Neil Peart’s hunch on Rush’s final show
Forming a band might seem easy, because all a musician should be looking for are like-minded people who share a common passion for music. After the initial formation of a band, long hours are spent trying to book a gig, find a manager, secure funding to record a studio album and promote it. If the group is successful, they start touring and spend months on the road.
The journey described above ends either bring band members together or tear them apart a part. It is well known that many groups have experienced both cases. GN’R’s Izzy Stradlin, for example, walked away from the band during a long tour and preferred not to communicate with his former bandmates.
The long time spent on the road had the exact opposite effect on Rush. Each band member has embraced each other like family throughout their career. Perhaps their healthy relationship and communication skills were some of the secrets to their success. So when neil peart died in 2020, Geddy Lee said it was like losing a brother.
However, it seems that Neil Peart predicted his unhappy future long before his death. Frontman Geddy Lee recalled the drummer’s intuition about his last performance with Rush. Maybe Peart sensed it was the end for them long before his comrades realized it.
What did Neil Peart predict about Rush’s final show?
On August 1, 2015, the group gave their last concert together without realizing it. One of Rush’s breakthrough tracks, ‘Worker,’ was the last song on the playlist, and oddly, the show was more emotional than their previous ones, as if the bandmates felt that this was somehow the end of the road.
Geddy Lee recalled the show three and a half years later while chatting with The Guardian in 2018. As the frontman listed his favorite band tracks when he named ‘Working Man’. It was much more than one ‘Favorite song‘ because it was the last one they played at their last show.
Lee was then asked if he felt the performance would be Rush’s last. The leader responded by stating that he wasn’t one hundred percent sure at the time. His teammate Neil, however, seemed to be sure it was the end for Rush. The drummer played like it was his last performance.
The musician said that hunch was the reason Peart finally left his drums and gathered the band members together for a hug. Lee explained that the drummer had promised not to hug them on stage, but he couldn’t keep his promise with the emotional atmosphere of the show.
Geddy also explained that his teammate Alex Lifeson had accepted that it was the end, but the leader remained optimistic. Lee thought the show was fantastic that night, but that was also hard to say since the band got emotional in the last twenty minutes. Yet even Geddy knew deep down that this could be the end, and the musician said that was the reason he choked on stage.
Words from the Rush frontman on Neil Peart’s hunch and if he was aware the show would be their last performance:
“Not 100%. Neil was pretty adamant, and he played it like this was going to be the final show. And that’s why he makes it left the drum throne and came out and gave us a hug on stage, which he swore he would never do.
I guess I was a little optimistic. But no. I think Alex kinda accepted it as an ending. I thought we really killed it that night, but it was hard to say because it got really emotional in the last 20 minutes. This is the first time I’ve choked on a microphone. So I guess part of me knew.”
The band members had a unique dynamic, which likely helped them achieve worldwide success. The members of Rush may have been professional musical partners, but they also considered themselves family. It was obvious that Neil Peart was aware that the performance would be their lastand while they didn’t voice it, it seems Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson knew it as well.