Musings on the Most Ridiculous Band I Can't Stop Listening To

Living, In The Limelight

This is ’76 at the Cap. Shapiro’s already got a toque nailed to the wall that he’s charging custies ten bucks a pop to air-drum in front of.

FUN FACT: Foghat and Montrose were also on the bill, so if you listen real careful-like you can hear a vague, curly-haired “WOOO!” from backstage.

1982 in Montreal, which is in Canada, but not the Canada that Rush was from.

1988 from Birmingham, England,

FUN FACT: This was Geddy’s worst haircut, and that’s saying something.

’94 in Michigan. The Counterparts tour.

Scream for me, Rio.

FUN FACT: South American rock crowds are the best rock crowds in the whole wide world, but there might be a coup.

Rockin’ Germany like a hurricane on the 30th-anniversary R30 tour.

Live from the World’s Most Famous Phish Venue, the 2112 Suite.


  1. J. Eric Smith

    ARGGGGGHHHHH!!!!!!!!! Terrible news. Dammit dammit dammit! I interviewed him years ago, and he was lovely to talk to . . . RIP to a legend. Here is the interview, if of interest . . . … rush-1997/

  2. J. Eric Smith

    Also . . . I did an article about my 10 most memorable concerts some years ago. I would estimate that I have seen something like 2,500 live shows in my lifetime, so top ten is pretty significant. Rush played one of those shows. Here is what I wrote about it . . .

    October 1996, Knickerbocker Arena, Albany, New York
    The first time I saw Rush was at Nassau Coliseum in April 1979, when they made the tragic mistake of letting Good Rats open for them, and got well and thoroughly dusted by the home team. I wasn’t as much of a Rush fan at that point, as it was their early ’80s albums that worked best for me, and then got me to go back and listen to the back catalog again, more appreciatively. Fast forward to 1996, when, after years of dutifully dragging opening bands around the country, paying back karmic debt to the bands that dragged Rush around in the ’70s, Peart, Lee and Lifeson finally decided to undertake an “evening with” type tour, where they filled the whole evening with two, long sets. The first show of the tour was here in Albany. I interviewed Neil Peart a couple of weeks before the gig for Metroland, and he noted that the longer format was going to allow the group to do things they’d never done live before, like playing the entire “2112” suite as it was recorded for vinyl, not as it had been truncated for the concert stage over the years. I called my Rush-fanboy college room mate, Jamie, to let him know what was going on, and he cashed in some frequent flyer miles to come up to Albany to see “2112” played live in its entirety for the first time ever. It was a gloriously over-the-top show, and the sound of 16,000 people screaming “Salesmen!” at the appropriate moment was giggle-inducing grand. Years later, watching the protagonists in “I Love You, Man” building their bromance over a shared fondness for Rush, I could totally relate. But I will punch you if you tell anyone. … -concerts/

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