It’s a sad time for progressive rock fans worldwide; Superstar Canadian trio Rush will never tour again, according to a recent interview with Guitarist Alex Lifeson in Rolling Stone.
The announcement had been a long time coming. The band finished their 40th anniversary tour, billed as R40, last year and drummer Neil Peart was quoted in an interview with Drumhead Magazine saying that he wasn’t keen on hitting the road again.
Peart, who together with Lifeson and bassist/vocalist Geddy Lee has been playing with the band for nearly all of its four decades (save a few formative years between 1968 and 1974), seems to be the strongest voice behind the decision, and it largely has to do with his family. He has a young daughter that he wishes to spend as much time with as possible.
“Should I be excited about leaving my family?” he asked in an interview last year regarding the prospect of touring, “No. And no one should.”
“Neil was prepared to commit to 30 dates and he told us that right from the very beginning,” said Lifeson of the group’s ultimate decision to stop playing live, “He didn’t even want to do the tour, to be honest with you. It’s been increasingly difficult for him, but he committed to the tour and we got through it. As far as he was concerned, that was the end of touring.”
After upwards of half a century on the road, no fans are likely to blame the band for finally calling it quits — especially when they went out in such top form. On the R40 tour, the band played all of their hits in reverse chronological order to high audience acclaim. Over the years the band accrued 24 gold, 14 platinum, and 3 multi-platinum albums.
Lifeson spoke fondly of the band’s last 30-show tour, saying that Rush enjoyed performing their hits immensely.
“We had such a great time on the tour,” Lifeson said in the interview with Rolling Stone. “It was really nice to go through all the material in reverse chronology, and I think our fans really enjoyed it. I think that no matter how long it would have been, it would have been too short.”