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article imageOp-Ed: Putting Rush into Rock and Roll Hall of Fame cheapens the honor

By Marcus Hondro     Apr 19, 2013 in Entertainment
There is a great deal of celebrating in Canadian music circles over the induction of Rush into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in a ceremony at the Nokia Theatre in L.A. Thursday. But there surely are just as many doing as I am - cringing.
The band's induction to the Hall, it took years, cheapens it. Rush is not the best Rock has to offer. Their music is beyond most rockers and it wasn't easy for non-musicians to relate to. I get it that they had fans, and rabid ones. J.T. the Brick (real name John Tournour), the FOX late-night radio sportscaster, he's on record as saying he's been to 53 Rush concerts. For me, the brash, loud sports jock is a glutton for punishment.
And here's Tom Morello, former the guitar man for 'Rage Against the Machine' on Rush: "Their musicianship was very important to me as an aspiring guitar player. And they eschewed some of the cornier trappings of hard rock music - the devil stuff and the groupie stuff, which I could never really relate to. And three of the greatest players were somehow in the same band. Their music was just very compelling to me."
Rush: Over-playing, screeching vocals
But not the least bit compelling for me, however, or many others. But then I play blues and blues doesn't go in much for pretensions and over-playing. To each his own in music but nonetheless I'm incredulous that they would put this band, lead by Geddy Lee, whose voice sounds like fingernails scrapping across a blackboard, into the hall.
Are Lee, Alex Lifeson and Neal Peart technically accomplished players? Sure but they just didn't know when to stop playing. Neil Peart as a drummer overplays like Lady Gaga overdresses and guitarist Alex Lifeson has virtually no sense of the spaces that his fellow-guitarist, Eric Clapton, spoke about when he said guitar playing was mostly about the spaces between the notes.
And their lyrics? Can you spell p-r-e-t-e-n-t-i-o-u-s?
The band, eligible since hitting 25 years of existence in 1998, was inducted along with the late Donna Summer (was she a rocker?), Randy Newman, Quincy Jones, Heart - in essence sisters Ann and Nancy Wilson - rappers Public Enemy, Lou Adler and blues guitarist, Albert King. It's otherwise a deserving line-up.
It's painful to think of 'Rush' going in alongside a great like King, let alone being in the hall with such icons as The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Michael Jackson, Janis Joplin, Jeff Beck. It's painful and undeserved and the news comes, like Geddy Lee's voice, as nails upon a blackboard.
And finally, to make this all the more painful, Canada Post is releasing a Rush 'stamp'.
This opinion article was written by an independent writer. The opinions and views expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily intended to reflect those of
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