Rush Fancast: Different Stages

SonicNet, November 15, 1998, transcribed By SLynn, edited by pwrwindows

LISA: Hi, I'm Lisa Robinson and we're live at Atlantic Record's New York studios with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush and we're bringing you a very special FANCAST presented by Atlantic Records, SonicNet and Transworld. And so for the next hour or so we're going to be taking questions live from the Yahoo chat audience. But first I'm just going to say hello and welcome and how are you guys?

GEDDY: Great to be here in this very casual and comfortable living room-like environment.

LISA: It's great to see you guys. We're going to talk about your triple live CD set, Different Stages, among a lot of other things and one thing I want to know right away is, Alex, you trusted Geddy to do this?

ALEX: Oh, yeah.

LISA: He went through all the tracks, all the tapes, mixed everything, all without you and Neil. I mean, that was okay with you?

ALEX: We discussed it together. But, once the work got really hard. . .I'd call Ged every day or two and he'd give me an update and everything was going fine. And I went in a few times in the beginning and heard the mixes and it sounded great so... Why sit around the studio? I mean Geddy knows what he's doing or obviously, so...

GEDDY: And he had to play golf. He had important golf games...and I wasn't exactly alone. I had Paul Northfield with me and he really did a lot of work.

ALEX: Yeah, he did a terrific job.

GEDDY: He was there more than me.

LISA: How many hours would you say, seriously, of live tapes did you listen to?

GEDDY: Well, we tried to figure it out. I mean, there were about... between 60 and 80 shows and I'm not sure exactly which, some of these were immediately eliminated because of technical glitches and things. But, I guess if you multiply the 60 shows times 3 hours, so...

ALEX: There's probably about 250 hours of stuff to go through.

LISA: Oh my God!

GEDDY: And I didn't listen to every minute.

LISA: I was just going to say, didn't you go crazy?

GEDDY: Well, I went crazy anyway, but that's another story and we can get into it another time!

LISA: No, let's get into that now!

GEDDY: There's a process that narrowed the tapes down. The first level of elimination, as I said was done by technical problems, unusable tapes. The second level of elimination was done by very obvious things, like tuning problems, things like that and they weren't done by myself. Our live sound engineer, Robert Scovill, he did a lot of the primary eliminations. At the same time he took copious notes on every show, so what I ended up with was anywhere from, say 10 to 20 versions of each song, to narrow down through. And Paul and I, Paul Northfield and myself, we listened through all those and had to determine which tapes we'd use. It was confusing at times, but we got through it.

LISA: You said something, I think, about when in doubt you used Chicago?

GEDDY: Yeah.

LISA: Why was that show so special? Do you remember it as being special at the time?

GEDDY: I remember most of our Chicago shows feel great just because the crowd is so spectacular there. I mean, they're so enthusiastic. But, I don't remember the performance being any more special than a number of other shows. But there was something about the combination of the way the room sounded and the way the crowd responded and the way we were playing to that. But every time we had a doubt between two tracks, we put up Chicago and there was something about it that felt like you were there. So, if I had two or three versions of a song that sounded equal, I'd rather be at the one that made me feel like I was in a venue.

LISA: Is it true there's a rumor on the web that Dennis Rodman came to that show? Did he?

ALEX: That was an earlier show.

GEDDY: An earlier show, yeah.

ALEX: In the first half of the tour. When we played at the United Arena.

GEDDY: The United Center, he was at the Center.

ALEX: But that [Different Stages] show was taken from the World Amphitheater.

LISA: Right. Okay, and what were you going to say, something else about Dennis Rodman?

GEDDY: It wasn't his first show, which was really surprising.

LISA: Really? He's a Rush fan?

GEDDY: Well, I don't know, he's been to more than one of our shows. I guess he's interested in something...

ALEX: Pretty nice guy actually.

GEDDY: Very nice.

LISA: Do you ever think you've done bad shows? I mean, did you listen to stuff and think that they were bad?

GEDDY: Well, bad is a relative term compared to what we're looking for - we're looking for perfection or as close to it. Don't ask me to define that, I can't, but there were shows that just weren't special to leave out for various reasons. Sometimes it was just the sound of the room that made the performance feel kind of flat. Sometimes it was just the attitude from the musicians that felt, somehow, flat. There were no overtly bad shows. There were a couple of train wrecks from time to time, in the middle of a song where somebody decided to go somewhere else and improvise, but generally they were fairly consistent. But, I was looking for things that leapt out, were outstanding.

LISA: How often does that improvisation and train wrecks and spontaneity happen do you think in a Rush show? Do you avoid it? Do you welcome it?

ALEX: We're pretty disciplined and structured in the way we present the set and how we put the show together and how we play it from night to night. We allow ourselves certain areas to improvise... at the end of this song, or in the middle section of this song. And the first few times you do it, it's . . . you go somewhere. But we have a tendency to settle in and just sort of develop whatever that is and it becomes a fairly regular part of that song from night to night.

LISA: Did you ever think about just completely throwing the set list out and doing something crazy? Not throwing it out, but changing it around?

GEDDY: No, we're creatures of structure for sure.

ALEX: There's so much going on, it would be very difficult to do that.

GEDDY: Yeah, there's a lot of complexity within the songs and within the choreography of the show between presentation, film, so forth and it really doesn't allow much improvisation and we're quite happy with that.

LISA: We're going to take some questions.

theanalogkid2112: Geddy and Alex!!! I love you guys!! I was wondering which one of you two composed the chords for the verse of "Spirit of Radio", and who composed the classical guitar intro to "A Farewell To Kings" and "The Trees"?

ALEX: I think I'm the guitar player (all laugh), so I would guess that I probably did. "Spirit of Radio,"...

GEDDY: We probably did it together.

ALEX: I'm sure we did it together.

LISA: In fact, the way you two write, do you do most of it together?

ALEX: As a matter of fact, that was probably done with acoustic guitar. That was a time when we used to write with acoustic guitars. Geddy and I would sit down...most of the earlier records were written that way. We would have acoustic guitars and we'd write all these songs and just have a very vivid imagination and try to imagine them through big amps and loud noises. But, it's kind of an interesting point that we would work that way for so many years.

GEDDY: Yeah, you can tell generally in the writing who wrote what. In the extreme examples, when there's obviously a riff, a flagrant guitar riff of some sort, or a classical guitar part, that's usually a guitar player's thing, but the verses are almost always one way or another a collaboration between the two of us. The vocal melodies are usually my responsibility. It kind of falls into place pretty obviously.

_different_strings_: Are there any future plans for making another studio album?

ALEX: Right now we're on a bit of a break. Obviously it's been a tough year for all of us. The live record's out now and that's going to buy us a little bit of time, and then sometime in the not too distant future we can make decisions about that when we're in a better position to.

DrewEvangelion: Hey guys, I love the album. My question is, have you EVER considered doing another epic in the vein of 2112 or Cygnus X-1 again, and if not, why?

GEDDY: Well, considered is an interesting word. Epics like that, I don't know. We went through a period where it was getting a little obvious for us to continue doing side-long pieces. And then we continued to do work in a conceptual vein, except we stopped calling them concept albums and just did them as individual pieces that revolved around kind of a loosely connected theme. And that freed us up to be a little more diverse in our writing. I think the negative thing about side-long pieces is you kind of have to stick to a script, which can be confining. But from time to time, I don't know if Alex thinks about these things, but I do from time to time think about going back to that approach and see if this many years later we could do something else with it.

ALEX: I haven't given it much thought really, but I certainly wouldn't be closed to an idea like that. I think it might actually be fun at this point to approach that kind of song writing structure and see what develops.

JDlimbo: What does the cover of the new live CD symbolize?

GEDDY: Well JD, that's up to you to decide.

Y1001001: Will there be a live video for "Different Stages?"

GEDDY: I hope so. I have footage logged from a show and we're trying to work out the details of how to best use that. I'm very interested at the moment in DVD technology and what it can allow us to do that would be more than simply a concert. And how we could incorporate some other really interesting things into it. And from what I understand, that area of exploration is becoming more and more possible where you can almost combine some of the benefits of a CD-ROM with a DVD. So, I would say yes, at some point in the future, there would be some sort of visual representation of the Test For Echo tour.

kozmo4us: I am a audiophile and I am into great sound. I find Rush's music to be more dynamic sonically than most. Why does RUSH put so much emphasis on sound? I find it an excellent audio advantage.

GEDDY: Well, I guess we grew up in an era where that was really important. It was always extremely important for bands of the 70's and so forth to try to make their records sound better, more interesting and because of the varied influences, classical music as an influence, at one point and so on and so forth. That required kind of a broad sense of sound, a high dynamic sense of sound. In the music of the late 80's and the early 90's, a lot of that has changed, and I think people have become accustomed to records that remain in a rather low budget manner or in a kind of a loose manner and I think that has subsequently changed the way we hear things so that when a record of ours, say from what I guess could be considered the old school of production or a different school of production, maybe seems different in context.

ALEX: Well, heck - it's music! You listen to music, you play music, you want to make good music and you want it to sound good. So, there ya go!

LISA: So, the band's 25 years old, is that right? I mean, the band's been together for -

GEDDY: We're just on the cusp of our 25th anniversary since Neil joined the band. Which we must consider to be the actual anniversary of the band.

LISA: But prior to that?

ALEX: We played for six years. Rush has been around for 30 years.

LISA: And you still get along?

GEDDY: Well...

ALEX: We're really good at pretending we do... Of course we do! We're beyond friends!

GEDDY: We're idiots! We're beyond friends.

LISA: Obviously there's a family thing that happens when people are in a band for so long, but also do you take breaks from each other?

ALEX: Yeah, we have our own lives and circle of friends and families and all of that but, whenever we're together, it's like we've never been apart. And I mean even now it feels the same as it did when we were 17 years old. We've experienced something that's very unique and we're well aware of it. And we're constantly amazed at our great fortune to have had this sort of experience and continue to have a very unique experience.

GEDDY: It's probably the most asked question. 'Why are you still together?' 'How do you explain it?' It's hard to explain that kind of thing, but the bottom of it all is that we just like hanging around with each other and we enjoy each other's company. And we think we still can make pretty good music together.

LISA: Do you feel the same excitement for the music as you did when you were 17?

ALEX: It's different, but the same intensity

GEDDY: The same passion.

NaturalScientist: We really loved the fact that you guys chose to eliminate an opener this tour, when and if you hit the road again, will we get the same 3 1/2 hour privilege?

ALEX: Well Nat, it was a tough decision to make. We've always had a policy where we really supported our support acts. Made sure they had sound checks, got every opportunity as we did coming up because it is tough to get that kind of exposure. But, with the kind of repertoire that we have, it's impossible to get out there and have a really good representation of all the stuff that we've written. So we needed to eliminate that end of it so we could pick up that extra hour of playing time.

GEDDY: In all fairness, we've done so many tours now that we've brought support, we figured that we could be forgiven to indulge ourselves on one tour without support. And maybe in the future, if there's another tour, we could still do the same thing. I would like to do the same thing.

ALEX: Yeah, it is nice. It's great to be able to play and get your pacing all together. And with a 3 hour set on the last tour it was less strenuous, I thought, than 2 hours we've played on previous tours. You could pace the whole set. There were instrumentals to give Ged a break. And then there was a drum solo to give the two of us a break and there would be a guitar thing that would give Neil a break. We had it really paced nicely.

GEDDY: Absolutely. There was also less wear and tear on you physically because there's no opening act and there's only one sound check. And everything starts a little later in the day and it's very calm in the building and it's very peaceful before the show. And we get on an hour earlier, so we're fresher. So, even though we're playing an hour more, we're in better shape to begin with so, it's a lot more fun.

tklancer: Geddy, during the album premiere you mentioned that you had a very long potential setlist. Any gems that got cut that we might want to hear in the future? Middletown dreams, for example?

GEDDY: Well, that wasn't one of them, but it's one we could cut in the future...

ALEX: If it ever does make it on a list.

GEDDY: A set list, like choosing the songs for this album, is the single most difficult thing. And if I submitted requests from fans, I would get so many different versions and it's impossible to pick all the songs that everyone... is their favorite because there's 20 albums worth of material. It's difficult. They're hard decisions. But you have to make a decision sooner or later, so I would say in the future, yeah, probably some songs that weren't on this set would probably appear somewhere else.

ALEX: I think we had 5 hours of material when we started rehearsals for the last tour, just from the three sets that the three of us brought in - songs we wanted to do and we felt were important to do.

GEDDY: And those were the ones we liked! (laughter)

NaturalScientist: What was the reason for repeating certain songs on Different Stages, i.e. The Trees?

GEDDY: I think it was important to present the tour as some kind of representation of the tour, rather than just include songs just because they were newer songs. Although, in the back of my mind, it's the first priority, is to have the newest songs from the best versions of the newest songs. But, if something came along that seemed to me to be an exceptional version of a song that may have already appeared on a live album, it was in the running. And in the end between Paul Northfield and myself, we chose what we considered to be the best versions of the songs available, whether they be new or old.

JoryStiefel: Do you feel your music has changed at all over the years, and if so, why?

ALEX: No. It's the same as it was in 1974. And why? Well, because.

GEDDY: (laughs) Yeah, of course it's changed... From our point of view, every album is a dramatic change from the previous album, even if it doesn't necessarily seem like that to the casual listener.

Baba_Ghannoush: Thank you, Rush, for releasing 'Different Stages' and for raising the standards of Rock Music. My question is: were there any bizarre experiences on the 'Test For Echo' tour?

ALEX: We're sort of past our bizarre years.

GEDDY: We're more into weird (laughs) and proud of it!

LISA: What were the bizarre years? Were there bizarre years?

ALEX: Well, there were more bizarre years. You fall into a pattern now, I think at this stage in our touring experience, you learn how to tour a certain way and you try to keep yourself healthy and motivated. We traveled a little differently; this was the first tour we chartered a plane rather than travelling by bus. So, it afforded us a couple of more hours of sleep every night of undisturbed sleep. And -

GEDDY: - in a vehicle that wasn't rolling down the highway.

ALEX: We got up and we played a lot of golf, a little tiny bit of tennis. But got out and did things. I don't know, I don't think there's much bizarre stuff that goes on.

GEDDY: No, we're pretty boring.

ALEX: Yeah, we're actually... yeah, we are very boring.

GEDDY: We do a lot of physical activity. We have wine tastings every night. That's not the most exciting thing to some people. We have pretty spectacular wines after the show.

ALEX: Well, in the past we just drank spectacularly! But now, we have a fine wine and a little case made up with some really good wine glasses, so that you get the full bouquet and characteristics of the wine. We come off stage and we're all sweaty and (taking on airs) ... "Ahhh, the fine burgundy..."

GEDDY: We're wine geeks now.

LISA: Are you really? That's one of the perks of rock stardom I would imagine.

ALEX: Well, anyone can do it and there are some fabulous bargains. Not that I bother with those wines. But, there are some great bargains out there. (laughs)

Afterimage_: Geddy & Alex, I'm a big fan and your music has really been an inspiration to me. What do you think of albums like Caress of Steel? Do you listen to it and cringe or are you generally happy with it? Personally, I think its absolute genius.

GEDDY: Well, that guy smokes dope. (laughs)

ALEX: I don't think...When's the last time you listened to it?

GEDDY: I haven't listened to it in a long time. I have to say that from time to time I had to review some of these records when we remaster a lot of them. And you have preconceptions about older records in your mind, you think 'wow, I hated that record' but you're associating it with not just the music, experiences making it. Various things go into your feelings about your past. But when you listen to them in your headphones and you're checking back the past, it's very interesting, it's very curious to me to see the different layers and stages that we were at. And sometimes we work on things now, where we're trying to write a particular kind of thing and you listen back to something you did 15 years ago and say 'hey! we did it then and we weren't even aware of the fact that we knew how to do it.' We just kinda naturally did it and then you forget that you know how to do that, so then you try to re-invent yourself. Maybe, I'm not making myself clear. It is interesting. You do listen back from time to time. But, I would say it's not a regular habit, but sometimes, it's a pretty surprising one.

ALEX: It was also very... quite an experimental record for us. We needed to try some things out in that longer concept format and without Caress of Steel, we wouldn't have made 2112. You know, we wouldn't have learned how to do that in such a way that was cohesive and flowing. So, although perhaps it's not as dear to our hearts, we still recognize it was a very important transitional record in our history.

LISA: I just think it's interesting your first record was basically like one of the first indie records, wasn't it?

GEDDY: Yes, it was.

LISA: I mean 17 years before indie rock, you put out your own album. You guys couldn't get signed?

GEDDY: No way man! We couldn't even get a tour across Canada. We were playing bars around Toronto and that was about it. And record company people would come down to see us and they would offer us 'Well, maybe if you did a couple of singles, we could see what happens there'. But we didn't want to do singles. We wanted to make an album. You know, singles was kind of ludicrous for us. Couldn't get it to happen.

LISA: Was it hard for you even to play in bars without doing covers or was it not that kind of a cover scene in the bars in Toronto?

GEDDY: Well, it was. We went through a couple of lean periods because we didn't work at all.

ALEX: Not because we didn't want to.

GEDDY: But we didn't want to play other people's material and we finally had to acquiesce and play material by other people. But we tried to find obscure songs.

LISA: Like what?

ALEX: We'd do 20 minute versions of "For What It's Worth." GEDDY: "Spoonful." But that's going way back.

ALEX: Which is a weird song to play in a bar, you know a dance kind of bar. (Lisa laughs) But, we developed a pretty core audience that followed us from bar to bar. So...

GEDDY: "Suffragette City," we used to play...

LISA: When you were in bars, did you ever think that what was going to happen, was going to happen? I mean were those the dreams?

ALEX: Way too drunk to -

GEDDY: (laughing) You dreamed about getting out of the bars. You dreamed about getting on tour. I'm sure there are lots of musicians out there that know what I'm saying. You can't dream past that; it is just incomprehensible.

LISA: It's amazing to me that you and the Beatles and U2 and many other great rock bands couldn't get a record deal. What does that say about the record industry?

GEDDY: It doesn't say a very good thing about the record industry. ELYMAN98 : Great album guys! What is the biggest difference in your individual playing that the two of you see from the two different "Stages"? And thank you for all the years!

ALEX: Hammersmith stuff has that youthful energy about it in terms of technique or technical performance. The tempo seems to creep up a bit, we tend to play things a little quicker, a little looser and wilder. Whereas the more current stuff has a maturity and a confidence in the presentation and the playing and the performance.

GEDDY: There's also a simplicity to the architecture of the band. And by that I mean, the parts, even though they're complex, are very easy to see because it's bass, drums, guitar. So, there's a clarity and an ability to see into the music a little easier than the music of today that we're making where there are numerous guitar parts and keyboard parts. You know, there are complexities and layers in our music that didn't exist in '78. Tardisyrinx : After all these years why did you finally decide to play all of 2112 in concert?

ALEX: With that extra hour of playing time, we could play it. 2112 came out at a time when we were still special guesting or opening shows. We didn't headline many shows back then. We never really had the opportunity because we had a 40 minute set to play all of it. And even when we got a chance to play it more often, we still couldn't do the whole thing because of time constraints usually. But this afforded us that luxury of being able to play that in its entirety and we didn't really want to short change it this time around.

GEDDY: And really, we're always looking to bring something back on a tour that we haven't played in a while. When we start a tour we say, "well, what can we bring back?" So, the idea of bringing back something so big was pretty exciting. I mean, at first it was a little ludicrous. We didn't actually think we could play it and mean it. But, we found that to be quite the opposite after we played it a couple of times.

ALEX: It started out more like 2111. (laughing)

GEDDY: Or two one one one. That's it! (laughing) kevinpetty : What do you think about the "death" of "arena rock?" Is it positive/negative, or just cyclical?

ALEX: I don't know, did it die?

GEDDY: I don't think hard rock, arena rock, metallic rock, whatever you want to call it, I don't think ever really goes away, it just goes into hibernation for a while. And we seem to have so many avenues of rock music right now, that it makes it very difficult for any one of those avenues to command the stage. mike_au98 : There is a large period of time between recordings on Different Stages. Do either of you listen to the older music and think you have lost a sound you like or are you happy with your musical progression?

GEDDY: Yeah, there are elements of the '78 recording that sound great to me and things that don't sound great to me. As we answered in an earlier question - there's a particular simplicity of structure that enables you to appreciate the sound better in '78 and I think that's a sacrifice you make when you bring more textures into your sound. But, yeah, I would say there is a little bit of a yearning for that simplicity. gruof : Alex, are you going to do another Victor album or other solo effort soon?

ALEX: I wouldn't say soon. But I'd like to do something like that. I had a lot of fun. It was a very satisfying experience for me and rewarding because I did it all by myself. Worked very hard on it and got to play with some other people which was kinda fun. But it seems that it was something that I needed at that time in my life and sort of satisfied that urge that I had. I'd like to do something like, but I have no overwhelming desire right now to get into that kind of a project. It's a very time consuming thing that takes a lot out of you. I'd like to pursue some other things. GeddyClaus: First I'd like to tell you guys you have the most talent, creativity and musical ethics in the business and I love you guys for that. My question is, what is your official stand on bootlegs? Are you adamantly against them or do you view them ambivalently?

GEDDY: I would say... ambivalent.

ALEX: I would definitely agree with that.

GEDDY: One thing that really pissed me off; I'm working really hard mixing this album and I was at a friend's house - he calls himself a friend! - and he had a fine collection of Rush bootleg live things. And there was one from our last tour. And so imagine, here I am, drowning in tapes and trying to get the material to sound as good as possible and he puts this record on that was taped by someone standing in the audience listening to the songs that I was mixing at that moment... recorded on one little microphone and half way though the song, some guy's talking to his friend and you can hear the guy's conversation. And I'm thinking 'What am I doing?' I'm killing myself to make the best possible sounding record and people are going out and buying these things that sound so awful. But, you know -

ALEX: I don't think a bootleg will ever replace something that we do in the studio though. It becomes a collector's thing more than anything.

GEDDY: Yeah, I think that's true, they like to have it -

LISA: And they still buy the one you do -

GEDDY: They still buy the record, but you can imagine how I felt!

ALEX: Yeah, really!

GEDDY: You know - Wow! - it's already on the street, this record!

LISA: You have an audience in a way that is similar though to, don't you think, a Grateful Dead audience in terms of the devotion and the fanaticism and -

GEDDY: Yeah. (Alex nods in agreement)

LISA: - the way they follow you... But do you have the same kind of... do you let them tape your shows? Do you have that kind of section where people can tape shows or have you never gotten into that?

ALEX: No, no.

GEDDY: No, never given it any thought to be honest. DryChianti : Alex, what's your favorite song and/or solo to play live, and why? ALEX: (bringing his hand to his forehead) Ahhh, gee... that's a tough one to answer 'cause... On the last tour for example, playing "Natural Science" for me was probably the high point of the whole night because it's a complex challenging song to play. It goes through acoustic to some arpeggios and tougher, riffier parts, so there are a lot of layers to it. And by the end of it my hands really feel it... also where it's situated in the set... I guess "Limelight", the solo from "Limelight" would be one of my favorite solos to play. It's kind of... a little off the wall and a little different and I think quite unique and representative of the kind of things I like to hear in a song.

LISA: One of the things I wanted to ask is, you know how so many live albums are, shall we say, enhanced in the studio. Did you do a lot of stuff to 'em?

GEDDY: We do very, very little. The whole point of recording so many shows was so we wouldn't have to go down that road. If you wanted a performance that needed altering, rather than alter it, I would rather look for another performance that was intact - it was the genuine capturing of a real performance that we were after. From time to time you might have to repair something, a technical glitch or something like that, or an obvious... You've got a great performance and something's drastically out of tune for one moment or so... Generally these tapes are unadulterated.

ALEX: The other thing too with taping so many shows... and we're pretty locked in tempo-wise from night to night... You can lift a piece... say a mic went down on the snare drum or something. You can lift it from another night and put it into the night that you're using for that repair.

GEDDY: Or if you have pops or something on one mic, now with technology you can go into the computer and you can actually remove the pop and keep the performance intact. So, we go to those extremes, of course, but generally I - It's hard enough to mix the thing and make it sound good without having to go in and redo it. And we've made those mistakes in the past.

ALEX: Yeah.

LISA: Twenty-four, the 24th question is from... ddregmets : Were you ever close to introducing a fourth member?

GEDDY: We discussed it, but close, not really.

ALEX: No, no, not even... far.

LISA: Keyboards?

GEDDY: Keyboards... it was a conversation -

ALEX: Then, we decided why don't we just do it ourselves? So we got some bass pedals -

GEDDY: It's not like we have enough to do on stage -

LISA: To make it more complicated -

ALEX: Well, I think we felt it would disrupt the chemistry that we have.

GEDDY: Yeah, and I think we thought that our fans would object more to see another guy playing those parts on stage with us, than us using technology like sequencers and things like that...

LISA: Do you think of your fans when you make those kind of musical decisions? Or, do you basically just do it for yourself?

GEDDY: Musical decisions are made for us. We try to appeal to our sensibility and we have faith that our fans have a very similar sensibility. But, certainly when you're putting a tour together, and when you're trying to shape your music live, you do consider that, sure.

LISA: The AnalogKid2112 is back with the 25th question... theanalogkid2112 : Lerxst and Dirk!! I've always wanted to know which one you wrote the chords for chorus of "The Manhattan Project"?

GEDDY: (pauses) How did that go?

ALEX: [Alex "sings" the instrumental chorus lead-in (the guitar part)...]

GEDDY: I don't remember... I can't even remember the chorus...

ALEX: We wrote it together. When we write, we write together. Someone might have a spark of an idea, but I mean the way we work -

GEDDY: [Geddy says something I couldn't hear because he was talking when Alex was talking] - you sleep on the couch! (laughs)

ALEX: But, if Ged comes up with sort of a melodic bass line, I'll come up with a melodic guitar line and vice versa and that's the way we work. 99% of the stuff we write is really the two of us just jamming together... and we connect very quickly.

GEDDY: The only times we write individually is, if I'm working on a vocal melody and we've got a basic chord structure together, then Alex'll go have a nap (laughs) and I'll work on that. By the same token, when Alex is working on some of the intricacies of his guitar parts, I'll go home... and you don't have the studio itself... that's great. You can just shape the thing as you like. In the old days -

ALEX: We respect each other's space. (starting in before Geddy finishes speaking)

GEDDY: In the old days, we were always on top of each other, but now there's a lot more individuality and respect for that.

LISA: Okay, the 26th question is from acdcc -

GEDDY: d - (laughs)

LISA: acdcc : Geddy, Why have you stopped using your (Lisa says) ...what is it? Your (spelling) W A L -


LISA: WAL bass... all caps... WAL bass?

GEDDY: I like the WAL bass. And I still like it, but I wanted a thicker, more visceral sound and the WAL was a little more sophisticated sound. So I shifted to Fender for that reason.

LISA: Cityboy15 asks: Will there be a live video or DVD - which you already said maybe.

GEDDY: Yeah, we're hoping.

LISA: Um, the 27th question... ddregmets : If you had to change one thing over the course of your career, what would that be?

ALEX: My socks.

GEDDY: My glasses. (both said their response at the same time)

LISA: (laughs) You (pointing to Alex) said your socks and you (pointing to Geddy) said your glasses!

GEDDY: I wouldn't change anything. [FANCAST time index: 44:42]

LISA: Nothing? [She proceeds to say something else here, but I just can't make it out. I think it was something like she was surprised that he wouldn't change anything.]

ALEX: What's the point?

GEDDY: I don't know what I'd change...

LISA: What's the point?! (laughing)

ALEX: (In this great, half-drunk, loud character voice) You can't do it again! Just forget about it, man! What's the matter with yooo!

GEDDY: (In a surfer dude-type voice) You can't do that!

LISA: Okay, 29, rushguy74 - I'm sorry, the 29th question is from... rushguy74 : Alex or Geddy, what is your favorite place or a few of your favorite venues to perform at? Do you enjoy performing in outdoor or indoor venues better?

ALEX: Well, they both have their charm and appeal...

GEDDY: And their lack of charm and lack of appeal.

ALEX: It's nice to play outdoors with the sky above you and the whole vibe that an outdoor gig gives. But, it's also great to be indoors where it's smoky and the lights are intense and you feel the crowd, the energy.

GEDDY: Yeah, they're really different. It's hard to compare them.

LISA: Where is it smoky indoors now?

GEDDY: In arenas, you know - arena rock. [At this point all three are talking at the same time and it is almost impossible to decipher what they are saying. The gist of it is the origin of the smoke to which Alex previously referred.]

ALEX: No, I didn't mean cigarette smoke -

GEDDY: We bring the smoke-

LISA: You bring the smoke. Oh, I see -

GEDDY: It's a different ambience. Indoors is more intense. Outdoors is more pleasant for us because we get a nice breeze. But I think the show feels a little more intense indoors, just in terms of the intensity of color and the lights. But there's some really nice vibe outdoors...

LISA: It's almost funny, isn't it, when you get as big as Rush has become and you play a lot of stadiums and then you go indoors to arenas and it feels intimate.

GEDDY: Yeah, sure.

LISA: And when you started out in these bars thinking about arenas, I don't think anyone ever would have described them as intimate.

ALEX: After 20 years though, you get used to that. And venues, I mean, there are so many great places to play. It's really hard to pick some.

GEDDY: The nice thing about the outdoor situation is that there's so many more outdoor venues. And they are getting better in terms of organizing themselves sonically and even in terms of comfort, some of the sheds, as they call them... which is like a terrible word...

LISA: Isn't it a terrible word?

GEDDY: Play in a shed! But some of those are really quite pleasant for the crowd.

LISA: We should just probably explain really what it is -

GEDDY: Amphitheaters.

LISA: - Amphitheaters - and part of them are covered and the rest of them aren't.

ALEX: Yeah, I think typically, the earlier designs, they were metal clad on top so they looked like a shed. Like a big, giant shed and that's how it got it's name.

GEDDY: (points at Alex, says like he's surprised.) You're right!!

ALEX: Yeaaaah!

LISA: 31st question... ddregmets : What music do your kids listen to?

GEDDY: Well, let's see, my daughter's really into Raffi and...

LISA: How old is she?

GEDDY: She's four.

LISA: Oh, okay. (laughing) That's good!

GEDDY: She likes Raffi and Sharon, Lois and Bram and... those are big records around my house. And my son listens to... they like Dave Matthews, he likes Pink Floyd, Sarah McLachlan. (FYI - Julian is approximately 18 or 19, but don't quote me.)

ALEX: My kids... I mean they listen to everything from more acid jazzy sort of things right through to really -

GEDDY: Raffi?

ALEX: (laughs) ...techno and all kinds of stuff. Tool. (FYI - Alex' boys are approximately 22 and 28.)

LISA: What about you guys? Do you listen to a lot of other music?

GEDDY: Yeah.

LISA: What sort of things lately have you been listening to?

GEDDY: I listen to Raffi and Sharon, Lois and ... (trails off laughing) All kinds of stuff. I've been listening to some, there's this label called Ninja Tunes that sends these weird trip hop compilations and I've been listening to those lately. Pretty interesting. And, I like Bjork. She's my hero right now... a lot. And Radiohead and things like that.

ALEX: Dave Matthews. Tool was on the stereo a lot at our place for a long time.

LISA: Thirty-two, SFH_Audio... Sorry, the 32nd question is from... SFH_Audio : How did you decide to work with Paul Northfield again after so many years?

GEDDY: I don't know how that came up. I think I knew there was going to be such a huge volume of work involved and I wanted someone I could unequivocally trust.

ALEX: Yeah, that was the main thing.

GEDDY: And someone who I thought had a real inherent sense of how we should sound. I didn't think it was a job for someone new. I thought it was a job for someone who I knew and who I knew, knew us sonically. And he's great.

LISA: The 33rd question is from... nissane : The last time I was in Israel, I met a lot of Rush fans there. Would you ever consider playing there?

GEDDY: Wow! (really surprised)

ALEX: Do you get paid in trees when you play there? (Lisa laughs)

GEDDY: I don't know.

LISA: Are there a lot of places in the world you guys haven't played?

GEDDY: Yeah.

LISA: Any you want to? 'Cause you travel a lot, right? Don't you do these exotic travel things? Personally?

GEDDY: Yeah, I love travel and go to many, many places. We're always at odds with that question. We can never really agree on what countries to tour and what countries not to tour. Ah, because of the fact that our tours are getting increasingly shorter, it seems to be hard to find the time to tour America and Canada properly without considering all these other places. We tried to get to Brazil last year and that didn't quite work out. We have a lot of fans there. So, I don't know, there's a lot of places that we'd like to play. Israel? Who knows?

LISA: Okay, the 35th question... pete323 : Any plans to have any more guest vocalists on future recordings? I really enjoyed hearing Aimee Mann with you on "Time Stand Still".

GEDDY: Well, that's nice.

ALEX: Mm-hmm.

GEDDY: (throws up his hands) Who knows?

LISA: Anybody you'd like to work with? That you haven't... in terms of the band - other people? I mean... Bjork, guest vocalist? Maybe?

GEDDY: That'd be terrific. She's amazing. Hard to know - I have great respect for a lot of musicians but -

ALEX: It's not like you just -

LISA: It's hard to bring somebody into something -

ALEX: Yeah, Aimee's voice was really perfect, we felt for that song... for what we wanted for that song. To try to think of somebody that you have an overwhelming desire to work with... off hand, probably no.

GEDDY: Yeah. Yeah... We kinda like doing our own thing.

LISA: Yeah, obviously! (laughs)

GEDDY: So, I don't know -

LISA: One thing we were talking about earlier, I was wondering when you were talking about opening acts and you were an opening act -

GEDDY: For a long time. LISA: - for ZZ Top, I remember. [At this time, Geddy and Alex were both talking, but I couldn't understand what they said as Lisa was talking over them.]

LISA: Were there problems? They didn't like that you got such a good response -

ALEX: They were okay.

LISA: - was a rumor? Or something to that effect?

ALEX: I don't think so. You know what? In retrospect -

LISA: You opened for KISS?

ALEX: Yeah, for a long time. In the early days when we were playing small venues. We had great memories of that time together. We had a lot of fun. But you know what - when you're young, you think you should have more than you get, sometimes I think that kinda tempers the way you look at things.

GEDDY: It's easy to complain when you're an opening act because you want more time for sound check, you want more lights, you want, you want. And you don't get.

ALEX: And if you get an encore on a couple of shows, you think, now well maybe you should get this every night. And sometimes, there are constraints. When you're a headline act you realize that -

GEDDY: Union.

ALEX: You've got union guys to pay, overtime, all that stuff. So it's easy to get a little pissed off about not going back and doing a second encore when -

GEDDY: It's not your show. ALEX: - when it's not your show.

LISA: You said you tried to be nice to your opening acts because of that.

GEDDY: Always.

ALEX: Well, yeah. Well, there were bands that we played with that were just, you know... pricks.

LISA: You don't want to say who...

ALEX: No, of course not, but they were - [A lot of conversation amongst the three of them I couldn't decipher, but it revolved around trying to find out who these bands were.]

ALEX: They were... (Alex, acting uncomfortable puts his hand to his head, then his chin feigning that he can't remember these bands and hems and haws his words) don't remind me.... He knows! (points to Geddy). But, ah -

GEDDY: Never! We were always perfect gentlemen.

ALEX: We just would never - we decided very early on that we would never do the same thing to the opening act. There's no reason you can't have a sound check if there's time for it.

GEDDY: Besides, if you screw the opening act, you have to hang around each other all of the time! You'll have no one else to hang out with!

LISA: Okay, 37th question is... I'm sorry, 36th question is from... NarLerx : Is that really a 1960's picture of Alex in the DS collage? Or you guys just joking around?

GEDDY: Those are all real pictures.

ALEX: Oh, yeah.

LISA: Really?

ALEX: Yeah.

GEDDY: Every picture in that collage is real.

LISA: Okay.

ALEX: Yeah, from both our collections, among other things. I mean, we dug deep in our stuff -

GEDDY: Our own personal junk.

LISA: Who saves all the junk? Do you all save the junk?

ALEX: Yeah, we both have our junk piles. [FANCAST time index: 54:00]

LISA: Must be big! Lots of boxes and trunks - (The boxes and trunks line is mostly meaningless because Alex starts talking as soon as she said the "Must be big!" line.)

ALEX: (Gets this really smarmy grin on his face.) Well, I don't know. I'd like to think... (Geddy immediately starts laughing, followed shortly thereafter by Lisa. Alex just sits there with this huge grin on his face.)

LISA: Okay, the 37th question... (Geddy is still laughing and Alex is still grinning) ...Moving right along here!... Davidduf : How do you feel about Tom Sawyer appearing on a number of recent movie soundtracks?

ALEX: I think it's cool; it's great. I think it would be great if all soundtracks had Rush music! (trails off laughing)

GEDDY: Good thinking!

ALEX: Hopefully, that'll happen...

GEDDY: Why hasn't that happened?

ALEX: I don't know. Someone should work on it.

LISA: From rbbegley, the 38th question... rbbegley : What were the other possible titles of this record?

LISA: ...that you had considered, were there?

GEDDY: Well, there were a bunch, I don't really want to get into that. Once it's chosen, it's chosen.

LISA: Okay, 39th question is from... Dyvid2 : What aspects are you most proud of on Different Stages?

ALEX: Well, I think great performances, the band sounds great...Heck!

GEDDY: Heck?!

ALEX: We look good!

GEDDY: Heck?! (laughs) I think the quality, the atmosphere of the performance, the natural quality of the performance is what I'm happy about.

LISA: Well, Tom_267 actually asks this 40th question which is... dovetails from that... Tom_267 : For rush: in what significant ways has your live show changed since the last live album?

LISA: (long pause) When was your last live album?

GEDDY: A Show of Hands -

ALEX: '88, '89, something like that. Well, the sound is quite different. It's much more organic, tougher I think than it was back then. We were a little cleaner and more placed.

GEDDY: I think there is a more appropriate positioning of the sequencers, ah -

ALEX: Keyboards.

GEDDY: - keyboard element to the band I think. A Show of Hands was recorded right after a very keyboard period that we were going through and it was almost nightmarish playing every night; there was so many things going on. Since that time almost, I think we have realigned the sound of the band to make it a bit more three-piece with keyboards as opposed to trying to make it almost a four-piece set. I think that's more in line now and I think that this album shows that. And as a result, I'm playing less bass pedals and more bass, which again helps reassert that three-piece stand. Bringing back pieces like "2112" which is a very three-piece song. Things of that nature help define that too. [FANCAST time index: 56:57]

LISA: Here's the question, of course, that everyone keeps asking you, the 41st question... jof21 : Geddy and Alex, how have the three of you managed to get along together for so long? What is your secret?

LISA: The secret... (There's a short pause and then Alex gets up and jumps Geddy on the couch humping wildly and ends up falling over the back of the couch.)

LISA: Maybe this is a good time to take a break!

GEDDY: (laughing, Geddy adjusts his hair back behind his ears and says...) There you have it! That's the secret! (As Geddy says this, Alex pops up from behind the couch and grabs Geddy from behind, leaning over the couch to give him a big hug. During the vigorous hug, Alex almost falls over the front of the couch and purposely tries to mess with Geddy's glasses.)

LISA: (while this is going on Lisa says) I hope you're getting all this!

GEDDY: You're gonna break my glasses!! (Alex releases Geddy and makes his way back around to the front of the couch. Geddy is still laughing at all this.) I told you he was an idiot! (Geddy proceeds to adjust his hair behind his ears again and readjust his suit jacket.)

ALEX: (breathlessly, sitting down) Oh my God! Can I smoke now? (pulling out a cigarette)

LISA: The secret - Oh, smoking! Uh-oh!

ALEX: (immediately realizing that he can't smoke in the room, stops) No! I'll get arrested, I'm sure!!

LISA: No - please smoke! By all means! [Couldn't get quite all the conversation, but she's telling him to smoke, while Geddy's saying "No" and Alex says something like "No, someone'll get all freaked out" and puts the pack back in his suit jacket.)

ALEX: (sitting back down after having got up to adjust his suit jacket) I did quit for 6 weeks...

LISA: You did?

ALEX: ...again...

GEDDY: What's the secret?...

LISA: The secret of getting along...

GEDDY: Being an idiot, I guess.

ALEX: (Alex, with a goofy grin on his face, gives a big thumbs up) I win! (Geddy gives him a thumbs up)

GEDDY: Comedy.

LISA: Do you fight? Do you fight on tour? Ever? On the bus? Backstage?

ALEX: No, no.

GEDDY: We just kinda stew.

ALEX: You let steam off. I mean, it's tough to be on the road and to be together all the time. You don't always get a chance to vent. And you know that if you vent with each other, that it's not gonna matter.

GEDDY: And he needs a lot of ventilation! (Alex laughs)

ALEX: But, you know it's not gonna matter at the end of the day. You're not gonna lose a friend over it. You understand that you're freaking out because you need to freak out.

GEDDY: And if somebody's going through a particularly difficult thing, you know that's why they're... (he gestures with hands if to say "that way") and that's why you're not. And sometimes you need to do that. You deal with it, you know? As opposed to just - Most bands break up ... over finances. A lot of bands break up over arguments about money. About - just ego - where they're not feeling they're getting their due. And they get frustrated and then they walk out on the relationship. Or they don't like each other to begin with and they just in it to accomplish some musical goal. But, the three of us are friends. And we made a decision a long time ago that money wasn't ever gonna be an issue of argument between us - ever. It never, ever comes up. So, you eliminate that and you've got a good chance of survival. And as far as ego or feeling frustration, the three of us equally share in all the responsibilities of the writing and the music and the making of the music. So, no one can say 'Hey, I'm being overlooked here' or 'I can't do what I want in this band.' So, if you want to do something musically, just speak up! So, we're lucky. We've been able to maintain that.

LISA: Do you think that you're possibly the only really democratic band? (Geddy laughs)

ALEX: I can't speak for other bands and how they do things but, certainly we've always tried to be that way. If there was - If one person didn't agree with the other two people, we always would discuss things further and try to get everyone to understand and then agree... equally rather...

GEDDY: Or we kill them - No, no, no! (laughs) [FANCAST time index: 1:00:25]

LISA: You're having fantasies - you said earlier you had fantasies of -

ALEX: ...Of the kid and his jacket? [I think this is what he said. He started talking as she was talking.]

GEDDY: No, the big hammer on Alex' head coming down and...boom! (Geddy has his arm raised and then lowers it as he's talking and at "boom" spreads his hands like something smashed.) Or was that a different fantasy?

ALEX: That was your fantasy! (all laughing)

LISA: The 44th question is from ChaosWire who says... ChaosWire : Geddy and Alex--thank you so much for your music. I was wondering, who are your most prominent musical influences?

ALEX: Well, we had so many over the years... (throws up his hands) Now, I don't know.

GEDDY: In the early days... I guess Cream, were a big early influence. Me as a bass player, Jack Bruce.

ALEX: Eric Clapton, Jimmy Paige, Jimi Hendrix.

GEDDY: Jeff Beck. That whole English school of rock that made the transformation from blues rock to a kind of progressive rock... The Who. Those were the most formative influences on us. And then as English rock progressed, became more complex with Genesis, Yes, bands of that ilk; they influenced us tremendously as well. But, now we're influenced by anything that we think is cool. That's what is great about music - you can bring so much in. A rhythm, a kind of guitar sound, or a kind of a - Like this last stage I think we were influenced a little bit by some of the American rock bands. Not so much the music, but the sound of them, where they were drier and everything had a kind of up front sound to it. I think that influenced us a little bit.

LISA: Which ones?

GEDDY: Bands like Soundgarden, Pearl Jam - not that the music like I said, but the sound has an immediacy and a dry kind of directness we liked and thought 'What would that sound like with our kind of thing?' So these are all kinds of experiments. We're influenced by lots of different things.

LISA: moneil28 : Has it always been a blessing that most of your music has never really been "chart music" and seems to kind of have a "cult" following?

LISA: Pretty big cult! (as soon as she reads the name, Geddy mouths "Moneil" with a curious look on his face)

GEDDY: Blessing? (laughs) I don't know if it's a blessing! (Geddy and Lisa laughing)

ALEX: We kinda worked around it...

LISA: You mean in spite of it.

ALEX: Yeah! You always hope it would get a little more exposure - certainly with radio and all that...

GEDDY: It has been kind of a blessing -

ALEX: In a lot of ways -

LISA: You didn't have a lot before that - [I'm not really sure if this...]

ALEX: You know what - this has provided us a little more privacy. We're more out of the main stream of things or sort of the industry part of the way rock music is exposed.

GEDDY: Yeah, we've been able to chart our course which is a blessing.

ALEX: - given us more freedom and control.

GEDDY: And we've been able to experiment in public and sometimes that's not always successful and - When you experiment record to record, you have to accept that some of them are going to be failed experiments. That does happen and that's all part of growing up in public and making your music. You just try to remember when something didn't quite work that it usually leads to something that works very well. So you have to allow yourself that latitude.

LISA: Also, if you had hit singles I guess very early in your career and that's what the whole thing was about, there might be that tendency to want to repeat that. It would never have given you the opportunity to stretch out.

GEDDY: That's it - we've just avoided that -

ALEX: Yes, we have - (laughs) We will NOT make hit singles...(pauses)...for at least 25 years!

LISA: Question number 49 is from... ninja23m : Looking back through all the different stages you've seen, what band(s) that opened for you, or that you've opened for has been your most memorable and why? ROCK ON!

GEDDY: Well, opening for KISS was a really good situation for us. They were really great to us.

ALEX: Yeah.

GEDDY: They treated us really well and we learned a lot about putting on a good show from them, regardless of what you want to say about their music, that's a different issue. But at the time they were hard working musicians that really gave people their money's worth and also a sense of professionalism about putting on a show in a way. It was a kind of camaraderie with that other band that we had never really experienced before. So, that was very influential. And since then, worked with numerous great bands that have opened for us - Primus are an example of a band that was great fun to tour with.

ALEX: Yeah, we got quite connected with them and all became very good friends. Spent a lot of time together.

GEDDY: UFO - we toured with way back when. (Alex laughs and drops his head) They were great friends and it was a pretty wild friendship! (Alex then holds his head in mock pain) (FYI - UFO opened for Rush on the "Drive 'Til you Die Tour" in '77-'78 & "Tour of the Hemispheres" in '78-'79.)

LISA: Why are you holding your head?

ALEX: My head still hurts from touring with those guys!

GEDDY: Yeah! (laughing)

LISA: Those must have been some of those bizarre years - (she is referring to an earlier question about bizarre years during their career.)

ALEX: (points at her) That's right!!

GEDDY: Yeah!

LISA: Okay, question number 50 is from nissane, I think, who says... nissane : Was there any overdubbing on the new live album. I thought I heard two guitars in solo of "Driven," or were you playing those parts with your feet?

GEDDY: Feet.

LISA: Feet.

GEDDY: Feet -

ALEX: (holding up his hand as if indicating a small part) Yeah, there's one section -

GEDDY: In one section where I play bass and hit a guitar sequence -

ALEX: Which I play a counterpoint to.

GEDDY: There are no... Everything you're hearing on that album we played live, not always with our hands. So, there's nothing added in that didn't - that wasn't there on stage.

LISA: Fifty-first question, ntoon asks...

ntoon : The instruments seem to be panned as if one were actually at a show (bass on the right, drums in the middle, guitar on the left). Was this done purposefully? If so, it turned out nicely.

GEDDY: Thank you and it was.

ALEX: It was -

LISA: It turned out nicely -

GEDDY: Glad you noticed.

LISA: Fifty-second question is from Ed_Bernhardt who said...

Ed_Bernhardt : What would be your favorite song that you each like to perform live?

LISA: Could you possibly pick one?

ALEX: I already did.

GEDDY: (sighs) I don't know. There were lots of them. "Dreamline," I like playing a lot. "Resist," I like playing...there's a lot...

LISA: I'll ask you this. Are there any you hate playing live that you can't get off the stage without doing?

ALEX: Can't say hate -

LISA: Let's not say hate. Let's say you're just tired of, but you know that the audience really wants to hear and you just feel you have to...

ALEX: If you're talking about the last tour, then I would say no. I loved playing every song right through to the end of the tour.

GEDDY: Yeah, I would say that's true. That's not always been the case.

ALEX: Yeah.

GEDDY: There are some songs that have been painful.

LISA: Painful?

ALEX: You just get tired of.

LISA: You don't want to say which ones they are?

GEDDY: I can't remember.

LISA: Okay. That's very diplomatic - might be somebody's favorite song.

GEDDY: Yeah. (Alex smiles and nods slowly)

LISA: Fifty-third question...

NarLerx: I hear there is going to be a symphony orchestration of Rush songs released in April - how does the band feel about such endeavors? Is your permission required to do such a thing?

GEDDY: I've heard this rumor before, but I've never... I don't know anything about it -

ALEX: I don't know the details. Apparently it's being recorded now... or has been recorded...

GEDDY: They need publishing license -

ALEX: And usually we're aware of that when there's been an application.

GEDDY: I can't really comment on it.

LISA: Do you guys ever to look at your web sites and see half the rumors that are on the internet?

ALEX: I do once in a while.

LISA: (to Geddy) Do you?

GEDDY: Rarely. Once in a while I do's weird.

LISA: It is weird, isn't it?

ALEX: Sometimes it is -

GEDDY: There's a lot of - (couldn't understand his last words - might have been "half truths"]

ALEX: But there's a lot of great stuff too. Comments from the fans... and the discussions between fans...

LISA: You don't participate in it, going in under a different name or anything?



LISA: Would you ever let Puff Daddy sample anything? - Talking about giving permission. How would you feel about that?

GEDDY: I don't know. (throws up his hands) It would depend on what, when and how and all that...

ALEX: (with a very perplexed look on his face) Why do you ask that?

LISA: I don't - cause a fan asked!

ALEX: Oh. (then looks out at the camera as if talking to the audience - again with a perplexed look on his face) Why do you ask that?

LISA: (laughing) The 54th que -

ALEX: Okay! You can do it!! (laughing)

GEDDY: Is that considered a legal contract? (laughing)

LISA: No! No, it's not! (Geddy's still laughing) Okay, the 54th question -

__Myke__ : Rush is a live band. Is there any other "lost" recordings ? Such songs as hemispheres, camera eye, necromancer?

GEDDY: Just the ones that we lost intentionally!

ALEX: Yeah, the ones we couldn't actually play for other people.

GEDDY: The ones that we tried to lose...

LISA: So you don't think you have any collecting dust like the one from Hammersmith?



LISA: Okay, 55th question from...

WillieDunlop: What is the worst mess-up, mishap, or discombobulating that occurred onstage during the T4E tour?

LISA: Remember?...

GEDDY: Mess-up or discombobulation?... I remember a couple of them...A couple of moments... I don't remember them in actual detail, but I remember a couple of moments where suddenly we were all playing what seemed to be a different song - (points to someone coming towards them) A message... coming down the pike!

ALEX: [Alex babbled something like "Oh yeah, that thing..." For the most part it was unintelligible.]

LISA: We only have a couple more questions we can ask. So guys... Go ahead, with what you were saying.

GEDDY: I can't remember... I just remember a couple of train wrecks - nobody got hurt... seriously.

LISA: FrostBittenCanadianBoy : Do you still call Canada home?

GEDDY: Absolutely.

ALEX: Totally.

GEDDY: I live there. I pay enough taxes there, I sure do call it home.

LISA: Never wanted to move?

GEDDY: Never wanted to? Hmmm, I don't know.

ALEX: Intrigued by other places in the world certainly...

GEDDY: I still may end up living somewhere else before my time is finished, but at the moment I like living where I live. I like living in Canada.

ALEX: Yeah, me too.

LISA: One more question. dg... oh, it must be digital man, only shorter...

dgtlman: Good evening guys, with all the sequencers and computers and stuff, is it getting easier or more difficult to play live?

ALEX: That's a good question actually...

GEDDY: Getting easier and more difficult.

ALEX: Yeah.

GEDDY: It's hard to choose. You have to kind of - it's very interesting because now your capable of reproducing everything exactly as it was recorded.

LISA: Right.

GEDDY: Should you is another question. Or should you leave some of that to providing a different interpretation of the song live. We've always been a very strictly - We've always adhered strictly to reproducing our albums accurately. But lately, I'm not so sure that that's always necessary. My favorite moments on this live album are the moments where we kind of diverted a bit from the song.

LISA: I just have one thing I wanna ask you. You said something I think about, is fans that stuck with you despite the inherent weirdness of your music.

GEDDY: Yeah.

LISA: Do you feel that way? Really? That your music is weird?

GEDDY: Yeah, I do! (laughs)

ALEX: Oooh nooo! (Alex puts his head in his hand, feigning crying....then starts laughing)

GEDDY: It's not always weird, but I think there's unusual elements about what we do musically and melodically. And I'm amazed that our fans are as loyal as they are and I'm grateful.

LISA: Well, you've gotten to talk to a lot of them tonight and there's a lot more out there. Thanks very much for this.

GEDDY: Pleasure.

ALEX: Great pleasure!

LISA: I'm Lisa Robinson with Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson of Rush. And we have brought you a very special FANCAST presented by Atlantic Records, SonicNet and Transworld. Thank you. Good night.

(Alex and Geddy wave) GEDDY: Ciao!