Geddy Lee On The New Rush Without Him, ‘They Were Terrible’


Geddy Lee recently spoke with The Strombo Show about how things went for Rush after they kicked him out in their early days.

Ray Danniels, Rush’s new manager, replaced Lee in the lineup in the early 1970s. When asked why he ‘let Alex Lifeson off the hook’, the bassist explained, “Well, I like Alex. I adored him at the time, and I adored his playing; we were excellent teammates. And I couldn’t say I blamed him. I never thought he had much to do with it, even though I put him on the spot and asked him directly when I was writing the book.”

The artist revealed in ‘My Effin’ Life’ that Lifeson did not object to Danniels’ decision. Lee continued, recalling how he later jokingly confronted his friend for this, “He was embarrassed.” For a few moments, he refused to look me in the eyes. But I never blamed him, and I knew others were plotting to get me out of that band. So there you have it.”

The Rush Was ‘Terrible’ Following His Departure

Following Lee’s departure, Joe Perna joined Rush as his replacement. The band, briefly renamed Hadrian, performed several shows with Perna, but they failed because the new bassist couldn’t keep up with the others.

As a result, the original member returned to the lineup, “Then I went on, and I felt confident because, within a few days, I had connected with new musicians, and we were working harder than the new Rush.” And the new Rush was abysmal. That gave me a lot of comfort. Then John [Rutsey] called and asked me again; I said, ‘Sure. ‘I’ll do it.'”

Lee Was Hurt About Getting Fired

Despite eventually rejoining Rush, Geddy Lee recalled the band’s early days with disdain. During an interview with the ‘Rolling Music Now‘ podcast, the bassist named those responsible for his dismissal, “Whoever had the idea, the way they all went about it was deceptive and, frankly, chickenshit, and I was shocked and hurt.” Still, I didn’t want to sit around feeling sorry for myself, so I told myself, ‘F**k them,’ and resolved to form my band. I’ve always imagined myself as a mousy kid, blowing in the wind and following the crowd, but the mysteries revealed while traveling back in time to write this book are, well, revelatory!”

Rush made music for decades after Lee’s return until their breakup in 2015. They announced the end of the band after Neil Peart’s death, but the bassist expressed interest in reuniting with Lifeson for new projects.

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