Rush drummer Neil Peart dead at 67

'Our friend, soul brother and band mate of over 45 years, Neil, has lost his incredibly brave three-and-a-half year battle with brain cancer'

Neil Peart, drummer and lyricist for iconic Canadian rock band Rush, has died at the age of 67 following a battle with cancer.

Peart’s Rush bandmates released a statement Friday.

“It is with broken hearts and the deepest sadness that we must share the terrible news,” read the statement.

“(Our) friend, soul brother and band mate of over 45 years, Neil, has lost his incredibly brave three-and-a-half year battle with brain cancer.”

View this post on Instagram

Neil Peart September 12, 1952 – January 7, 2020

A post shared by Rush (@rush) on

Peart, who was born in Hamilton, Ontario, replaced original Rush drummer John Rutsey in 1974 after the release of their first album. The band would become one of the most celebrated Canadian rock groups of all-time, behind the strength of iconic albums such as 2112 (1976), Hemispheres (1978), and Moving Pictures (1981).

Peart’s precision drumming helped define Rush’s unmistakable prog-rock sound. The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.

Peart is survived by his wife, Carrie, and their daughter, Olivia Louise Peart.

Image via Flickr/Josh Tidsbury