RUSH drummer Neil Peart took part in the Buddy Rich Memorial Concert on October 18 at the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City. A number of other drum virtuosos and musicians were featured, including Nick Rich with THE BUDDY RICH BAND, John Blackwell, Terry Bozzio (ex-FRANK ZAPPA), Chad Smith (RED HOT CHILI PEPPERS), Jeff Berlin, Will Lee and Tommy Igoe. The entire event was streamed live on the Drum Channel and the full concert will be made available on-demand via the Drum Channel web site on December 23. The footage will then be released on DVD and Blu-ray sometime in 2009.
A five-minute preview can be viewed below.
In a recent posting on his official web site, Peart wrote about the event, "In my time, I have climbed some serious mountains, from hiking to the top of Mount Kilimanjaro and bicycling over the Simplon Pass in the Alps, to facing down the uphill battles that life throws up in all our paths. However, one of the hardest climbs I ever had to make was just four steps — up to the stage of the Hammerstein Ballroom in New York City, on the night of October 18, 2008.
"In forty-three years of playing drums, I have walked onto thousands of stages, of course, and I am always tense and anxious — tense with determination to play well, and anxious about not playing well. But this stage, this performance, was, as my teacher Freddie Gruber would say, 'a whole other thing.' Earlier that day, friends asked me how I was doing, and I shrugged and said, 'Terrified!' They laughed, but that was a pretty accurate confession.
"I felt I had a lot to live up to on that stage — the weight of expectations, my own and the audience’s, and of course, the peerless drumming deity under whose name we were performing: Buddy Rich. I wanted to do my best — better than my best! — and I would only have one chance: right now. The house was full of great musicians, in the band and in the crowd, and, oh yes — the show was not only being recorded and filmed, it was streaming live on the Drum Channel website, all over the world."
Read more of Peart's posting at this location.