It looks pretty unlikely that we’ll ever see Rush live again.
The state of the Toronto-based rock trio has been up in the air since the conclusion of their R40 tour in 2015. Lee sat down with Rolling Stone to share the latest Rush intel and detail his brand-new book, Geddy Lee’s Big Beautiful Book of Bass.
When asked about the status of Rush, the 65-year old revealed, “Well, I’d say I can’t really tell you much, other than that there are zero plans to tour again.”
“When you’ve spent 42 years working closely with the same people and formed the kind of bond and friendship that the three of us have had — and maintained, to this day — it’s a big decision and a big question what you want to do next. Or if you want to do something next,” he added.
Following their “final” tour, Lee admitted that the trio sees each other frequently as friends and with no mention of work, adding, “I would say there’s no chance of seeing Rush on tour again as Alex [Lifeson], Geddy, Neil [Peart].”
There have been rumours and rapidly changing opinions since 2015, some that led fans to speculate that not all of the Rush members are ready to quit. Peart’s health issues are thought to be the main reason behind the decision.
In the December 2015 issue of Drumhead Magazine, Peart hinted at his retirement from touring. His ability to drum has been greatly affected since his chronic tendinitis diagnosis.
“Now after 50 years of devotion to hitting things with sticks, I feel proud, grateful and satisfied. The reality is that my style of drumming is largely an athletic undertaking, and it does not pain me to realize that, like all athletes, there comes a time to … take yourself out of the game.”
Although guitarist Lifeson confirmed Rush’s retirement last year, fans still aren’t convinced it’s true.
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In the Time Stand Still (2016) documentary — which celebrates the legacy of Rush and the finale of their touring career — Lee revealed:
“We always said that if the three of us aren’t on board, we don’t do a thing. So one guy doesn’t want to do that thing anymore that I love to do. That hurts. But there’s nothing I can do about it and that’s part of the agreement.”
He may have changed his mind since then. Lee didn’t rule out the possibility of any sort of one-off event on Monday, contradicting himself, “Would you see one of us or two of us or three of us [play together]? That’s possible.”
His words of ambiguity continue to hint at future opportunities despite their agreement not to leave anyone out.
Is Lee holding Rush closer to the heart than his fellow bandmates?
Rush’s groundbreaking prog-rock record Hemispheres (1978) will be re-released on Nov. 16 under the UMe/Anthem/Ole label. It continues as the sixth reissue of many 40th-anniversary studio albums.
Hemispheres is available for pre-order via the official Rush store.