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Legendary drummer Neil Peart of Rush dies after battle with brain cancer

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I am fucking shattered. 


I haven't been able to take a full breath since I read the news. 

His compositions and words mean so much to me. They were with me as I came of age. Neil was one of the smartest, most thoughtful, creative, caring, and influential figures in rock music. He was a wonderful writer, a gifted composer of drums, and the best drum performer I have ever witnessed.


I knew there would be no more music. I just didn't think there wouldn't be any more words. 



I will miss him terribly. 

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I can't process this yet fully. 


He apparently had the same Glioblastoma that Gord Downy of The Tragically Hip had. It's so fucking awful. 



I remember so much. I saw Rush 10 times throughout the years. The last two times I saw there were on their 40th anniversary tour in their hometown of Toronto. Those two nights will forever be in my memory. Neil played 3 drum solos that night. 


When I went to Toronto I decided to visit Neil's hometown because there's a park there that he worked at as a kid and eventually wrote the Rush song Lakeside Park about. It was very pleasant and I can see how it created a ton of good memories for him. 


As far as I know, his mom and dad are still alive. I can't imagine what they're going through. 



I remember seeing him on Letterman when Dave was doing drum solo week. It was a really great performance. There's a lot to share, but I'll start with that. 




He is also 100% Canadian to the core. As such, he did a drum solo version of the Hockey Night in Canada theme that was a joy to see. 



Some of his best drumming was done in his last touring years. This is the first song I learned on bass. Neil's drumming is in top form here, and he rips a solo in the middle of the song too. 



Another one of the great solos of his from 1997:





But it was more than his drumming. His lyrics were just the best. They were straight from the heart. 

One song that was always one of the more emotional ones of Rush's was called "Losing It."


Losing It was about a talented artist that eventually lost their edge with age, and the trauma that comes with that. The song was never played live. And as Rush got up in years, I knew that Losing It was becoming more and more real. Neil dealt with tendinitis. Alex dealt with arthritis. They got older and maybe just couldn't perform at their best anymore. That's why Neil said the 40th anniversary tour was going to be their last--he couldn't perform at his peak, and he didn't want to give people a show that was below his abilities. 


So when I saw them on their 40th Anniversary Tour, they played 2 nights in Toronto. On the second night, they introduced a song they had never played live before. They played Losing It. 

That's when I knew Rush were done. 


This is that exact performance. 



Additionally, their final album from 2012 features one of the most beautiful Rush songs ever. Neil wrote the lyrics about settling down, being content with a life of ups and downs, and finally tending one's own garden. It has a beautiful, emotional guitar solo, and it serves as a great close to Rush's career. It is the book closing. 







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My brother 8-10 years ago almost got to move him into a new home in my city, but was yanked off the job and pissed him right off. He was pretty much moving back home, or as close as he could. While still enjoying a nice view of Lake Ontario and his old city of Hamilton. 

I was never a huge Rush fan, but there is no denying how fucking talented that man was. Can’t believe the same cancer took him and Gord from us :salt: Like rubbing salt into a wound that hasn’t yet heeled. I’m just glad I got to see The Hip during their farewell tour in Toronto 

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28 minutes ago, elbobo said:

god damnit, he was a legend. One of my friends is absolutely devastated, he probably saw rush live 30 times over the years.



I know how he feels. 



One thing I will say is that Neil had a massive appreciation for Buddy Rich and jazz drumming. He studied under Freddie Gruber in the 90s. And he did several benefits and tributes to Buddy Rich. This is a video of him playing with Buddy Rich's Big Band:



Now... Neil Peart is NOT a jazz drummer. He can't swing the way Buddy could. But you can see on the band's faces how his prowess and heart makes them proud and sends up a worthy tribute to Buddy. 

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I just found out about this and yea, a real, big fucking shame.


Tom Sawyer inspired me to start playing drums and I still regularly play parts of it when I do get to play. A rare perfect song.


That aside, every interview I've ever seen with him made him seem like an incredibly thoughtful and intelligent person, so RIP to him, what a legend.

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