PRS

As I was sitting in the living room feeling terribly nauseous and sick I put on Youtube and poked around. I found a rig rundown video with Alex Lifeson’s guitar tech from the Time Machine Tour in 2010. They checked out his guitars. Most of them were his signature Les Paul model, the Les Paul Access. There were a couple of older Les Pauls too and his gorgeous ES-355, and that one Telecaster he plays now and then. There were also a couple of 90’s Paul Reed Smiths.

Lifeson started playing those in the late 80’s or early 90’s (I think) after he stopped playing those Signature strat copy things that I think he was a part owner of the company. I was so happy when he stopped playing those things and I really liked how he sounded playing those PRS guitars but I was sort of hoping he’d start playing Les Pauls again, which eventually he did. I mean, Geddy Lee once said something along the lines of Alex doesn’t sound like Alex unless he’s playing a Les Paul. I don’t remember the exact quote but it was something like that, and once Mike my lifelong bass player said the same thing about me and that was pretty much the best compliment I’ve ever heard.

Anyway…

After I watched that rig rundown video I found today’s new episode of That Pedal Show and who should they have as a guest? Paul Reed Smith himself.

Maybe someday after I win the lottery and buy a bunch of Les Paul Standards from 1957-1960 I might treat myself to a two humbucker Paul Reed Smith model. They are great guitars. Even that weird strat copy they make for John Mayer is a great guitar, even if it’s basically a stratocaster with a funny looking headstock.

Geddy Alex and Primus

This is wonderful. Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson on stage together for the first time since 2015.

Comedy Central is going to air this show soon, and Paramount+ will stream it after that. I’ll watch it a few thousand times once it’s out.

Cookie

Rush did a song on their first record called In the Mood. It was a dumb Little Rock and Roll song that doesn’t fit in stylistically with the band they morphed into a short time later but it’s fun and it became a concert staple that appeared in set lists off and on for most of their career.

The hook includes the brilliant, Geddy Lee penned (ad libbed?), line “hey baby it’s a quarter to eight, I feel I’m in the mood” (fucking epic).

On many bootlegged occasions over the decades the word baby was changed to something that sounded like “cookie.”

Now Alex has an Instagram and he posts this:

Was the line changes to cookie or Chuckie? Did they mess with the line to make it about Al’s wife?

I don’t know, but…. Fucking epic.

What’s Vat?

This is not enough to make me want to start drinking beer, but if anything was going to pull off that particular magic trick, this would probably be it.

In 1974, in the lyrics to Working Man, Rush hinted at a love of drinking beer. Now today they have announced a Rush Beer. I believe it will be called Rush Canadian Golden Ale.

I don’t drink beer and don’t know anything about beer outside of the fact it tastes vaguely like animal piss. I do, however, know that Canadian beer is supposed to be much more alcoholy (that’s a technical term that I just coined. you’re welcome) than watery, awful American beer. So if they end up importing this into the United States, much like the first Rush record was initially only sold in the US as an import, it’s a safe bet that it will probably get you drunk.

Cheers.

Take a Holiday

Yesterday was the 4th of July. Independence Day in the USofA. Today is the 5th of July which, thanks to the 4th falling on a Sunday, is the day we celebrate the holiday and have a day off from work. Amen to that, brothers and sisters in the American workforce.

I haven’t really done anything. I unclogged a drain in the bathroom sink. I finished watching Black Summer. I put guitars onto a couple of new song ideas. I’m up to six songs now.

I haven’t spent much time with heavier “rawk!” sounds with the new guitar. That changed today. I had some crunchy goodness going on. The bridge pickup on the new guitar is kind of in love with the Bassbreaker 15. The neck pickup is jealous of that love and therefore kinda bitchy. They aren’t playing all that nicely together. I’ll work it out. If not there will be a new pickup. Something swanky and boutique. Probably not until the kids are done with college though. Money? What’s that?

How about a little love for leather guitar straps. I’ve never owned one before but when the new guitar came (I still can’t believe Jen bought me a Les Paul for my birthday. Best birthday gift ever) I needed a new strap and I found a reasonably priced one on amazon.

One thing I learned, the cloth straps I’ve been using since day one back in 1987 play nicely with clothing. Meaning that when I need to adjust the strap’s position relative to my shoulder, it will slide around easily and not try to bunch up my shirt. Not so with the leather strap. The leather strap grabs hold of my shirt and drags it along with it everywhere it goes. I never thought of that before. No one was more surprised than me.

Anyway, are you having a happy long weekend? I am having a happy long weekend.


On a sadder note, Mary Weinrib passed away at the age of 95. Who is Mary Weinrib? Well pop culturally speaking, she’s Geddy Lee’s mother. Now giving birth and raising the greatest bass player in history and the frontman for the greatest rock band in history is a legendary accomplishment. That’s great. It’s also not the most amazing thing she’d ever done. Mrs Weirib, as a young woman, survived the Holocaust. She survived Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen, among others. Rest in peace Mary Weinrib. Your kid done good.

I should also mention that I did not mention when Neil Peart’s father passed away a couple of weeks ago. Sorry about that.

Rutsey’s Last Show

I stumbled across this on the tweeter yesterday.

July 25, 1974.

Centennial Hall in London, Ontario.

Opening up for Kiss.

The last Rush show with the late John Rutsey on drums.

Why, after all this time, is this interesting?

Because there are pictures.

I’ve been on this site a few million times before. It has a list of every show Rush ever played. Well, as complete as can be put together, at least. Cygnus-x1.net Check it out.

The list says they had another show booked for the next night but it was cancelled. Was it cancelled because Rutsey was leaving, or was there another reason and then Rutsey left afterwards. Whatever the reason, the next show was August 14th in Pittsburgh opening for Uriah Heep and Manfred Man. That was Neil Peart’s first show. My favorite band has had four members. Two drummers. They’re both gone.

Yes with Geddy Lee

The best part of this video is knowing that Geddy Lee is playing along with some of his heroes, and while he appears cool he is probably freaking out with glee on the inside.

No Bill Bruford on the stage, but he’s retired so I didn’t expect to see him.  No Tony Kaye either.  I don’t know what his story is.  Trevor Rabin is half everyone else’s age but he’s starting to look old.

Geddy Lee is more than a replacement for the late great Chris Squire.  There’s nothing missing on the bass guitar front.  Still… the lack of Chris Squire’s harmony vocals is a Titanic sized hole in this performance.  Hell, you could fly a planet through the Squire sized hole.  Rest in peace, Chris Squire.