Geddy Lee reflected on the passing of Foo Fighters drummer Taylor Hawkins in a new interview.
Appearing with Alex Lifeson on House of Strombo in honor of the 40th anniversary reissue of Moving Pictures, Lee said of Hawkins’ sudden passing, “Heartbreaking — just heartbreaking. That really broke my heart, his passing. [He was] so full of life. I remember when he presented the [Rock And Roll] Hall Of Fame award to us in 2013 and we came up on stage, he was literally jumping up and down like a two-year-old. He was jumping up and down, he was so happy. And that was him. He was so full of admiration and rock and roll joy juice. And it just seems wrong that he left us.”
Lee would add, “He just sent me an e-mail like a month ago. Just checking in. That’s what he would do; he would just check in.”
Lee also touched on what it was like to lose Neil Peart back in January 2020 and what it was like to have to grieve that loss publicly due to Rush’s legendary status. Due to the band being public figures, Lee said that’s why Peart didn’t want to go public with his diagnosis of glioblastoma.
“He wanted to keep it in the house, ” said Lee. “And we did. And that was hard. I can’t tell you it was easy, ’cause it was not easy. And it was ongoing. His diagnosis was… He was given 18 months at the most, and it went on three and a half years. And so that was a constant flow of us going to see him, giving him support. What his family had to live through was really difficult. So it was a lot of back-and-forth.”
Lee continued, “And when you’re in that state, it’s very hard to function normally, because you can’t talk to anybody about it, ’cause no one’s supposed to know. And so people hear rumblings and they bring things up to you, and you deflect it. And so that feels, on one hand, it feels dishonest, but on the other hand you’re being loyal to your friend. So f— the dishonesty part. That wins. I would say that was the most difficult time for us to move forward, during that whole thing, because we were in this bubble of grief sort of walking towards an inevitable and terrible conclusion.”