Author Topic: In Memoriam  (Read 37063 times)

Offline perc2100

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Re: In Memoriam
« Reply #390 on: January 13, 2020, 10:12:46 AM »
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Neil Pratt was an amazing drummer.  Saw Rush live a few times.
This was a death of a person I have zero relations to that has hit me pretty hard.  The only other celebrity death that wrecked me was Stanley Kubrick because that also felt pretty out-of-the-blue (and Kubrick was in the process of finishing EYES WIDE SHUT so dying at the end of working on a film felt even more devastating to me - especially when there was a bit of uncertainty of what would happen with the notorious control-freak's final film still in post-production).
For reference, I'm both a music teacher and a drummer.  While Neil Peart is undoubtedly one of the greatest drummers of his generation, and maybe just as talented a song writer as drummer, it was his insane work ethic that was inspiration to me as a young drummer in my formidable years.  Peart was an incredibly intense musician: one who felt like anytime he had sticks in hand it was business time and he owed it to his bandmates and especially his fans to be impeccably perfect at all time.  Most people know Peart as a drummer of a Prog-Rock band with one of the most intricate drum sets around.  While that was his bread & butter, it was his work as a jazz drummer that blew me away.

In 1994, he was asked to play at the Buddy Rich Memorial Scholarship concert: where the best drummers in the world would be asked to sit in with Buddy Rich Big Band for a couple charts, a solo, and then a trio at the end of the set with two other drummers (the concerts typically had 6 per Concert, with the Concerts happening every couple of years beginning in 1989).  Peart grew up with a dad who was into jazz music but like any good teenager he rejected the music of his parents and forged his own path.  He showed up to the gig with a fairly simplistic 4-piece set, after spending months analyzing Buddy's music.  Shortly after, he took lessons that broke down his technique and rebuilt himself back up: he essentially reinvented himself both mechanically & feel-wise.

His dedication to his craft inspired me as a music major in college, at first struggling to build skillsets I sorely lacked.  When you're a young musician, you often assume the greats have natural talent and don't have to work like us mere mortals.  When I read an interview with Neil in a 'Modern Drummer' talking about his hard work trying to bring a 'weak spot' of his world up to his incredibly high standards of Rush, it blew me away & inspired me.  Some bands have fun and are much looser live than on albums (Beastie Boys were notorious for this - note, I _LOVE_ B-boys and seeing them live is a GOAT memory for me) but Rush was almost impeccable as a live act: they knew gigs would be their bread-and-butter, and they put in the rigorous time to be great live.
That work ethic struck a chord with me, and inspired me to dig in and better hone my craft.  I was never a huge fan of Rush (though I always admired the hell out of all three musicians), but it was impossible to be a drummer in the 1990's and not cross paths with Neil Peart drum set licks to practice: his fills and solos were incredibly musical as well as technically choppy and intense!  His approach to his work, though, is what inspired me the most.

When I heard he died Friday afternoon I was almost devastated.  He was young, and he kept his brain cancer a secret from the public: this felt way out of the blue.  While Geddy Lee's voice is a turn-off for me to really love the band, their talent was impossible to ignore & I listened to a LOT of their records and charts this weekend remembering all the great things about Peart.

Here's a video of Peart looking _almost_ nervous driving the Buddy Rich Big Band in the early 1990s with a stripped-down (for him) 4-piece drums set:

Offline AzT

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Re: In Memoriam
« Reply #391 on: January 14, 2020, 07:19:49 PM »
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Quote
It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Stan Kirsch.

Without Stan Kirsch, Highlander: The Series would have been far less. He brought a sense of humor, kindness and youthful enthusiasm to the character of Richie Ryan for six seasons.

Stan was at a disadvantage compared to other actors portraying immortals on the series. He was never able to have flashbacks from the 1800's or discuss how things were ‘back in his day’. However, Stan turned this situation into an opportunity; providing one of the few portrayals on the show where a character gradually grew into a wise, skilled and self-assured individual from episode to episode. Stan even changed himself physically to show how Richie Ryan would survive in the world of the immortals.

Although Richie Ryan’s life was cut short on the show, there was little more to see; Richie Ryan had evolved into his own man, and it was Stan’s performance that made it true.

Beyond Highlander: The Series, Stan Kirsch was an accomplished acting coach. We have heard first-hand testimonials from many of his students; all of them having considered Stan an incredible teacher and a gift of a human being.

Every time we had the opportunity to catch up with Stan, he was nothing but kind, thoughtful and sincere. He was a warm presence that will be missed.

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Re: In Memoriam
« Reply #392 on: Today at 03:09:55 AM »

Offline rabbitwarren

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Re: In Memoriam
« Reply #392 on: January 16, 2020, 01:01:51 PM »
Christopher Tolkien, son of JRR Tolkien and the one who really expanded Middle Earth beyond the LOTR Trilogy/Hobbit, died at 95 years of age.  If anyone has read the Histories of Middle Earth, you will understand the amount of work he put into this. 

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Re: In Memoriam
« Reply #393 on: Today at 03:09:55 AM »