Music stars react to Rush drummer Neil Peart's death

Mat Hayward/Getty ImagesThe music world is reeling from the news announced today that Rush drummer Neil Peart died on Tuesday after a three-and-a-half-year battle with brain cancer. A variety of artists from across the rock spectrum have paid homage to Peart with messages posted on their Twitter feeds.

Here are some of the tributes:

Yes: “Neil Peart was one of the most innovative and exciting drummers and lyricists in the history of music. An inspiration to millions and a true gentleman. Our heartfelt condolences go out to Neil’s family, friends and fans – from all of us in YES.”

Heart‘s Nancy Wilson: “So sad to learn Neil is gone. What a immense talent and influence on the course of rock music for all time. He was such a magical cornerstone in the Temple of Rush. Rush is forever timeless.”

Robbie Robertson: “Rest easy Neil Peart. A true Canadian icon and musical genius.”

Billy Corgan: “[Peart’s] influence on the Smashing Pumpkins is indelible: giving us wings to soar with and a road map to ultimately find our own way. There isn’t a modern rock drummer alive who hasn’t heard him, and spoken his name with a reverence that is reserved for the very few. And as a lyricist, Mr. Peart is without compare. I am forever in his debt, and humbled to say that though I never met him, I feel I knew him as a friend. Which brings to mind his great line, ‘I can’t pretend a stranger is a long-awaited friend…’ May God embrace you, Neil, as His own.”

Foo FightersDave Grohl: “Today, the world lost a true giant in the history of rock & roll. An inspiration to millions with an unmistakable sound who spawned generations of musicians (like myself) to pick up two sticks and chase a dream. A kind, thoughtful, brilliant man who ruled our radios and turntables not only with his drumming, but also his beautiful words…I still vividly remember my first listen of 2112 when I was young. It was the first time I really listened to a drummer. And since that day, music has never been the same. His power, precision, and composition was incomparable. He was called ‘The Professor’ for a reason: We all learned from him.”

Foo FightersTaylor Hawkins: “Neil Peart had the hands of God…End of story.”

Bryan Adams: “RIP Neil Peart drummer for Canadian rock band #Rush Condolences to his family and fellow band members Geddy and Alex.”

Styx‘s Tommy Shaw:”So heartbreaking to hear that Neil Peart has left us. My deepest sympathies to Alex, Geddy and the entire RUSH family. His magnificent array of drums and his distinctive style made an indelible impression on millions of aspiring young drummers. There appeared to be no half measures with him unless they were ones written into the progressive arrangements of Rush songs.”

Original Guess Who frontman Burton Cummings: “Rest in peace Neil Peart, the one of a kind drummer from Rush…I never met the man personally, but I know he was one hell of a creative force, and heralded as a rock god in many countries far and wide. I understand he was suffering from illness the last few years, and at least now he can be at peace. R.I.P. Neil, you are missed and remembered by millions.”

Black Sabbath‘s Bill Ward: “Red Barchetta is sad today, and fondly reminding my wife and I of places long gone, but still sweet in our hearts. What is left is a life’s work to praise, converse about, to be in awe of, knowing the world is a better place for your triumphs. What you did in the moments you had, what you created, lends itself to the richness of life, and for those who embraced your passion and love, I believe we are better for it.”

KISSGene Simmons: “My prayers and condolences to the Peart Family, Fans and Friends. Neil was a kind soul. R.I.P.”

KISSPaul Stanley: “Absolutely Horrible News. [Neil] Peart has died after fighting brain cancer for years. His later life was filled with so much family tragedy. So, so sad. I’m just shocked.”

Founding KISS drummer Peter Criss: “R.I.P. Neil. A true legend. Your music will live on forever. God bless.”

KISSTommy Thayer: “So sad to hear about Neil Peart passing. My deepest condolences to his family, friends and fans.”

Tom Morello: “When [Rush] was inducted into the [Rock Hall] the place went APES*** beyond any other artist in the history of the Hall. Check it. Rest In Peace Maestro.”

Jane’s Addiction‘s Stephen Perkins: “Long Live Neil Peart”

Brian Wilson: “I just heard about Neil Peart passing. I feel real bad about this – he was way too young. Neil was one of the great drummers and he’ll be missed. Love & mercy to Neil’s family.”

Metallica‘s Kirk Hammett: “RIP to a master”

Journey‘s Arnel Pineda: “DeepCondolences to #GeddyLee & #AlexLifeson for the passing of their beloved brother #NeilPeart…may he #RestInPeace #RushForever #RushBand”

Poison‘s Rikki Rockett: “Godspeed #neilpeart. You will always be the Professor On The Drum Kit. R.I.P. and may God bless your legacy.”

Styx‘s Todd Sucherman: “He had his own voice on the instrument but even more, he had his own literary voice. Lyrically unique, and he lived through such unimaginable tragedy and ultimately came out the other side to continue his life passionately…In particular 2112 through Signals loomed large in my childhood. I learned every single note of Moving Pictures when I was in 6th grade. That record still can catapult me back to those days.”

Megadeth‘s David Ellefson: “What an incredibly sad moment. Neil, Geddy & Alex changed my life as a young aspiring musician. Condolences to the family and @rushtheband organization.”

Richard Marx: “RIP #NeilPeart You were a sensational musician, and a wonderful writer (everyone should read Ghost Rider) but best of all, you were a great friend to my brother from another mother @VerticalHorizon Rest easy. Matt [Scannell of Vertical Horizon] will proudly honor your memory.” 

Marx is referring to the fact that Peart co-wrote a song on Vertical Horizon’s 2009 album Burning the Days and also drummed on three of the album’s tracks.

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