Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Rush R40

I don't have a bucket list but if I did I would have crossed an item off it last night.  Back during the school year my son did a great job with his studies so to show my appreciation I picked up a couple tickets to a Rush show in Columbus, Ohio.  The R40 stands for 40th anniversary.  I've been a fan of Canada's greatest rock band since I first discovered  them on the FM tuner of my father's hi-fi system as a boy back in the early 80's.  Like any good parent when my son hit his preteen years and started to take notice of music I turned him onto my extensive CD library. I was not surprised when he took a liking to the trio from Ontario.  He was ecstatic to say the least when I showed him the tickets. As the months turned to weeks and then to days he had been talking about the upcoming show more and more.  I've not been to a show in a while and I have never seen seen Rush perform live so I was also looking forward to the experience.  A win-win situation to be sure.

For many years Rush has always gone big and booked stadiums to play their shows.  I found it fitting and a bit ironic that the venue was Nationwide Arena home of the Columbus Blue Jackets NHL hockey team.  Maple syrup, hockey and Rush; Canada's major exports.

We made the drive down to the capitol city early so we could relax and have a nice dinner before the show.  Once the doors opened we walked around the arena and noticed some players practicing on a side rink.

All the concerts I've attended have been in smaller auditoriums or outdoor amphitheaters.  This was the first show in a large scale arena for both my son and I.

After wandering around and checking things out from various angles we found our seats and watched the fans slowly trickle in and start filling the seats.  Eventually the lights went downs and the curtain came up and the spectacle began.

Please excuse the blurry photos.  The only camera I had was my cell phone and with the zoom cranked all the way up I did the best I could without a steady rest.  Besides some crummy photographs are better than no photographs.  One of my purposes with this blog is to record special events in my life so when I'm an old codger with dwindling memory power hopefully these stories and images will trigger the recall.

More than once I've been told as a Rush fan to go see them play if given the chance.  "Just go" they said and I'm so glad I did.  We were blown away!  The audio was very loud probably one of the loudest concerts I've ever heard.  Not just loud but perfectly executed.  The members of Rush are all perfectionists and besides they've been playing together for 40 years and it shows. 

The lighting was some of the best I've seen and a gigantic projection screen made it easy to see the guys onstage even from way out.

Thousands of loyal Rush fans packed the house.  Seeing all these people and feeling all their energy was almost as impressive as the band.  I feel very lucky we had the opportunity to witness a little bit of Rock and Roll history in the making. 

Earlier this year the band announced they were taking an extended hiatus from the road after wrapping up this current three month tour.  Of course many bands say this and end up back on the road eventually.  This may not be the last time Rush rocks a big stadium but if it is I can happily live out my days knowing what it was like.  Last but not least I had a blast sharing the experience with my son.  My parents didn't take me to any rock concerts so I can only imagine how cool that is to a 14 year old kid. 

Set list:

1.  The Anarchist
2.  Clockwork Angels
3.  Headlong Flight (with "Drumbastica" mini drum solo)
4.  Far Cry
5.  The Main Monkey Business
6.  One Little Victory
7.  Animate
8.  Roll the Bones
9.  Distant Early Warning
10.  Subdivisions

Set 2

11.  Tom Sawyer
12.  Red Barchetta
13.  The Spirit of Radio
14.  Jacob's Ladder
15.  Cygnus X-1 Book II: Hemispheres Part 1: Prelude
16.  Cygnus X-1 
(The Voyage Part 1 & 3 with drum solo)
17.  Closer to the Heart
18.  Xanadu
19.  2112 Part I:  Overture
20.  2112 Part II:  The Temple of Syrinx
21.  2112 Part IV:  Presentation
22.  2112 Part VII:  Grand Finale


23.  Lakeside Park
24.  Anthem
25.  What You're Doing
26.  Working Man


  1. Considering Guess Who/Bachman Turner Overdrive, labeling Rush as "Canada's greatest" might be argued. They are, undoubtedly, "one of Canada's greatest" bands.

  2. Yes I saw the Guess Who here in Ohio one summer when I was in high school. Very good classic rock!

  3. ummh... rush is great band in the world.
    i am a huge fans for neil peart. great drummer, great bands.

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