As both musicians and fans continue digesting the unexpected passing of Rush drummer and lyricist Neil Peart, Styx timekeeper Todd Sucherman shared a poignant tribute that vocalist Lawrence Gowan performed during the band’s concert in Arizona just hours after Peart’s death was made public.
Sitting solo at his keyboard, Gowan sang one verse and one chorus of Rush’s 1981 classic “Limelight” amid erupting cheers of recognition from the audience. The singer ended the 90-second tribute by telling the audience, “Thank you to one of the greatest drummers and certainly one of the all-time greatest lyricists, Neil Peart.” Both Gowan and Peart were raised in the Canadian province of Ontario.
Sharing the video taken by a fan, embedded below, on Facebook, Sucherman wrote, “‘Limelight’ was played by Lawrence Gowan before ‘Come Sail Away’ last night in the round at the Celebrity Theater in Phoenix. I was off stage down a hallway listening to this beautiful tribute. From my vantage point I couldn’t see Lawrence (as the stage was spinning). All I could see was my drum kit spinning alone in the center of the stage as this song played, and for me… it was a moment.”
Peart passed away on Jan. 7 after a three-year battle with glioblastoma, an aggressive type of brain tumor, with his death announced yesterday (Jan. 10). He joined Rush in 1975, one album into their career and stayed with them until his retirement after their 2015 tour.