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Subject: The National Midnight Star of 10/31/90 (#85)  ** Special Edition **

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          The National Midnight Star, Number 85

                Wednesday, 31 October 1990
Today's Topics:
              Frequently Asked Questions List
From: Dan Delany 
Subject: Frequently Asked Questions List

The RUSH Fans Digest Frequently Asked Questions List:  Updated Oct. 30, 1990

   This file contains questions that seem to crop up frequently in the Rush
Fans Digest.  It will be posted on or around the first of each month.  If
you received a copy of this file in email, other than as a part of a
Digest, it is probably because you asked one of these questions.

   If you have any suggestions for additions to the list or corrections,
please send them to me at and I'll add them in.
I'd appreciate it if people who submit questions submit anything they know
about possible answers, since I don't have all of the answers myself!

DISCLAIMER: The information in this file is accurate to the best of my
knowledge, but I'm not perfect.  If you have an answer to one of these
questions that doesn't match the one given here that you can verify, let me
know, and I'll put it in!

   Anyway, on to the questions...

What albums has the band released?

   A more complete version of this discography is available for FTP at  (
   {according to, at least.  I haven't looked.}

   Mercury  822-541-2 (1974) Rush
   Mercury  822-542-2 (1975) Fly By Night
   Mercury  822-543-2 (1975) Caress Of Steel
   Mercury  822-545-2 (1976) 2112
   Mercury  822-552-2 (1976) All The World's A Stage
   Mercury  822-546-2 (1977) A Farewell To Kings
   Mercury  822-547-2 (1978) Hemispheres
   Mercury  822-548-2 (1980) Permanent Waves
   Mercury  800-048-2 (1981) Moving Pictures
   Mercury  822-551-2 (1981) Exit...Stage Left
   Mercury  810-002-2 (1982) Signals
   Mercury  818-476-2 (1984) Grace Under Pressure
   Mercury  826-098-2 (1985) Power Windows
   Mercury  832-464-2 (1987) Hold Your Fire
   Mercury  836-346-2 (1989) A Show Of Hands
   Atlantic 7 82040-2 (1989) Presto

   Additionally, several collections are available: {sorry - no catalog
                                        numbers, as I don't have these.}

   Archives (includes _Rush_,_Fly By Night_, and _Caress Of Steel_)
   Chronicles (1990)  - includes stuff from every album, including the
                        tracks that are missing from the CD versions of
                        Exit...Stage Left & All The World's A Stage
   _RUSH_ Through Time
   _Everything Your Listeners Ever Wanted To Hear By Rush But You Were
   Afraid To Play_ - this collection was targeted at radio stations.

Are any videotapes of the band available?

   Polygram Music Video 60285 (1981) Exit...Stage Left
   PMV 60607 (1986) Grace Under Pressure Tour
                    (includes the video for _The Big Money_)
   PMV 0741 760-3 (1989) A Show Of Hands
                         (The laserdisc version includes _Lock And Key_, which
                          isn't on the videotape version.)

   PMV 60466 (1985) Through The Camera Eye (video compilation)
   includes: Vital Signs
             Tom Sawyer [live, from Exit...Stage Left]
             Distant Early Warning
             The Enemy Within
             The Body Electric

Are these tapes available on laserdisc?

   Yes.  All 4 of them are.

What songs has the band made videos for?

   A Farewell To Kings
   Closer To The Heart
   The Trees
   Tom Sawyer
   Tom Sawyer [live, from ESL]
   Limelight [live, from ESL]
   Vital Signs
   Distant Early Warning
   The Enemy Within
   The Body Electric
   The Big Money
   Mystic Rhythms
   Marathon [live, from ASoH]
   Time Stand Still
   Lock And Key
   Show Don't Tell
   The Pass

Can anyone list everything else that the members of Rush have ever appeared

   This is not a complete list.  Please send me your additions!

   Bob & Doug MacKenzie: _Take Off_ (Geddy)
   _Modern Drummer_ Sound Supplement, May, 1987:  Pieces Of Eight (Neil)
   Max Webster: _Battlescar_ (Geddy, Alex, & Neil)
   Jeff Berlin: _Champions_  (Neil)
   Platinum Blonde: _Alien Shores_ (Alex)
                    {I'm not sure about that title.}
   Northern Lights: _Tears Are Not Enough_ (Geddy)
   _Guitar Player_ soundpage, ?1988: "Canadian Guitar Summit"
      Rik Emmet (he organized the whole thing),Leonna Boyd, Alex
   Larry Gowan: _Lost Brotherhood_ (Alex)
   _Smoke On The Water_ - benefit for Armenian earthquake victims (Alex)

   In the January 1986 issue of _Modern Drummer_ magazine, while discussing
    his appearance on the Jeff Berlin album, Neil says that he "...did a
    similar thing with a musician named Ken Ramm in Toronto.  That record
    was released in Canada."

What was the first single released by the band?

   The A side was a cover of a Buddy Holly song called "Not Fade Away."
   The B side was a Lee/Rutsey song called "You Can't Fight It."
   These songs are not on any Rush albums.

I just bought the CD of  and
it's missing a track!  Is a complete version of this CD available?

   No.  But if you absolutely have to have everything on CD, the 2 missing
   tracks are on _Chronicles_.

What is Battlescar/Max Webster, who plays on it, what is the label/catalogue
number for the Universal Juveniles CD?  Where can I write to get it?

   Max Webster is a Canadian band that used to open for Rush.  Battlescar
   is a song from their _Universal Juveniles_ CD that was done as a duet
   of the 2 bands.

    Max Webster - Universal Juveniles  1980
                  Mercury SRM-1-3855 [6337 144]
                  Distributed by Polygram Distribution, Inc.
                    810 Seventh Avenue
                    New York, NY 10019

                  Write:  Anthem Records
                          Oak Manor  P.O. 1000
                          Oak Ridges, Ontario
                          Canada  LOG1PO
                                  (could be LOG1P0)

   One more note:  "Battlescar" has a subscript:  "recorded live July 28th,
   1980 Phase One Studios -Toronto-".

Have any books been written about the band?

   Rush-Visions:The Official Biography (c) 1988
   By Bill Banasiewicz (The B-Man)
   ISBN: 0-7119-1162-2    94 pages
   From: Omnibus Press
   Distributor: Music Sales Corporation
                24 East 22nd Street
                New York, NY 10010

   Success Under Pressure (c) 1984
   By Steve Gett
   ISBN: 0-89524-230-3    48 pages
   From: Cherry Lane Books
         110 Midland Avenue
         Port Chester, NY 10573

   Rush  (c)1982
   By Brian Harrigan
   ISBN: 0-86001-934-9    80 pages
        The Putnam Publishing Group
        200 Madison Avenue
        New York, NY 10016

Does anybody have the lyrics to ?

   The lyricserver at probably does.
   Send a message containing the word HELP to that address for
   information.  The lyricserver responds erratically, but please look
   there first before posting the request to the Digest.

   The following message appeared in the Digest on Thu Oct 4, 1990.

 { begin quoted text }

   The Lyrics server is down for now because of legal problems(maybe
   copyright).  If the server resumes, I will be certain to post to the
   Digest ASAP.

                       Jonathan C. Schon
 { end quoted text }

Can anybody tell me how to get the Rush Sun background graphics?

   The place they are located is waterloo (sorry, don't know the complete
   Internet (name) address), with numeric Internet address of:

   Here's what you do:  (When in doubt, ask your friendly sysadmin!)

   1) "ftp"
   2) login with userid "anonymous", password 
   3) once logged in successfully, change to to the /incoming dir
      ( "cd  /incoming" )
   4) the pictures are in the following files - just use the normal "get"
      to download them to your machine.

    - This is the first file to get; it contains
                      information on how to deal with the other files.
    - rush.rast.rush: Album cover from first album, _RUSH_
    - rush.rast.2112: Album cover from _2112_
    - rush.rast.aftk: Album cover from _A Farewell To Kings_
    - rush.rast.fbn: Album cover form _Fly By Night_
    - rush.rast.hemi: Album cover from _Hemispheres_
    - rush.rast.boyz1: Picture of the three of 'em (Recent)
    - rush.rast.boyz2: Picture of Geddy & Alex (Recent)
    - rush.rast.boyz3: Picture of all three (Recent)

    Once you've downloaded them, follow the directions in the file
    "" to display them on your workstation.

   If you need to get a copy of the program "xloadimage", there is a
   compressed tar file on the waterloo server, in the same directory
   as the pictures.  To get it to a working state, first download it
   (using binary transfer) to your local machine.  Then uncompress it,
   and un-tar it by using the command: "tar xf xloadimage.tar"  This
   will un-tar all the files into the current directory.  After that,
   it's just a matter of 'make'ing the file to get the executable. The
   README file is very informative - read it!

Somebody posted  in the Digest.  I missed it - could somebody
please send me a copy?

   To request back issues of the Digest, send mail to:

   When you send your request, include the Digest number, or she will not
   be able to honor your request (because of the implementation, the date
   will do little good).

   To quote Helen:

 { begin quoted text }

   Your request must have the following information:

   1:  Whether or not you want Rush backissues or Tull backissues.
       (this is IMPORTANT - a request for issue 23 gives me no clue as to
        what you really want)

   2:  Which issue numbers you want.  Or, in the case of the tull history,
       which parts.

   3:  An internet address (hopefully yours  :)  if at all humanly possible.
       Failing that, a bitnet address would be nice.  Please, only use uucp
       as a last resort.
       HOWEVER!!  Please include an address at the end of your post - some
       mail headers are no fun to try and decipher.


   Turnaround time:
                  I have stored the digests (both rush and tull) to tape.  All
                  of them.  The only ones I have on my account are from the
                  past week.  Once a week, I store the new ones to tape and
                  answer the requests.  In theory, at least.  I am still in
                  the process of working some bugs out, and, adding an excess
                  of programs due to that, things have not been going well.
                  I'll get to your request.  Honest.  Don't send it again, as
                  it just makes things more confusing.

   # of issues wanted:
                     Due to an excessive number of people wanting issues 1-7x
                     and other such quantities, this is how it's going to work
                     (for now, at least).  All large requests will be sent in
                     groups of ten issues.  I can't just mail user < *  because
                     it does horrible things to the mail queue, and I don't
                     currently have the time to type the command for each issue
                     issue.  One of these days i'll write scripts to do it, but
                     until then, you'll have to bear with me.

   Turnaround of more than a week :
                                 I'm probably having problems mailing to your
                                 site.  Don't worry, I'll get them to you.

 { end of quoted text }

What issue of the Digest is  in?

   This list isn't complete, and it probably contains errors.  Let me
   know, so I can fix them!

      Item                                                 Issue
      ----                                                 -----
   Neil's reaction to the Digest                              5
   Analysis of "The Pass"                                    21
   Neil's editorial on Satanism                              28
   A Nice Morning Drive                                      34
   Signals tour book                                         40
   Power Windows tour book                                   40
   Grace Under Pressure tour book                            42
   Permanent Waves tour book                                 48
   1978 Article/Story on Rush                                59
   Alex interview                                            62
   "Kubla Khan"                                              64
   Modern Drummer interview with Neil                        68
   HYF tour book                                             69
   Rockline interview                                        72
   Peart Q & A                                               74
   Rockline interview                                        76
   Definition of "peart"                                     80
   Chronicles essay                                          81

I've heard about the "Rush Backstage Club."  What is it, and how do I

   It's an outfit that sells Rush souvenirs (t-shirts, posters, etc) and
   occasionally releases a newsletter.  (I'm not a member, so I don't
   really know.  Could a member send me some details?)  To join the
   backstage club, just send $11.95 ($9 to join plus $2.95 shipping and
   handling) to:

   Rush Backstage Club
   1055 E. Tropicana Avenue, #580
   Las Vegas, Nevada  89119

   Membership obligation is to purchase 1 item of merchandise each to
   stay on the mailing list.  Also, they will answer any inquiries if you
   include a self addressed stamped envelope.  For those international
   people, pay in U.S. money (NO CASH!!!) and include postage coupons with
   information requests.

What are the birthdays of the band members?

   Geddy Lee          July 29,1953
   Neil Peart         September 12, 1952
   Alex Lifeson       August 27, 1953

What are the real names of the band members?

   Geddy Lee          Gary Lee Leibovitz
   Neil Peart         Neil Peart
   Alex Lifeson       Alex Zinovinojivic

How is "Peart" pronounced?

   It rhymes with "near."

What does "YYZ" mean?

   YYZ is the transponder code for Toronto International Airport.  Every
   airport is assigned a unique 3 letter code, and that code is always
   being transmitted so that pilots can easily tell where they are.  These
   codes are also written on your luggage tags when you fly.

What does (for Mongo) after "Anagram" on the PRESTO album mean?

   It's a joke from the movie _Blazing Saddles_, referring to the
   "Candygram for Mongo" scene, according to Geddy on Rockline 12/4/89.

What is happening during the "censored" section of the Show Of Hands

   "That's kind of a joke, but it doesn't seem like many people are
   getting that joke.  Actually, Alex, at certain parts of that song,
   would just start rambling into the microphone -- all kinds of various
   nonsense, and it actually never got recorded anywhere.  So no one had
   any idea, including him, what he had actually said.  But we loved the
   shot of him just ranting into this microphone, so we decided we would
   put up this bogus 'radioactive' warning about the fact that we had
   'censored' what he had said, and we thought we did it in kind of an
   obvious way -- it looked like it was phony, because we put the
   radioactivity symbols right on the screen, but nobody seems to be
   getting that." -- Geddy Lee, in the 12/4/89 Rockline interview

In the _A Show Of Hands_ video, does Geddy really say "Catch a Fish?"

   Yes, he does.  Nobody knows why.

What songs make up the "Fear" trilogy?

   The "Fear" trilogy consists of:
      Part 1: The Enemy Within (Grace Under Pressure)
      Part 2: The Weapon (Signals)
      Part 3: Witch Hunt (Moving Pictures)

Has this trilogy ever been performed live?

   Yes.  It's on the _Grace Under Pressure Tour_ video.

Why do the songs appear in reverse order?

   "It's really kind of strange how it turned out, and it's not meant to be
   as mysterious and clever as it looks.  It was more accidental.  At the
   time of _Moving Pictures_, I had actually sketched out each of the three
   songs in my notebook and talked to the other guys about them and what I
   was going to go for, but the easiest one for me to clarify in my mind
   and in words was 'Witch Hunt,' because it was the simplest concept to
   deal with, and then 'The Weapon' came next because my thinking led up to
   that point, but in fact a couple snatches of lyrics and even both of the
   verses for 'The Enemy Within' were written as long ago as that, and all
   of the titles and everything were fixed on, and what I wanted to write
   about, but 'The Enemy Within' was the most difficult one to deal with,
   so it ended up being the last one done, so they happened to go in the
   order 3-2-1." -- Neil Peart, in an interview on KGB 101 FM, San
                                Diego: 10/2/84

Where does the name 'Rocinante' come from?

   It was the name of Steinbeck's motor home in _Travels With Charlie_.
   It was also the name of Don Quixote's horse.

I read that "Xanadu" was based on a famous poem.  Does anybody have a copy?

   The poem is "Kubla Khan" by Samuel Taylor Coleridge.  Your local
   library probably has a copy.

Where did the story of _2112_ come from?

   2112 is _very_ loosely based on _Anthem_, by Ayn Rand.  Much of
   Neil's early work was influenced by Rand.

Who is Count Floyd?

   He was a character on the Canadian TV show SCTV.  {similar to "WKRP
   in Cincinatti", but a TV station.}  The Count Floyd character had a
   show that featured really bad movies.  {movies so bad that even
   Elvira wouldn't show them.  :-) }

Who is Pye Dubois?

   Pye Dubois was the lyricist for Max Webster.  "Tom Sawyer" began life
   as a Max Webster song called "Louis The Warrior," but Pye gave the
   lyrics to Neil after "Battlescar" was recorded.  Pye also helped
   Neil write "Force Ten."

Who is T.C. Broonsie?

   Terry Brown.

Who was Absalom?

   He was King David's favorite son, who rebelled against his father,
   and was killed by Joab, according to my trusty Websters.  There is
   also a Faulkner novel called _Absalom, Absalom!_

   To quote Neil:
   "Before I ever knew who or what Absalom was, I always loved the sound
   of it.  I had thought perhaps it was an ancient prayer or somthing.
   There is a book by William Faulkner called _Absalom, Absalom_, which,
   again, I loved the sound of.  I wanted to put it in the song, as a play
   on words with "absolute" and "obsolete", but I thought I'd better find
   out for sure what it meant.  So I called my wife and asked her to look
   it up in the encyclopedia.  When I learned the real story, and its
   Biblical roots, I decided that it was still appropriate, as it was the
   ultimate expression of compassion, which is what the song was really
   about.  "Absalom, Absalom.  My son, my son.  Would God I had died for
   thee." (Now don't anyone go reading any religion into that!)"

Who is the writer in "Losing It" about?

   Neil discusses this song in _Modern Drummer_ magazine, in the April 1984
   issue.  The writer represents Ernest Hemingway.  The dancer "...drew
   a bit from that film with Shirley MacLaine called _The Turning

In "By-Tor And The Snow Dog" By-Tor is the bad guy, but he's a hero in "The
Necromancer."  What happened?

   When asked about this on Rockline, Geddy said something along the lines
   of, "He saw the light."  Neil once commented, "I guess he's like
   all of us - sometimes good, and sometimes he's bad!"

Is that crackling noise about 10-20 seconds into "Distant Early Warning" on
the _Grace Under Pressure_ CD supposed to be there, or is my copy

   It's supposed to be there.  There is a rumbling at that point on the
   _A Show Of Hands_ CD and on the _Grace Under Pressure Tour_ video,
   but people without subwoofers may be unable to detect it.

Near the end of "The Camera Eye," there are some mumblings that I can't
quite make out.  Does anybody know for sure what is being said?

   No.  {The first time I posted this FAQL, I received no fewer than 8
   emails from people who claimed to know exactly what is being said
   there.  Unfortunately, none of them agreed with each other, so I'm
   only going to change this answer if somebody can come up with proof
   that they are right, such as an interview or magazine article.}

Who says  in ?

    Alex says "That's nice" at the end of "Chain Lightning".
    Neil says "Subdivisions" in the song of the same name,
      even though Alex is shown in the video and does it live.
    The deep voice at the beginning of "Cygnus X-1" is none other than
      Terry Brown.
    Neil does the "Attention all planets of the Solar Federation - We have
      assumed control" bit at the end of "2112".
    Neil does the narrative during "The Necromancer".

Where is "Lotus-Land?"

   "Lotus land as it appears in 'Free Will' is simply a metaphor for an
   idealized background, a 'land of milk and honey'.  It is sometimes
   also used as a pejorative name for Los Angeles, though that was not
   in my mind when I wrote it." -- Neil Peart

What does "La Villa Strangiato" mean?

   'Weird City'

What is Tai Shan about?

   Tai' Shan (from Hold Your Fire) is the name of an actual "holy mountain"
   in China.  The mythical (?) emperor Huang Ti had so much power that he
   was able to summmon all the spirits of the world to him on top of
   Tai' Shan to proclaim his power.

   Legend has it that if you climb to the top of this mountain and
   "raise your hands to heaven," you _will_ live to be at least 100
   years old.  Neil wrote these lyrics while sitting at the top of
   the mountain.

What building is on the cover of _Moving Pictures_?

   The building pictured is the old Parliament building in downtown
   Toronto.  It is several blocks south of the Toronto Planetarium
   surrounded by a park.  There is a multilane road that splits into two
   multilane roads to run around both sides of it and joins up again on
   the south side.  The entrance on the cover is on the south of the

Why was the headline on the newspaper on the cover of _Permanent Waves_
blocked out?

   "There are always the inevitable last minute crises, such as the Chicago
   Daily Tribune being still so embarrassed about their 'Dewey defeats Truman'
   error of more than thirty years ago, that they actually refused to let us
   use it on the cover!"  -- Neil Peart, in the _Permanent Waves_ tourbook

   To clarify this:  When Truman ran against Dewey for President, Truman
   lost in most of the states with early returns.  So, it looked like
   Dewey was going to win.  The Tribune released an early morning paper
   the next day with a 'Dewey defeats Truman' headline.

How many Rush symbols are there in the _Hold Your Fire_ inside photo?

   the fire hydrant from "Signals"

   the TV from "Power Windows"

   the clock indicating 9:12 (21:12 military time)

   the number 15 on the main the "Hold Your Fire"
   tour book, they mentioned that this was their 15th album to

   the juggler is clearly holding his fire.

   at the very far left, underneath the chains is a trunk with
   the logo from their first album.  This was spotted on a 12
   inch picture disk from the album.  It cannot be seen in many
   other versions of the picture.

   The Chinese neon sign above the restaurant reads "Tai-Shan".

   A friend told me that the car is a Mercury, but I don't know this
   for sure.

What is the Omega Concern?

   As Alex realized that he had to play acoustic guitar for some Rush tunes
   and then quickly switch to his electric (Closer to the Heart, etc.), he
   crafted a stand (actually an attachment to a Tama Titan cymbal stand)
   that holds his acoustic in an adjustable playing position.

   He soon began to sell this as a product (1st to Music Emporium) under the
   company label "The Omega Concern."  Apparently, Alex's "company" also made
   Geddy a light-up lyric stand and Neil got a newspaper/book holder so he
   could read while he eats breakfast.


        Please send me your suggestions for additions or corrections.

"All the world's a stage                      |
 And all the men and women merely players:    |       Daniel Alan Delany
 They have their exits and their entrances;  -- Wm. Shakespeare  (1564-1616)
 And one man in his time plays many parts."    _As You Like It_  II,vii,39

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