Former SKID ROW singer Sebastian Bach has paid tribute to Neil Peart, who died on Tuesday (January 7) in Santa Monica, California after a three-year battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive form of brain cancer. The iconic RUSH drummer was 67 years old.
Earlier today (Saturday, January 11), Bach posted a YouTube video of him celebrating Peart's life while listening to RUSH music and talking rock and roll at the Record Parlour in Hollywood, California. He wrote in an accompanying message: "I'll never understand how hard it hits us all when a hero dies. Even though I never really knew the person.
"I was fortunate enough to meet Neil Peart twice in my life and will treasure those memories forever.
"When I got the news yesterday that he was no longer with us, I put on 'Permanent Waves' and wept for about two hours straight. A physical response, not of my control. I did not know what to do with the rest of the day I was so sad. So I got in the car and went to the Record Parlour and we cranked RUSH all night long. The Record Parlour knows exactly what a record store should be. Turns out this was the absolute perfect place for me last night in my mourning of the greatest drummer the world will ever know. [I] was going to go get dinner after the record store but there was no need. [Owners] Chad and Chris ordered pizza into the store and we hung out for hours talking about rock and roll. Nowhere else I would have rather been last night. Thank you to all of you at the record Parlour for being so cool and getting me home safe.
"Neil Peart.... Thank you for making the impossible seem easy. Thank you Neil for showing us all the ultimate possibilities of what music can be. Thank you for being such an important part of all our lives. It truly feels like you were a member of the family. Your music will never die in our hearts."
In a 2005 interview, Bach stated about RUSH: "Their time signatures fascinated me. I couldn't understand the tempos of songs such as 'Cygnus-X1' and 'Hemispheres'. It was music like nothing else I had ever heard. But being a young Canadian whippersnapper, I was geographically programmed to worship RUSH like the rest of my fellow Canadians."
He continued: "I was the second ever member of the 'Rush Backstage Club of Toronto', the RUSH fan club put together by their longtime photographer, Andrew MacNaughton. Andrew was the cousin of my school roommate, George Jeffries at Lakefield College School in Canada. He was the first member of Andrew's 'club' which we joined in 1981."
Bach added: "RUSH was a magical sound to me and showed me that music could be challenging and entertaining at the same time... Few musicians on the planet can boast the longevity of RUSH, especially in a band context. Rock bands are a fragile organism and RUSH's career demonstrates that there are exceptions to the 'Behind The Music' scenario of 'band makes it big, band breaks up, band reunites for Japanese tour.' Their work ethic and constant reinvention is an inspiration to each and every musician."
Peart joined RUSH in 1974. He was considered one of the best rock drummers of all time, alongside John Bonham of LED ZEPPELIN; Keith Moon of THE WHO; and Ginger Baker of CREAM. Peart was also RUSH's primary lyricist, drawing inspiration from everything from sci-fi to Ayn Rand.
Neil's survivors include his wife Carrie and daughter Olivia.