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Sundays 8pm to 11pm on Radio 2
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Neil Peart is the thinking person's rock star. As drummer and lyricist for Rush, Neil fueled the band's huge, complex sound - and influenced the way it 'thinks'. Over the years, he's referenced Greek mythology, Hemingway and the novelist-philosopher Ayn Rand. Pretty heady stuff for a rock band. And what a band: 37 years and still going; 19 original studio albums; more than 40 million records sold.
Neil grew up in the farmlands of southern Ontario. As a kid, he saw a film about the big-band drummer Gene Krupa. Being a drummer looked exciting, glamorous and dangerous. So at 13, Neil started taking lessons and got into rock drummers like John Bonham and Keith Moon. In 1974, he joined Rush. And before you know it, they were one of the world's biggest bands.
Then, after more than 20 years of success, the unthinkable happened. In 1997, in less than a year, Neil lost both his 19-year-old daughter and his wife of 22 years. Overwhelmed by loss, he went on a personal odyssey - a 14-month motorcycle trip across North America, through Mexico to Belize and back. He chronicled it all in the book 'Ghost Rider'. In all, Neil has published five books about his travels on the open road. The latest is called 'Far And Away: A Prize Every Time'. It's an intimate travelogue that spans four years in the life of an artist, husband and new father.