Geddy Lee
Canadian musician
Geddy Lee
Geddy Lee, OC, born Gary Lee Weinrib, is a Canadian musician, best known as the lead vocalist, bassist, and keyboardist for the Canadian rock group Rush. Lee joined what would become Rush in September 1968, at the request of his childhood friend Alex Lifeson, replacing original bassist and frontman Jeff Jones.
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Geddy Lee's personal information overview.
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News
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Review Of Rush's 'Time Stand Still': The End Of The Road
Huffington Post - 4 months
I’m a writer, a professor, a husband, and a father. But before I was any of these things, I was a Rush fan. There aren’t many things in life that weather the changes of puberty, adulthood, being a parent, and having a career, but the music of Rush has remained with me for decades, and I still find their work intellectually nourishing even as I rock out. Seeing Rush live is an unforgettable experience and yet, sadly, it appears this has come to end. Their latest documentary, Time Stand Still, is both a goodbye and a thank you to their fans. I saw a special screening of it recently and I was surprised at how much it moved me. Here’s why. Only the Beatles and the Rolling Stones have sold more albums than Rush. Think about that for a moment. If I were write that sentence in the mid-1970s, when Rush was just beginning to take off, even they wouldn’t believe it could be true one day. It seems improbable that three guys from Toronto would write such influential music and yet remain margi ...
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Huffington Post article
Talkin' Jaco with Metallica's Robert Trujillo, Chatting with Denise Donatelli, Plus the Nolatet, Svetlana & The Delancey Five and Rolla Olak Exclusives
Huffington Post - about 1 year
A Conversation with Robert Trujillo Mike Ragogna: Robert, was your first big musical inspiration Jaco Pastorius? Robert Trujillo: Yeah. I'm always pulling and really feeding off of my inspirations, I think most musicians do. But I try to incorporate a lot of that influence in what I do. So Jaco was definitely a huge inspiration back in 1979 when I saw him for the first time. It really did change my life and set me on an interesting creative path. Definitely. MR: When did you first see him perform live? RT: I saw him with Weather Report. I had started hearing about him in the late seventies and then in 1979 they came through town. They were playing at the Santa Monica civic auditorium, that was our local concert venue at the time. The great thing about Santa Monica civic auditorium was it was a place you could ride your bike to. In this case my dad dropped me and my friends off and we'd go see Ronnie James Dio or Jean-Luc Ponty or Weather Report or the Pretenders. There wa ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Adam Sandler Adds Jared Fogle To His Updated 'Chanukah Song'
Huffington Post - over 1 year
Adam Sandler has updated his beloved "Chanukah Song" for the fourth time -- to include lyrics on the disgraced former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Drake, Harry Potter, Seth Rogan and more.  Sandler sang "The Chanukah Song Part 4" at the "Judd Apatow and Friends" Carnegie Hall performance Nov. 14 and recorded a YouTube version at San Diego's Civic Theatre. He originally recorded the song in 1994, but made updates to it in 1999 and 2002.  Put on your yarmulke, it’s time for "The Chanukah Song Part 4!"  And if you'd like to sing along, here are the updated lyrics by way of Vulture:  Put on your yarmulke, here comes Chanukah So much fun-ukah to celebrate Chanukah Chanukkah is the Festival of Lights, Instead of one day of presents, we have eight crazy nights. When you feel like the only kid in town without a Christmas tree, Here’s the fourth list of people who are Jewish, just like Jesus, Olaf, Punky Brewster, Scott Rudin, and me! Joseph Go ...
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Huffington Post article
Adam Sandler Adds Jared Fogle To His Updated 'Chanukah Song'
Huffington Post - over 1 year
Adam Sandler has updated his beloved "Chanukah Song" for the fourth time -- to include lyrics on the disgraced former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Drake, Harry Potter, Seth Rogan and more.  Sandler sang "The Chanukah Song Part 4" at the "Judd Apatow and Friends" Carnegie Hall performance Nov. 14 and recorded a YouTube version at San Diego's Civic Theatre. He originally recorded the song in 1994, but made updates to it in 1999 and 2002.  Put on your yarmulke, it’s time for "The Chanukah Song Part 4!"  And if you'd like to sing along, here are the updated lyrics by way of Vulture:  Put on your yarmulke, here comes Chanukah So much fun-ukah to celebrate Chanukah Chanukkah is the Festival of Lights, Instead of one day of presents, we have eight crazy nights. When you feel like the only kid in town without a Christmas tree, Here’s the fourth list of people who are Jewish, just like Jesus, Olaf, Punky Brewster, Scott Rudin, and me! Joseph Go ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Adam Sandler Adds Jared Fogle To His Updated 'Chanukah Song'
Huffington Post - over 1 year
Adam Sandler has updated his beloved "Chanukah Song" for the fourth time -- to include lyrics on the disgraced former Subway spokesman Jared Fogle, Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Drake, Harry Potter, Seth Rogan and more.  Sandler sang "The Chanukah Song Part 4" at the "Judd Apatow and Friends" Carnegie Hall performance Nov. 14 and recorded a YouTube version at San Diego's Civic Theatre. He originally recorded the song in 1994, but made updates to it in 1999 and 2002.  Put on your yarmulke, it’s time for "The Chanukah Song Part 4!"  And if you'd like to sing along, here are the updated lyrics by way of Vulture:  Put on your yarmulke, here comes Chanukah So much fun-ukah to celebrate Chanukah Chanukkah is the Festival of Lights, Instead of one day of presents, we have eight crazy nights. When you feel like the only kid in town without a Christmas tree, Here’s the fourth list of people who are Jewish, just like Jesus, Olaf, Punky Brewster, Scott Rudin, and me! Joseph Go ...
Article Link:
Huffington Post article
Déjà Vu Can Happen to You
Huffington Post - over 3 years
Ever read something in a novel and feel you've read something similar in a novel by a different author? I'm not talking about plagiarism, but a variation on a scene or theme. After all, few literary works are so original that they don't at least occasionally echo other fictional offerings. I noticed this with three novels I read last month -- Paul Theroux's The Mosquito Coast, Jim Harrison's Revenge and Wole Soyinka's The Interpreters. The Mosquito Coast (1982), about a brilliant/abrasive/absurdly confident Massachusetts man who drags his family to live in the Central American jungle, made me think of how a Georgia man drags his family to Africa in Barbara Kingsolver's The Poisonwood Bible (1998). As in most "echo cases," the similarity is just that -- similar, not redundant. For instance, the nasty Nathan Price in Kingsolver's novel is a racist missionary, while Allie Fox in Theroux's book is an anti-American-consumerism guy who -- in his saner, less-cruel moments -- has a bit more ...
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Huffington Post article
Rush Remix Their Polarizing Album 'Vapor Trails' - Premiere
Rolling Stone - over 3 years
Click to listen to Rush's Vapor Trails Remixed Rush fans were ecstatic when the group returned from a six-year hiatus with their 2002 LP Vapor Trails but some noticed that the record didn't quite sound right "We overcooked it" bassist/singer Geddy Lee tells Rolling Stone now "The mixes were really loud and brash...
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Rolling Stone article
Debate Club
The Portland Mercury - over 3 years
Mercury music writers tackle Rush's greatest achievements. by Aris Wales and Ned Lannamann WELCOME BACK to Debate Club, the printed equivalent of two music nerds fighting over a parking spot. For this installment, Mercury metal expert Aris Wales and Music Editor Ned Lannamann argued over Rush's greatest achievement. Wales selected the Canadian trio's sophomore album, 1975's stoned-out Fly by Night. Ned chose 1981's slick Moving Pictures. (What neither of these bozos realize is that Rush's best album is, in fact, 1976's 2112.) Rush performs this Sunday, July 28, at the Sleep Country Amphitheater; Multnomah County Chair Jeff Cogen will possibly be in attendance. • • • NED: So, why do you hate Moving Pictures? ARIS: I don't hate Moving Pictures. It's just a pop record more than their other stuff. NED: Wait, so does that make "Tom Sawyer" a pop song? ARIS: Maybe, and if so, it's a super-great pop song. It's the fucking air-drum son ...
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The Portland Mercury article
Dave Astor: Orphans in Literature
Huffington Post - over 3 years
When recently rereading Uncle Tom's Cabin, it struck me that this heartbreaking novel about slavery was also about something slavery caused: the orphaning of children. Whether their parents were yanked away at auction or killed, many kids in the brutal antebellum South lost their moms and dads. A major orphan character in Harriet Beecher Stowe's powerful page-turner is Topsy, who was turned into a psychological mess by cruel owners until the love of the child Eva and, eventually, the love of parent figure Ophelia help transform her. Ophelia was partly based on Stowe herself, who died almost exactly 117 years ago on July 1, 1896. After reading Uncle Tom's Cabin -- whose brave, devout title character doesn't deserve the slur later associated with his name -- I thought about other orphans in literature, and why those characters can make novels so compelling. Their difficult starts in life draw our sympathy, and when they overcome obstacles via their own efforts and/or help ...
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Huffington Post article
Rush's Geddy Lee: 'Strong Honesty' Links Rock and Roll Hall of Fame's 2013 Class
Rolling Stone - almost 4 years
The members of Rush are rethinking the idea that their overdue induction to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was more for their fans than for them "We've been saying for a long time for years that this isn't a big deal" said drummer Neil Peart "Turns out it...
Article Link:
Rolling Stone article
Rush frontman Geddy Lee thrilled by Rock Hall induction
Calgary Sun - almost 4 years
The only ones not outraged it's taken this long for Rush to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame?
Article Link:
Calgary Sun article
Geddy Lee Pitching At Blue Jays Home Opener
Huffington Post Sports - almost 4 years
Rush bassist and frontman Geddy Lee will throw the ceremonial first pitch when the Toronto Blue Jays play the Cleveland Indians in their home opener on Tuesday. The game marks the beginning of the Blue Jays' 37th regular season. Lee is a longtime baseball fan and Blue Jays season ticket holder. It'll be a good month for Lee, who, along with bandmates Neil Peart and Alex Lifeson, is getting inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on April 18.
Article Link:
Huffington Post Sports article
How I Met Your Mother: Robin Sparkles Returns & Goes Grunge!
Radar Online - about 4 years
How I Met Your Crazy Canadian Pop Star! The hit CBS show How I Met Your Mother returned Monday night with another funny glimpse into the character Robin’s early days as Canadian pop star Robin Sparkles with a “never-before-seen” video she made back when she was a famous singer and RadarOnline.com has the hilarious video clip, documenting Sparkles’ plunge into an edgy grunge singer. PHOTOS: Hollywood’s Power Couples “It’s Robin Sparkles 4, y’all,” Barney (Neil Patrick Harris) gleefully says about Cobie Smulders’ character, and the faux Behind the Music video showcased cameos from Canada’s biggest stars talking about the young Robin Sparkles and the day she went nuts. From Jason Priestley to Alex Trebek and rock great Geddy Lee from Rush, the all-star Canadian video shows Robin Sparkles’ decline from Pop Princess into a darker brooding singer. PHOTOS:  Neil Patrick Harris & David Burtka Take Their Twins To The Park She had penned a song called P.S., I Love You about an ob ...
Article Link:
Radar Online article
Timeline
Learn about memorable moments in the evolution of Geddy Lee
    LATE_ADULTHOOD
  • 2016
    Age 62
    In 2016, Lee plans to produce an independent film about baseball in Italy.
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  • 2015
    Age 61
    In 2015, Fender released a revised USA model of his signature bass.
    More Details Hide Details In the band's earlier years, Lee's main instrument was a modified Rickenbacker 4001. Additionally, he has used a Fender Precision Bass, as well as Steinberger and Wal basses. For Rush's 2010 tour, Lee used two Orange AD200 bass heads together with two OBC410 4x10 bass cabinets.
  • FIFTIES
  • 2013
    Age 59
    He collects baseball memorabilia, once donating part of his collection to the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, and threw the ceremonial first pitch to inaugurate the 2013 Toronto Blue Jays season.
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    In 2013, Lee made a brief cameo appearance as himself in the How I Met Your Mother season eight episode "P.S. I Love You".
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  • 2012
    Age 58
    During the 2012-2013 Clockwork Angels Tour, Lee used a different steampunk device called a "Geddison" as a backdrop.
    More Details Hide Details This was composed of a giant old-style phonograph horn, an oversized model brain in a jar, a set of brass horns, and a working popcorn popper. The 2015 R40 tour combined several of these elements together, with the exception of the chicken ovens used on the Snakes and Arrows tour.
  • 2010
    Age 56
    The Snakes & Arrows Tour prominently featured three Henhouse brand rotisserie chicken ovens on stage complete with an attendant in a chef's hat and apron to "tend" the chickens during shows. For the 2010–2011 Time Machine Tour, Lee's side of the stage featured a steampunk-inspired combination Time Machine and Sausage Maker, with an attendant occasionally throwing material into its feed hopper during the show.
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  • FORTIES
  • 2002
    Age 48
    For the 2002 Vapor Trails tour, Lee lined his side of the stage with three coin-operated Maytag dryers.
    More Details Hide Details Other large appliances appeared later in the same space. For visual effect they were "miked" by the sound crew, just as a real amplifier would be. Rush's crew loaded the dryers with specially-designed Rush-themed T-shirts, different from the shirts on sale to the general public. At the close of each show, Lee and Lifeson tossed these T-shirts into the audience. The dryers can be seen while watching the Rush in Rio DVD, the R40 DVD, and the R30: 30th Anniversary World Tour DVD. For the band's R30 tour, one of the three dryers was replaced with a rotating shelf-style vending machine. It too was fully stocked and operational during shows. For the R40 tour, there were four dryers, as opposed to the usual three dryers.
    For live shows in 2002 and 2004, Lee and his keyboard technician used the playback capabilities of the XV-5080 to generate virtually all of Rush's keyboard sounds to date, as well as additional complex sound passages that previously required several machines at once to produce.
    More Details Hide Details When playing live, Lee and his bandmates recreate their songs as accurately as possible with digital samplers. Using these samplers, the band members are able to recreate, in real-time, the sounds of non-traditional instruments, accompaniments, vocal harmonies, and other sound "events" that are familiar to those who have heard Rush songs from their albums. To trigger these sounds in real-time, Lee uses MIDI controllers, placed at the locations on the stage where he has a microphone stand. Lee uses two types of MIDI controllers: one type resembles a traditional synthesizer keyboard on a stand (Yamaha KX76). The second type is a large foot-pedal keyboard, placed on the stage floor (Korg MPK-130, Roland PK-5). Combined, they enable Lee to use his free hands and feet to trigger sounds in electronic equipment that has been placed off-stage. It is with this technology that Lee and his bandmates are able to present their arrangements in a live setting with the level of complexity and fidelity that fans have come to expect, and without the need to resort to the use of backing tracks or employing an additional band member. A notable exception of this was during the Clockwork Angels Tour, when a string ensemble played string parts, which were originally arranged and conducted by David Campbell on Clockwork Angels.
  • 1999
    Age 45
    Lee also plays bass on Canadian rock band I Mother Earth's track "Good For Sule", which is featured on the group's 1999 album Blue Green Orange.
    More Details Hide Details Lee was an interview subject in the documentary films Metal: A Headbangers Journey and Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage, and has appeared in multiple episodes of the VH1 Classic series Metal Evolution. Along with his bandmates, Lee was a guest musician on the Max Webster song "Battle Scar," from the 1980 album Universal Juveniles.
    Another version of "O Canada," with a rock arrangement, was recorded by Lee and Lifeson for the soundtrack of the 1999 film South Park: Bigger, Longer, and Uncut.
    More Details Hide Details My Favourite Headache, Lee's first and to date only solo album, was released on November 14, 2000 while Rush was on a hiatus following the deaths of Peart's wife and daughter. Lee appeared in Broken Social Scene's music video for their 2006 single "Fire Eye'd Boy", judging the band while they perform various musical tasks, and in 2006, Lee joined Lifeson's supergroup, the Big Dirty Band, to provide songs accompanying Trailer Park Boys: The Movie.
  • 1996
    Age 42
    Along with his Rush bandmates – guitarist Alex Lifeson and drummer Neil Peart – Lee was made an Officer of the Order of Canada on May 9, 1996.
    More Details Hide Details The trio was the first rock band to be so honoured, as a group. Lee is ranked 13th by Hit Parader on their list of the 100 Greatest Heavy Metal vocalists of all time.
  • THIRTIES
  • 1993
    Age 39
    Lee sang "O Canada," the Canadian national anthem, at Baltimore's Camden Yards for the 1993 Major League Baseball All-Star Game.
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  • 1985
    Age 31
    On the 1985 album We Are the World, by humanitarian consortium USA for Africa, Lee recorded guest vocals for the song "Tears Are Not Enough".
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  • TWENTIES
  • 1982
    Age 28
    In 1982, Lee produced the first (and only) album from Toronto new wave band Boys Brigade.
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  • 1981
    Age 27
    In 1981, Lee was the featured guest for the hit song "Take Off" and its included comedic commentary with Bob and Doug McKenzie (played by Rick Moranis and Dave Thomas, respectively) for the McKenzie Brothers' comedy album Great White North.
    More Details Hide Details While Rush has had great success selling albums, "Take Off" is the highest charting single on the Billboard Hot 100 of Lee's career.
    In 1981, he won Keyboard magazine's poll as "Best New Talent."
    More Details Hide Details By the 1984 album Grace Under Pressure, Lee was surrounding himself with stacks of keyboards on stage. By the 1980s, Rush had become one of the "biggest rock bands on the planet," selling out arena seats when touring. Lee was considered the most prominent member of the group, being the lead vocalist and known for his dynamic stage movements. According to music critic Tom Mulhern, writing in 1980, "it's dazzling to see so much sheer energy expended without a nervous breakdown." By 1996, with their Test for Echo Tour, they began performing without an opening act, their shows lasting nearly three hours. Music industry writer Christopher Buttner, who interviewed Lee in 1996, described him as a prodigy and "role model" for what every musician wants to be, noting his proficiency on stage. Buttner cited Lee's ability to vary time signatures, play multiple keyboards, use bass pedal controllers and control sequencers, all while singing lead vocals into as many as three microphones. Buttner adds that few musicians of any instrument "can juggle half of what Geddy can do without literally falling on their ass." As a result, notes Mulhern, Lee's instrumentation was the "pulse" of the group and created a "one-man rhythm section," which complemented guitarist Alex Lifeson and percussionist Neil Peart. Bass instructor Allan Slutsky, or "Dr Licks," credits Lee's "biting, high-end bass lines and creative synthesizer work" for helping the group become "one of the most innovative" of all the supergroups that play arena rock.
  • 1977
    Age 23
    The group's distinctiveness was enhanced when Lee began adding synthesizers in 1977, with the release of A Farewell to Kings.
    More Details Hide Details The additional sounds expanded the group's "textual capabilities," states keyboard critic Greg Armbruster, and allowed the trio to produce an orchestrated and more complex progressive rock music style. It also gave Lee the ability to play bass at the same time, as he could control the synthesizer with foot pedals.
  • 1976
    Age 22
    Lee married Nancy Young in 1976.
    More Details Hide Details They have a son, Julian, and a daughter, Kyla. He is an avid wine collector, with a collection of 5,000 bottles. He takes annual trips to France, where he indulges in cheese and fine wine. In 2011, a charitable foundation he supports, Grapes for Humanity, created the Geddy Lee Scholarship for students of winemaking at Niagara College. He is also a longtime fan of baseball, with favourite teams including the Detroit Tigers, the Chicago Cubs, and the Toronto Blue Jays. In the 1980s, Lee began reading the works of Bill James, particularly the The Bill James Baseball Abstracts, which led to an interest in sabermetrics and participation in a fantasy baseball keeper league.
  • CHILDHOOD
  • 1953
    Born
    Lee was born on July 29, 1953 in Willowdale, (North York) Toronto, Ontario, Canada to Morris and Mary Weinrib (née Manya Rubenstein).
    More Details Hide Details His parents were Jewish Holocaust survivors from Poland who had survived the ghetto in their hometown Starachowice, followed by their imprisonment at Dachau and Bergen-Belsen concentration camps, during the Holocaust and World War II. They were about 13 years old when they were initially imprisoned at Auschwitz concentration camp, close to the same age as Anne Frank at that time. "It was kind of surreal pre-teen shit," says Lee, describing how his father bribed guards to bring his mother shoes. After a period, his mother was transferred to Bergen-Belsen and his father to Dachau. When the war ended four years later and the Allies liberated the camps, his father set out in search of his mother and found her at a displaced persons camp. They married there and eventually immigrated to Canada. In Canada, Lee's parents gave him a Jewish education, with a bar mitzvah at age 13. His father was a skilled musician, but died the year before from medical problems resulting from his imprisonment. This forced his mother to find outside work to support three children. Lee feels that not having parents at home during those years was probably a factor in his becoming a musician: "It was a terrible blow that I lost him, but the course of my life changed because my mother couldn't control us."
Original Authors of this text are noted here.
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