Tonight (Tuesday, October 24), AXS TV will premiere a new installment of The Big Interview With Dan Rather featuring a chat between the famed newsman and Rush frontman Geddy Lee. Rather’s lengthy interview with Geddy is one of few Lee has given since Rush last performed in 2015.
Geddy talks about his incredible career, his passion for baseball and his personal life. Lee grew up in Toronto, a child of Holocaust survivors who immigrated to the Canadian city. “I consider myself to be someone that feels the clock ticking a little bit,” the Rock & Roll Hall Of Famer explained to Rather. “I think that’s ’cause I lost my dad early on, and my parents came from a situation of horror in Europe through the war. So, I’ve always had this appreciation for gettin’ the most outta the day, getting the most out of the minute. I have a lot of interests, and I try to follow those interests, and I try to embrace the world.”
Lee tells the story of first picking up a bass at age 12 and quickly figuring out he had a knack for the instrument. The Rush bassist shares how he met Alex Lifeson and that a fortuitous cancellation led him to join forces with the guitarist. “We both sat at the back of the class. He was really funny, and we sort of connected. He played guitar, and before you know it, we were starting to jam together. I didn’t know at the time that I would spend the rest of my life with this crazy Serbian guy. He was actually in a band called RUSH… and they were scheduled to do a show in the basement of a church. Their bass player couldn’t make it for some reason, and Al called me up in a panic saying, ‘Do you think you could play the gig with us?’ And I said, ‘Well, sure.’ I learned the songs that afternoon. We did the gig, and then we went to the local deli for French fries and gravy… And that’s how my career with Al started,” Geddy said.
Rush’s career has spanned four decades and Lee details why he thinks the trio has achieved such longevity. “I think at the core of what we are, we’re pals, and that gets us through a lot of stuff… There was a like-mindedness and a consideration between us. We liked this weird hybrid of hard rock and progressive rock, and we had ambitions that were very similar… And that’s a big thing, because a lot of bands break up because of musical differences,” the bassist noted. The episode is topped by a special tour of Geddy Lee’s impressive baseball collection.
Hopefully, Lee also discusses what is in store for Rush as a preview has him describing the current period as a “hiatus” instead of an out-and-out break up. Drummer Neil Peart has previously stated his desire to stay off the road and Rush indicated their 2015 R40 Tour would probably be their last, at least of that magnitude.
Watch a preview of the episode, which premieres at 9 p.m. ET:
In other exciting Rush news, the band recently announced a 40th anniversary edition of their iconic A Farewell To Kings album. Bonuses include a complete live recording of a Rush show from February 20, 1978 at London’s Hammersmith Odeon including previously unreleased performances as well as a reproduction of the tour program from the era.