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  1. Hi girls. I've never posted on a Rush message board before. I've read them for years (this one much more than the others) but, for whatever reasons, just never decided to get my feet wet. After last night's phenomenal show at the Taj Mahal in Atlantic City, I decided to change that - even if only for a day. There are some things inside me that need to come out and I felt like this was the only place I could release them. I'm a 31 year-old woman from NYC and a Rush fan since 2003. Last night marked my 14th Rush concert and my VIP package awarded me a great ticket right in front of the very man whose plaintive riffs stole my heart 10 years ago: Alex Lifeson. (I'm pretty small, so he never noticed me standing there gazing up at him with a potent cocktail of loving tears and adoration in my eyes, which was perhaps for the best. It was a very emotional night for me and getting any sort of eye contact from a member of Rush might have legitimately caused a fainting spell!) I think that most Rush fans are, to an extent, somewhat broken and emotionally fragile people. Not ALL of them, obviously, but the more I meet and speak to at shows, and the more eyes I gaze into as I pass them in the hallways of concert venues, the more I believe that the 3 talented misfits who comprise Rush have managed to produce music that reaches into the hearts of every other misfit on the planet and pulls them into that warm and comforting nimbus where they know they will always be safe. And understood. I am one of those broken people. I was an "accidental" child born to a mother who was violent and resentful. I was sexually abused by my father until I was in my teens and never told anyone. I was a compulsive cutter, a complete outcast in school who was abused verbally and physically. I had no social skills, grew up despising all other children and was terrified of men. For the most formative and important years of my life, I was such an introvert that something as simple as going grocery shopping gave me anxiety attacks. I spent the majority of my life feeling like I had no place on this earth. I felt unloved, unlovable, worthless, filthy, confused and full of a sadness so infinite that it sometimes felt like my heart was smothering in my chest. I had no interest in music, in hobbies, in dating. My only true joy was in painting, but because I lived on my own from an early age, I rarely had the money to buy decent art supplies. I was a lost and completely broken human being who was merely existing without living at all. Anyone who tells you that music cannot change your entire life has obviously never been at the very end of their own rope, like I was. I will never, ever forget the first time I heard Rush. Sitting on my bedroom floor in front of my stereo system on an overcast day in October, I stumbled onto Q104.3FM while station surfing. Suddenly, streaming out of my speakers in impossible, shimmering, twisting ecstasy came Alex Lifeson's Limelight solo. It pierced through my heart like an arrow and I remember an awe-struck, prickling sensation spreading fast as wildfire throughout my entire body. His guitar cried out in sorrow and my heart answered immediately in understanding. But then the notes that followed twisted and danced and spiralled off into the most nakedly honest and raw joy I'd ever heard. It felt like, in the space of only 30 seconds or so, he had told my own personal story and created a happy ending for me where there had been none. The euphoria and pure, delicately screaming joy of that final, spiralling note that he rides into oblivion awakened something inside me that I couldn't fully understand but never wanted to let go of. Alex had jump-started a heart that had been dead for nearly 2 decades. I had no idea who he was, I had no idea who the rest of the band was or even the name of the song. I only knew that if I could hear that sound again, that sparkling guitar full of hope and promise, that teeming wall of rapturous sound that wrapped around it, then somehow everything would be okay. That was the beginning of my love affair with Rush. They reached me in the most beautiful and profound way possible, at a time when nothing and no one else could. I have never loved a band so much. I've never felt this way about music before, so consistently and for so long. I've never felt so deeply connected to 3 people I don't even know. I've never felt that I owed SO MUCH to a group of complete strangers. As they played The Garden last night, I reflected on all of this and broke down and cried. Right there in front of me, a mere 15 feet away, were the men who had saved my life and they didn't even know it. They would NEVER know it. I doubt they realize just how much the fruits of their livelihood affect the lives of those who hear it, how significant they are to the lost and hurting who stumble across their music. I'm still a broken person, but Rush was the bandage that helped me begin to heal. They were my rainbow in a life of nothing but clouds. I can only hope to God that they know how special they are. I often wish that I could meet them and just hug them and tell them "thank you", but it would never be enough. For what they have given to me, for what they have given to us all, there is no hug long or tight enough and there can never be enough "thank you"s. As The Garden wound softly to a close last night and the boys retreated for a short break, I thought about the lyrics. "In the fullness of time, a garden to nurture and protect". Whether Rush realizes it or not, we all are their garden to nurture and protect.... and they have done a damn fine job. So to all the other misfits out there... to all of you who, like me, have found solace or love or hope or healing in the music of these 3 wonderful men... my heart is with you, I understand and I raise a glass today to you, to Rush, to new beginnings, to the strength to carry on despite all odds and to the camaraderie that exists within this incredibly unique fanbase. If anyone made it through this entire message, thank you from the bottom of my heart for obliging me. :') And most of all, thank you RUSH!!! <3
    80 points
  2. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20Farewell%201_zpskswijqt2.jpg By Tombstone Mountain Afterimage One http://cdn.discogs.com/jP3EIUO1gYE3gDyuHJPDAs_gLq8=/fit-in/300x300/filters:strip_icc():format(jpeg):mode_rgb()/discogs-images/R-1094321-1252991715.jpeg.jpg My first concert was '87. Hold Your Fire tour at the Spectrum in Philadephia. At the time I was living in Ocean Township, New Jersey. A blip on Route 9 between Forked River and Barnegat. It was a big deal my parents let me drive there and back at the age of 17. In my Dad's house (yes, he reminded me that it was his house), I had two parents who taught me the value of hard work, and my life centered around family. A family with a military background. I was disciplined to be aware of my surroundings. They knew where I was at all times, and paid close attention to me when I came home at night. Meaning, they would sniff me out if I were doing anything "wrong". Oh yeah, there was ZERO angst tolerated by Mutti (stepmom from Germany) and Dad. However, they nurtured my curiosity for music, encouraging me to learn how to play an instrument (the Bass Viol), and bought my first electric bass. Like so many other individuals who've built their own shrines during the teenage years, my bedroom had it's own little corner dedicated to favorite bands. Posters aplenty: Van Halen. Duran Duran. Men at Work. Mozart. Rush was ONE of the them. Synth era Rush to be precise. I remember sharing what it would mean to me if I could go see Rush. Didn't have to beg. I just got my license, drove an almost pristine Datsun 260 z (black, with those dark headlight covers), and was growing in different directions at all times. What a feeling to have earned their trust to let me go on that long drive to the City of Brotherly Love. Tommy Shaw opened, my girlfriend fell asleep by The Mission. I didn't care. It was really all about me seeing the band I loved, and it was my first rock concert. There was no connection to the halcyon days of the 70's, so this era was formative in my Rush experience. Afterimage Two http://ak.picdn.net/shutterstock/videos/1983811/preview/stock-footage-flying-over-the-clouds-in-the-night-with-the-moon-seamless-d-animation-hd.jpg It was o-dark thirty. When I departed Goatnut International Airport all I had was a suitcase full of clothes, a laptop, and a match, in case I gassed out the lavatory. My plane lifted off and soared above the clouds for a spectacular view. A full moon over an ocean of white and blue. For a moment, I felt awe and wonder. Nothing but that bright orb filling up the sky, casting its reflected light over the billows of moist air. It wasn't the best thing I experienced that weekend though. I was going to see Rush, the finale of the R40 tour, and possibly for their career. After seeing them twice already, in Greenesboro and Seattle, I already knew the vibe surrounding these events. The Forum in Los Angeles would be different because of the perceived finality of it all. As the sun rose higher and higher, and my flight was making it's way over LA, my head was full of conflicting emotions. I pulled out the laptop and started typing. Here are the exact words I entered: Departure. Arrival. Anticipation. Adrenaline. Traffic. Smog. Smaug? Smuag? Touch. Hugs. Plastic surgery. Implants. Falling Down. Howie Long. Egg white omelette. Old friends. New friends. The great Charles Barkley, known for ferocious elbows during his time in the NBA, and for conjuring Satchel Paige-like wisdom, aptly described what it means to get old and retire: "Father time is undefeated". I stopped right there. Now my thoughts turned to hitting LA, and meeting friends. Afterimage Three http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/3_zpsjzcxi1kp.jpg You join The Rush Forum for the band, you stay for the people. --LIX Two friends from TRF, Gina (x1yyz) Michael (Greyfriar) were coming to LA. Michael hails from a small village in Germany. When I joined the Forum, he was gracious to extend conversation my way. We share a connection. My stepmom is from Koln, and I spent my teen years eating really great German food. Mutti (stepmom) taught me valuable life lessons about so many things. Keeping in touch with friends was one. Michael and I have corresponded via PM for years, speaking with great honesty about so many topics. Our private conversations mean a lot to me. On this trip I got to be with him, look into his eyes and know him. He got to meet Bubbles from the Trailer Park Boys...here's his picture. Now he's famous. Can't put a price on that. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/bub_zpsgwllokfy.jpg Gina has meant so much in my quest to make the little rag of a parody more enjoyable to read. I told her upon completion of the first cover she "elevated" the form, beyond the past editions. Per usual, she was humble and low key about her contribution, but for me it means the world. Someone "gets" it, and wants to contribute. She understands where I'm coming from on a creative level and can almost see where it's going. I so appreciate her efforts to help someone she doesn't know, who lives far away in the hills of Tennessee. Indeed, we are connected by such slender (and weak YBG) threads. Concert Day 4:45 pm. From the Sheraton, Michael, Gina, and myself, departed for the Forum stopping by the Renaissance Hotel to pick up Tom Healey (periscope ace). The four of us crammed in the cab. Not a long drive to the arena. Let the whirlwind begin. We got out and made it to the "Will Call" concierge to watch the freak parade, mingling with people from all over the world. Lot's of folks to mention, but my personal favorite was a charming couple (George and Pamela) from Aberdeen, Scotland. Kilts do something for me, as well as the charm of those wonderful accents. Celebrities began emerging, so did my inner (and outer) Yukon Blade Grinder. Showtime was arriving quickly as we made our way to the libation stations and meet up with TRF members. Michael and I walked as brothers in arms to reassure ourselves the moment was actually happening. It was beautiful. We met up with Robert (robertrobyn), Rick (rushman14), Phil (Empty Mindless Spectre) and friends. It seemed we've known each other for years...YEARS!!! A bond already existed there that was, dare I say, like a family. We eased into conversations with that excellent social lubricant known as beer. Selfies out the ying-yang. Laughter. It was all good. That was outside. Inside I met with the Animate (Liz), who was surprised I didn't look like Yosemite Sam (exact words). Oooooookay. Then, Stevie. I first met her in Greenesboro, NC. Not an active poster on TRF, but claims to have made it to all 30 shows. Wow, that is some dedication. Probably the only chick on the planet to own a 2112 shirt with a naked woman instead of a man, standing against the oppressive red star. She gave me a crystal that has "powers", which supposedly helps me radiate "positive" energy. Far out Stevie! Thanks. A memory that shines from these encounters was meeting Rick's childhood friend who got him into Rush when he was 14 years old. They shared recollections of the first concert they attended together, and other humorous stories. As I listened to them and watched the regard they held for each other, I admired the connection. Such obvious affection and respect represented a bromance on epic levels. Cool people are people I wanna know, and you can never have too much of that in your life. It's a common theme at a Rush concert, because we get that from the band. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/us_zpshxvnhx5q.jpg Afterimage Four: The Show They're no "stars" in this building other than Rush. --Jack Black When I see Rush I'm on another planet and living in the moment: Air bass--check. Air drums--check. Air guitar--check. Singing--Badly, but check. I'm reliving those teenage years jamming in my bedroom, door closed. It all comes back to me. Getting lost in the music is the reason I've showed up all these years. http://www.billboard.com/files/styles/promo_650/public/media/the-forum-la-paul-hebert-bb42-billboard-650.jpg First off, The Forum is THE velvet box of memories on the west coast. Whether from the concerts--or from sporting events--a ton of history has gone down in that building. A bit of Yukon Blade Grinder history went down as well. All the way from his trailer park, Bubbles was in town. I spotted the man and got a few minutes with him. We sang a bit of "Closer to the Heart" (he said I was in f***ed up key), and I exposed him to a bit of Goatnut whimsy. More on that later. It was nice to be on the inside of such a historic place. Vibe was warm. Looking around I saw thousands of people just like me. Excited to be there, pensive that it may be the end. Good cheer was the dominant feeling. It was still a packed Rush concert, and we knew an evening of incredible music was coming down the pike. http://i.ytimg.com/vi/iRglJmoMU7Q/maxresdefault.jpg Of course when the band took the stage the energy went up ten fold, and there was no letting up. When the crowd responds in such a way it elevates the entire event into something special. Both band and crowd made it magic. It stayed that way through the entire 1st set. On The Rush Forum, the predominant era of choice is basically the Terry Brown catalog. No doubt. I enjoy it like everyone else, but it was before my time. I had to go back in time to appreciate it after I cut my teeth on the synth era. 1st set was my personal moment of zen. One would think the last set would have more energy than the 1st, for some reason that was not the case though. Weird. The 2nd set, which takes us to Moving Picture and earlier, I'm focusing on the playing ability of these guys. Rush aims for perfection at all times when delivering the goods. However, live I don't expect it. I want the little bumps to see how they deal with them, being a player myself. I'm funny that way. When I attended the May 28th North Carolina gig, Alex got lost during The Camera Eye. I was fascinating how he held his place and picked up when he became re-orientated. To me, that's the best part. The professionalism is astounding. Complex music with lots of buttons to push, and pedals to stomp while playing...and in Geddy's case, singing added for good measure. Lot's of shit can go wrong. Yet, it seems they all carry the same load to hold it together. It's another facet of what makes this band special. Alex was in front of me all night. Now, in my time I've seen some amazing players. Played along side some. Alex is a composer on the guitar. He does what's best for the song, creating almost any texture or mood to fit the piece. Never overplaying. Some say his ability has diminished dramatically. I disagree. His fingers may be more sausage-like than ever, but dude was on it ALL night in LA. To see him performing the volume swells of Xanadu, the harmonic opening of Red Barchetta, and the unique vibe of Animate, just floored me as I watched him close his eyes and sail away to Lerxt World. It's my belief the main reason they stopped performing Jacob's Ladder is because it can be a slog of a song to play. Meaning it can get boring. If you're not a musician I'm afraid you wouldn't understand but let me explain. The vibe created by playing simple textures can drone on...and on. It can lull the performers to sleep almost. Good for audience in terms of song choice, hard for the folks keeping it together. By pulling the masterpiece out of the mothballs they committed to giving us a part of the Holy Grail this tour. As Alex built momentum from the staccato pulse of the opening, it was hard not to scream as he nailed the solo. Not his most challenging, but certainly one of the most cinematic of his career. Then, turning your attention to Neil, and watching him go through his arrangement, I wondered what it was like for these guys to write this stuff. Man to be a fly on the wall watching that go down. Losing It, also a piece of the Holy Grail. Not performed live until this tour. People get old, and abilities deterioate--our common fate. I can see why they waited for the perfect moment to do it. It's too much of a bummer otherwise to be reminded of it. Why would Geddy want to sing that every night? Jonathan Dinklage provided the violin work. Different than Mink's original only in that he adds some different colors to the textures he plays. Translation: he made that song his bitch. My God, he took what Mink did, and amplified it by a factor of 3. Of note, the lighting during this song was really impressive. Liquid-y would be an apt description. The light was liquid-y. Yeah, that's it. Cygnus was brought to life in an unexpected way this tour. For veteran's of the Halcyon days, this probably made 'em pass out. It was remarkable how the tour paid homage to A Farewell to Kings. You get Xanadu, Closer to the Heart and Cygnus x1. Had to step over the bodies after these songs to get to the bathroom. I actually prefer this song performed sans vocals. So many twists and turns to watch. Geddy was allowed to noodle away without worrying how close he was to his microphone. After the song was over, Neil was giving the crowd the towel wave. He's getting demonstrative these days. Let me point some notable moments: Alex watching Neil solo during Cygnus--He sat on the edge of the stage and just watched Neil, all smiles. The double bass onslaught at the end was probably as good as he's ever performed that part of the solo--thunderous. Alex usually doesn't hang out that long, but from the look on his face he was drinking up what may be the last time NEP plays that solo. Geddy hauling the mail--Those who criticize the man's voice based on last tour have to give him his due. It's only polite. He showed up big time. I think someone he trusts and respects must've sat him down and said "look at this" and handed him the Clockwork Angels Live DVD. Geddy made it a priority to pay attention to detail in this department. All three shows I saw live, and the periscope feeds, indicate that he made a strong effort on his vocal role. Huge improvement. Losing It--I got to see that song live. Describing it...well they played it to perfection. After the song Neil did his little fiddle imitation for Jonathan, and that was it. I'm one of the few who got to witness that song. Geddy sitting on Neil's lap--A complete surprise during Animate. We never saw that one coming. Is this the end? Seeing Neil do anything other than the usual is a big deal. He actually came to the front of the stage, put his arms around Alex and Geddy, and waved. He's never done that as far as I know. If this was it, I can say I was there to watch it end. Am I sad? Yes. Yes, because I want these guys to drain that tank until the rocket sauce is just fumes. I'm sad because they can still play at a high level, and I wanna see what's possible. What if they make another record and it blows Clockwork Angels out of the water? It's possible. In this life, I wanna see what's possible... http://img.rush.com/wp-content/uploads/2014/11/rush_bow_bw-1280x780.jpg
    55 points
  3. Who loves ya baby? Hey guys...the setlist...it's all about you! http://31.media.tumblr.com/04b3fd03e3199a21644919d2954d9c7a/tumblr_n1g0p1nhvx1sg3xpdo1_400.gif How can you not "like" this?
    51 points
  4. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20cover%20limo_zpss22jvmtj.jpg An open letter to Neil my drinking partner and drum guru: So here it is. The end. Time for one door to close, and another to open. The Yukon Blade Grinder dialed me up, and told me about the scenario. I just couldn't leave them hanging, so here goes. Saturday you will play the Forum in that dangerous shithole known as LA. The last Rush concert will bring many to tears...out of love...and from a love lost. It seems in music, as in life, when the last note is played or the final breath is drawn, we sit in shock over the finality of it all. No doubt to be the case here. Forty years of sweat. Forty years of joy. Forty years of tendinitis development. It all hurts. So soak it in. I remember laying my sticks down on the floor tom after my final concert with Genesis. Elation wouldn't be a good word to describe my feelings. Relief was more like it. I did my bit for the band, and was ready to move on to other pastures to see what lay beyond my purview. Something else was out there and I needed to find out for myself what exists "beyond the cymbals". Boy was I an idiot. I missed my friends. Your gig is a gravy train on biscuit wheels old chap. Don't let it go. Persevere until you drop. You've got a full tank, as witnessed from this tour. The tabloids raved about the band. Not one ill review to be found, except one on some website called "The Rush Forum"...written by a complete tosser. Don't quit and let your belly hang over your belt. I know the story of "being" there for your family. I respect that so much Neil. I respect it so much that I think you should put their asses on a tricked out bus, and take them with you to see America again and again. But that's just me, your friend Phil. Do us a favor. Stay in the game. Play when you want to play. Record when you want to record. Never give up performing with Alex and Geddy. What you have is too special. Your little one will certainly miss her Uncle Dirk and Uncle Lerxt. Wouldn't want to deprive her of that now would you? Take it from me, a man who left his mates to put on his Mr. Jangles dancing shoes. Sure I made millions. I sold more records than when I was with Genesis. Made the papers and everything. To this day I still ask myself "What if"? Don't be that guy. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/phil%201_zpsdeavcm8h.jpg Your friend and fellow drummer, Phil P.S.--Where's that double bass pedal I loaned you back in 2005? I need it. P.S.S.--You must visit Goatnut,TN...there's this really cool cave.
    45 points
  5. Hey everyone, happy Easter :). I just wanted to share this project that I spent almost all day working on. When it comes to decorating Easter eggs, I like to go all out. This is definitely the best Easter egg creation that I have ever made and I'm very happy with how it turned out. I would have drawn some amps and stage decorations, but by the time I was finished I just wanted to leave it as is. I hope you like it, have a great Easter if you celebrate it. Rush on!
    40 points
  6. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20cover%20Howard_zpsusoxilbe.jpg Howard Ungerleider: This is your Life By Pope Francis Yukon Blade Grinder reporter on assignment http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/pope_zpssyr5i7bn.jpg My heavens! What a treat to be invited to Yukon Blade Grinder land. As THE man of the cloth, I find it quit humbling to have an opportunity to sing the praises of one Howard Ungerleider. So rich is his body of work. So diverse a resume of accomplishments and achievements. One could simply spend days upon days documenting them...but not me. Think about it. It's been written the entire world was created in just 6 days, so I can't give more than this to Howard without feeling guilty. I'm here, as they say in some parts of the world, to get my swerve on and share some thoughts about one Mr. Ungerleider. I traveled all over God's green earth to find the real story. It wasn't easy. As with any assignment with the YBG sometimes you just gotta go with the flow. In the end, it was all my pleasure. How it all started: Humble beginnings http://www.plsn.com/plugins/content/mavikthumbnails/thumbnails/150x136-images-stories-14-10-current-howard-u-0-howard-carboy.jpg Ungerleider was born in New York in 1952 and moved to New Jersey when he was 12, spending his teens in Paramus. He credits his father, a former drill sergeant in the military, with instilling a strong work ethic in him. Success comes from the sweat of our brow, and sometimes from a boot in our rear. That gave him the tools to not be afraid to get his hands dirty. Kudos to Dad--job well done! His grandfather played mandolin with the New York Philharmonic, and Howard taught himself a little piano and guitar, which he played in a couple of local bands. Meanwhile, always cruising for the action and the next step up the corporate version of Jacob's Ladder, he volunteered at his high school theater where he first started running lights. He went to what is now Monmouth (NJ) University studying theater and drama right up to the moment when a prank got out of hand and he was shown the door. “It was stupid,” he laughs about the reason for his dismissal. No worries my son...you're forgiven! We all fall short. For example, the Yukon Blade Grinder didn't even pay the fuel tab for my papal jet to go interview Geddy and Alex. The bill is in the mail. But before his dubious exit, he was on the student council, where he booked concerts and once worked with a New York Agent named Sean LaRoche. So he started showing up at his New York office, thinking if he met him he’d get a record contract for his band. All in God's good time my son. LaRoche’s secretary kept putting him off, saying he was out of the office, at lunch — whatever — to get this kid to leave. After three weeks, Ungerleider figured out her schedule and marched into LaRoche’s office when she was out. LaRoche, who couldn’t believe this kid had gotten into his office, was even more flabbergasted that he was asking for a record contract. That's using the brain the good Lord gave us all Howard. From dreams to a bowl of dust? NOT for Howard!!! “Listen, there’s probably 20,000 bands out there and only one will make it, and it won’t be yours,” LaRoche told Ungerleider. “Now do you want to learn about this industry or do you want your life to be a pipe dream?” Undaunted, Howard was ready for his real "education". LaRoche wrote some names down for him and sent him out the door. Perhaps crestfallen, but not deterred, it was his ticket to his job as an office boy making $75 a week for another agent, Jeff Franklin, then one of American Talent International owners. As always, Howard was able to learn what he needed to step up to the next level. He went from getting coffee to working in the mailroom, with Franklin seemingly screaming at him all the way. He got his big break when he overheard Franklin chewing out a room of agents because they couldn’t get a gig for Fleetwood Mac at a $3,500 package, with an extra $750 for the opening act. On the way home, Ungerleider stopped by Fairleigh Dickinson University and sold the deal to them — for $8,750. The applause of metal heaven reign on you my son! Now an agent himself, Ungerleider worked with Deep Purple and Ronnie James Dio and did very well. “I developed a tough reputation, and they would often send me to collect the money from a gig,” he laughs. So tough in fact, he was the inspiration for the immortal tour manager "Ian" from the movie Spinal Tap. He's the one who made sure the motel accommodations were right. He made sure Alex had mandolin strings, and the band had bread that needed no folding. http://blogs.desmoinesregister.com/dmr/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/its_time_to_kick_ass.jpg Ian from This is Spinal Tap Inspired by Howard Ungerleider But as he traveled with the bands, they would always ask him what he thought of the show. He would be blunt. “Sometimes I’d point out that there was no ‘show’, just a band playing music.” He would make suggestions, particularly about the lighting, and the band would have him talk to the lighting director about his ideas. This blossomed into a moonlighting gig as a lighting consultant. “In 1972, I was working with Blue Öyster Cult, and their booking agency was ATI,” Elliot Krowe says of his early days with Ungerleider. “Howard was always in the offices there, and we were introduced. He was available for work, so I hired him to do advance work for me on the BÖC tour. Subsequently he hooked up with Rush and they’re first foray into the states was on tour opening for BÖC, and his first lighting design was done on my system as an opening act.” http://ic.pics.livejournal.com/squintyt4e/6708338/2718/2718_600.jpg 40 Years of Vision and excellence As the crazy overflowed at the agency, with partners fighting and threatening legal action against each other, Rush needed a tour manager for their first U.S. tour, and the prospect of working for a band looked good. In the summer of 1974, he was sent to Canada by his company to help a new band as they started touring regularly. That band was Rush and Ungerleider has played a crucial role in the success of their tours and production for nearly 40 years. 40 years! That's Moses territory right there, and Howard was certainly traveling the Promise Land in America. For so long he wore the Tour Manager and Lighting Design/Director hat and has been on the road with Rush for every tour except the Roll the Bones tour. From the early days opening for Kiss and Aerosmith, to the breakout 2112 shows, the blockbuster success of the Moving Pictures tour, introduction of lasers on 1984's Grace Under Pressure tour, triumphant return and astounding South American audiences on the 2002 Vapor Trails tours, to the Time Machine, and the current R40 tour, Howard has been instrumental in the look and feel of the band's performances. While the band provides the all important soundtrack, Howard sets the scene and creates the drama with precise and powerful lighting and video cues. He is an indispensable member of the band--thus says you-know-who! One of the great perks of being a Yukon Blade Grinder correspondent, and the voice of God on Earth, is that I get to meet so many wonderful people. Geddy and Alex were next on the docket to meet for this homage to Howard. Flying into Toronto, admiring the skyline and after eating a healthy meal of poutine, I got the chance to visit with the two and get their thoughts on such a long a happy union with Howard--so rare to see such commitment these days. Little did the two men know that I've been a fan since day one, myself seeing them live countless times (Vapor Trails is my favorite album, though Totem is my favorite song). They were surprised to see me in my VT shirt. As we sat down in the offices of Anthem Entertainment, it was so nice to get Canadian hospitality--and friendly smiles. Eschewing the customary decorum, I told them to call me Frank. After all, I'm just a guy myself who enjoys a drink and a laugh: http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Geddy-paper_zpsoknvg81w.jpg Geddy and Alex, so nice for you to take time from your busy schedule on this tour break to speak with me. You're big fans of the YBG I see. I'll bet you didn't know I was a big fan of your music. Alex: Actually now I recognize you from the concert in Germany. You were fifth row in Koln right? I knew I recognized that hat. You were nuts that night Geddy: I remember the "Sermon on Mt. Nerd" that was telecast all over the world when you were denouncing Vapor Trolling. Thanks a lot big guy...I mean Frank. No problem, no problem my sons. Tell me what are some of the things you love most about Howard? Geddy: Two things. 1) He can tell a story. A great storyteller. My goodness he can captivate a room with his storytelling Alex: Truth be damned..er sorry...I mean, I've been at some of these events and many times it's being told in a way that I don't remember. But who cares they're great stories. Geddy: Absolutely the truth. Howard is gifted in that department. Bring you to tears with his humor. Give me just one example of a good story from Howard Geddy: My favorite is when he worked as tour manager for us when we opened for Blue Oyster Cult. We had a problem getting all of the money owed us. So, he said he went into their dressing rooms with his beloved pet ferret. What was his name Al? Alex: Slinky. He kept this thing on a leash and walked it every day for Christ's...er I mean Pete's Sake. Geddy: Yeah. Well anyway. He went into their dressing room with Slinky and put him in Buck Dharma's pants. He said if he didn't get the money he was gonna tell slinky to bite his cod off. We got paid, but I doubt that story is true. Alex: I dunno Ged. We only lasted two shows with them after that, then Kiss came into the equation. No great loss, but I think it played a hand somehow. Nice. Loyalty is a quality God admires. Tell me another...these are great. Alex: There's the "Big Gulp" incident at Rochester. I couldn't believe that one. Geddy: Well, Rochester was the worst horror story. When we played there at the auditorium and the show was about to start. As Howard called the house lights and the place went dark, a huge Big Gulp came over in the air, flipped upside down and doused the complete lighting board and we had to do the whole show that night with just spot lights only because all of Howard's consoles, including the back-up, were flooded with ignorance and a Big Gulp. After that show, he started to do things a bit differently. For ten years he had that ferret on a leash, sniffing out trouble before it happened. Alex: Nothing but spotlights that night. I still think it was Howard's Big Gulp though. Geddy: But, the show was one of our best shows. Howard even came on stage to help sing Limelight. Alex: He's got a really good voice. Surprising. He performed a miracle that night. Literally turned water in to wine. I'm sure you're familiar with that exp<b></b>ression. Right Frank? Oh yes. One of my favorite stories. So, where's the ferret now? Is it dead? Alex: Oh yeah, long gone. I think Slinky's been stuffed and is on Howard's tour bus for good luck. Geddy: Been working like a charm I must say. Wow. Yukon Blade Grinder readers will love that one. Tell me the other thing you love most about Howard? Alex: The other thing is that no one, and I mean no one, can get a room full of people drunker, quicker than Howard Ungerleider. Geddy: Amen to that. Alex: He is a mixology expert. He can mix drinks with the best of them Geddy: An alchemist in every sense of the word. My favorite is "Photo-bomb". That'll kick you in the rump Alex: That's a good one. Though when I reflect on the crew party after the Clockwork Angels tour he made these drinks called "Jesus, Joseph, and Mary"...three levels of awesome sauce right there. It fills my heart with joy to hear such things. Beautiful. In closing, when Howard reads this edition of the Blade Grinder, what would you like him to know about how you feel about him? Your career is coming to a close...what would you like to say? Alex: Thanks so much for being there Howard. All of this happened because you were a part of the team. We learned so much together, and been through so much life. Good times and bad. You really are the 4th member of the band. We love you. Geddy: Howard. Herns my man. You're the best. Come live in Toronto so I don't have to see Alex so much. I need an excuse to get away sometimes. Parting words Touching. Very touching to hear those words. I remember flying back to the Vatican with my head swimming about this story. How could I wrap up a story such as this with a fitting tribute to the best lighting director the planet has ever seen? Well Howard, it's been said that when God was making our world the first thing he did was create light. However, I have a feeling if God was tired that day, or was otherwise occupied and needed someone to step in and make light a reality---he would've called you. Thank you my good man...from all Rush fans! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/pope%20wave2_zps3zrhklas.jpg "Sermon on Mt. Nerd" 2013
    38 points
  7. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20HQ%20Cover_zpsm8cfgxpn.jpg Forward from the upcoming book, It's Over at Last by Neil Peart After the last curtain call of the R40 tour, the hubbub and cocktail chatter was turned up to 11. The Forum in Los Angeles is a great place to end the journey. Across the street, Steve Harvey's Fried Chicken joint is always ready to deliver. It's my personal favorite. Inside the special VIP lounge, amidst a captive audience, resident drinkmaster Howard Ungerleider was doling out a new concoction he called "Photobomb". My relationship with Howard started shortly after I joined up with Geddy and Alex. Even way back then, Howard was such a soothing balm to almost any stressful situation. He reminds me of Isaac, the Bartender from The Love Boat - always eager to chat enjoy a refreshing adult beverage. Watching him across the room I was struck by a flurry of emotions. Liam Birt was there, another anchor of the past and also the present. The mere fact that we kept so many people from our humble beginnings was resonating within me. This moment was special, but not sad. A door closes, another opens. A new chapter in our lives was about to begin. Our manager Ray Danniels was surrounded by a conglomerate of yes men taking notes, sending texts, answering phones. My senses told me that after all the negotiating to make this tour happen, they didn't believe me when I told them it was over. Our journey's end made me think of something... http://cdn.playbuzz.com/cdn/94e40aad-a736-4871-9503-96fc4d9a9f20/3adb3030-d675-4fdf-8d4d-5e548aeac0b6.jpeg Pimpin' ain't easy! --Oscar Wilde The Brazen Head is officially Dublin’s oldest watering hole, located down the quays of the River Liffey. Established in 1198, it was originally a coach house but it's unclear how much of the original structure remains. The pub certainly drips with history (metaphorically and literally), hosting historic figures who are known to have spent time in Dublin: authors James Joyce, Brendan Behan and Jonathan Swift, as well as famous revolutionaries like Robert Emmet, Wolfe Tone, Daniel O'Connell and Michael Collins. During a recent excavation, an earthen jar containing previously unknown manuscripts written by Oscar Wilde was discovered. Gems from yesteryear still prove relevant to this transplanted Canadian, and in this melancholy moment the poem hit me. Here's a snippet from his newly revealed writing: The Ocean, my friend. Father time, doesn't bend "Bask in the sun next to the ocean blue, as your soul gets sprayed in a golden, endocrinal hue. When you breath in the air you discover a generous measure of kindness from Poseidon's trident. Hear the gull crying out to its master, see it fly without care or burden on its wings. Oh how I long to sit next to the ocean, and feel the warm spray and its ever comforting breeze." He was on to something. I think. Maybe golden showers feel good or something along those lines. Well, touring can be just that. Here in Santa Monica it's the ocean air that kills you, but at least the beaches are immaculate. Manicured. Litter free. Acres of tan skin. Steroid stallions cruising for tuna. Sadly, the ocean air is jaded by the faint hint of burning petrol. Off in the distance, you can see the flames causing that acrid stain. In the dark corners of my heart I think of all those fat cat oil tycoons polluting the air without restraint. They've no concern for people like us, or the air we breath. If one were to ask them about the smell in the air, they'd probably say: "That's the smell of money!" No doubt. Speaking of money. When I started writing my new book I needed a change of scenery...because I'm thinking about my next paycheck. I'm officially retired, but living in Santa Monica isn't for the financially embarrassed. In what's been standard operating procedure following our most recent tours, I always want to get away and focus on my next book. Really, that's my top priority. In order to create entertaining and insightful prose, atmosphere is always important. My mindset is certainly influenced by my surroundings. One thing on my mind is to share thoughts and feelings about the R40 tour, and why now is the time to hang it up. Much to the chagrin of Rush fans everywhere--it's time. Nobody wants to hear those words, but as I look at my hands and listen to my gut, it's time. The term "fan" is derived from the Latin word fānāticus which means to be “carried away by a god, raving about, possessed”. To be honest, I'm tired of people being fanatical about me. Get over it guys. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/dead-sea_zps0zmxt5m5.jpg Neil relaxing in the Dead Sea 2015 To escape the hubbub of LA, I set out for a favorite destination of Geddy's and mine--The Dead Sea. It isn't as busy, the air is clean, but it's the water that kills you. Looks inviting, but tastes like battery acid. Salt pillars poke up out of the water like buttes from an alien world. Similar to LA, there's plenty of old men hung like field mice and wearing speedos. It's liberating to be surrounded by people who just don't care. People just doing their thing, unaffected by the smirks of young women. Boarding El Al out of Los Angeles I started to reflect on the tour. One of the goals was to leave everything out there and to surpass the previous concert efforts. We have always been of the mindset that we want to improve as the tour progresses. At the end I feel we did just that. We surpassed even our own lofty expectations. I'm already missing certain aspects of touring life, mainly seeing Michael everyday. Our rides certainly gave me plenty to think about between gas stations. The next concert, and the last show. It's crossing the finish line of a marathon that lasts months. I always take the time to give an extra bow from behind my set, but this time I got the courage to step out to the front of the stage. Kinda scary, but the multitude of women assuaged my fears of being stampeded by adoring fans. For some reason I enjoy the anonymity of stopping at Mom and Pop gas stations. We top off the gas tanks, maybe read a book, and take a catnap under a tree after a snack. Normally, Mosbach and I would get snow cones and a corndog. On a show day, I'll always get pickled eggs so I'm ripping farts strong enough to melt Geddy's and Alex's faces by the time Animate rolls around on the setlist. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Neil-diner_zps9ochth6y.jpg One pastime Ged and I share when we vacation is bird watching. Israel boasts some friendly birds, but also the most dangerous. In 1989 while high atop Masada, I was attacked by a flock of Esegenei persecticus, better known as "Yarmulke Hawks". Swooping down from great heights to steal any hat or head covering a weary traveler may wear. The birds cackle with elongated jargon. I know this sounds crazy, but they have a weird Yiddish dialect when they cry out. Golan Heights Yiddish to be precise. They seemingly mock tourists into surrendering whatever snacks they're packing. After my first visit to that part of the world, after they took a holy shit on my prayer cap, I told myself the next time I'd be prepared for those nuisances. I have no sympathy for them after that fiasco. I had my plan to give them antacid tablets wrapped in matzoh balls. It was rewarding to watch them explode in mid air. One reminded me of the time Randy Johnson vaporized a seagull during a game--poof! Nothing but feathers, and not a carcass to be found. That'll teach those bastards. I hope their friends were watching. http://files.shandymedia.com/styles/page/s3/images/photos/thefumble/randy-johnson-fast-ball-kills-bird.png Reality hits you at 60 During the R40 tour I struggled just to get out of bed. After a show muscles ache, and no matter how many Asian masseuses Alex lines up for me, I still hurt. Epsom salt baths are beneficial but the side effects outweigh the benefits. Not to call him out in a public way, but most of his twitter followers know this already. My security guard has a bath salt addiction. So I gotta watch those around him on the bus and in the hotels, primarily because he runs the bath water for me. In a perfect world I could keep on touring, but I'm no spring chicken and have a flourishing life outside of my chosen profession. Most Rush fans probably have no idea that I ride from show to show on a motorcycle, choosing the back roads for my routes. The more remote, the better. Claustrophobia and xenophobia are issues I deal with on the road. Traveling by bike makes those mental hurdles a bit easier. If I traveled by jet I would still have issues. Imagine living your life where you play a gig, fly to the next city, get to your hotel, stay there all day, waiting until the next day to jam. That's what many people don't get. Touring life is really no life at all. Hurry up and wait. So I travel by motorcycle to break up the droning monotony. Don't get me wrong; the payday is significant. Financial embarrassment is something that I gladly left behind years ago, and I'm used to a lifestyle that many would die for. I have a huge garage full of cars. A swimming pool in the shape of a money sign, and three housekeepers I call Nina, Pinta, and Santa Maria...in other words life is good, so why try harder? Yukon Blade Grinder Exclusive Part II A message to our old pal, the new guy: Over a year has passed since our last gig. Man, what a show! Sold out tour. Tons of chicks at the concerts. Not a bad review to be found in the papers. We waved good bye in Los Angeles thinking there may be a few more gigs left in us, and then...radio silence. How convenient that Anthem didn't have to ship the drum kit across the continent. We are all to familiar with your attitude at the start and end of a tour: http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Neil%20mad-happy_zpsdf9javig.jpg Now, here we are waiting for the winds of change to blow up your skirt and air out that candy ass! You're fooling no one. Ged and I know every time you use your turn signal that a drum beat is going off in your head. We know too well, Pratt. We don't believe for one minute you're cool with being old and fat. Time for you to get busy and start practicing. So what if your older and feel you've reached the zenith of your abilities? We'll take you at 75% capacity. Still better than anyone else out there on the planet. We played Losing It several times last tour and not one of us shed a tear. So what if we aren't what we used to be? Jeez, we're in our 60's and not one of us takes viagra--that's an indicator the Rocket Sauce tanks are full. Time to drain those tanks, Pratt. Dirk and I have completed a ton of music and feel it's about time to share, however, we don't seem to have your correct address. We feel that 1410 Itsbetterthanever Street is a fake, and your phone numbers changed. You thought you were clever giving Ray 867-5309--without an area code. It seems so orchestrated, Neil. Do you really want us to leave you alone? Not gonna happen buddy! You're our meal ticket. Can't get in touch with you, yet you're popping up in the oddest places. Operation? You've really sold your likeness to Milton Bradley for that stupid game?!? http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/operation_game_zpsnsaputna.jpg Ged and I thought it was a lame move, but when we found out you got paid $5 million, we started looking for games to endorse. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Neil%20check_zpsxik6jp4z.jpg Then the modeling. Truly a WTF moment. You're modeling leather biker apparel. Wake up dude! Neil, re-attach your balls and call us...you know the number. XOXOXO...blah blah blah, Derxt
    36 points
  8. Some of you might have seen this on Facebook but I thought I would share here. I was cleaning out the old storage shed last weekend and came across this painting I did in 9th Grade (1978). Definitely AFTK era :codger: http://i493.photobucket.com/albums/rr300/Fatorgan/rushpainting_zpsy7yamtwu.jpg
    35 points
  9. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20Holiday_zpsssgatfyw.jpg --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. http://buzzfil.net/public/images/post/16-05-58-media-31069-110770.jpg By Bear Grylls, On assignment in the Yukon to save our band part I 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. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/yukon-cornelius_zpspipdxzzg.jpg 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. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/dirty%20hands_zps74mrxtv0.jpg 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." http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/peter-dinklage_zpsuu79x6g0.jpg Understood my man. Neil does have rather large hands. However, you'll never hear Gump complain. http://travelquaz.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/09/yukon-political-map-by-maps-com-from-maps-com-worlds-largest-.jpg 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. http://cdn.vogue.com.au/media/articles/2/4/9/0/24931-1_n.jpg?124519 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! http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uR6Ja7JgvpI
    34 points
  10. I haven't been on here in ages but finally had some free time to spend a lazy Saturday afternoon perusing the Internet and return to this forum. I can't believe the bashing that is going on about Geddy's vocals on the tour and (in particular) the DVD/Blu-ray. I thought people on here were fans. Obviously (I think) the ones that are complaining are too young to understand aging. Yes, I too have noticed that Geddy no longer has that range of his youth, but he still "sounds like" himself! Trust me, I've seen every tour since AFTK and even in the 80's I noticed differences in his range from the 70's songs that were still in rotation. Part of it was growing as a vocalist and the fact that he did start taking vocal lessons and instead of "screaming" parts he was actually singing them! I was at the second Toronto show and Ben Mink and the band doing Losing It for the first time ever live was the pinnacle! Why is nobody focusing on the extremely great musicianship of these 3 in their mid 60's and can pull off some of the most complex compositions that they admit were difficult when they first recorded them (Hemispheres)? They put musicians a third of their age to shame!!!! I thought the people on this forum were true fans (and understanding human beings). I guess I was wrong. I wish I could do the things I could 30-40 years ago but I can't (and, for the older members, I'm sure you can't either). Why do you expect them to do the same? For you younger members, you'll understand when you get to my age (50). Peace out. Rush is still the greatest Rock band in my opinion and I thank them for 40 wonderful years of music. They owe me (or anyone else) NOTHING!
    33 points
  11. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20Starman-fork_zpsg60vqh2m.jpg Part 1 How Earth got Neil Peart Ah, it's that time again. Another useless holiday for puny Americans to celebrate, and the time for YBG critics to pull out the red pen of grammatical correction. Created strictly for economic purposes, Valentines day represents the very worst of capitalism and democracy. Love. "Love is all there is" once permeated the airwaves in your country. There was once a television show dedicated to a sailing vessel specializing to the very concept of love. On my home planet of Mongo, we watch this show once a week on TempleVision, The Love Boat. Ready to make another run into the hearts of Yukon Blade Grinder readers, I'm ready to put a dagger in those hearts...just for fun! It's what I do, because I am Ming...and I'm the Merciless! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Templevision_ming_zpskirj3rvf.jpg by Yukon Blade Grinder Galactic Guest Journalist Ming the Merciless On your planet I'm a fictional character, however I'm real--very real. Little do the people of your galaxy know that my planet, we call it Mongo (your astronomers call it VT3x), is the supreme gem of the Solar Federation. On a more gratuitous, regally submitted information level, it's not often that I honor requests without some form of payment. However, in all galactic candor, I was quite surprised when the editor of this Blade Grinder left a message for me. Not many people can get a hold of me when I'm visiting Area 51. In fact, it's never happened before. What's even more amazing was the technology used to subvert government security. It's simple, yet ingenious. Crude, basic, and effective. They knew how to phone home the right way. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/device_zpspggd8op7.jpg The request from this seemingly important media giant was an easy one to fulfill. To say that I relish the opportunity to work for such resourceful and ego-maniacal individuals is an understatement. Anytime someone contacts me on one of these things I'm listening. For a little background, let us revisit the past. Most citizens of your planet know very little about its relationship with the planets Mongo and Megadonia, but let's start at the beginning. In 1947, the desert of New Mexico became a hotbed of interest when our ship crashed. The element 115 gravity amplifier (an eludium pue 36 explosive space modulator as it's known on Mars) experienced a hiccup and the rest is history...or heavily redacted history. A weather balloon came back to earth, or so your government claims. Ha! Actually, it was Mongonian ship carrying a seed designed to save your planet. In it's infancy, our galaxy knew your little experiment of a solar system which planet Earth calls home was in trouble, and in need of a savior. So, we all put our heads together and started the process to lend a helping hand. It was just another seed of hope for your planet, and there have been many seeds in your brief history. Isaac, Bartender from The Love Boat & sower of many seeds However, the real prize on that ship was the seed that became Neil Ellwood Peart. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Neil%20Alien_zps22zzbn2p.jpg But enough about your planet, let me tell you about my stomping and annihilation grounds. Mongo. It's located within the same solar system of Megadonia, home of Megadon. We're neighboring planets in fact. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/planets_zpshame9rvh.jpg For the graybeard Rush fans, Megadon inspires flights of fancy and kick-starts memory trips and lucid daydreams. They recall days and golden Acapulco nights staring at an album cover featuring that supposed symbol of tyranny, then flipping it over to see a camel-toe of epic proportions. Earthlings seem to find that attractive. Certainly a symbol of vitality on your planet, otherwise, why would a person want their tiny seed bearing sacs so visible? Seems obvious. I'm sure he's an accomplished avatar of love on your little planet, but let us continue...to many native Megadonians, that album is the bane of their existence. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/cameltoe_zpsqt08nwwx.jpg Famous Camel Toes of Earth My home planet and Megadonia share many of the same features: lush vegetation and forest regions. Our sprawling deserts of ice are home to the best ski slopes in the galaxy. Some lands are inhabited by magical beasts and creatures known to atomize their prey with just a glance. The vast oceans on our planets contain many unknowns, and are dangerous to navigate because of unpredictable weather. We also share a connection that goes beyond topographical and geologic features--political oppression. On my planet, I'm the oppressor. On Megadonia, it's the Elder Race...or it used to be before Rush retired...thank the Gods! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Meet%20elder%20race_zpsxy5noxsd.jpg Yes, the very same group responsible for overthrowing the Priests of Syrinx back in the day. In our worlds, that day is known as "The Invasion of the Noisy and Stinky People", which occurred in the year 2112 (Our solar calendar. It's 1976 for earthlings). I was brought in to take care of the priests of Syrinx after the fall, and also coordinate the transitional rise of the Elder Race. The Priests of Syrinx always get a bad rap. I've not seen one positive article written about them. The National Midnight Sun literally roasted the cloister because of their fixation with computer games and their stance on musical instruments. Now, the planet is crawling with Yngwie Malmsteen clones. Sometimes people don't think about the unintended consequences of their actions. The Elder Race was a real challenge to placate. Old people tend to that situation themselves, always wanting this or that exactly so. Never satisfied and always complaining. The majority of Priests were banished, however many of them were forced into servitude to the Elder Race, emptying bedpans and transporting them from arts and crafts to their noonday meals. This measure was put into place to ensure a proper dose of humiliation Since the fall of the Temple, life has been relatively lazy and unproductive for the citizens of Megadon. Stock and trade are way down on the inter-galactic markets. Mining the coveted Sphincterstone has come to a halt since control has been assumed by the old folks. On a good note, farming is still going on with a passion, but it mostly revolves around the usual plants: Nabiscus, Ceasarum Roots, Hyperspedium cracklefluffs, Mezloninnian Pixelpods, and that plant imported from planet Earth known only as Maui Waui. The latter, in all its pungent glory is known to cause its consumers to become apathetic and curiously hungry. Still haven't figured that one out. Perhaps I should indulge my own finicky taste buds. When the Temple fell, most citizens on Megadon seem to enjoy it immensely. The complex requirements of my own tongue have grown tired of honeydew all the time. Sorry, I shall stop my digressions there. From the picture leading this article, you can see I'm everywhere Templevision broadcasts. We've just replaced Owen Hardy and his moribund gardening broadcasts. Always speaking of nurturing, talking to one's vegetation to make it feel like it has a soul. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/priests%20pink%20podium_zps8qlrn33b.jpg When Owen brought his guitar in front of the priests it was a sad, sad day for him. Most Rush fans have no clue that poor sap from 2112, sharing his stupid music was actually one Mr. Hardy. Having his dreams go from boom to bust, his guitar reduced to the finest grain of dust. An unintended consequence for barging in on the Priests during ceremonial proceedings. Owen was understandably browbeaten. They didn't mean to hurt his feelings, but he's known for being a bit of a whiner and should have known better. Correct protocol wasn't observed when he approached the council in the first place. You always make an appointment, and you never play "Stairway to Heaven" when you do. Owen was obviously under the influence of the Maui. Any citizen knows you don't bother the priests when they're doing the budget for Megadon's adolescent indoctrination program. Pretty stressful, invective laden environment. While delving into financial matters that require great concentration, the priests don't want to hear "Listen to my music" while knee deep in red tape. A lot of times light saber duels occur (regularly broadcast on TempleVision I might add) during the process because passions run so deep, and soaring ambitions are consumed in a single desire! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Owen%20hardy_zpsthsjxrqr.jpg Owen Hardy--Guitarist. Owen Hardy--Protoganist of 2112 and the epic Clockwork Angels Owen Hardy--Host of Templevision's "Gardening with the Starman". Owen Hardy--Federation malcontent. He's lived somewhat of a charmed life since the year 2112. Promoted to galactic hero in the eyes of Solar Federation citizens, yet he didn't want the fame associated with his role as change agent. TempleVision became his new friend, as it allowed him to keep arms length from the citizens of Megadonia, while promoting a grand agenda of his own design. Instead of the soothing voices of the temple priests, guitar lessons three times a day were broadcast with various "experts" from Earth providing insight to the craft. Yngwie Malmsteen will soon exterminated by popular demand. In an interview with the National Midnight Sun, Owen stated that he was "happy that people enjoy their freedom, but he's just a person stepping in front of authoritarian rule, sharing what he believed so important, so essential to the spirit of Megadonians and Mongopitulators." To deal with the trappings of fame and fortune, he sought out the person who help free his mind, and soul--the Oracle of Megadon. His advice was timeless in a time of great need. "Brother you need to fight the power!" was his mantra, and it was the calling card for years since 2112. Known only as "Flav", the diminutive sage of supernatural wisdom for the common man. The seed that became Neil Peart, comes from Flav the Oracle. "I was more than happy to be the donor ya know. Just took a lil' sumthin' sumthin' and there ya go homes. To all Rush fans with love. Good to the last drop!" That certainly has some Valentine's flair yes? http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/oracle%20of%20megadon_zpsxngsfaew.jpg Wrong! Fast forward to the present. Now, times are dark in Rush world. The band is on permanent hiatus. Neil is retired, which means one thing on Megadon... http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Acrimedes_zpscpnqoymr.jpg The day Neil announced was he was personally finished entertaining his legions of fans, the former priests of Syrinx abandoned the mines of Kreakletonium and resurfaced. Needing to coalesce a plan for the overthrow of the Elder Race, they convened in the Zreeton Caves, outside the metropolis of Megadon. While conducting their tribal ceremony, echos of ecstasy and a cacophony of triumph could be heard for miles in the Canyons of Geigersmeg. So loud were the shouts, it awakened Acrimedes from hibernation. Never in possession of a contented appetite upon arousal from sleep, hell was unleashed with unimpeded ferocity. Not good for the people of the town next to Megadon. Tectertia's entire population, save the house pets, were consumed rather quickly. Acrimedes, in all his alien rage, desecrated the Temple of Carnak by vomiting the remains of his victims on its dome. As the bumper stickers used to say in Tectertia, "Acrimedes>All of us". The smell was awful. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/MAP_zpsbizcfrqu.jpg Acrimedes is on his way to Megadon to continue the carnage. Who's left to save the day? Is it Owen Hardy and his gentle soul? The Oracle of Megadon? Is it these guys? http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Templevision-skaters_zpsbmeeawik.jpg Rush fans can only hope and pray. Until the second installment of my Yukon Blade Grinder assignment, I leave you with this image to savor: http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/Priests%20in%20cave2_zpsjo5bgegf.jpg
    32 points
  12. The following is written by The Cat 3 and blueschica, two people who knew Lorraine well, both on and off the board. ----------------------------------- Dear TRF brothers and sisters, We are so very sorry to share the sad news of Lorraine's passing. According to her church's weekly bulletin she passed away during the week of March 6-12. She fought a brave fight and kept her faith intact throughout the journey. We had many conversations after her diagnosis and her faith brought her so much comfort, courage and peace. Another thing that brought her comfort was the knowledge that she was not alone in her struggle but had so many wonderful people like each of you supporting her. She read each and every post that you've made in "her thread" (as she called it) and it really brought her joy just knowing that she was loved and cared for, that people were praying for her, sending good thoughts, well wishes along with the oh so many hugs. Thank each and every one of you for taking the time to post, pray, send good vibes and thoughts since learning of her illness. She truly viewed you as family members, of sort. Sometimes a bit of a dysfunctional family at times, but a family, nonetheless. The Rush Forum was such an important part of her life, as it is in many of our lives as well. Joining out of interest in a rock trio and finding the unexpected anecdote to loneliness and the gift of lasting friendships. If you take a look at Lorraine's profile, you will read her answer under the heading of "Best Rush Experience" that she answered, "Being a member of TRF. Now everyone say "Awwww!!!" She was not trying to be clever with that answer, as she truly meant those words. C.S. Lewis said, "Friendship ... is born at the moment when one man says to another "What! You too? I thought that no one but myself . . .". Though we may be saddened by the loss of our friend, we can be grateful for the friendship we found in her and, indeed, with one another. I'm certain that Lorraine would wish us to conclude by saying may God bless you and keep you until we meet again. Stephen (The Cat 3) ----------------------------------- Remembering Lorraine has brought back so many memories. She was one of the first people to welcome me to TRF and I feel very lucky to have shared a friendship with her. She had such a great sense of humor! Whether it was planning the TRF prom, making Hilda jokes, or figuring out who was a "True Rush Fan", Lorraine was always brightening the day. She could make us laugh so hard- what a wonderful gift! Lorraine also had a sense for when people were feeling down or worried and supported so many of us with her conversations and experience. Others will know as much or more about that as I do, because it was one on one, but she was there if she thought you needed her. She had a way of transcending the computer screen and letting you know the real person, which was amazing. Lorraine had such an ear for music, going way back to listening to New York stations while she was growing up. I loved the "Gush About Rush" thread that she started because she was so good at putting into words what was great about what we were hearing. She loved "The Trees." The Outlaws recording of "Green Grass and High Tides". The 60s group Left Banke singing "Pretty Ballerina." And Frank Sinatra singing the classics. Whenever I hear these songs, or see daises, Lorraine will be there somehow, and always be remembered. Becky (blueschica)
    31 points
  13. Friday night, I lost my Mom .. Up until three months ago, Mom had been going to work 5 days a week and still enjoying life as best as her 86 year old body would allow .. Her spirit and enthusiasm for life, her family and giving back was as strong as ever .. In mid June we rushed her to the hospital for what turned out to be a gallbladder infection .. She subsequently developed pneumonia, but the spark that carried not only her, but everyone around her, through life continued to fight .. Friday was the fourth call in the past 8 weeks that we had received telling us that things didn't look good - each time previous, Mom had not only come though, but ended up taking a step forward to returning home .. Very sadly, a fourth comeback was not to be .. The human spirit and fight from her is indescribable - inspiring is not even the word .. I was holding her hand as she took her final breaths ... Nothing can prepare a person for this .. I had lost my Dad and sis years before, but both went sudden and unexpected .. The range of emotion and the thoughts that have gone though me the past two and half months I am unable to put into words ... My sister and I would visit Mom in the rehab center two, three, sometimes fours times a day ... We were there - hands on - to help with physical therapy .... the people there were tremendous - sincere and inspiring in their own ways .. At 8:15pm Friday, it dawned on me that Mom was not gone, even though that is when the nurse pronounced her body dead ... He body, vessel, or shell - whatever we want to call it - was only a part of what we came to recognize and "Mom" ... Her mind, her spirit and energy were things all connected to the same "Mom", but each were recognizable on their own .. It struck me that when the body dies, a person will live on in more than simply "memories" .. Perhaps that spirit and energy will create inspiration and life and add to those who knew her .. Maybe that is how we grow and come closer to our own potential .. If you shut you phone off, that does not mean that your friends cease to exist .. If a body dies, that does not mean the life that animated that body vanishes .. And I believe that we are all connected in some way to this life .. When one person suffers, we all suffer ... The division and blocks between people are all sad signs of lack of development, and lack of awareness ... In 1947 as a senior, my Mom was the first girl ever suspended from Morristown High School because she violated the rules at a segregated school dance by dancing with a black student .. My Mom would take her bookbag that said "READ A BANNED BOOK" to every PTA meeting when we were kids .. In the 1970s when I would go into the post office on the way home from school, I would take out mail from NOW and the National Coalition Against Censorship. having no idea what it was all about .. Now I know .. The spirit will never die .. Mom taught me to believe in myself, be myself and love myself ... Not at the expense of others, but BEACUSE of others .. We are all bonded in this life by life .... The band that brings us all here created something more that just notes on a recording .. We have all tapped into that same experience and that same energy .. We have all lost people and animals that we love .. Please allow them to continue to live on by remaining positive and fighting the good fight .. Mom, your body will RIP .. Your life will live forever Luc, your Father and I are cashing in our life insurance and selling our wedding bands to finance the family business .. When we're no longer here, that is what will be there for you Thank you Mom
    31 points
  14. I've seen way too many complaints from people who were upset that Clockwork Angels is so well-represented this tour. First off, to them I say . Personally I think CA is the best thing the band has done in at least 34 years so I was thrilled to hear three strong tracks from the album! On a more serious note, CA figured prominently into the setlist not only because it is their latest work and they are still pushing it as such, but also because it shows that Rush is not a band to rest on their laurels. So many other bands who made it big in the 70s/early 80s never moved past that time. They linger around, milking their past hits for all they are worth, and rarely put out new material. Rush has certainly pushed themselves and explored new territory, they have never stopped writing new material, and that is fantastic. Would you honestly still like Rush as much as you do if they hadn't released any new music since 1978 or 1981? Bring on the Clockwork Angels!
    31 points
  15. Check it out below from Lawrence Gowan of Styx. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AexxaIAppn8
    29 points
  16. Right now, Sunday 2:10am EST, still uploading to YouTube. I'm going to bed having faith that the upload and processing will go smoothly and that it will be there in the morning. http://youtu.be/XNne9oAx9Fc
    29 points
  17. I saw Cinema Strangiato on Wednesday in Toronto, and spotted Terry outside the movie theater. Couldn't NOT ask him for a picture!
    28 points
  18. I get up at midday yeah And drink a box of wine Then it's on to The Macallan yeah I'm drinkin' all the time Well it seems to me I told my wife Not to bother me when I'm on the can I guess that's why she calls me Calls me the retirement man The kid is home by five o'clock Says, "Daddy do you want another beer?" Always seems to be wondering Why I can't get my ass in gear Well it seems to me I made a mistake Thinking I could write like Rand I guess that's why they call me Call me the retirement man
    28 points
  19. Today, August 22, 2014, marks the 10th anniversary of The Rush Forum. This thread is meant to congratulate the members of TRF who joined within the first year of the board’s conception. But, more importantly, it’s meant to celebrate a milestone for a place that continues to bring together thousands of Rush fans to a place where they can find like-minded people to talk about everything and anything: Rush and music in general, politics, personal triumphs and tragedies, to laugh and to support each other, and in many cases make life-long relationships online and in person. The idea of The Rush Forum came from Rush Revisited, who was joined by Ghost Girl and 1-0-0-1-0-0-1 to create a friendly and open forum for Rush fans. And, today, it has grown to a membership of thousands who have made, literally, millions of posts. What the Administrators of TRF began on August 22nd of 2004 has impacted so many people in so many ways. It’s my hope that you three understand what TRF means to those of us who call this place “home.” There are not words to express our gratitude. And, and very special message to RR: You, my friend, started a unique, wonderful and lasting place of camaraderie that has no match. Thank you so much. :) It’s my immense and humble honor to induct those who joined TRF in its first year into the Force Ten Alumni. And, with that, I present the first three inductees, the TRUE original TRF members: RushRevisited 1-0-0-1-0-0-1 GhostGirl On behalf of the entire membership of The Rush Forum: Welcome to the TRF Force Ten Alumni. You may now take your bows, clink your glasses and make your speeches. :cheers:
    27 points
  20. I was just sitting here and heard something. Sounded like someone was walking around my property and I turned in time to see a man put something on my doorstep and walk away. Going quickly to the window, I got there in time to see a Federal Express truck drive off. Ran to the door and saw a very large box sitting there. I hadn't ordered anything big enough for the size of the box. Upon looking at the return address, I see a law firm in Chicago. I panicked. What if someone was suing me for something??????? What did I do wrong???????? I shook the box and it sounded like there were documents. Someone was suing me. That must be it. In the box was a massive Complaint and other documents. But I didn't do anything wrong, so what was I being sued for??? You should have seen me trying to get it open. It was taped very well. i managed to slit through it without cutting myself. I honestly don't know what to say. I wasn't even sure what section to put this in because I wanted to make sure everyone saw this since I have no idea who was involved in this, or even whose idea it was. Did Geddy really autograph that???????? :wub: :wub: :wub: My eyes are full of tears. There are no words to express my emotions at this moment. Who do I thank???? But thank you isn't enough! The only thing I can think of to say right now is this - never before in my life, certainly not in person - not ever, have I encountered the type of people that I have found on here. Since I first got here, you've treated me like this. You've given me so much. From my heart, I thank you! :kisshug: EDIT: Forgot to mention that there was a birthday card included inside the beautiful book. :) Another very thoughtful gesture.
    26 points
  21. http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/ML3K%20copy.jpg There's nothing left to say that I haven't already said many times. You are the most amazing, unique and lovable group of individuals I have ever encountered in all my years on the internet. As LIX has said many times on here, he came for the band and stayed for the people. That about sums it up. Thank you everyone for everything! :) :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2: :hug2:
    26 points
  22. http://i.imgur.com/Tbb5ZxS.png Hello, friends! :hi: The thread title says pictures, so hopefully my version of a selfie is permissible! In my professional practice, I'm much more comfortable with actual paint and brushes...but I thought I'd attempt something less doodle-like in the digital realm for once. Kinda makes me want to splurge on nice software someday!
    26 points
  23. I was lucky enough to be up front for both shows. Rush has meant more to me then can be put into words on a forum, so the fact that their last 2 shows of their brilliant/unprecedented/incredible career came in my backyard meant it was time to see them out in style, despite the setbacks to the bank accounts. Irvine, CA This has always been one of my favorite places to see a show. I've never seen one here where the sound was not crisp, and this show was no exception. I was front row Alex's side. I wanted a chance to watch the true unsung hero of Rush work his magic up close. Having watched some of the Youtube videos of the earlier shows, I expected a couple small mistakes, but Alex was absolutely brilliant that night. In fact, all 3 were on their "A" game in Irvine. They were incredibly tight and I did not hear any flubs. Sadly, it was evident to me that Alex was playing in pain, at least for most of the first set. He looked uncomfortable and like he was really straining to stay on top of it. I felt for him, but like the warrior and professional he is, he fought through it. I am not sure if he took a few bong hits during intermission, but he seemed like a totally different guy the second half. He was more like the goofy Alex we all know, He was having more fun and seemed to be playing with much more ease. Jacob's Ladder is perhaps my favorite performance from Alex, and I just watched in awe. He plays it with so much feel and so much soul. This setlist was epic with Natural Science in there. It's always such a crowd favorite that they seem to love playing. Geddy's vocals were amazing. He was on it. Of course, it wasn't perfection, but it was as close to it as you can get at this stage of his career and after a zillion shows singing the way he has... Neil played perfectly all night. However, he did drop his drumstick twice on his throw in the airs.....very disappointing ;) He started showing his goofy side by kind of playfully running behind his drum set and hiding between Working Man and Garden Road. There was a full moon that night. From where we were sitting, there was an incredible view of that full moon as Rush was coming on stage with a very crisp clear full moon right behind Neil's kit. Based on some of the other shows I've seen online, I'd say this may have been Rush's best show of the tour. Los Angeles, CA So much already said on this one. I will say that the boys did not sound nearly as good as they did in Irvine, but no one cared. We all knew the magnitude of the night. There was a different feel to this show that any I've ever been to. I have never ever been part of a concert experience like this, It was just an epic night. It almost had a red carpet feel to it. There was a buzz in the air and it was a coming together of the Rush geeks in a way like I've never seen. For one, I have never seen so many girls that knew every word to every song. And I have never been with a crowd as intense as this was. The emotion and passion was everywhere. As the show was about to start, we saw the 3 guys wearing kimonos dressed as the boys circa 2112 sit in the row next to us. On the other side, was a young lady wearing her kimono. A couple rows behind us were Taylor Hawkins and Chad Smith. Jack Black was roaming around the floor by himself just rocking out (odd but cool), I also heard sightings of Michael Moore, Jason Siegel, and passed Bubbles on my way back to my seat for the 2nd half. Going into this show, I felt pretty sure it would be their last. Sadly, I'm more sure of that than ever after watching the end. Neil was really getting out of his box by the end of the night. He was posing for some shots for some people in the front row by making some really goofy faces--- as early as 2112. I don't know if he knew them or not, but, regardless, it was very out of character. Then we all know about the camera, pictures, and spontaneous bow with the boys. Without a doubt, this was his way of saying goodbye to the fans and his way of telling Alex and Geddy that this is it. It was a very strange and awkward final bow, just because no one knew what was happening. Neil's look on his face was just priceless. I would bet that this was one of the most difficult things Neil has ever done. Harder than playing those drums like a monster every show. This was completely out of his comfort zone and the social anxiety kind of showed just by the way he was grinning.The way he snuck up behind them like a little kid was a memory I'll always have. He mouthed goodbye and that was it. Geddy gave us the usual "maybe someday down the road perhaps our paths will cross again possibly you never know", but he and Alex know Neil better than anyone, and they had to know there was a purpose to what Neil did. As we walked out, we passed so many fans crying. We passed many many fans still sitting in their chars not wanting it to be over. People were screaming for a 2nd encore. (I was sure there would be one) But nothing ceremoniously. No tributes. No official goodbyes. No acknowledgment that this was the end, other than the subtleties already mentioned. It's just not in Rush's nature. I discovered this band in 1987. I can't believe how lucky I got to have them another 28 years. What we have witnessed with this band is incredible and will never ever come close to being duplicated again. Those 3 guys gave us 40 years of music that is untouchable. At 60+, to play shows like that is just ridiculous. I think as time goes on, their legacy will only grow stronger. The "mainstream" finally started getting how amazing these guys are 10 years ago, and I am so happy that they got such deserved recognition outside of the cult band stuff, because they need to be recognized as truly iconic. Unparalleled. The best rock musicians to ever come together as band. Selfishly, I feel very sad that I won't see them do this again, even though retiring is the right thing for them to do now. They are still on top and still brilliant performers, and that's the way to go out. Thank you Alex, Geddy, and Neil for putting your heart and soul into every show and every song on record and never settling for less than the best you can give us!
    26 points
  24. This was a sweet Instagram post from Chris Stankee, who works for Zildjian cymbals and worked with Neil on different projects. The perspective on the photo is a bit off, but understandably, because Chris has blurred out Olivia's face since she is a child. "In August of 2016, Bubba wrote to me from his place in Quebec where he spent every August. “So... We’re having a brain tumor. I’m fine. Don’t freak out. And don’t put it on Facebook!” To which I replied, “Good! Maybe it’ll dumb you down just enough that the rest of us will understand what the hell you’re talking about most of the time!” You see, if you made him laugh, which wasn’t easy to do because Lerxt and Craggie set the bar so high most of his life, you’d be rewarded with his bellowing laugh that betrayed his normally soft spoken and composed demeanor. I’ll never forget that laugh as long as I live. He said “we’re” having a tumor because he knows all too well the effects of cancer on loved ones. Hell, who doesn’t, right? He wanted it kept quiet because that was his way. Geddy and I spoke the other night about how hard that was for us to bottle that up the last 3.5 years. To those I was able to confide in, I thank you. To those who I had to deflect and change the subject when asked, I’m sorry. I know you understand. To have shared in his adventures is my life’s honor. I’m grateful for the friendships, now family formed in his circle. They know who they are. We share your grief and are comforted by your tributes. He would hate all the fuss, but would understand. We all knew him as a supreme musician, writer, adventurer etc. But also know he was this. A thoughtful father, reading to his daughter, her head on his shoulder, holding her hand. “Freeze this moment a little bit longer. Make each sensation a little bit stronger. Time Stand Still.” He loved that album. We listened to it often, on 10. I invite you to do the same. I’ll see you again friend and we shall revel! " ♥️ "#neilpeart
    25 points
  25. Online friends being real or not is debatable. I get it. But "Who really cares?" is just a straight up dick thing to say especially given everything Lorraine has gone through. For REAL. I can't actually say Lorraine's my friend but I CAN say that she seems like a nice person. I CAN say that I hope things work out for her and her husband despite not knowing her. Bad things happen to people I don't know all the time...and at least SOME of those things make me feel sad for those people that I DON'T actually know. "Who really cares?" --- Apparently, everyone in this thread except you.
    25 points
  26. my band's version of Losing It which was played at RatCon this year. I was actually a little nervous. Gerry Hilera was scheduled to play with us but unfortunately could not make it. Our guitar player, Andy, took the violin leads and the guitar parts. On an already tricky (for me anyway) keyboard pattern while singing I was picking up a few things as well that I wasn't counting on. Wasn't 100% sure it would work but, overall, pretty pleased with it. It will now be part of our repertoire since we do not need a 4th player for it.
    25 points
  27. I can’t help imagining the following scenario: Scene: Heaven, The Afterlife, Elysian Fields, Valhalla Jesus: Oh My ME!!! Look over there, look who just walked in through the gates, it’s NEIL FREAKING PEART!!! Buddha (fanning self): I can’t believe it! Zeus: Think he’ll sign an autograph? Odin: For us, sure! Of course! Of all his fans, no one can say we aren’t the biggest! (Group of deities heads in Neil’s direction. Neil spies them and cringes). Neil, muttering as he tries to evade the Fangods: Oh cripes, not THIS shit again! Where’s the Praetorian Guard? Oh f**k, that’s right, they’re not dead yet. Bastards. Jesus et al: Neil, Neil, you’re the greatest drummer ever! Neil: Go away Allah: Come on, please sign my book! Neil: No. Leave me alone. I’m not famous anymore. Now go away! Buddha: Play Tom Sawyer!! Apologies if this offends. I need a little gallows humor to cope.
    24 points
  28. Not my story but an interesting one nonetheless posted by someone on Facebook. I thought everyone would enjoy the read. "And onto my story ...[i don't really expect anyone to read this, this is really for my own posterity - one day Facebook will remind me that I wrote this sometime in 2016 and I'll enjoy reading it in my old age ... If you happen to indulge me and read this, I hope you enjoy it] ...(Photos courtesy of and used with permission by: www.camillapucholt.com) When you live in or near Toronto, Ontario, you're likely only one degree away from knowing someone who is really close to someone in the band. I'm lucky that way. My brother is a member of the Coppinwood golf course and happens to work closely with a founder of the course, Paul McLean. Lifeson is also a member, one time owner, golf buddy and good friend of Paul. Tom Cochrane is a good friend and golfing buddy of Alex and Paul. A few months ago, my brother told me there was going to be a 10th anniversary "dinner" for the golf course and that Lifeson and Tom Cochrane would probably be there and play something. He was allowed to buy extra tickets, so I agreed to go and he got me a ticket. I thought "why not, I'll get a good meal and maybe get to be in the same room as Alex and Tom and maybe they'll play an acoustic Crossroads, or something like that ..." I'll bring my Victor CD and a sharpie if the right moment arises. Upon arrival at the golf course on June 11, 2016, it was clear that this was more than just a run of the mill anniversary dinner. A well crafted stage was set up overlooking the picturesque golf greens and fairways and I noticed a number of somewhat familiar Rush-looking roadies scrambling around, as they do, solving sound, lighting and setup issues. I distinctly picked out Geddy's bass tech, John "Skully" McIntosh fiddling with things and some others wearing R40 roadie gear. A prominent "Lerxst" branded amp sat front and centre on the stage. Something special was in the air. We milled about the world-class venue, being treated to amazing food stations, open bars and sponsored drink booths (you have to try the 80 calorie "SocialLite" vodka, lime, ginger and soda beverage.) If my account of things are a bit inaccurate, I blame this company (www.sociallitevodka.com). Drinks and food in hand, my brother (another lifelong Rush fan and the reason I am a Rush fan quite frankly) and I recognized Alex milling about as he was waiting to do the mini-photo shoot with the Trailer Park Boys in front of the golf course that you can see in the photos. Alex seemed to recognize my brother from the golf club and they started chatting about golf. Alex in a humorous and animated way mentioned he was disappointed that the one summer he's had off in so many years, he wasn't able to play golf because of a shoulder injury. The thoughts running through my head at this point: "wow, I'm two feet away from Lifeson and he's talking to my brother ... wow ... he's pretty tall ... and he's got really nice teeth ..." I've always feared running into any of the members of the band as I didn't want to ruin my lifelong idolization and adoration with an unpleasant and awkward moment that would have ruined one of their days and tarnished my image of a band member. I'm no "long awaited friend" and I acknowledge that. With that in my head, I attempted my best at small talk with Alex. The thoughts in my head at this point: "wow... don't be a dumbass, you're talking to Lifeson; be cool." Without revealing what a Rush fan(atic) I am, I politely asked Alex if he was playing later, which he acknowledged and I joked with him "so this may be the biggest gig you play all year!" He chuckled a response: "Yeah, I'm not too happy about that." Alex was swept away with photo duties and with other members and fans wanting a picture, so I thought I would keep my sharpie and Victor CD to myself for the moment. I was happy not to get anything signed that night and figured it wasn't the right place to ask to get something signed. Alex is such a down to earth and disarming person and he was clearly enjoying the event like everyone else; I didn't want to be the one to start a barrage of autograph signing to ruin his evening. We settled into watching the Carpet Frogs, a great local band, perform some amazing covers and thought at some point Alex and Tom were going to come out and maybe join them to do some covers themselves. The drinks kept flowing and everyone in attendance was clearly enjoying themselves. I later found out, thanks to someone in this group, that the bass player was actually Jeff Jones, the bass player before Geddy Lee in Rush, or some proto-Rush incarnation with Alex and John Rutsey. There were some celebratory speeches and then Alex was introduced and took over as the MC of the evening. He is inherently witty and humorous as we've all heard and I've now had the pleasure of witnessing beyond any rants and jokes during past tours. He joked about not playing and that how this band was so much better looking than his other band. He adjusted a guitar strap on a red Gibson and was poised to play something and then he introduced ... Distant Early Warning! What?! He's playing Rush? He's playing Distant Early Warning! I'm two feet away from Lifeson and he's playing Rush?! I'm in the front row? Heck I AM the front row! There's no one at the front of the stage but ME! ... and they sound amazing! (Note to self at this point - find out who this bass player is - he can really sing AND play bass - answer: see above.) In retrospect, I was witnessing 2/3 of a form of Rush. Admittedly, I don't think many golf club members even knew "Distant Early Warning" - but I was there, front row, all by myself, my personal Rush concert, singing along ... "Absalom, Absalom, Absalom" ... Jeff Spiccoli from Fast Times at Ridge Mount High, eat your heart out, you may have had Van Halen play for you at your birthday ... but I'm having Alex Lifeson and a really amazing band play for me on this amazing late spring evening. It was wonderful to see Alex sing along to all the songs and truly have a great time as a guitarist and fan of well, his own band's songs. (He knows all the lyrics by the way.) If the night ended right then and there, I would have been happy, amazed and buzzing about it as much as I am now, but it continued ..... Limelight, Spirit of Radio and a closing of the set with "another from Moving Pictures and a bit of a standard at Rush shows" according to Alex ... Tom Sawyer. Alex left the stage saying, I would really love to play some more, but I don't think they can afford my regular rate. The evening continued with a comedy routine by the Trailer Park Boys (you remember Bubbles from the R40 Roll the Bones rap video!) Jokes included thanking the wealthy and successful club members for having such nice cars that they could steal from and that they should probably just leave the doors open so they don't have to break any windows .... their routine ended with Bubbles leading a left to right chorus of golf members shouting "Cock!" "Tractor!" ... I still don't get it, but it was funny. A group ensemble, including Lifeson, played (I think) a Johnny Cash standard with Bubbles on vocals and as the Trailer Park Boys prepared to leave the stage, Bubble's mic picked up his trademark whine: "I'm not leaving the fockin stage until I play a Rush song ..... there's no fockin way ..." ... and then the trademark arpeggio starts; I'm listening to Bubbles and Lifeson do "Closer to the Heart." Can it get any better? Well it did. In introducing Tom Cochrane, Alex told a story how he had a night listening to Tom play all his hits on an acoustic guitar when they were away in Arizona and how it actually brought him to tears how good they were and how talented Tom was. Tom made a joke about Alex complaining about not working and mocked him with the words "blablablablabla." (I got the joke.) Tom Cochrane then came on to play an amazing set of his and Red Rider hits. Jeff Jones continued on bass. I didn't realize it, but he was also a member of Red Rider in the past (this guy never had a break all night! Three sets with three different bands!) In truth, I think the golf club demographic was more attuned to Tom Cochrane and Red Rider songs than Rush songs and Tom had everyone worked up to a frenzy by this point of the night. You don't realize how many great hits he and Red Rider had until you hear them one after the other, played with the expertise and perfection of well, a Rush concert. Again, the night really couldn't get any better. Until, I looked to the right. Alex had come out into the crowd to watch his friend Tom play and randomly (or serendipitously, from my perspective) decided to stand beside me to enjoy the show. In my head: "I'm here watching an amazing concert, head banging to Tom Cochrane hits with Alex Lifeson beside me. Is this for real?" By now the alcohol had amplified my courage and I took out my Victor CD and sharpie and humbly asked: "Excuse me Alex (like somehow I'm on a first name basis), but could I bother you to sign this CD?" He was a bit surprised it was a Victor CD and not "just" a Rush CD and replied: "Oh for this CD, for sure...." I fumbled around for words to say (the '80 calorie' vodka drinks probably added up somewhere near 640 calories by now) and thanked him for a lifetime of music and for giving me a soundtrack to my life. I expressed how I really hoped that the band would continue and he agreed. "Don't worry, we'll be doing something soon." If you've suffered to this point of my story to hear this, then your patience was worth my verbosity. There is hope. There is a Rush. Alex definitely wants to do something. I joked "... at least another album ...." and he smiled with approval. I realize now that I probably could have kept talking to him probing for more information, as he really wasn't that annoyed with me, but I really wanted him to just enjoy the concert, enjoy the night, enjoy the talents of his friend playing an awesome set ... I motioned away, giddy (and drunk, let's be real) and almost embarrassed that I didn't know what else to say ... my final words to him were "Clockwork Angels was a masterpiece, by the way ...." He smiled and thanked me for my praise and kindness (and probably started looking for where the nearest security guard was ..) Lifeson and others later joined the stage for the crowd pleasing hit "Life is a Highway" with Lifeson soloing on this and the encore, Lunatic Fringe. My brush with greatness didn't disappoint. He's just a down to Earth, genuine, humorous, witty and class human being. I'm glad I went to Coppinwood for dinner this June 11, 2016. I need to learn how to play golf."
    24 points
  29. Saw Buffalo show last night. Front row Alex side. Amazing! I had a sign "thanks for the music" Alex gave us a nod and smile. Even better when Ged came over he was point blank and looked right at us nodded and said"no, thank you!"
    24 points
  30. Neil is 62 years old. If he wants to spend his time on his bike, or spend time with his wife and young daughter, or however else he wants to spend his time- he has earned that. And he certainly doesn't need to justify anything to us. I've loved this band for more than 35 years. And I know there are those who haven't gotten to enjoy them for nearly that long. If you are a new fan, just within the past couple of years, I truly feel for you- I'm sure we would all like, in a perfect world, in a vacuum, for there to be so much more time and energy ahead for them than there is. But this upcoming tour will be the last for Rush as we know them. I still look forward to whatever may lie ahead- even though I know it will be different.
    24 points
  31. Hi all - I am ORF's niece who posted the notification on Facebook. I am blown away by the response. I knew he was heavily involved in this group and others, but didn't realize what a positive effect he had on those he interacted with. Thank you all.
    23 points
  32. I have been thinking about this over the weekend, after the whirlwind day of going to Geddy's book signing on Friday. I wanted to thank everyone here and other Rush fans for making Rush fandom a great place to be! I ended up explaining this to my husband (who made 3 new friends on Friday, lol) when he said yesterday, "Everyone was so nice when I was in line for the book signing; it made things so easy for me. The guys around me held my place and didn't mind when I kept leaving to check on you. (long story; I didn't feel well for a bit.) I was telling my husband that yes, seeing and meeting other Rush fans was almost as big of a thing as seeing Geddy. (of course, we already know this . . .) It was a huge part of the day to meet the people around us and (of course!) they were all friendly and very devoted. There was an ER nurse near us that worked the overnight shift, slept 3 hours and started the drive from southern Maryland to come to Philadelphia. An older guy in a man skirt (I can't even describe it other than something they would wear as a joke on McHale's Navy but he owned it) and his wife were a riot to talk to and had driven 5 hours from Virginia. A very young guy right behind us had driven from upstate New York, not knowing anything about Philly and doing the long drive alone. Everyone here from TRF has been so supportive, also, through my seven months of posting, "I hope Geddy comes to Philly!" over and over. Thank you! Special shout out to Rod from Toronto, who spread positivity when we were stuck in gridlock on the way and I didn't think we would get to the bookstore at all. Anyway, while talking to my husband about Rush fandom and reflecting on all of the "we came because we don't know if we will get a chance to see Geddy in person again" comments, it really hit home with me that maybe all we have left of Rush is the music (which is huge, not denying that), but also the memories, and each other. I'm so glad you guys have made the Rush universe a great place to be. :heart:
    23 points
  33. Predictably, Hitler has a meltdown...a big one. http://youtu.be/DpBWRJlbBCA
    23 points
  34. I had a big weekend. My daughter got married. http://i211.photobucket.com/albums/bb50/workingcinderellaman/IMG_6666_zpssyazzckk.jpg It was so wonderful, but I feel like I'm getting old.
    23 points
  35. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20cover%20pointing_zpsblfzf9hp.jpg http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/images/contributors/david-fricke.jpg By David Fricke, Yukon Blade Grinder, Sr Editor Part II On a rather warm May evening, and after a really cool press release for the new album Moist, Rush convene for one last crucial task before hitting the tour grind: a pre-tour dinner. The site is Ken Jeong's Rocky Mountain Oyster Palace, a Toronto dive located in the famous Jane and Finch district. When I say famous, I mean dangerously famous. Driving through this, ummm, interesting part of Toronto, I instinctively lock my car door as we pull up to a red light. "Don't worry" says Geddy, "We're ok. All Canadians love us!" Praying that to be the case, I still double check my door making sure it's locked. Finally pulling into the parking lot, and through an iron gate, I see the huge sign that radiates ego, and calf fries. This place is wack. As we enter the restaurant, trumpets blare. http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/KJPalace%20copy-1.jpg Complete with neon lighting, fake wood, decadent framed food-porn of fleshy mountain oysters and an aquarium which surrounds the dining hall. It's the hangout of Canadian stars. I sit at the table with Kings of Canada. Our sprightly waiter, the owner, jumps from the kitchen and greets us with, "What's up bitches...and distinguished guest? Oh, you from RollingStone? You Subdivision boy right? Ha ha...I know that's you. Can I have your autograph, left out muthafukka?" My gosh. He knows that I was the loner in the Subdivisions video. That's never happened. Taken aback, I don't know what to do other than sign his order pad, and try to shake his hand. "No, no, no, no. You get no play with the ladies. Which hand you use? Bet you can't show your ass on the UVA campus. Just kidding bitches. I guess you back for more of my nuts?" "Oh yeah. Wenner Rounds. Been craving them all day" says Neil, who kindly wipes the table off as we sit. "Whatever you have of the Alberta Moose, whatever you have of the Saskatchewan Elk. What else sits great?" Ken would have none of that, he has a requirement. "Oh no...before I do anything you have to answer this one question: How my nuts taste?" Without hesitation, the Kings of Canada sing aloud in barbershop harmony: You're so nutty, this we know How the squirrels love you so You've descended from the oak The nuts on you, they're no joke! An asian manical laugh fills the air, "You got it bad bitches! Boy the Rockys are really nice today--fresh!" "Oh okay, we can order now right?" Alex asks with a gracious glow. Apparently this is the routine everytime they visit. One of the perks afforded to the entrepenuer who has monopolized their market. "So let's get five dozen of those Rockys...what about the Yukon Goatnuts?" Sheepishly Ken admits, "What you talkin' 'bout Willis? We sold out just before you arrived." "We'll be here a while. Can you get some flown in tonight?" Alex asks with deadpan sincerity, "We're not joking!" "I'll see what I can do...as always, quid pro qou bitches", Ken says while rubbing his chin and clicking his heels. As he heads for the kitchen he asks Geddy if he wants the secret sauce. Without a word, Geddy and Neil nod their heads with enthusiastic approval. When I turn my attention back to the table, I notice that a wineglass has mysteriously appeared before me, filled an oenophilic quarter full. "It's a Jailhouse bordeaux, Alex's secret recipe" says Lee, sailing over my palate with a single phrase. "It's our 2014 Bacchus Plateau. The 2010's are doing quite well. This one is not oaked--it's actually aged in a plastic bag." Gonna be a great night for me. Geddy has pulled out the band's own wine label. I'd heard about this before, when Rush Limbaugh hosted the unveiling of Clockwork Angels on his radio show. Neil was a riot of course. The band's trying their hand at marketing products aimed specifically at their fan base. Nothing wrong with that. Gotta make a buck. Now it's time to get to brass tacks and get the show rolling. Hoping to leave no stone unturned, the recorder is on, and I start asking questions about the recording of the new epic album Moist, at newly refurbished Le Studio. When you all went back to Le Studio for the retrospective documentary, what was it that so moved you to buy the property, and record Moist there? Alex: Well it came down to several factors really. One, we have so much cash we thought "what the hell"? Two, it was hard to see, a crime really, for a treasured time capsule vacant of equipment, yet full of golden memories to just lie in ruins. Third, it's a great place to just get away and be guys. Really, those are the reasons. Everything else is secondary. Plus the volleyball court is awesome. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/6/6c/Le_studio_Logo.png/250px-Le_studio_Logo.png What record does Moist resemble most in terms of recording? You've recorded many at Le Studio Neil: Drummistically it actually reminded me of recording Hemispheres in Wales, in that beautiful stone room. We got a great sound at Le Studio. Kevin "Caveman" Shirley worked his mojo. We set up the Stonehenge baffling and got the sound we wanted rather quickly. Alex called it...what did you call it? Alex: The "brown" sound of drums, a reference to Eddie Van Halen's tone. Neil: Right. I think we had something like 50 mics on the set, and then we used a new type of microphone Caveman invented called Banana Mike. You actually wear it around your waist. Really gets a great bead on all those sounds around waist level in the room. There's all kinds of rich sounds bouncing at that level. The Banana Mike was able to capture them really well, though it was a bit awkward to wear while performing my drum parts. Geddy: For me it was unlike any recording experience at Le Studio because the enviroment is so different now. This is 2015. We're talking the 70's, 80's, and 90's in terms of comparisons. Now, between the studio and control room, is the aquarium wall from floor to ceiling, with lots tropical fish in it. This is the second wall to be installed. Alex and his quirks you know. He HAD to have it. It just makes this constant noise that drives me crazy. Anytime Nick or Terry had a comment for me, I'd have to manuever my head because a fish would always be in my direct line of sight, kinda staring at me. But, that wasn't the biggest issue. We had two producers who helped make our best works in the same room. So you had that dynamic at all times. Our engineer Caveman (Kevin Shirley) was a strong personal force as well. It was like being one cat, in a bag full of cats. Got stuffy pretty quick. To answer your question it doesn't remind me of any record. This was a new experience for us. Tell our readers about the "brawl". Broon and Booujzhe had many disagreements. Which ones stick out? Geddy: Ha. To call them mere disagreements is like calling the great Saskatchewan Beaver Pelt Rebellion of 1877 a "peaceful" demonstration. In hindsight it was really beneficial to us. Cleared the air, which is necessary in any relationship from time to time. Moist was not an easy album to make. Lots of directions to go, and lots of ways to arrive at the end goal. Incredible amounts of experience and creative energy to draw from. For the four of us (Nick included), we wanted to keep the snowball rolling from the inertia of Clockwork Angels, but Broon hadn't worked with us in ages. Caveman, I think it was Counterparts, so it was a long time. Nick had been on board since Snakes and Arrows, so he had his system in place. Bringing Terry and Caveman into that was going to be an adjustment regardless. This isn't 1982 anymore. We've evolved a bit. Terry needed to figure that out. Caveman, well--we call him Caveman for a reason. Alex: The big one started in the control booth. Back in the day, Broon always kept a candy dish full of Jolly Ranchers there for anyone to enjoy. It was a refreshing break to come out of the sound room and just pop one in...really broke the monotony, made you feel good. Nick wanted to carry on that tradition, so he put out a candy dish, except it had Starburst instead of the old Jolly Ranchers. When Terry saw that something went off in his brain. It was like watching a Jedi MMA match. Broon just went nuts. We're talking mind powers out the ying yang. What was really interesting were the things they would say to each other. Have you ever watched the Mighty Morphin' Power Rangers? Crazy what producers can think up on the spot. Caveman got between them and got nailed with the dish that was thrown at Nick. He got knocked out cold. It bounced off the floor and cracked the aquarium wall. Water and fish everywhere. It was a real mess (laughs). We weren't even worried about Caveman, we're scooping up fish so they didn't die. What did you do with the fish? That's a huge tank. It's a wall of fish, water, and more water. Geddy: We just threw 'em in the lake. They're probably happier there. Alex: If they just didn't die. I mean, they were tropical fish. Neil: Revisiting that moment in time, there we were just looking at this water catastrophe with Caveman's limp body on the floor, fish flopping around him. Good thing we know people who could clean it up relatively quick. Otherwise the record would've taken much longer to make. For a second we just looked at each other and Alex said, "this is what it must've been like to be a member of The Police." Then there was LBP. Geddy: When we started work on the instrumental, Little Blue Pills, there were song structure issues, but also minor technical ones. We wanted have the sound of pills rattling in a bottle during the middle eight, with our wives actually rapping a chorus of sorts, a la Roll the Bones. Terry thought it was a bit of reach. Your wive's singing is not on the album, and ended up on the cutting room floor. Why? What were the lyrics? Neil: I wasn't allowed to write them--they did. I'm embarrassed but this is what they were: http://cdn2-b.examiner.com/sites/default/files/styles/image_content_width/hash/cb/80/1368662525_6474_Viagra.jpg?itok=yQQLyunj We may be older, but that doesn't matter. Let's get worked up in that old folk lather. It doesn't matter what you say, we're gonna act out 50 Shades of Grey. You have the look of fear. So sexy for men your age. Thanks for giving us that thrill, Now take your little blue pills. Geddy: My God that blew our minds. But, the detail Broon wanted was unusual. He wanted Viagra that was made in the US, not the Canadian off-brand. The density is a bit different. He said (laughs) they created a thicker, more robust sound as they rattle. Talk about anal. Nick, Caveman, and Terry, all put their foot down and told us to grow a pair, so we dropped the singing bit. Neil (quickly changing the subject): Yeah but that was really minor in scope because "Once a man twice a Boy" was so problematic because of our guest performers. Which leads to the Blind Boys of Alabama. An odd choice for proper Rush, at least upon first glance. How did you get connected with them? Neil: My drum teacher knows them. Recorded with them in the 60's and 70's. Leophus Hambone Jones, 1970 Oh yes, the great Hambone Jones--originator of the famed "Circular Motion" technique--tell us about him. Neil: He's more than a drum instructor. He's a life coach for the band really. When Freddy died he left me instructions on how to get to the "next" level. Hambone was the person he chose to take me there. Really? What was that like to get such a gift in his will? Neil: An honor, but also a huge responsibility. I feel responsible for Hambone. He now lives in LA and Toronto, and travels with me. In terms of connecting with him, Freddy didn't make it easy (laughs). Freddy left me a map of the United States, with arrows indicating places I might find Hambone, since he has no phone. Geddy: Hell we couldn't even find him on Google Neil. He's 97 years old, living under a bridge and street performing in Minot, North Dakota. Freddy left that part out--drummers! Neil: Right. So it was strange from the get go, but we found him. I gave Freddy's letter to him he knew what to do. Alex: It's funny. He didn't even open the letter. He put it to his forehead for a couple seconds and said "Right on man. I'm supposed to hang with the drummer with no rhythm." Then came the process of getting to know Hambone. Which was interesting to say the least. He's a man of the street, but his kit is awesome. Next to Pratt's, the coolest I've seen. We tried to acclimate him to "normal" living. Bought him a house. Got him a car. Hired a maid service. Got him a membership at the YMCA. He would have none of that--he prefers to live under bridges. The sound of the cars gives him "peace that soothes the soul". So, we send out Meals on Wheels three times a day, they feed him and his friends. Whatever makes him happy. Interesting. What about the connection to the gospel group? They are a gospel group. http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/thumb/c/ce/Blind_Boys_of_Alabama_in_Quebec.jpg/200px-Blind_Boys_of_Alabama_in_Quebec.jpg Neil: Hambone played with them in the 60's and 70's. Made a ton of records. One night in LA, I got an invite from Hambone to go see this group. Never heard of them before--The Blind Boys of Alabama. He hopped in the sidecar of my BMW motorcyle and we made a day of it. He actually tours with me that way. Kinda pisses off Mosbach (His personal security) but that's another story. Anyway, they were fantastic. Funny. Touching. Great harmonies. Alex: I actually saw them in Quebec at a summer festival back in 2007. They blew me away. So I actually knew about them before the Neil and Ged. Geddy: Meeting them was the best. So humble. So friendly. They stayed in Morin Heights for a week. Even challenged us to a volleyball match after they regained their sight. Regained their sight? What do you mean? Geddy: One of the great things about Le Studio is the residential component. You live here when you record. We all stayed in the same chalet. Nice accomodations. Well, we were sitting around one night singing "Once a man twice a Boy". Alex lights up a huge joint and they smoke it with him. Three hours later they could see again. We did a test and their vision was 20/15, which is better than perfect. Which made me wanna hit it too, but I didn't. Alex: My medical card really comes in handy. That month, ironically, I had the "Ecuadorian Electric Eye" strain. It restores sight to the blind apparently. Alex Cavemen gave you a reverb pedal as a sign of trust, or was he just sick of you bitching...which was it? Alex: Oh yeah that was a moment. I think it's on youtube. He said I earned it. Whatever that means. Geddy: I almost cried. Really touching moment. As Ken comes to the table with salad and drinks, we're get ready for the main course...which will take place next issue. So for those who are dying to know where this is all going I suggest you pull up to the table, and get ready to dine on the finest calf fries in Toronto! The Yukon Blade Grinder, per usual, will be bringing the main course http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/KenJChef%20copy-1.jpg
    23 points
  36. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20Cover_zpsrwdelfam.jpg  http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/images/contributors/david-fricke.jpg By David Fricke, Yukon Blade Grinder, Sr. Editor Part I   Few pleasures I've experienced in my work compare with this evening. Naturally, when the Yukon Blade Grinder dialed my number, I hopped on that puppy. Been on Willie Nelson's tour bus and hit fat j's that would make Bob Marley envious. I've sung with Springsteen during his now famous rendition of "Fire" at the White House, and been to Maggie's Farm with Bob Dylan. However, this was different. As stars go, these guys are famous for being normal. As in boring. On the way to Anthem Entertainment Internation HQ's from the airport, all four of us hopped in Peart's standard family minivan. So freaking cool that they picked me up from the airport on the way to the presser. As I sat in the passenger seat and got comfortable for the ride, Neil popped in a disc inscribed Moist. He said, "Welcome to the new era of Rush--Geddy and Alex can now count to four! Sesame Street is really helping them along". As we drove out of the airport headed for downtown Toronto, I felt like, to qoute the famous Lou Gehrig speech: "the luckiest man on the face of the earth". Neil points out the first track is the prequel to the immortal Jacob's Ladder, called Adam's Rib. When I reviewed Permanent Waves in 1980, I had to call out the music jack-holes of the day. With that album, Rush accomplished something I never suspected they could--mainstream accessibility while maintaining the uniqueness of their sound. It happened, and they did it well. In his words, "Adam's Rib" is about being alive, knowing that you're heading for the scythe of death, only to come into the presence of the next reality--the mystery of life answered. Of course, Alex has to throw in his two cents worth "I thought it was about sex, drugs, & rock n roll when Geddy and I were pumping it at first...Neil always takes the fun out of the jam!" Hmmm I sense a bit o' tension there. The album starts with a wind blowing gently. You can hear rustling leaves along the ground. A dog's bark is a distant early warning for an encroaching bliss of metal, as a floating voice recites what sounds like a Psalm, only to resolve in a human tornado of drums, bass, and guitar. As always, Neil provides the listener with plenty of food for thought: For years along the Darwinian path ambition lifted man to the skies. Searching beyond the veil for the echo of our past Only to discover wisps of terrestrial lies. Not alone, yet we can't see our guests Walking beside us, step by step. We've never seen the coming hordes As we stare into empty nests. Arriving at the points between enchantment and disillusion Our lives are revealed for what they are. Life is nature's tedious ad-lib, We come from Adam's Rib. Well, whatever the hell that means, it sounds awesome, and I want more! For 10 minutes I'm in total bliss. If anything, the music of Rush has been idiosyncratic to the hilt. They play what they like, and what they're doing now is indicative of musicians in total control of their craft. Steering a ship into waters that demand focus by playing in time signatures sure to make you puke in your hat, if your eyes aren't on the horizon. Gnarly! The epics were thought to be long gone in the lexicon of the band's music, so this was a surprise. Moist contains two. Unlike the band's last effort, the highly ambitious Clockwork Angels, this album is clear and totally balls to the wall. The second track "Twice a boy, once a man" creates something new for Lee--the use of voice modulation. Relentless in melancholy, I'm reminded of "Madrigal" from A Farewell to Kings. I was mesmorized when Lee shouts the chorus, complete with backing vocals supplied by none other than the Blind Boys of Alabama, sounding like an Irish wake, only hipper: When you climb the hill to arrive on top, You forget the journey never stops. Spindled by the weavers hands, I was twice a boy and once a man. Play in dirt make castles of sand. Build a fortress of stone with cold chapped hands. Time has now worked it's plan I was twice a boy, and once a man. Instrumentals have been something the band has always enjoyed making. Moist has one--"Little Blue Pills". Think YYZ meets Jerry was a Racecar Driver. Craziness knows no bounds. Man, it's really getting warm in this car as the music keeps pumping. Suddenly the conversation turns to marketing. Eager to please, the band's been breaking out new products left and right. Wines. Cheeses. Plus, the purchase of legendary Le Studio in Morin Heights. But now they're tapping into the adult market with products that'll help their fan base. PMS medication--outside of the box thinking. Neil says it was all Geddy's idea. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/PMS%20med_zpspsnhiahz.jpg "Hey when those difficult times hit the family--we wanna help" quipped Alex, pulling a flask from his jacket. Now that is some Canadian hospitality. The goodies don't stop there. Here's one for the aging Rush male fan: http://i658.photobucket.com/albums/uu304/homersimpson239/Mobile%20Uploads/totem.jpg Wow indeed! But we moved on to other topics. The album cover. Geddy has moved into aquatic art and felt the theme of water needed to be brought in, since it has three forms. "Album covers are important. Hugh's out of pocket, so we comissioned some chick from Frisco to hook us up. Hugh may be out of a job soon!" http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/MOIST_zpsv5j05ey9.jpg http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/MOIST%20back_zpsksjedkqx.jpg "Yeah, we're going back to the epics in every sense. 10 minute space jams. No more pansy stuff. This is what we do! I can't wait to play these songs on tour", says Geddy as we head into Anthem Entertainment International HQ's. The world is awaiting to be told of the grand reunion of Terry Brown and the golden boys of Canada. Part II in the next epic issue of The Yukon Blade Grinder
    23 points
  37. For the last year and a half ( ) we've neglected to give out badges when people reached 2112 posts. I got busy with work and stuff and just totally slacked on it. And without me keeping up on when people are about to reach that milestone, GG can't make threads for them, and I can't make the badges to go into those threads. And once the weeks and months kept going by, it became really tough to figure out the exact dates when people got their 2112th posts, because it happened several months and many posts earlier. I needed to play catch-up, but I kept putting it off... Luckily, I got a PM from Lost In Xanadu last week, and he volunteered to help. He went back and figured out who had reached 2112 since the last badge was given out, and in most cases, found out the exact date in which they reached it. For those whom we couldn't pin down a date, we made estimates -- sorry, best we could do. So now we have a complete list of all the people who are missing badges, in order. I'll be posting those badges in the coming weeks, in order, starting with the earliest ones. bluefox4000 just reached 2112 tonight, so he'll get his ASAP. Again, special thanks to LiX for the invaluable help in bailing me out and compiling all that data. :cheers:
    23 points
  38. My eyes are dried with salt and then the "Tears" fall again. I have cried all day and night. I know "I can't pretend a stranger is a long awaited friend" yet we all live in the "Limelight." We will all pass away one day but this one really hurts me deep. I know over the many moons I have been an unfiltered and over the top forum member, but it was really all about RUSH and my passion for this band since I was in the seventh grade. Regardless of igniting strangers on here with my daunting daggers in text and such. No matter what anyone will ever think of me on this Forum or on the Earth. Neil was "IT" for me. Many of you have always asked for my "ban" over the years, yet 73 must have seen the goodness in me. You can't be loved by everyone on the planet, and you certainly can't be hated by everyone too. It's life. I have made way more friends on this Forum than enemies. Probably why I am still around. 73 knows "The Real Me." Anyway, my father and Neil have been my mentors. The two guys I look up to and love beyond beyond. I am sooooo sad today, yet I know that I am also so lucky and blessed. My 82 year young father is still alive and very healthy. My 79 year old mom is still alive and doing well too. My phone blew up today. Over one hundred texts from friends and people around the world were worried about me today. Ex-girlfriends, even my ex wife who I took to over 25 Rush shows over 20 years was so sweet to me. I always thought to myself after I saw the last RUSH show ever that how will I ever deal with Neil's death some year. I figured I had lots of time to figure it out. I had no clue. But even thought I was an atheist in the past I became more about the Universe and Spirituality. "Spirit Of Radio" comes to mind. So I think it's time to share something with all and it's really no big deal now, but I have to get this off my chest and tell you all. Back on November 2nd 2019 I met someone who knew the Peart family very well. He told me that Neil was suffering from a brain tumor and that Geddy and Alex flew out to see him at his Santa Monica home. I had no idea about this and I thought it was a complete rumor and not true information at all. I just dismissed this notion and moved on from it. Now here we all are on January 10th 2020. Neil is gone from brain cancer. It kills me. All of my friends and family told me on the phone today that I am a very lucky soul. Forget about seeing 60 Neil Peart drum solos since 1984. Forget about the incredible lyrical content Neil gave to this Earth. For me personally Neil gave me a gift. I fell in love with the drums in the seventh grade. Then that same year I fell in love with RUSH and especially Neil Peart. I remember back in 1981 which was actually the eighth grade now I was taking drum lessons. Sorry, "Bravado" just came one. I can't see the screen with so many tears flowing down my face. I remember reading an article about how Alex had to just watch Neil play the drums on this song. Even his jaw hit the ground. Neil's drumming on "Bravdo" is beyond beyond. I love playing it on the drums. Anyway, where was I? So my drum teacher, Ray Libby told me to put on the headphones because he wanted to teach me "Dreams" by Fleetwood Mac. I remember even as a young spirited fella that I was totally bored playing that song one time through. I remember how bored I was. So next week I brought him the cassette of "Moving Pictures." I told Ray I would like him to teach me "YYZ." on the drums. Everyone was into "Tom Sawyer" as kids. I was hooked on "YYZ." Well my drum teacher couldn't play it. Ironically I think Ray was more of a jazz drummer. LOL! I left in frustration that night. I went home and I put on my Sony Walkman and I learned "YYZ" on my own. Then it became a passion. An obsession. All I did was want to learn the entire Rush Canon on the drums. So I started to go backwards in time and play to all of earlier records. I was so young and I loved the challenge. "Be cool or be cast out?" I was a total nerd. Had no friends even through high school. I just immersed myself in Rush music for the drums. The perfect nerd. Closing the door in my drum room. My parents never complained. They are the greatest parents on the Earth to me. Then closing my bedroom door. Cranking "Grace Under Pressure" on cassette on my Pioneer stereo. Sitting at my desk ignoring my homework and writing lyrics like Neil. I even did little drawings for the titles. I really liked using red and black for the title and art. Hell, some people even today think I look a bit like Neil. It's true. Even in the "Time Stand Still" video during that three dimensional shot. Neil in his black tank top with a tan. I that was me in 1987. Well I've had a few beers tonight. Dedicated my first one to Neil. I'm still "Face Up" as I write this homage to Neil. The greatest drummer and lyricist on the planet. I will confess that even when I was an "Analog Kid" I hated seeing Neil holding a cigarette in magazine shots or just in random pics. I have always hated cigarettes and I really had a hard time seeing Neil smoking that horrible crap. I mean even in his books he refers to his Marlboros as "red apples." Again, another weird thing..... Last night I watched "Once Upon A Time In Hollywood." A masterpiece. Should win all the Oscars. But anyway, at the end of the film Leo is doing a black and white ad for cigarettes. The are called "Red Apples." So in my brain I thought perhaps that's why Neil called his smokes "red apples" instead. Well, we all have our "Freewill" and we all make our own decisions. I feel so sad for Geddy and Alex, but mostly Carrie and Olivia. Neil is reunited with Jackie and Selena. So sad. "Chain Lightning" comes to mind. Amazing lyrics. Life is short Rush Gang. My heart is crushed and I have cried and ocean of tears tonight. "High Water" is rising from my eyes as I type this. I mean I must be crazy right? Many of you think I am. I have N PEART on my California license plate. Black with yellow letters. It's amazing and I am proud to have these plates. Glad I met Neil by his bus during the "Vapor Trails" Tour despite us just locking eyes like two deer in headlights. All I wanted to tell Neil was "Thank you, I've been playing the drums for 30 years thanks to you." I couldn't get the words out. I was starstruck for the first time and only time in my life. He simply walked backwards and recoiled back onto his bus. Meeting Geddy and Alex with many of my wonderful friends was a breeze on the GUP IV Wine Tour. Geddy and Alex were so sweet and so fun. I remember Rod asked Alex if I could try out for RUSH and take Neil's place. Alex laughed and told me... "Ok you have 30 seconds to try out...... GO!" So I hammered out "YYZ" on the breakfast tray with my fingers. Alex laughed and said.... "Ok! That's it! Thanks for trying! It was classic. Love you Rod. Love all of my friends on here. This has been a rough day and it's finally after midnight. A new day is dawn yet the pain will eternally linger on.......................................... I will take my drumming gift and my love for Neil to my grave one day. It's the Cycle Of Life. We will all perish one day. But yet we well always pray for the best. I always thought of "Afterimage when his first wife and daughter passed. Now I think about Neil too. "All the crap we are to take." One of my best friends died last night too. Killing me. As I sit here with sunken in red bloated eyes, all I can do it learn to let it go and become stronger from this sadness. I am so glad my mom and dad and my two girls Zoe and Skylar have seen RUSH. One of my small goals in life. Achieved. My girls have seen an Neil Peart drum solo in their lives. I am happy with a mixture of emotional tears. NEIL PEART! I WILL ALWAYS LOVE YOU!!!!!!!!! YOU WILL LIVE INSIDE ME EVEN AFTER I DIE!!!! I WILL PLAY YOUR MUSIC ALONE ON THE DRUMS UNTIL I DIE!!! CAPS ON BABY!!!! CAPS FUKKKKKKKKKING ON!!!!! THAT'S FOR ALL OF YOU WHO KNOW ME!!!!! RIP PROFESSER! The greatest drummer ever!! Jesus! "Ghost Of A Chance" is now on my stereo! It was my wedding song. "I believe there's a ghost of a chance to find someone to love and make it last." My marriage failed, but at least I found the late great Neil Peart in my little tiny life. I am blessed Johnny Blaze. Not cursed........................................... RUSH ON RUSH FORUM FAMILY!!!! THANK YOU 73 FOR KEEPING ME AROUND!!!!!! One hell of a rollercoaster ride baby! I'm still not getting off! NEIL PEART!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    22 points
  39. Rush aren't dead! Neil Peart hasn't retired! http://31.media.tumblr.com/04b3fd03e3199a21644919d2954d9c7a/tumblr_n1g0p1nhvx1sg3xpdo1_400.gif Wednesday 9 December 2015 07.08 EST Last modified on Wednesday 9 December 201510.06 EST On 7 December, when the story went viral across various music websites, the headlines were unequivocal. “Rush drummer Neil Peart has retired,” said Metal Injection, complete with tongue-in-cheek “Bummer Alert:. For fans of the multi-million selling Canadian band – described by Metallica guitarist Kirk Hammett as “the high priests of conceptual metal” – this was indeed a bummer of epic proportions. http://media-cache-ak0.pinimg.com/236x/8f/c2/45/8fc24594e3de7b5d05e90b0f7f16b5cb.jpg Neil Peart is no ordinary drummer. In the sphere of heavy rock, Peart is, by popular consensus, second only to the late John Bonham of Led Zeppelin. And just as Bonham’s death in 1980 was the end of Led Zeppelin, so the virtuoso Peart is irreplaceable to the band he has served as drummer and lyricist since 1974. If the story were true, that was it for Rush. The source was an article that the 63-year-old Peart wrote for Drumhead magazine, in which he referred to comments made by his young daughter. “Lately, Olivia has been introducing me to new friends at school as ‘My dad – he’s a retired drummer.’ True to say, funny to hear.” Peart went on to quote a line he wrote for a 1982 Rush song. “It does not pain me to realise that, like all athletes, there comes a time to … take yourself out of the game. I would rather set it aside then face the predicament described in our song Losing It (‘Sadder still to watch it die, than never to have known it’).” http://legacy.nerdywithchildren.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/07/rush8.jpg Rush during happier times The response from Rush fans on social media was an outpouring of despair, mixed with a degree of uber-fan one-upmanship: “I saw them back in ’78 at Newcastle City Hall”. “I’ve seen 102 Rush gigs.” The kind of stuff that geeks revel in – and fans of Rush are notoriously geeky. In fact they're so geeky, the missionary position is considered the standard operating procedure for reproduction. But was Peart really saying what they thought he was saying? In the absence of an official clarification from Peart, it was Rush bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee who set the record straight, when he spoke to Prog magazine on 8 December. According to Lee, what Peart said was merely a confirmation of what he has said repeatedly in recent years – that he is no longer willing to tour for months on end, as Rush have done throughout their 40-year career. Simply, that Peart is “retired” from touring, but not from the band. “I think Neil is just explaining his reasons for not wanting to tour with the toll that it’s taking on his body,” Lee said, alluding to the tendonitis the drummer now suffers from. http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/2015/article/neil-peart-rush-tour-its-true-dilemma-20150106/179735/large_rect/1420565572/1401x788-175702944.jpg Peart, known for his athletic drumming style, is also known for being able to defecate while playing. There is, however, another factor in all of this – Peart’s dedication to his family. As Peart said in 2012: “Honestly, people don’t realise the sacrifice you make as a touring musician. Being away when children are growing up and when your partner needs you around, it’s wrenching.” http://www.ameripublications.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/12/Neil-Peart-Rush-drumming-lege.jpg Can Peart see that he's leaving his friends behind? It's not too late to turn back Neil! --God The truth of the matter is that Peart did retire from Rush in the late 90s, following the death of his daughter Selena in a car crash, and the loss of his first wife Jacqueline to cancer. It was only after he remarried in 2000 that he was persuaded – by his new wife, photographer Carrie Nuttall – to return to the band. Since then, Rush have enjoyed a later-career renaissance. For a band that has sold more than 40m albums, they have remained a cult phenomenon – “under the radar”, as guitarist Alex Lifeson puts it. But the band’s 2012 album Clockwork Angels was a huge hit: No 1 in Canada, No 2 in the US. And in 2013, Rush were inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, joined on stage at the ceremony by the Foo Fighters, who performed a classic Rush song, The Overture, from the 1976 album 2112, while wearing wigs and the kind of flowing white satin robes that Rush wore back in the 70s. http://cygnus-x1.net/links/rush/images/books/classic-rock-07.2012/classic-rock-07.2012-2.jpg Foo Fighters leader Dave Grohl – whose work with Nirvana sealed his reputation as the finest rock drummer of his generation – said he cried after meeting Neil Peart for the first time. Another famous drummer, Stewart Copeland, formerly of the Police, described Peart as “the most air-drummed-to drummer of all time”. Copeland, also added that he has an intense jealousy of Peart's ability to stay in time without a click track. Geddy Lee tells the Guardian what it is that makes Peart so good: “Neil combines a few things that you don’t usually find in one drummer. He combines powerful rock histrionics with an incredible compositional sense more suited to a classical musician. He has the chops and ability to switch into a jazz-like improvisational mode at any time. The other thing is the pure physicality of what he does. When you see him play live for three hours, there are very few people on Earth than can play at that level for that length of time. Like he says, ‘My job is like running marathons while solving equations.’” http://assets.rollingstone.com/assets/2015/media/199709/_original/1434408275/1035x685-R1238_FEA_Rush_B.jpg "It's this guy who's holding everyone hostage" --G.LEE Lee feels that Peart’s comments about retirement have been misconstrued and sensationalised. “That’s how it goes in the media,” he says. “Talking about something when there’s nothing to talk about.” He is adamant that Peart, and Rush, will carry on. But for how long, he cannot say. The wear and tear of age is also telling on Lifeson, who has arthritis. What Lee said in May 2015, in an interview with Classic Rock magazine, still holds true. “Can we go on forever? Clearly not. And if it is the end, it’s going to happen in bits and pieces. If we can’t go out and do a massive tour in the future because everyone can’t agree on that, there’s nothing to say we can’t do another record or one-off shows here and there.” Neil Peart has not retired. Not yet. But Geddy Lee knows it won’t be long. “All we can do,” he says now, “is enjoy what time we have left.”
    22 points
  40. I love coming to the TRF every day. It is a place where hopeful fans share a connection--one where we, like children months before Christmas, anticipate "surprises" of what is to come in hopefully what will not seem like too long of a waiting period in the near future. However, the writing is on the wall, already eluded to by the band and Ray Danniels, that "getting three 65 year olds on the road ever again seems unlikely. I don't know about you guys, but I feel very sad inside. This tour is certain to make us all feel better for a while. The deep cuts and the effort by this band to give us the best of what they have to give is an incredible gesture. These guys sure do care about us all to do such amazing things year after year, and that is why we all love them like like we do. I have never felt anything like I feel for Rush for any other band. An kind of weird analogy is it is beginning to feel like a dear friend is now expected to be dying......and the hollowness you know that will be coming in the not too distant future is beginning to settle in. I am beginning to feel sick about it. We love you Geddy, Alex, and Neil. You guys are the best of the best. Thanks for the big effort this tour. We all appreciate it and all of the work that you and all of your tour team has put forth every time in the past, but especially this time. It is easy to see how much thought you all put into making this "last hurrah" so unbelievably special. Can't wait to catch you all in Columbus. I will love coming here to visit with all of you after the tour, but I suspect we all might feel a bit differently afterwards....maybe like discovering that Santa isn't real after all, and the magic may be gone from the holiday forever. Our love we have for this band in our hearts I am sure will continue to stoke the fire that keeps this place alive with happiness and great posts...for a while. But we will, I believe, just feel somehow emptier, more hollow, sad not knowing what is to come; after all a 40 year relationship suddenly changing, will have to impact us all in some way. The ever changing soundtrack to my life, and many of all all here, is perhaps about to lose its primary writers---I don't think any other authors will ever be able to take their places. :Neil: :Alex: :geddy:
    22 points
  41. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/YBG%20cover%20bulls_zpsqwmrtbig.jpg Olé, Olé, Olé Yukon Blade Grinders! http://static.guim.co.uk/sys-images/Film/Pix/pictures/2011/11/25/1322223467242/A-still-from-Puss-in-Boot-007.jpg By Puss in Boots "We knew we had a chance to take a break together...so why not Spain? We just had to do this. It was in the cards and it was epic!" --Geddy Lee How it came to be The Running of the Bulls, held in the small basque city of Pamplona, Spain, is one of the world's longest standing traditions. The festival, which may date back to the Middle Ages, has been celebrated annually since 1592. A litterbox of humanity I call it. Today, visitors from around the corner and around the world gather in Spain to witness the event and take part in the week-long fiesta. This year, new visitors from Canada are in attendance, and rocking the Spanish world with their presence. With a surprise concert opening the festival, all Pamplona is buzzing. Currently enjoying critical acclaim and packed houses across the US, they are masters of their domain, playing where and when they want. This moment in time takes them across the ocean. So nice for them to visit us on a short break during a tour, yes? I think yes. Don't agree? Come tempt my blade. The week-long Pamplona festival was originally held in October to honor the Patron Saint, San Fermín. A good tomcat. The origin of the religious celebration may date as far back as to the Middle Ages. Over time, the sanfermines began to add elements to the religious ceremonies such as "trade fairs, music, dance, giants, tournaments, acrobats, puppet shows, bull runs and bullfights." Despite evidence that the basis of the San Fermín celebrations began in the 13th century, old city documents report the Running of the Bulls has been celebrated annually since 1592 — a century after the Spanish reconquest and Columbus discovered America. In 1592, the festival was moved from October 10 to July to avoid the shaky October weather and coincide with the annual fair already held in July. It has has since remained a hallmark of the Spanish Summer. However this year a surprise concert in de Plaza de Toros de Pamplona to open the festival featuring the golden boys of Canada. Read on Blade Grinders...this story is loco! Pamplona 2015--No Bull http://www.videovista.net/reviews/dec03/rushrio2.jpg The Running of the Bulls is a huge tourist attraction and a celebratory week-long occasion for both Spaniards and international travelers. We make major dinero. Nonetheless, the festival emerged for its practical purpose. According to an ancient tablet found while spelunking here in the hills in 2001 by Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson, the bull run started because it served as a way to transport the bulls from Pamplona's corral, to its bullfighting ring, where public spectacles were to be held throughout the fighting season. Says Alex in his recent book, Taking Spain by the Balls: "Fascinating how the people actually want to agitate the bulls to tork them off...kinda nuts. People getting gored, maimed, rammed. As a band we decided to try it, a bucket list kinda thing. We've already been to Bangkok, Nepal, and Florida. So we had to do this just once. It's all good fun right?". Truer words have never been spoken Lerxt. http://www.partyearth.com/assets/pamplona/rotb_content_wrapper_map_bg-f1db45676aac93faa5867f853035ce83.jpg Until someone gets hurt, that is. The Running of the Bulls has a well earned reputation as a dangerous and violent festival-- and this popular conception is not unfounded. It's cold reality. The prospect of danger lurks in many festivals and sporting events: the inner-city olympics of Detroit. Bat day at Yankee Stadium, and the Annual Numismatic Coin Flipping Carnival of Leipzig. The latter, notable for the tragic "eye poking incident" of 1935, where 22 contestants engaged in conduct detrimental to the carnival, forcing police to control crowds using harsh language and threats of violence. Well, they shrivel in the shadow of this giant. At least 13 spectators and participants have died from injuries related to the bull run in the last century alone. The last death was that of a 22-year-old American tourist in 1995. It may come as a surprise, however, that the most dangerous aspect of the festival is not the bull run itself, but the week-long party flowing with traditional sangria that takes place around the feature event. According to the locals, "far more festival-goers have been impaired from over consumption of alcohol" than from bull-related injuries. A likely story. This year, a prime festival sponsor is the band's wine label Bacchus Chateau, with it's wildy popular jailhouse fare, La Villa SanGriato. However, on the label of the new phenomenon is the warning "one cup and you're effed up!" Test for echo--pace yourselves amigos--it's a long week! http://media.nola.com/entertainment_impact_festivals/photo/pamplona-running-of-the-bullsjpg-e890e6542669d6f9.jpg His cats are now out of the bag Ernest Hemingway popularized Pamploma's Running of the Bulls festival when he published his famous novel The Sun Also Rises in 1926. Hemingway's novel takes place against the backdrop of the wild Spanish fiesta and bull run, and the author relies on the ceremony to symbolize larger themes in his work such as the lost generation and the quest to reclaim masculinity in the post-war world. Masculinity? Bah says this Yukon Blade Grinder reporter. This event used to be akin to attending a Rush concert in terms of gender participation, but no more. As evidenced by more and more concerts crawling with chicks, women love this kind of entertainment as well! This classic American novel helped transform the Running of the Bulls into an international spectacle. Band frontman Geddy Lee speaks about the band's experience with the novel, "When we first started touring Neil would bring all these books on the RV. I'm OK You're OK. The Stand. The Joy of Cooking. The Sun Also Rises was one of them. Neil would sometimes read it outloud to help us stay awake as we drove. It actually put us to sleep, but don't mention that to him--Canadians don't complain--we pout!" No worries Geddy--your secret is safe with the Yukon Blade Grinder. As Hemingway's protagonist, Jake, declares in The Sun Also Rises, “Nobody ever lives their life all the way up except bull-fighters.” Geddy admits the band wants to experience that adrenaline high as well. Ok Amigos. Arriba, Arriba! Andale, Andale! http://ewpopwatch.files.wordpress.com/2006/02/15517__nacho_l.jpg You must be swift...like a gazelle--Nacho Libre The bull runners, known as mozos, wear traditional white uniforms with red trimming. According to the ancient tablet, there are two contested origins of the uniform: on the one hand, the red and white colors might honor the martyred Saint Fermín while others claim the uniforms represent the butchers who began the running of the bulls tradition. It is a common mistake to believe that Spanish matadors and mozos dawn the color red in order to anger the bulls. In fact, according to band drummer Neil Peart, the color is not what drives bulls to attack because "bulls don't seem to have any color preference at all. Bulls instinctively follow movement, so they will charge whichever object is moving quickest. Therefore, the bulls chase the runners because of their speed, not the color of their uniforms. At least, that's the way it was on the farm at St. Catherines. Spanish bulls may be different though." As usual, Pratt has all the answers. Sharp is the word and quick is the action. http://41.media.tumblr.com/tumblr_l3pw7jVaUq1qc6xhto1_500.jpg Each individual race takes just three minutes on average and terminates just minutes after it begins at 8 a.m., according to the locals. After the race comes the food, and we know this band can eat. Their new nutritionist, Ken Jeong, is owner and operator of the Rocky Mountain Oyster Palace located in the war torn Jane and Finch district of Toronto. He's along for the ride this year to sample the local fare and run his ass off. As always, Jeong is looking to improve his product, and sometimes traveling the globe is a must to find that special recipe to elevate your product. When asked about the quality of spanish calf fries, he wasn't leaving anything on the table. "Ahhh the smell of calf fries in the morning. Smells like victory! I got secret sauce, and you don't bitches! You gotta taste my nuts". Thank you gilipollas--thank you. http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/siesta_zpsocg4efm8.jpg Mission accomplished For the rest of the day, attendees visit the traditional livestock fair (rumored to smell like bullshit) and take part in the crazy celebrations, which last all through the night. Plenty of boobs. Plenty of calf fries. My kinda party. The festival ends at midnight on July 14 when all who remain in Pamplona gather before the City Hall and sing the song "Pobre de Mi" (Poor me, the Fiesta de San Fermin has ended). However this year, the festival will end with the Canadian band's magnum opus Anagram played over the loudspeakers in the city square...because there is no safe seat at this feast. So with that I bid you farewell, in the finest of Spanish traditions: Ole Blade Grinders Arriba, Arriba! Andale, Andale! http://i341.photobucket.com/albums/o371/x1yyz/bull%20run%20food_zpstult0jur.jpg
    22 points
  42. Cut n' paste below. And although we're already in the spoilers section, I guess you should know there are spoilers? ;) The bits of our interview with the Canadian prog legends that didn't make it into the magazine. On the eve of a US tour that may be their last, Rush guitarist Alex Lifeson and bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee talk to Classic Rock in a wide-ranging interview covering their entire career. They discuss their greatest work – from their zinging, Zeppelin-influenced debut album through to epic masterpieces such as Xanadu and La Villa Strangiato and on to their 2012 concept album Clockwork Angels. They talk about the complexities in drummer Neil Peart’s lyrics, the obsessive nature of their fans, and the good times and the bad times in their long history together. They also address the question that all Rush fans in the UK want answered: will they ever play here again? But first we take them back to 1974 and that first album, Rush. When you think of the time when you made that record, what is the first thing that comes to mind? Alex Lifeson: I remember how exciting it was to be in the studio – even thought we could barely afford it. Geddy Lee: It was a great time for us, and there’s some great raw stuff on that record. The first Rush album really stands up better in some ways than some of the later things. That album was the only one the band made with drummer John Rutsey, who left Rush in 1974 and was replaced by Neil Peart. It’s now seven years since John Rutsey died. How do you remember him? Geddy: John was an odd gentleman. A difficult person, in the sense that he had a hard time dealing with himself. He was not a happy guy, and had demons that he wrestled with. And when you’re that kind of person it’s hard for you to deal with other people. There was a lot of conflict and secrecy in the band when John was in it. We couldn’t really read him and he didn’t really care to share that much with us. And when Alex and I started pushing the music in a new direction, he eventually said: “I can’t get behind this.” That was the end. Alex: John left before the album was released in the United States. But he was part of this thing. He had the same dreams that we had. In those early days, did you always believe that Rush would be successful? Alex: I don’t think we ever thought we would be big. The dreams we had then were of making more records and touring; playing in front of bigger audiences. We were playing high schools and bars. That was our world for six years. As a Canadian band your chances of getting a record deal were slim, and getting out of Canada even slimmer. Geddy: We were never that kind of obnoxious band that said: “We’re gonna be huge!” We just hoped we could be as good as bands we thought were good – Led Zeppelin and Deep Purple and Yes and Genesis. When we toured with Kiss in 1975 we couldn’t believe we were playing in America and travelling around. It was all so new and exciting to us. And we honestly thought it was probably the last time this would ever happen to us, so we should enjoy it. I think I still have the keys to every hotel room from that tour. I kept them because I never thought I’d ever be in Lubbock, Texas again. And in fact I haven’t been to Lubbock, Texas again. For all the success that you’ve had since then, were there times when you felt that – outside of your core fan base – nobody gave a shit about Rush? Geddy: Oh, there were lots of times in our career when we felt it was such an uphill struggle. Many years ago, before we did 2112 [in 1976], we thought we were going nowhere fast. And later on? Geddy: There were times when we didn’t feel we were getting mass appeal, but it wasn’t something we were looking for. Alex: We’ve always been aware of the loyalty of our fan base. And it’s shifted over the years, of course. In the eighties we lost some of the older fans from the seventies. And with all the stuff that’s been happening in the past five or six years there’s been another shift, with a whole new segment of younger fans plus all our older fans. There have been points where there’s been less interest in general. But we continued to tour through those times and we’ve always done well touring. The mid-nineties seemed to be a difficult time for Rush; the albums Counterparts and Test For Echo were widely ignored at a time when alternative rock had changed the musical landscape. Did you feel, deep down, that Rush had become irrelevant? Alex: With every new era of music, whether it was punk or the whole Seattle scene in the nineties, it was supposed to have carried a nail for our coffin. But we’ve ploughed through those times. Yeah, there have been times when maybe in a broader sense we seemed irrelevant. But we’ve always managed to continue. And really, we never cared whether we were relevant or not. Rush are a progressive rock band in the broadest sense; the music has constantly developed across the years. Geddy: I think that’s true. In a way, we’ve always been searching for a new us. That’s been our curse and our blessing – we always think there’s a better version of us to be done on the next record. Alex: I don’t think all our records are completely successful, from a creative standpoint. But we always tried with each record to do exactly what we wanted to do. Geddy: And really, any criticism we’ve had was fair game for the time [laughs]. When you’ve been a band as long as we have, and been through the ups and downs we’ve been through, you take everything in its stride. We’ve made a lot of mistakes on record, but we’ve been able to learn from them and move forward. We’ve aged well because we’ve been able to apply the things we’ve learned. It’s all part of evolution. What are those mistakes you’ve made on record? Geddy: I don’t know if entire albums fall into that category, but certainly there are songs that I don’t feel great about. For example? Geddy: Just recently I listened to the song Neurotica [from 1991’s Roll The Bones) and I thought, what the f**k was that? It’s just a strange tune. I feel we’ve had a very up-and-down career as songwriters, but one thing that’s always held true is our honesty about what we’re doing. Like it or not, this is what we are [laughs]. Certainly you’re renowned as a group of virtuoso musicians. And if there is one Rush song, above all others, that captures you all playing at the top of your game, it has to be the classic La Villa Strangiato, the nine-minute instrumental tour de force from 1978’s Hemispheres. Alex: It absolutely is. It’s epic. There are so many parts to that song, and everybody shines on it. My recollection is that it was only a few takes to record the song. In fact if you listen closely during the guitar solo you can hear the previous solo ghosting underneath. I remember us playing the whole song in one piece and then we dropped in for that solo. There’s another epic – Xanadu, from the previous album, A Farewell To Kings – that you also recorded in one take. Alex: With Xanadu, we ran that down once to get the sound and levels, and then we hit ‘record’ and played the song and it was done. Pat Moran, the engineer on that record, was shocked. Seldom did a rock band do one take of a song that’s eleven minutes long. He was blown away. It was after those landmark albums of the late seventies that the modern Rush was born, with songs that were shorter and more direct. And from Neil Peart there was a new approach to lyrics, in which he ditched the fantasy and sci-fi themes of 2112, A Farewell To Kings and Hemispheres. Alex: We just felt we were working to a formula that was a little stale. Hemispheres was really a difficult record to make. It was written in a key that was very difficult for Geddy to sing, in a really high register, the whole record. It was time to move on. Geddy: For some of our fans, records like Hemispheres, that’s their favourite Rush. And when we started changing and our songs got shorter and more tuneful we lost those fans. The 1980 album Permanent Waves was really the bridge between the old Rush and the new Rush, the link between Hemispheres and the modern rock of 1981’s Moving Pictures. Geddy: Permanent Waves really is kind of a bridge album, and a hugely important record for us. Alex: I don’t know what it is about the chemistry between us, but I think without Hemispheres we wouldn’t have gone to Permanent Waves the way we did. Permanent Waves was really a hybrid of Hemispheres and Moving Pictures. We still had some long tracks on there – Jacob’s Ladder and Natural Science – but also shorter songs like The Spirit Of Radio and Free Will. Which do you think is the unsung classic in the Rush catalogue? For some fans it’s the 1984 album Grace Under Pressure. Alex: Grace Under Pressure is a good choice. Signals is a bit like that too – overlooked because it came after Moving Pictures. Looking back, I think Grace Under Pressure suffered in production, but the songs are really strong and there’s great diversity on that record. Counterparts is another one. There’s a lot that I really like about that record. There’s a feel about it, a tone and a mood. Geddy: When we were doing Grace Under Pressure it was a pretty low time for us. We weren’t sure of the kind of band we wanted to be. There was a lot of experimenting. And there was rejection from different producers that we’d hoped to work with – that was a bit of a reality sandwich we had to swallow [laughs]. We ended up pretty much producing that record on our own, and it was hard. On the albums that followed Grace Under Pressure – Power Windows in in eighty-five and Hold Your Fire in eighty-seven – the band’s sound became increasingly dominated by Geddy’s use of synthesisers. How do you feel about those albums now? Geddy: Those records were also experimental. Power Windows was a high note. That was a great record. Some of the work we did on Hold Your Fire was very positive, some of it less successful. So there were a lot of ups and downs in those years. But the cumulative body of work, the best from those years, stands up pretty well. Alex, you’ve said in the past that you felt marginalised in thas period, your role as guitarist limited. You said you were frustrated. Were you also depressed? Alex: Honestly, no. I’ve been fortunate that way. I’ve been down at times, yeah, because I’ve felt trapped or bored. But depressed? Not really. It’s not in my nature. Geddy: It was a difficult time for us. Alex was resistant, of course, because more and more keyboards were coming into the band. Did that lead to arguments between you? Geddy: I think it’s more in our nature to quietly harbour resentments than to go on attack mode. But we had some pretty bold conversations, I’d say. All the cards were on the table. Toto guitarist Steve Lukather says that his band used to fight over music. Did that happen with you? Alex: I can’t say we ever did. There was never a personal issue. If we had a disagreement over something, whether it was musical or otherwise, we always talked it out. Is Rush is a genuine working democracy? Alex: It always has been. And it wasn’t just a majority that ruled, it had to be unanimous in any decision. So if two guys wanted to do something and one didn’t, then you talked about it, you worked out the pros and cons, and at the end of it, if there was still that one that didn’t want to do it, it didn’t get done. It wasn’t worth having the bitterness over some seemingly meaningless decision. Is Neil equally open to discussion about the lyrics he writes? Geddy: I am a fan of Neil’s, and I love being a collaborator with him, because he is so objective and easy to work with. We’ll be recording songs, and stumbling over a word or something, and if Neil is not in the studio we’ll get him on the phone and discuss it. He’ll even allow me to suggest lyrics – a word that might work well – and he’ll accept it or he’ll come up with a better one. He’s really a pleasure to work with. With Neil there are no hissy fits, ever. And also, over the years he’s become more and more sensitive about shaping the lyrics to make my job as a singer easier. He looks back at some of his lyrics from the past, the things he’s given me to sing, and he doesn’t know how I did it [laughs]. Alex: When it comes to lyrics, Geddy is very free with the scalpel. He does severe editing, because he wants to be able to know clearly what the idea of a song is. Ged’s got a great sense of what the presentation of those lyrics needs to be for everyone to have an understanding of what’s going on. Ged’s got this way of paring it down to its essence. And it makes the delivery more convincing for him, and that’s what he’s all about. And Neil’s really good about that. Geddy: You focus on what works, not what doesn’t work. And if it was ever something that meant a lot to him, we’d have to discuss it conceptually: why is it not working for me? Have there been times when Neil has written a lyric that you don’t understand? Alex: His lyrics are not easy. A lot of times I have no idea what he’s talking about [laughs]. A lot of people were baffled by the story Neil wrote for the Rush’s 2012 concept album Clockwork Angels. Did you get it? Alex: Oh, with Clockwork Angels I was probably more confused than ever. Geddy: I understand it quite fine. I spent months working on those lyrics and discussing them with Neil. We went back and forth with some aspects of Clockwork Angels quite a lot, to make sure that it came off more universal and less overtly proggy. Alex: Neil is so patient with that sort of thing. If I’d written a song and it was being dissected the way his lyrics are dissected, and then rewritten and rewritten, I don’t think I could do it. Especially with ten or eleven songs on the record. I think I’d have strangled Ged. And then strangled myself. If you were to pick one song to illustrate how great a lyricist Neil is, which would it be? Geddy: I love Bravado, from the Roll The Bones album. That’s a song in which very little was changed in the lyrics from its original inception to the final version. Alex: I think The Pass is really beautiful. That was one of those songs that happened very quickly. Resist is another one. I love the lyrics in that song, they really speak. As a Rush nerd of thirty-five years’ standing, I’d say that this band, more than any other, brings out the geek in its fans. Geddy: I think there’s truth in that, for sure [laughs]. Do you understand why? Alex: Maybe because we take it more seriously in one way. Maybe our music, and the lyrics, are geeky? Maybe it’s the detail in your work. There’s so much of it to obsess over. Geddy: The fans love detail. As we do. We put a lot of detail into our music and our album covers and the film and our live show. We try to have a lot of stuff to keep people amused and entertained. Alex: There is certainly a lot of detail to obsess over [laughs]. It’s not just shallow music to make you feel good, that’s for sure! It’s serious music. And I guess we’ve been doing it for so long, that is the label we’ve earned. Rush are also, for many fans, a lifetime obsession – once you’re in, there’s no getting out again. Geddy: Ha ha. Yeah, that’s also very true. Some fans – myself included – like to savour the moment whenever a clock ticks over to 21:12. The last time I did this, holding up my phone to show my wife as I declared: “It’s Rush o’clock!”, she rolled her eyes. Alex: I think your wife and my wife would get along really well [laughs]. Have you ever done that? Geddy: I haven’t. But maybe if I’m in an airport at that time of the evening and I see a digital clock... You allow yourself a little smile? Geddy: Yes, I do. It’s this level of geekiness in the fans that was so well-portrayed in that famous scene from the film I Love You, Man, when two buddies are at a Rush show, watching you play the song Limelight, and singing every word to each other. It’s all rather embarrassing, and we’ve all done it. Geddy: Well, that movie definitely hit upon that thing of going to a show and letting go and enjoying the moment. And I think that’s an important thing to remember when you love rock music: that there is a sort of freedom in allowing yourself that sense of abandon, and digging your band. From the outside looking in it can be embarrassing, for sure. With such a loyal fan base, Rush are the biggest cult band in the world. Is that, for you, the perfect scenario? Geddy: Pretty much, yeah. There’s nothing wrong with that. Alex: For us, having that cult status for so long was a real safety net. You could be sort of famous, really well-known to a small pocket of people, and carry on an existence that was perfectly normal. There is a degree of discomfort that comes with being famous, but it’s part of the job. And, hey, there are worse problems. Geddy: I think for many years people didn’t know much about us, and we were never crazy about doing a lot of press. But as time has gone on we’ve grown more comfortable with ourselves, more comfortable in our role as a band and more comfortable around people, and I think that has contributed to our appeal. When people see this band, how we’ve stuck together and remained friends for all this time, I think that makes people feel good about the possibility of long-term relationships [laughs]. Alex: And despite the success and the fame that comes with it, I think you can balance it. With fame you can’t just shut it off and be a dick. You have to be at least a little bit open and gracious. I think you have to give some time to people that support you, who care about what you’re doing and are moved by it. It’s a matter of courtesy. I was raised by my parents to be very courteous. It’s in me, and I’d feel badly if I brushed somebody off or was rude to somebody. You’ve talked about this band being in its final stages. When it’s finally all over, will you stay active in music? Geddy: Most definitely. It’s in my nature to be productive. I like to be active. So music will always be something I hope to do in whatever context it is. Also, musicians and artists don’t retire. You either work or you stop working. When people talk about retirement it infers punching the clock, and I don’t like to look at my life like that. Alex: The idea of retiring – sitting on a beach in Florida, that sense of retirement – is not what I would do. I would travel. And I would be as active as I could be. I get these offers to play on people’s records, do some production, and I would pursue that even more. I love writing. I’m always writing music when I’m home. And I always want to play guitar as long as I can. Clockwork Angels was such a big success. It was number one in Canada, number two in the US, and was widely acclaimed as one of the best albums Rush have ever made. Alex: I felt like we’d really accomplished something with Clockwork Angels – a record that did really well at this late stage of our career. Geddy: I wanted to tour that album forever. I had so much fun on that tour. Are you already thinking about another album? Alex: Geddy and I have talked about getting together on our next time off and just writing for the fun of it. Neil loves recording and always has. Geddy: But to do another record, it has to have that one hundred per cent commitment from all of us. I don’t think you can go into a Rush record, or any Rush project, half-assed. You’ve got to really want to do it. So... Geddy: The conversation about future albums has to wait until after this current tour. But there is no negativity about it. You’ve said there will be no big tours for Rush in the future. Could you envisage making an album but not touring with it? Geddy: I can see us making a record and playing live but not playing a lot of shows. I can see us doing a record but not doing a tour. Alex: I could see us doing two or three weeks of dates. A few years back I saw David Gilmour, the On An Island tour. I think he did eighteen dates on that tour. He was out for a few weeks, and that was it. When I saw that show, oh my God, it was so amazing. He was playing so well. And what a fantastic presentation! And he probably put the same amount of work into doing those three weeks that we would put into doing ten months. And that’s kind of cool, that you would commit that amount of energy and work to do just a few dates and that’s it. I can see us doing something like that. Tickets for your current US tour have sold very fast. Alex: They have. I think maybe a lot of Rush fans are anticipating that this may be the last major tour that we do, and they want to get their last dose in [laughs]. Led Zeppelin were such a huge influence on Rush in your early days. Can you understand why Robert Plant refuses to do a Zeppelin reunion tour? It’s a frustrating situation for Jimmy Page. Geddy: I can see that. I understand how Jimmy Page feels. He still wants to do it, and Robert has moved on. But Robert is no less busy, he’s just busy with fresh things, he needs new stimulus. And I have total respect for that. Do you also feel, as a singer of a certain age, that Plant has the most to lose if Zeppelin re-formed? Geddy: Yes. It’s harder for the singer, in many ways. When the singer ages in front of the public, they can hear it. To be the singer in Led Zeppelin, it’s a f***ing tough job. It takes a lot of discipline and a lot of work. So I understand his reluctance to want to do that again, whereas he is very creatively fulfilled with all these various projects that he does. Good on him. I’m happy for him. You’ve done a lot of rehearsals for this US tour. Do you really need to? Alex: Oh yeah. I started in January, playing more regularly. Through March I was at my studio four or five days a week for three or four hours of solid playing. Neil and Ged did the same thing a month before rehearsals. We rehearse for the rehearsals! Why? Alex: We like to be so prepared for that first show that we feel like it’s our twentieth show. It pays off. That first night, you feel confident. That’s the way we’ve always done it. So what is in the set-list for this tour? Alex: We’ve dug deep. We’ve pulled out some songs that we haven’t played in a very long time. We’ve pulled out some real fan favourites. And we’re enjoying playing them. We’ve revisited every era except maybe the mid-eighties era, which we covered in a good portion of the set on the last tour. We’ve not included anything from Power Windows or Hold Your Fire, but there’s something from just about every other record. Can you be more specific? Alex: We’re bringing the Hemispheres Prelude and Jacob’s Ladder and Cygnus X-1. It’s fun and exciting to play these old songs. Jacob’s Ladder sounds amazing! For years we’ve discounted it, although it was always a fans’ favourite. We’ve got three sets – A, B, C – which we’ll be rotating throughout the tour. Geddy: It’s funny, some of those old songs sound so strange to me now, but when you start playing them you get back into that head-space you were in when they were written and recorded. You fall in love with those songs again? Geddy: It’s really all about your sense of perspective. A few years ago we brought back The Camera Eye [from Moving Pictures]. I never wanted to play that song. I never thought it was particularly worthy. And yet it was one the most requested Rush songs. I couldn’t understand it. How could people be so wrong? So what changed? Geddy: I realised I underestimate the moment in time – the context of that moment. When we started playing The Camera Eye, I thought, okay, there are a lot of pretentious moments in this song. It hasn’t aged well. But then I started re-learning the keyboard parts and putting together a slightly different version – instead of eleven minutes it clocks in at nine-and-a-half. And in the playing of it, yes, I fell in love with it again. And that’s where it becomes very subjective, and not objective. I stopped being able to tell if it was a pretentious song, and I just enjoyed playing those chords and I remembered why the song got recorded in the first place – I liked the chord progression and the vocal melodies. You can go back to that time and appreciate what you were trying to do. This song – it was a point in your life, and fans want to relive that point in your life and you can have fun playing it. I dig the hell out of that song now. What else is planned for the tour? Alex: Ged and I have gone crazy on bringing out all of our old instruments and buying up vintage gear all over the place. His goal is to play a different bass for every song in the show. And for Rush fans in the UK, the big question is very simple: will you coming back? Geddy: I’m always coming back. I spend a lot of time in London. I have a place there. It’s one of my favourite towns on earth. You know what I mean – your fans in the UK want to see the band play live again. Geddy: There’s nothing on the cards right now. I would say that there are those of us that would prefer to do some dates in the UK and even some European dates, and there’s an opportunity, once we get rolling, to see what we might want to add. But let’s just say that at this point that Neil’s made it clear that he’s good with this US tour being the last group of dates. Alex: You never know. These past couple of months have been pivotal. It’s shown us, after a year and a half off, how much we really love doing what we’re doing. I think that’s really important in Neil’s case. But when you’ve only got so much time to play with it’s tough. So you’re letting us down gently? Alex: Well, like I said, you never know what will happen. But I’ll say one thing: Geddy feels it’s important that we go back at this time to the UK, to acknowledge the support you’ve given us for all these years. And I agree with him.
    22 points
  43. Whats really upsetting about all of this....It's horrible for us to hear about this news.....I can't imagine how it must have been for Geddy and Alex right now and for the past almost 4 years. They clearly knew he was sick....And every single time that an interviewer stuck a microphone in their faces, or a fan went up to them on the street and asked them. "What's the likelihood of a reunion?" "Will Rush ever play again?" and they had to simply say that Neil wasn't playing drums anymore....And all the times that they had to put on a happy face when someone brought up Neil and pretend that everything was all hunky dory :( God...I can't imagine what a heavy burden that is.....
    21 points
  44. A special day for me, for many, many reasons: I´m coming back from an injury that stopped me from running for several weeks, and today was the first race I took part in after recovering; also, it was the last until we fly out of Brazil. And more importantly, carrying Stella to the finish line was a dream I had since I learned I was going to be a parent. Check it out: http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/RodrigoAltaf/received_1861372960771328_zpswbpnr410.jpeg http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/RodrigoAltaf/received_1861376194104338_zpsxforixra.jpeg http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/RodrigoAltaf/received_1861375004104457_zpsfty8ncib.jpeg http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/RodrigoAltaf/received_1861375410771083_zpseaty9t5v.jpeg http://i89.photobucket.com/albums/k210/RodrigoAltaf/received_1861374470771177_zpsf4i4xfwy.jpeg
    21 points
  45. Saw this posted on Facebook a little while ago. I'm not sure where it came from, but it's a picture from Neil's camera at the last show in LA. http://i160.photobucket.com/albums/t180/imzadi-7/Mobile%20Uploads/image_zpsro5zwxku.jpg
    21 points
  46. Was thinking the other day that Ive got tons of slides and negatives sitting in my basement from various rush shows I attended back in the 70s and 80s. These pictures have never been seen by anybody by myself, so I thought it was about time I shared them. Hope you enjoy! Ill add pics as I dig them up and scan them, but for now here is a set that were taken over two nights at Maple Leaf Gardens in Toronto during the Moving Pictures tour I believe. I believe the dates were March 23 & 24, 1981. http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH040_zpsf9a043e5.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH039_zpsb347694a.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH034_zps8131cfa4.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH031_zpseb56fecf.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH033_zpsae655ed5.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH016_zps0af3d33a.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH012_zpsc53d41c9.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH001_zps74c7b16c.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH024_zps9661066d.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH006_zps38708026.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH005_zps78d2358c.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH002_zpsed85a8f2.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH004_zpsfdc2246f.jpg http://i761.photobucket.com/albums/xx257/andreww1962/RUSH010_zps34f15304.jpg
    21 points
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