being folk or pop artists, Alex and I were looking for one of Gordon's songs that might better suit our style of play and we found that in 'The Way I Feel.' Its structure was loose and more open to interpretation than many of his more popular tunes." ... "After the gig, Gordon's daughter Meredith [Moon] said to us, 'Leave it to Rush to make 'The Way I Feel' sound prog,' so I think we succeeded," Lee added. Lee and Lifeson also came out for the ensemble finale, "Summerside of Life," featuring all of the evening's performers ...

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A tribute show celebrating the music of late Canadian icon Gordon Lightfoot took place last night at Massey Hall in Toronto and Rush's Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson made a surprise guest appearance:

... Everyone from his own daughter to contemporaries like Burton Cummings paid tribute to Gordon Lightfoot in song on Thursday night at Toronto's Massey Hall in the first musical gathering to honour the iconic singer-songwriter since his death just over a year ago at age 84. But the biggest surprise was when previously unannounced performers Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush fame took the stage to join Blue Rodeo, one of two house bands for the evening, to perform The Way I Feel. "Fancy meeting you here," joked Lee. ...

You can watch some fan-shot video of the performance below or on Facebook.

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 last 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 while they last. 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 before 9AM EST on May 31st, after which the winner will be announced. For all the details visit the PTGA website.

Crown Lands guitarist Keven Comeau is interviewed in the latest edition of Prog magazine for their My Prog feature, and brings up Rush at several points (thanks RushFanForever):

... I uploaded my uncle's Rush albums onto my i Pod Nano when I was 14. The first album I listened to was "A Farewell To Kings". Xanadu was the first time I heard Taurus pedals, tubular bells, odd time signatures, Minimoogs. It blasted the prog doors open for me. ... Rush's final show in Toronto in 2015 [was the best prog show I've seen]. I caught both nights but the second night they played "Losing It" [from Signals] for the first time. The energy in the room was incredible! It was a poignant moment and one I'm glad I caught. ... On one of the first dates I went on with my wife, we showed each other our favorite records. One of mine was [Rush's] Exit Stage Left, When "The Spirit Of Radio" came on my wife sang every word. I knew right then that she was the one. ... I played with Alex Lifeson on stage at Massey Hall a couple of years ago for a charity gig, and we have stayed in touch. I'd love to work on some music with him. ...

American Songwriter posted their list of 4 of the Most Underrated Guitarists of All Time last week, and Rush's Alex Lifeson took the top spot:

At the top of our list is Rush's mighty Alex Lifeson. Even marginal Rush fans know now how brilliantly he plays the guitar and composes. But since everyone tends to turn their focus on Geddy Lee and Neil Peart, it seems like he never had enough time in the spotlight. But when it comes down to it, Lifeson was the heart of Rush. And he's inspired an entire generation of musicians, including Paul Gilbert, Steven Wilson, Jim Martin, and many more.

Toronto's Budweiser Stage (formerly the Molson Amphitheatre) is celebrating its 30th season this year, and Toronto Life magazine posted a feature celebrating the milestone this past week, where several of the artists who've played there describe their memories of the venue, including Rush's Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson (thanks RushFanForever):

Alex Lifeson - Rush

The gigs were magical-beautiful summer nights spent looking out over the audience. But there are a couple of standouts, as a performer and a fan. In 1998, Jimmy Page and Robert Plant were in town. Geddy Lee and I went backstage before the show and chatted with them for a bit. We reminisced about Led Zeppelin dates in Toronto that we'd gone to as teens and how exciting they were for us. Then Page and Plant set up a beautiful little spot by the monitors so we could watch the show from there. Years later, we were the ones playing, and Gordon Lightfoot came with his daughter, who wanted to meet the band. They arrived just before we went on, and it was the first time I met Gordon. I'm a huge fan, so spending time with him was very cool.

Geddy Lee - Rush

Rush played a bunch of shows at the amphitheatre-we've experienced profound emotions and triumphs in that space. One of my standout memories was from a night I wasn't even there: it was on a Wednesday evening in 2015, when Foo Fighters were headlining. Dave Grohl had recently fractured his leg, and he was sitting on a custom throne. At stage left was Dave's mom, Ginny, and her special guest: my mother, Mary. The two of them had become friends during an interview for Ginny's book about moms of rock stars. During the show, the Foos broke into a rendition of "Tom Sawyer," and my 90-year-old mom started beaming from ear to ear. I was on tour in the US, and my phone blew up with photos and videos sent by folks who were in the crowd.

Here's video of Rush playing the venue back on June 30, 1997 on the Test for Echo tour:

That's all for this week. For all my Canadian readers, Happy Victoria Day, and for my US readers, have a great Memorial Day weekend!!