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.


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.

Lerxst Victor

I was hoping the new Alex Lifeson songs would be on YouTube or somewhere I could share them from. Nope.

So have my favorite cut from his Victor record to hold you over for now.

Guitar Commercial

This video is a commercial but given the subject matter I don’t mind sharing it.

Gibson guitars and Alex Lifeson from Rush once designed a Les Paul model together. It was called the Axcess Les Paul, or Les Paul Axcess, or whatever. Despite Alex being pretty much the guitar god to me, and Les Pauls being my favorite guitars by far, the Axcess didn’t really do it for me. The look was just a little off, and a Les Paul with a Floyd Rose bridge just bothers me on a fundamental level. I watched Alex play them more times than I can count and he always sounded amazing, but that one just wasn’t for me.

He’s working with Epiphone now to make an affordable Axcess model. I’m sure it’s great, but again it’s not for me. This video is a four minute intro to the new guitars where he basically tells his entire history with Gibson. It’s pretty cool. The music playing is pieces of the two new instrumentals on his new website. It’s been kind of a busy week for old Lerxst.

For the record, Gibson did once release a custom shop copy of his ES-355 in a very limited quantity for an absolutely stunning price. I’d kill to get my mitts on one of those, but I’d likely have to sell my body for medial experiments in order to afford it.

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. 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.

Vaccine FOMO?

I spent a good chunk of this morning going through nearly every vaccine distribution center in Massachusetts trying to luck into booking someone else’s cancelation. No dice.

Is it possible that part of my frustration at not being vaccinated yet can be chalked up to FOMO? The Fear of Missing Out?

No. No, it can’t. Not getting an invite to the Dispo app is FOMO (even though the entire concept of that app is flat out dumb, I still want in damn it, let me in!), but not getting vaccinated is not. The frustration over not getting a vaccine appointment is due to not having a vaccine appointment. That’s all, folks.

Jen is working today and Harry is at his dad’s so I am on my own. I’ll think of a cleaning project to do for a while then I’ll mess with my amplifiers. I said Jen is working, but the cat just ran into this room and Jen followed. Sometimes the cat gets into “Timmy’s stuck in the well” mode and makes us follow her places. It almost always ends on the bed where she just wants us to focus all of our attention on petting her. Our cat is both smart and powerful.

I am also trying to cheer myself up over my lack of a vaccination appointment by listening to Rush. Clockwork Angels, to be exact. Allow me to say that “Seven Cities of Gold” is possibly the best song ever recorded. The music annoyed the cat enough that she left the room (and allowed Jen to leave as well) but to me it’s pretty much the pinnacle of human accomplishment. I mean, that and the moon landing, but mostly Rush.

Okay, now that “Seven Cities of Gold” has finished, I’m listening to “The Wreckers” and I need to correct myself. “The Wreckers” is the high point of human accomplishment. There, fixed that.

Neil Peart Article in Rolling Stone

For decades, Rolling Stone seemed to have a bias against Rush. On the rare occasions when they mentioned the band it was usually negative. It lead to most of us having a pretty bleak opinion of the magazine. Granted, there was a lot more to make Rolling Stone irrelevant and unreadable, but for a Rush fan there was that little irksome thing on top of everything else.

In the waning years of the band’s career that started to change. Rolling Stone started publishing articles on Rush that were positive and seemed to imply someone in the company “got it”. They were fair and seemed honest, but left me and my fellow Rush fans feeling good about the universe and that was a nice thing.

Yesterday, on the first anniversary of Neil Peart’s passing, they published this article. I would recommend you give it a read. It’s long, but worth it. They take a guy whose public image was one of a grumpy dude who didn’t want to deal with you or anything you cared about and turned him into a human. Good work. Thank you.