--From the Senior Editor
Even Indiana Jones was afraid of something (snakes). For Bear Grylls, his big fear is skydiving, having nearly died in a parachute accident in Zambia in 1996. Famous for surviving extreme wilderness environments, even if it means drinking ‘water’ from elephant dung or his own urine from a snake’s skin, the British adventurer and TV presenter (Born Survivor, Running Wild, The Island…) has drawn on his experience of tackling his fear for his new TV series Breaking Point, in which he takes people with extreme phobias (heights, rats, water…) into the wild to confront their demons. His newest adventure mates confronted some of their own demons in his latest adventure in wilds of the Yukon Territory. Rush, with all three members in tow: one retired, one that probably needs to retire, and a bass player with a huge need to write new music.
Having attended the "last" live gig in Los Angeles, Bear couldn't stand the idea of such a group of vital sexagenarians giving up a bit too soon with so much left in the tank. Geddy and Alex, along with a reluctant Neil, went along and joined Bear for memorable trip to sort out life. Grylls is all too familiar with the rancor surrounding what's left of the band and decided to do the world a favor by getting them together in one place to hash out differences. He may have just saved the day...read on fellow Grinders, in this exclusive two part story adventure awaits you, the rabid fan.
By Bear Grylls,
On assignment in the Yukon to save our band
I thought it so important to get the band together in a non-music setting get them to rely on each other for even the most basic of needs. We all know there's an underlying tension in the band, mostly emanating from Geddy and Neil. They don't even look at each other during a concert. "What's the deal?" I thought. A bassist and drummer should be best friends. They lay down the foundation for rock music, they hold it all together no? Recently I've been reading and listening to various interviews in the tabloids with said bassist, and I've came to the conclusion something is terribly wrong with Ray Danniel's golden boys.
The band is separated by thousands of miles, yet they still think they can operate as a unit via text and email. That's a load of cod's wallop. After taking President Obama out into the wilds of Alaska, I phoned my agent and told him to get Rush up to the Yukon double quick so I can do my part to keep them together, and continue making the music we love. Nature will take care of this mess.
I'm not a trained psychologist, but I do understand the need for communication in any successful relationship. Take me and Les Stroud. We communicate, but it's mostly with our middle digits. No matter if we hate each otherr (which we do), a middle finger is better than a moonshot when you're just trying to talk. I sensed that Geddy, Alex, and Neil needed to go into the tundra and make an adventure, eating off the froze tundra, and rekindle the bond which made them so special in the first place.
The nature of the band is one of generosity. When someone farts, everyone says thank you--and they mean it! Their crew will tell you so. No one in this band is afraid to pony up at the bar and take care of their friends either. Legend has it, and this has been confirmed to be true, they conduct free prostate exams for crew members during each tour. So on top of enjoying a drink and friend, they're concerned about the crew's health as well.
However, such an invasive procedure has its critics among the employees of the R40 crew. For example, Neil always handles the exams for Geddy's techs, who have summarily complained about the size of his hands. Keyboard tech Jack Secret said that Neil put a mirror in front of his face so that he can "see" the hurt. Neil told to Tony this was so the he could be ever mindful about his patients discomfort, Jack thinks otherwise. "I know it sounds crazy, but when Neil tells me he's going to use his shoehorn, I get nervous."
Understood my man. Neil does have rather large hands. However, you'll never hear Gump complain.
Getting the guys to the Yukon was a bit of a struggle but we got them safe and sound to checkpoint By-Tor, right outside of Tombstone located in the middle of the territory. Dropped off via dog sleds, they arrived slightly chilled and ready for a hot beverage. No problem. I had just the solution for starting the trip off right. Trust is key in any relationship. A drummer needs to know his bassist is in the pocket, and a bassist needs a drummer that is sober in order to stay in time.
Speaking of which. During this trip the use a marijuana was not tolerated. Right from dismounting of the sleds I made it clear to Alex and Neil that no drug use would be accepted, and use of such product would incur a harsh penalty. Such warning proved fruitless, as Neil and Alex sparked up right after eating caribou on our first night. So, naturally accepting the consequences of rule breaking occurred the first night. Geddy wasn't excluded. He was just as guilty as they were for letting his friends operate outside the boundaries of this expedition.
Tea is often a comfort. We Brits celebrate teatime religiously and so I thought of easing the pain of their first infraction with a bit of urine tea, complete with pine needles to add a bit of flavor. The catch with this little penalty was that no one in the band could drink their own pee...had to be the Endocrinol fluid of a band member.
I took sips of all three. Of course it was met with incredulous snark, but they soon realized I hold the keys to the kingdom as I reminded them we had no radio, and only I knew the located of the GPS rescue unit. Bottoms up! Alex was a real sport. Geddy not so much.
In order to get to the bottom of this mess I had to go all out. We all know from watching Beyond the Lighted Stage Neil is no ace at skating. But, with a little training prior to his arrival he appeared to arrive in top form. The Iron Lotus, considered the holy grail for same sex figure skaters, would be what Neil and Geddy would perfect in the wild as a team. Trust, absolute trust, would be needed in order to perform this move. Alex and I would simply watch and encourage, with Alex primed for taking photographs for the band's next album cover.
To Be Continued--BG
We all know the holidays are something special, and this one is exceptionally important as we grow closer to the end of our band's career. When Neil ran off the stage in Los Angeles I believe we all felt a bit of sadness acknowledging the impending finality of it all. Not so fast. When the conclusion of this story hits the newsstands I believe you'll be happy to know change is in the air, and everyone will say thank you before it's over.
So, as a way of leaving you with something very special until that next issue, here's a little documentary filmed by the office staff of the Yukon Blade Grinder to show you just how special it was OUTSIDE the Forum in LA before the show...Enjoy!
Edited by Tombstone Mountain, 24 December 2015 - 10:43 PM.