12 September 1952, Hamilton, Canada - 7 January 2020, Santa Monica, California, USA
Drummer & Songwriter
Neil Ellwood Peart was a Canadian musician, songwriter, and author, recognised as one of the best rock drummers in history. He was best known as the drummer and primary lyricist of the rock band Rush of which he was a member of for almost 45 years, from 1974 -2018.
He died from brain cancer at just 67 years of age.
In 2016 Rolling Stone magazine put Peart at No 4 in its list of 100 Greatest Drummers of All Time, after John Bonham, Keith Moon and Ginger Baker.
As the Nirvana drummer and FooFighters frontman, Dave Grohl, said: “Neil Peart – that’s a whole other animal, another species of drummer”.
Peart enjoyed such a reputation for his deft, powerful drumming with the Canadian rock band Rush that he became adept at deflecting praise from interviewers on the subject.
“What is a master but a master student?” was a common response on Peart’s part, a hint at his interests in esoteric philosophy as well as an indicator of the reflective thinking that made him also an acclaimed lyricist for the band.
The many songs that Peart wrote for Rush, for all but one of their 19 studio albums, were inspired by subjects as diverse as libertarianism, fantasy fiction, religious thought and the pressures of fame – the last of these expressed most clearly in the 1981 single Limelight, in which he used Shakespearean phrases to illustrate his points.
Fly By Night (1975)
Caress Of Steel (1975)
All The World's A Stage [live] (1976)
A Farewell To Kings (1977)
Permanent Waves (1980)
Moving Pictures (1981)
Exit...Stage Left [live] (1981)
Grace Under Pressure (1984)
Power Windows (1985)
Hold Your Fire (1987)
A Show Of Hands [live] (1989)
Roll the Bones (1991)
Test For Echo (1996)
Different Stages [live] (1998)
Vapor Trails (2002)
Rush In Rio [live] (2003)
Feedback [EP] (2004)
Snakes & Arrows (2007)
Clockwork Angels (2012)