Far and Away: A Prize Every Time

( 5 )


Rush drummer Peart relates nearly four years of band tours, road trips, and personal discoveries in this introspective travelogue. From the ups and downs of a professional artist to the birth of a child, this revealing narrative recounts 22 adventures from rock's foremost drummer, biker enthusiast, husband, and father.
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Far and Away: A Prize Every Time

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Rush drummer Peart relates nearly four years of band tours, road trips, and personal discoveries in this introspective travelogue. From the ups and downs of a professional artist to the birth of a child, this revealing narrative recounts 22 adventures from rock's foremost drummer, biker enthusiast, husband, and father.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A ride well worth taking for those who seek the journey more than the destination." —Kirkus (April 1, 2011)

Kirkus Reviews

From one of rock's most revered drummers, ruminations on motorcycling, drumming, the joys of fatherhood and the exquisite pleasure of simply enjoying the journey.

As the lyricist for Canadian progressive hard-rock trio Rush, Peart's (Roadshow: Landscape with Drums: A Concert Tour by Motorcycle, 2007) inimitable way with words is well-known to the band's fan base, if occasionally derided by music critics. What many may not know, however, is that the self-described "left-leaning libertarian" is equally adept at translating his philosophy into prose, as evidenced by this book, in which he continues to chronicle his unique method of getting to work—eschewing the company of his band mates in favor of motorcycling between concert venues—as a means of exploring the world around him and his place within it. Despite having experienced tremendous tragedy in recent years (including the deaths of his daughter and first wife), the author evinces such tremendous joy in discovering new off-the-beaten-paths, relishing a second chance at fatherhood, and in the simple act of learning, that it's easy to forgive some of his more awkward attempts at humor—even those missteps tend to come off as oddly endearing, conveying a rare and unselfconscious genuineness. Perhaps the book's best and moist poignant chapter is "The Best February Ever," in which the author describes the bucolic setting surrounding his sanctuary in Quebec. His description of nights spent alone sipping Macallan before a roaring fire while losing himself in great books and days spent cross-country skiing over an unbroken winter landscape while focusing on simply appreciating the heart-breaking majesty of the world around him will instantly transport readers to a more relaxed state of mind—and quite possibly drive hordes of peace seekers northward.

Not without potholes, but a ride well worth taking for those who seek the journey more than the destination.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781770410596
  • Publisher: ECW Press
  • Publication date: 9/1/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 280
  • Sales rank: 160,914
  • Product dimensions: 7.90 (w) x 9.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Neil Peart is the drummer and lyricist of the legendary rock band Rush, and the author of "Ghost Rider," "The Masked Rider," "Traveling Music," and "Roadshow." He lives in Los Angeles.
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Read an Excerpt

JULY 2007

With only a few days at home after the first leg of the Snakes and Arrows tour (sixteen shows, 7,257 miles of motorcycling), this will definitely be the “short version.” Still, I wanted to try to put up something new.

Photographs of the performances are plentifully available elsewhere (my view of the audience this tour is studded with innumerable cell–phone cameras, sticking up like periscopes), so I thought I might just display a couple of motorcycling photos. On this tour Michael and I haven’t even carried cameras with us on the bikes, let alone bothered to ease our steady pace to take photos, but recently we had a camerahappy “guest rider,” Richard S. Foster. The name might ring a bell to dedicated readers of album credits—our song “Red Barchetta” had a note on the lyric sheet: “Inspired by ‘A Nice Morning Drive’ by Richard S. Foster.”

Rick (as he is known to his friends, among whom I now number myself) tells our long story in another forum, and it’s quite an amazing sequence of coincidences and synchronicities. (See photo credits for details.)

The short version (I keep saying that) is that despite my attempts back in 1980 to contact the author of the short story that had inspired “Red Barchetta”—a story I had read in a 1973 issue of Road & Track— we only recently managed to actually make contact.

Rick rode with Michael and me through the back roads (the very back roads) of West Virginia for a couple of days between shows in near– D.C. and near–Pittsburgh (so many of those amphitheaters are in the exurbs), and then he attended his first Rush concert in (or near) Boston.

But that’s his story, and I’ll leave it to him to tell. Michael only left Rick with one request, from the movie Almost Famous, when the singer says to the young journalist, “Just make us look cool.”

(How well Rick succeeded with that challenge, the reader may judge by his story.)

For Michael and me, it was great just to have some photographs of us riding—something we do every day, after all, so it is nice to have it documented like that. After last tour, when I was constantly so intent on note–gathering for the book that became Roadshow, this time I have been feeling a real sense of freedom—the freedom of not having to document anything. I can simply experience it, think about it or not, and let the day flow by me as it will.

That being said, so far this tour has certainly been worthy of a book, too, in its way. I kind of wish someone else was writing one about it, but I don’t think it will be me. My journal notes consist only of our daily mileages—though I couldn’t resist noting a couple of church signs: “GIVE SATAN AN INCH, SOON HE’LL BE A RULER,” and one I just love: “TO ERR IS HUMAN, BUT IT CAN BE OVERDONE.” So good. And I admire it not only for the worthy sentiment, but for the perfect phrasing, too.

Another church sign caught my eye because of the word “faithless,” as in our song on Snakes and Arrows. This one seemed kind of mean, though: “AND JESUS REPLIED, SAYING, ‘YOU ARE A FAITHLESS AND PERVERSE GENERATION.’” I assured Michael that he was the only one of us who was both.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 4
( 5 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 5 Customer Reviews
  • Posted July 13, 2012

    Vivid travelog sprinkled with anecdotes

    Neil Peart, in addition to being one of my drum Gods, is also a very vivid and engaging writer. I have read all of his other books and this continues in the tradition of "you are there with him" travels around the USA and other places. His vivid descriptions of places and communities are interwoven with anecdotes about his band RUSH, and his personal life. Even if you don't ride a motorcycle, his overt enthusiasm for touring on his BMW will put you in the drivers seat and make you want to get touring bike. His appreciation and descriptive acumen make for a quick and immersive read. It's tone is very much brighter than Ghost Rider, and while it does center mostly on the road. It takes you from place A to B in a charming, masterfully written manner. It's also a cautionary tale of putting too much faith in a GPS unit. Highly recommended.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 22, 2012

    Lack of pictures decreases the value of this book!

    I have the hardcover of this book, and it is fantastic. I was going on a trip, and thought I'd get the Nook version to read on my iPad, but there are very few pictures in it at all. Without the pictures, there is very little value in getting this for your Nook. I definitely recommend the hardcover, though!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 5, 2012

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 27, 2011

    No text was provided for this review.

  • Anonymous

    Posted January 1, 2012

    No text was provided for this review.

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