Rush Declined Offer of Las Vegas Residency Before Drummer Neil Peart’s Death
Rush drummer Neil Peart died last week, aged 67, after a quiet battle with brain cancer. But although the Canadian rock legends last performed in 2015, an offer was still on the table that year for them to mount a concert residency in Las Vegas. It's a request the band reportedly refused multiple times.
That's according to Las Vegas Review-Journal columnist John Katsilometes. Shortly after Peart's Jan. 7 death, Katsilometes recalled a conversation with Bobby Reynolds, senior vice president for AEG Live in Las Vegas.
"That would be my dream residency," the journalist told Reynolds of the proposed string of concerts for late 2015 or early 2016, shortly after what would be Rush's last world tour with Peart. "I would be there every night."
Answered Reynolds, "Las Vegas would have been the only place you could see Rush, and I think it would have been incredible. I know their popularity, and their fans are all over North America and Canada. You look at that opportunity now — we'll never know what it would have meant."
However, although the AEG Live executive "put every kind of damn offer you can put in front of Rush" around that time, the group never took him up on the proposal. (Obviously, both Reynolds and Katsilometes are big Rush fans, with Reynolds revealing that Rush was his first-ever concert experience.)
The residency would've had Rush "playing T-Mobile Arena maybe four or six weekends a year," mirroring a similar residency from country icon George Strait, who had also quit touring. These days, concert residencies in Las Vegas are growing in popularity among rock's elite. Aerosmith, Def Leppard and David Lee Roth are a few who have recently booked them.
Alas, Rush's last Vegas concert was at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in 2015 during the band's "R40 Live" 40th-anniversary tour. They would go on to play three more shows over July and August 2015 before Peart's death nearly five years later.
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