Geddy Lee, Alex Lifeson Join Dave Grohl at Taylor Hawkins Tribute

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Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush carried out on the Taylor Hawkins Tribute Concert in London, delivering a decent three-song set that felt equal components like an homage to the fallen drummer in addition to their very own, the late Neil Peart, who died in January 2020.

“Now if there’s one band that I all the time related Taylor Hawkins with, it is these subsequent two guys,” Dave Grohl advised the Wembley Stadium viewers. “Taylor obtained up and performed with these two guys as soon as of their hometown of Toronto, Canada. And I’ve to say, it was not solely one of many biggest nights of my life, watching him try this, however maybe one of many biggest nights of his. So would you please welcome to the stage, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson from Rush!”

With Grohl behind the equipment, the trio — augmented by multi-instrumentalist and producer Greg Kurstin — launched right into a blistering tackle the opening overture from the 2112 album. The second rapidly demonstrated that the times of rehearsal they’d engaged in main as much as the occasion had primed them nicely for the second.

Following that with “Working Man,” the AOR staple plucked from Rush’s 1974 self-titled debut, a few issues turned clear. First, Lee and Lifeson delivered an astounding full-length model of the observe (regardless of the night operating lengthy), almost 50 years after the pair first performed it collectively, with the vocalist and bassist proving that he was in good type on all fronts. The guitarist matched Lee at each flip, enjoying a dizzying solo as Grohl bashed away in good synchronization. Not many drummers can step into Peart’s footwear — or would dare to — however the shaggy-haired Foo Fighter pulled it off admirably.

“So, for Alex and I, it is a privilege to be up right here to play with Tremendous Dave, and Greg,” Lee shared with the gang. “In 2008, as Dave advised you, we obtained a name from Foos’ administration, asking if we would come to the Toronto present and present up in order that Taylor might play one in all his favourite Rush songs with us. We obliged and that was the start of a lovely friendship.

“So tonight, in honor of that — and in honor of our personal misplaced brother,” Lee added with a reverential pause, acknowledging the formidable absence of Peart, “we would wish to play that music.”

With that, they provided a reprise of the second Hawkins joined them for “YYZ,” with former David Bowie drummer Omar Hakim stepping on this time for what turned a spirited run by means of the legendary instrumental traditional from the Canadian group. Kurstin dealt with the signature keyboard components for the music — a satisfying strategy to wrap up the emotional tribute.

“Bless you all, bless Taylor,” Lee advised followers on the conclusion of the music as they exited the stage.

There’s lengthy been mutual admiration between Rush and Foo Fighters, which culminated when Hawkins and Dave Grohl inducted the Canadian prog legends into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. In typical Foos trend, they injected some further aptitude into the night. Grohl dressed up as Lifeson, Hawkins took on the persona of Neil Peart and producer Nick Raskulinecz donned a fancy dress to appear to be Lee.

Together with the actual Rush, the pretend band performed the band’s epic “2112 Overture.” (Grohl, Hawkins and Raskulinecz revisited the second by contributing a studio recording of the music to Rush’s 2112 reissue in 2016.)

Grohl and Hawkins shared inducting duties, with the drummer highlighting Lee’s “ripping bass and his unbelievable, unmistakable voice,” Lifeson’s “soulful, imaginative, melodic, chaotic guitar solos” and “in fact … fuckin’ Neil Peart,” who “spawned a era of air drummers for many years to return.” As Hawkins identified, Peart “wrote the fuckin’ lyrics. Who let the fuckin’ drummer write the lyrics?”

Hawkins shared simply how a lot the band’s music meant to him. “I obtained into prog once I began drumming. I should have been 10 or 11,” he remembered. “And the primary band I heard had been Rush. It was the dwell album Exit … Stage Left. I picked up a lot from listening to Neil Peart.”

The members of Rush had been equally enthralled. Lee wrote that Hawkins was a “sweetheart of a person that radiated good vibes, a love of music and a complete monster on the drums” following the drummer’s death. “He was so, so glad the evening Alex and I got here up onstage to play ‘YYZ’ with him in the course of the Foos present on the Air Canada Centre on March twenty third, 2008. … His pleasure was nearly inconceivable for him to comprise. And naturally, he nailed it!”

“You may think about how nervous I used to be, however I obtained by means of ‘YYZ’ with them,” Hawkins mentioned. “Regardless that they advised me I used to be enjoying too quick! The nerves I used to be going by means of. Right here I used to be changing Neil Peart in Rush – nicely, nearly!”

Hawkins will likely be honored at a second tribute live performance in Los Angeles on Sept. 27.

Rush Albums Ranked

We study Rush’s 19 studio albums, from 1974’s muscular self-titled launch to a collection of exceptional late-career triumphs.





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