NEIL PEART'S CHROME SLINGERLAND DRUM KIT USED WITH RUSH FROM 1974-1977.
Slingerland Drum Kit including 2 22-inch Bass Drums with chrome wrap including original head; blue resonant heads each with large silver Rush logo and "Neil" on one and "Peart" on the other (originals and additional replicas); 2 13-inch Tom Toms with chrome wrap; 14-inch Tom Tom with chrome wrap and with original head SIGNED by Peart, latter 3 Toms with Set-O-Matic mount; 16-inch Floor Tom with chrome wrap; Set of 4 Concert Toms with copper wrap in 6, 8, 10 & 12-inch. All with 3-ply shells of maple, poplar and mahogany. Kit extended with generally period-correct replacements: 14-inch Slingerland Artist Snare with copper wrap; 2 Zildjian 8-inch Splash Cymbals; Zildjian 13-inch New Beat Hi-Hat Cymbal pair; 2 Zildjian 16-inch Medium Crash Cymbals; Zildjian 18-inch Medium Crash Cymbal; Zildjian 20-inch Medium Crash Cymbal; Zildjian 18-inch pang cymbal; Zildjian 22-inch Ping Ride Cymbal; Ludwig 4-inch Gold Tone Cowbell, model #129; LP Standard Agogo Bells; LP Black Beauty Cowbell; Pearl Tri Bells; LP Rock/Bongo Cowbell; Spectrasound Mark Tree with 35 brass bar Chimes; LP Bell Tree with 28 brass bells; 5-piece Temple Blocks; 2 Ludwig Speed king bass drum pedals; Ludwig Seat Case; Rogers Stick Tray Assembly and with all associated hardware.
Provenance: Purchased by Neil Peart in late July/early August 1974 from Long & McQuade, Toronto; placed in storage in 1977; One of three drum kit's donated by Neil Peart for Modern Drummer Magazine's "Neil Peart Drumset Giveaway" introduced in the March 1987 issue. This set awarded to New York drummer Mark Feldman in the October 1987 issue and with a Letter Signed ("Neil Peart"), 2 pp, Toronto, July 20, 1987, informing Feldman that he was a contest winner and commenting on his submission; sold by Feldman to the present owner.
Exhibited: Rhythm Discovery Center, Indianapolis.
Although Rush had formed as early as 1968 and had even released its eponymous debut album, it wasn't until original drummer John Rutsey left and Neil Peart stepped in that the band's flame was truly ignited. It went from a blues and hard rock band whose first album was considered derivative of Led Zeppelin to a platinum-selling progressive rock powerhouse. Neil Peart not only provided the basis for more complex song structures with his masterful drumming, but by taking over as a lyricist, he freed bassist Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson from a duty they had never wanted so that they could focus on bringing the collective musicianship to another level.
Peart reportedly arrived at his July 1974 audition with Rush in a battered car, wearing shorts and transporting his drum kit in trash cans. Lee and Peart hit it off instantly, although it took Lifeson a bit longer to warm to warm to the drummer. Still, they eventually agreed to invite Peart into the band on July 29 of that year, two weeks before the group's first US tour. Peart purchased a silver Slingerland drum kit from local music store Long & McQuade that he used on his first show with the band, opening for Uriah Heep and Manfred Mann's Earth Band at the Civic Arena in Pittsburgh on August 14, 1974. He played this kit on the breakthrough Fly by Night, Caress of Steel, and 2112, considered among the greatest progressive rock albums of all time. Probably the highest profile live appearance of the kit was the 3-night performance at Toronto's Massey hall when the band's first live album All the World's a Stage was recorded. Peart was introduced at those shows as "the Professor on the drum kit" and his extended drum solo on "Working Man," played on the Slingerland kit, is legendary among fans.
All the World's a Stage marked the end of Rush's first chapter and Peart's Slingerland drum kit was soon afterward retired. Rush had gone from Led Zeppelin wannabes to a US Top-40 charting band with a distinctive sound poised to win fans the world over. The Slingerland kit had been on the road for 5 consecutive US and Canadian tours and was seen by thousands of fans from 1974 through 1977. Neil retired the kit at that time and placed it in storage where it sat until it was brought out a decade later as a prize in Modern Drummer's "Neil Peart Drumset Giveaway."