In a recent interview with Toronto Life, Geddy Lee talked about Rush’s decision to forgo joining Led Zeppelin. Initially, Rush was under pressure to become more commercial in their early days, but the bassist said that they weren’t interested in that. The three members of the group, Lee, Alex Lifeson, and Neil Peart, were immune to extraneous influences because of their close friendship and shared artistic vision. In response to a follow-up inquiry about their thoughts on being more palatable to fans of mainstream radio, Geddy said:
That’s what our management and label requested we do. We had different ideals from them when they said that we were destined to be like Bad Company or Led Zeppelin. We weren’t going to back down from the concept album. Rather, we released a more improved one about events in space. It was the album “2112.”
Lee About The Way He Speaks
Earlier in the interview, the interviewer brought up how Lee’s singing voice is frequently made fun of, with comparisons to a “hamster on amphetamines” and comments that it sounds like someone screaming in agony. The rock musician, however, finds these descriptions intriguing, as he clarified, citing a few hard rock vocalists as his sources of inspiration: “Aha! I was influenced by hard-rock screechers like Robert Plant and Steve Marriott. I’ve worked hard to widen my range and become more melodic throughout the years. However, when I go all the way up there, the true fans enjoy it.
Rush’s Recognition Of The Impact Of Led Zeppelin
Rush has never denied the band’s impact on them, even if they declined to follow in Led Zeppelin’s footsteps. The bassist discussed the significant influence of Led Zeppelin’s debut album on the trio in his most recent memoir, “My Effin’ Life,” explaining: “We hurried to our neighborhood Sam the Record Man as soon as their debut album was out of stock, only to discover that word was getting out quickly.” We picked one up when the reorder eventually arrived, drove home, and put it on my turntable. I vividly recall the three of us sitting there in complete amazement on the bed, taking in the fire of “Communication Breakdown,” the heaviness of “Good Times Bad Times,” and that drum sound, oh my! Following his praise for Plant’s broad vocal range, Jimmy Page’s guitar prowess, and John Paul Jones’s bass lines, Geddy talked about:
They had a profoundly positive impact on us. “Heavy metal” wasn’t the right term for Zeppelin. They were so much more than just a heavy metal band, thus it didn’t fit them. Their sound was one of perpetual surprise. They took chances and used influences that other heavy metal bands would never have thought of. In the past, Lee revealed that his fondest concert memory is of Led Zeppelin’s Toronto performance, which he described as a fantastic experience. He remembered how thrilled he and his buddies were to be experiencing every aspect of the event, and how they had spent the entire night getting tickets for this show.