When you hear thunder, it will be him playing. RIP, Neil Peart

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Mendalla

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Another great of rock music is gone. Neil Peart played drums and wrote lyrics for Canadian power trio Rush from when he joined in 1974 to the band's retirement in 2015. He passed away at 67 from brain cancer. Neil was easily one of the best drummers of all time and also a masterful lyricist.

 

Mendalla

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While it was initially my brother who was the Rush fan in our family, the band grew on me. I developed an appreciation for the skill all three members brought to their respective instruments (Geddy Lee, bass & keyboards; Alex Lifeson, guitars; Neil Peart, drums). It was a surprise to me when I learned that they had called a day, an even sadder one today when a co-worker told me Neil was gone.

"Spirit of Radio" was a fairly early Rush song, but a classic and one of the ones that brought me around. This performance is from 2007. Look at that drum kit. Neil always had one of most impressive sets out there and actually did use all of it in creating the powerful rhythms and drum solos that he brought to the band's recordings and concerts.

 

Greywolf336

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I had never heard of them and still am not a huge fan but my boyfriend is. We went to see them in Montreal during their last tour and despite not really knowing the songs or really being a fan, it was a good concert. My boyfriend is sad today but glad he managed to see them live.
 

Mendalla

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CBC Music spent yesterday evening paying tribute, including this compilation of Peart solos from throughout the years.


And a string of clips from a 2014 interview



 

Mendalla

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From Neil's own YouTube channel, a bit of a novelty, but still a good showpiece of Peart in action.

 

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But it's the songs of Rush that will be Peart's lasting legacy



 

Mendalla

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Lawrence Gowan started out as a rising star here in Canada before ending up as the singer and keyboard player for American band Styx. Friday night, he paid tribute to Neil Peart with a short performance of part of the Rush classic Limelight.


And here is the original


And, for those who may be interested, an analysis of the song by rock musician and musicologist Rick Beato that really highlights the musicality that made Rush the rock greats that they were.


It also highlights why they are often classed as prog rock alongside bands like Yes and King Crimson. The musical complexity of the songs and skillful musicianship are hallmarks of that genre. Beato even points out the influence of Yes bassist Chris Squire on Geddy Lee, a debt Geddy repaid when he took the stage with Yes at their Rock and Roll Hall of Fame induction, not too long after Squire's death.
 

Mendalla

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CBC Radio 2 is paying tribute today on both the Essentials (8:30 am) and Deep Dive (6pm).

The Essentials highlight 5 Rush tracks, mostly from earlier in their career:

Spirit of Radio
Fly by Night
Limelight
Temple of Syrinx
Tom Sawyer

Deep Dive will be playing the entirety of the 1981 album Moving Pictures, long regarded as their finest work.
 
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