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Alex Lifeson gave one of the most memorable speeches in Rock & Roll Hall of Fame induction ceremony history. When Rush was finally inducted into the Rock Hall in 2013, his speech was a bizarre, yet, emotionally ranging two minutes of saying the word “blah” over and over. (You can see it in its entirety below at the 4:14 mark.)

So, what did bandmates Geddy Lee and Neil Peart think of this moment? Not much. In fact, Lifeson said, “They wanted to kill me. They were really upset.”

Lifeson made these comments in a 2019 interview with Planet Rock magazine (h/t Classic Rock.) The “blah” idea came to Lifeson during a brief rehearsal for the Rock Hall ceremony. Instead of relying on a teleprompter, he wanted to memorize his speech, but he was having trouble doing so.

RELATED: Alex Lifeson on Nandi Bushell's Neil Peart Tribute: 'You Brought a Tear to my Eye'

He started second-guessing whether he’d have the guts to do such a thing. Lifeson then ran the idea past his wife during the ceremony, and she wasn’t terribly impressed with it either. However, he stuck to his guns and went with his plan.

“All these people were getting up and giving these long-winded speeches, most of which were really f-cking boring,” recalled Lifeson. “I thought, ‘Here we are in the Rock & Roll Hall Of Fame – isn’t rock supposed to be irreverent?'”

Lifeson then added that part of the reason Lee and Peart were upset was due to the fact both of them preceded him with really poignant speeches. The bassist and drummer eventually got over it though, particularly Peart.

Lifeson said, “The following day I got an email from Neil saying, ‘I owe you an apology the size of Texas. I am so sorry that I got upset. I’ve been inundated with emails from everybody I know saying, Wasn’t Alex’s speech great?’ So I was vindicated!”


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Erica Banas is a rock/classic rock news blogger who's well-versed in etiquette and extraordinarily nice. #TransRightsAreHumanRights

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