Neil Peart, the iconic drummer with the Canadian trio Rush, has died. He was 67 and had been diagnosed with brain cancer.
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) reports that Peart passed away in Santa Monica, California on Tuesday with his death announced in a statement by family spokesperson Elliot Mintz.
Famed for his technical skills and songwriting, Peart played on all of Rush's albums bar the band's 1974 debut. Together with singer-bassist Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson he created some of the most seminal albums in progressive rock including 2112 and Moving Pictures.
In a statement on Friday, Lee and Lifeson paid tribute to their "friend, soul brother and bandmate over 45 years", describing him as "incredibly brave".
"Those wishing to express their condolences can choose a cancer research group or charity of their choice and make a donation in Neil Peart's name," they requested. "Rest in peace, brother."
Peart was also an acclaimed author with books including his debut, The Masked Rider: Cycling in West Africa, and Ghost Rider: Travels on the Healing Road. The latter chronicled his grief and recovery following the deaths of his daughter Selena and his wife Jacqueline within ten months of each other in the 1990s.
The Hamilton, Ontario native married photographer Carrie Nuttall in 2000 and returned to Rush the following year. In 2009, Peart and Nuttall celebrated the birth of their daughter, Olivia.
Rush were inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in 2013. Peart announced his retirement in 2015.
Here are some of the many tributes to the music great:
RIP Neil Peart pic.twitter.com/PxNZ3W5WSs— Foo Fighters (@foofighters) January 10, 2020
Rest In Peace, Neil... pic.twitter.com/ceZXPYaSdd— Metallica (@Metallica) January 11, 2020
I just heard about Neil Peart passing. I feel real bad about this - he was way too young. Neil was one of the great drummers and he'll be missed. Love & mercy to Neil’s family.— Brian Wilson (@BrianWilsonLive) January 10, 2020
– Brian pic.twitter.com/T5qjECWX1W
Neil Peart lost his daughter at the age of 19 in a car accident in 1997. Just months later his wife died of cancer. In his book Ghost Rider - Travels on the Healing Road Neil discussed his grief. Here is to hoping there is a drum kit & his family members to greet him in Heaven 🙏 pic.twitter.com/DHVCItqvwl— Laura Steele 🎧 (@RealLauraSteele) January 10, 2020
At the end of a crazy @rockhall night in 2013 where @rushtheband & @PublicEnemyFTP were inducted. It was just myself & Neil PEart alone talkin & laughing low in relief the long night was over-a small table backstage sharing a unique moment without much word. Rest in Beats my man— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) January 10, 2020
https://t.co/iiRGc1RZkZ— Jack Irons: The Steel Cowboy: Hunter's Moon (@cowboy_steel) January 10, 2020
Take a moment and familiarize yourself with Peart.
We lost one of the best drummers to ever grace the planet today.
Sad to hear of Neil Peart passing. RIP. pic.twitter.com/2iMWJq1uoo— Geezer Butler (@geezerbutler) January 10, 2020
We are heartbroken to hear about the passing of Canadian Music Hall of Fame inductee Neil Peart. One of the best rock drummers of all time, Neil's legacy will live on through their music forever. Our thoughts are with his family and @rushtheband. pic.twitter.com/DwhxlmHjs7— The JUNO Awards (@TheJUNOAwards) January 10, 2020
My prayers and condolences to the Peart Family, Fans and Friends. Neil was a kind soul. R.I.P....... Rush Drummer Neil Peart Dead at 67 - Rolling Stone https://t.co/icYz6fnXfE— Gene Simmons (@genesimmons) January 10, 2020
There are drummers and then there is Neil Peart. I believe for most of us he was the "one". I would Rush ( no pun) home from school to play Natural science , subdivisions and numerous other tracks. His playing helped shape the drummer I am today. RIP professor .I💜Neil Peart— Charlie Benante (@skisum) January 10, 2020
Oh man... Neil Peart. Every drummer just ran to their kit to bust out Tom Sawyer. His dedication and RE-dedication to his craft is a lesson in always improving. Never be complacent. You can ALWAYS be better. R.I.P.— patrick wilson (@patrickwilson73) January 10, 2020
So sad to hear about Neil Peart— Ron Sexsmith (@RonSexsmith) January 10, 2020
I only got to meet him once but we were both
St Catharines natives. Incredible drummer obviously
but also, he gave RUSH their signature thought provoking lyrics. Huge Loss RIP RS