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Rush Founder Dies

05/13/2008
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The following story was part of the Day in Rock Report for 5/13/08 - (antiMusic) John Rutsey, a founding member of Rush passed away on Sunday, according to a report by Q107 Classic Rock, who cites Rush's management company as the source of the news. He was 55. At press time an official cause of death had not been disclosed but Rutsey did have diabetes. Rush has not yet made a statement.

Here is what Wikipedia has on John Rutsey: a former drummer, most recognized for being a co-founding member of Rush along with Alex Lifeson and Jeff Jones (who was shortly replaced by Geddy Lee). He was the band's drummer from summer 1968 to July 1974. Rutsey played on the "Not Fade Away"/"You Can't Fight It" single and the eponymous debut LP, after which he quit the band, citing creative differences and health concerns related to his diabetes that may have posed potential problems with extended tours.

Rush's self-titled debut album was released in March 1974, and Rutsey left soon after in July 1974. Neil Peart joined that same month, and played his first show on August 14, 1974. In a 1989 Rockline interview, Lifeson remarked, "John's still around. I see John quite often. He gave up playing shortly after he left the band and went into bodybuilding.

"He competed on an amateur level for a while, doing that for a few years, and has sort of been in and out of that, but he still works out, and I work out with him a few times a week at a local gym - at a Gold's, here in Toronto." In a recent interview on the VH1 Classic show "Hangin' With," Alex revealed that he had quit seeing John around 1990.

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