Renowned musician Geddy Lee of Rush is often held in high regard within the music realm. However, during a candid conversation with Ultimate Guitar, Gene Simmons brought to light the individualistic nature of every musician.
This discussion stemmed from Simmons realizing, during an impromptu jamming session, that Lee had a different perspective on music.
As the conversation took a deeper dive into the subject of teaching music, Simmons touched upon some iconic figures, including John Lennon, Paul McCartney, Jimi Hendrix, and Buddy Rich, noting that they too couldn’t read or write music. This led to Simmons sharing an intriguing story about Geddy Lee.
Simmons recollected, “A lesser-known fact is that KISS was the band that introduced Rush to their first-ever tour. We were fans of their ‘Working Man’ phase, reminiscent of a Canadian Led Zeppelin. We had some great times, full of camaraderie and light moments.”
He continued, “During one of our casual sit-downs, while trying out some tunes, I proposed a blues scale. To my surprise, Geddy wasn’t familiar with the terminology or the ‘1,4,5’ sequence, a basic concept in music theory. Even when I broke it down and mentioned the G note, he seemed puzzled. But that’s the beauty of it – Geddy was a genius who initially played by instinct and sensation. Of course, with time, he got more into the technicalities,” the KISS frontman shared.
Drawing parallels, Simmons pointed out another iconic figure, saying, “A similar story is that of The Edge from U2. His signature ‘jingle-jangle’ sound was birthed from his initial inability to play chords. He adapted by strumming distinct notes, leading to the unique sound U2 is known for today. Music, in its essence, isn’t always about