What I learned about finance from RUSH

Neil Peart

Hidden talents

You probably didn’t know this about me, but I’m an AMAZING Air drummer.  Yup. You heard that right. Air Drummer.

In High School, I had a friend, who has since passed away from testicular cancer, who actually was a very good drummer and in several bands up until the time of his death.

When I used to play the air drums for him, he would marvel at my adept mimicry.

Several bands, were my “go to” mimics.  Van Halen, YES, and RUSH.

Anyone who knows anything about Rush, is aware that their drummer, Neil Peart, is simply amazing at his craft and profession.  It’s mind boggling when you hear or see him play.  I’m glad I had an opportunity to go see him play in Philadelphia.  I don’t usually attend concerts solo, but on that particular occasion I couldn’t find someone else who wanted to go, so I did just that.

This past weekend, flipping through my 25 Showtime channels, I stumbled upon a documentary about the band, which featured their last tour, which occurred in 2015.

Define success

Money has always fascinated me, ever since my sister Judy gave me my first passbook savings account with $5 dollars in it.  The concept that those 5 dollars were sitting in a bank and waiting for me started a never ending journey to add to it. (see more of how this aspect and motivation, develop in my earlier post here)

Attaining wealth or “when we arrive”, is another point of fascination to me.  Quotes like “How many yachts can you water ski behind?” from the movie Wall street, come to mind.

So when I see someone who has attained wealth, I enjoy seeing how they handle it.

Mr. Peart is a shining example of who you might say is incorruptible. At least in his commitment to enjoying aspects of life that are less material in nature.At least that’s the impression I got from watching this documentary movie.  You see Mr. Peart has insisted when the band goes on tour, that he be allowed to ride his motorcycle along the tour route, while moving from city to city.  He rides (on a different motorcycle) with a single security person.

There are several clips in the movie that reveal both his passion and his commitment.

The first is a scene where they are discussing the physical demands of a drummer. Neil Peart said, (paraphrasing) “If I’ve been given this gift, I’m going to perform to the level I expect of myself.”

The second is when he’s reveling in his opportunity to plan a road trip from one concert to the next. He basically says, “When else in my life, will I be able to enjoy the pleasure of planning his scenic route?”.

Maybe it’s just my own comparison to myself and my own failings, but I’ve always thought that when I reach a certain pinnacle, I’ll want to stop.  Do a LOT of navel gazing.  Then have people bring me stuff.  It’s examples like Mr. Peart that truly make me rethink those things and strive to be better, and maybe even possibly help others with my money.

Fountains of inspiration

We’re not talking early retirement here now. We’re talking about being one of the best drummers in the world and still being happy about simple pleasures in life.

There is inspiration everywhere and in everyone for how we look at money and not just how we save it.

Who inspires you to keep striving for your goals?


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  1. You had me at Rush.one of my Top 5 bands and I’ve given countless lectures to people and why Neal Peart is the greatest drummer ever. What I love, and have learned from them, is that they are just group of people that don’t fit the typical mold of rock stars. But they found success because they are passionate and love what they do. Great guys . I really enjoyed the stories and now I want to watch the documentary. You’re right, if you are going to do something, whether it is blogging, finances, or your job, just work hard and do whatever you can to master your craft .

    Thanks for the great read.

    1. I need to join your lecture circuit. There are a lot of connections and lessons learned here. Passion, Not quitting, Changing with the times, 40 year friendships. One of my big takeaways from reflecting, is that it’s ONLY 3 GUYS, making all that amazing, and memorable music. The documentary kept me spellbound and teary eyed and I’m a fringe fan. But always admirer. Check it out. Thanks again for commenting.

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