Geddy Lee Talks About The Last He Saw Neil Peart
via Jeff Lee / YouTube
In a heartfelt revelation during his current book tour, Geddy Lee of Rush shared poignant memories of the last time he saw his dear friend and former bandmate, Neil Peart. The legendary drummer passed away in January 2020 after a courageous battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer.
As part of a Q&A segment during the tour’s opening night at the Beacon Theatre in New York City
Lee opened up about Peart’s final months and the profound impact of their last meeting.
Lee revealed that in the last months of his life, Peart would immerse himself in different Rush albums, analyzing and listening to tracks he hadn’t heard since their creation.
“And by the time that he sadly passed, he had listened to pretty much all the work we had done as a band. And the last time I saw him…”
Getting emotional, Lee shared the powerful moment when Peart expressed his pride in the music they created together:
“He wanted to tell me how proud he was of the music we have done together… some of this stuff is hard to talk about.”
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In a bittersweet recounting
Lee described the scene on Peart’s balcony during their final meeting:
“And so we were sitting on his balcony, and he was having a smoke, because he loved to have a smoke, like clockwork. And we were talking about what a great moment it was that he was here in this place, and we had just seen some parakeets flying into the trees. And we both were bird nerds so we could talk about that.”
Continuing, Lee shared Peart’s heartfelt sentiments about their musical journey:
“But he went on to talk about these songs and what they meant to him, and he thought it was very important for me to know that our life as a rhythm section together was important to him. So I thought that was beautiful.”
Reflecting on the unpredictability of those final moments
“And whenever we left him towards the end, we never knew if we’d see him again or not.”
The emotional journey didn’t end there, as Lee and Peart’s sister Nancy had previously revealed the drummer’s desire to keep his illness private:
“We had three and a half years to prepare, so we knew it was coming,” she said.
In a recent development, Lee expressed openness to a potential Rush reunion with bandmate Alex Lifeson, keeping the spirit of their iconic musical journey alive.