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A year after virtuosic rock drummer Neil Peart died at the age of 67 from brain cancer, his Rush bandmates, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, have given their first interview about mourning their musical comrade. Speaking to Rolling Stone for a new cover story, the duo said that they had known about Peart’s aggressive form of cancer for about three and a half years prior to his death, a diagnosis that they were sworn to secrecy about. Lee and Lifeson also confirmed that Rush will never return, although it’s possible that they’ll be inspired to work on new music with each other in the future. “That’s finished, right? That’s over,” Lee said about Rush. “I still am very proud of what we did. I don’t know what I will do again in music. And I’m sure [Lifeson] doesn’t, whether it’s together, apart, or whatever. But the music of Rush is always part of us. And I would never hesitate to play one of those songs in the right context. But at the same time, you have to give respect to what the three of us with Neil did together.”
Lifeson, like Lee, noted that he has yet to become inspired to pick up an instrument since Peart’s death became public last January. “I thought, you know, ‘One day, when I’m just sitting around shitting my pants, I’ll still want to play guitar.’ And that’s kind of gone now,” he explained. Lee added, a bit more optimistically: “For the longest time I didn’t have any heart to play. I still feel there’s music in me and there’s music in [Lifeson], but there’s no hurry to do any of that.” If so, for our sake, let’s hope it’s before the year 2112.