Forget the fact that 2112 was the first album I purchased (8 years old) or that I saw Rush no less than 35 times in the last 40 years. Neil Peart taught me how to think. I learned about individuality from 2112, being true to yourself from Cinderella Man, the precious and tenuous relationship between the US and Canada from The Trees, the dark side of fame from Limelight – I could go on and on ad infinitum. Everything I learned about writing I learned from Neil and ironically I sit here lost for words.
As a 52 year old male Canadian musician, Rush is nearly genetic. It’s in my blood. I never really got the full-throated weight of that until I read this Dave Bidini article in the Star years ago. He really nailed it – I’m thrilled that I could actually find and post it. It stuck with me for a long time.
I’m feeling broken tonight, as I’m sure many of you are. Cranked up my Rush Spotify playlist on the way home and played YYZ three times in a row. I know I’m gonna be fine. But today I’m remembering Neil and the countless concerts and albums and angst he unknowingly walked me through. I’m thinking of Geddy and Alex and how they must feel like they’ve taken a bullet in the chest. And of course his wife and 10-year old daughter, and the wife and daughter he lost so many years ago. I’m thinking about a lot of things but mostly about the epic drum part in La Villa Strangiato. Good Night Maestro. You are already profoundly missed.