Dave Grohl has joined the growing list of rock icons who have weighed in over the loss of Neil Peart. The former Rush drummer died at the age of 67 earlier this week after battling brain cancer for the past few years. Along with music fans who have lit up social media, the Foo Fighters frontman gave a statement on the importance of the legacy Peart has left behind in a statement to Rolling Stone.
"Today, the world lost a true giant in the history of rock 'n' roll," the statement began. "An inspiration to millions with an unmistakable sound who spawned generations of musicians (like myself) to pick up two sticks and chase a dream. A kind, thoughtful, brilliant man who ruled our radios and turntables not only with his drumming but also his beautiful words."
The last remark is likely a reference to Peart's contribution to Rush's lyrics in addition to his work behind the drumkit for 47 years.
"I still vividly remember my first listen of 2112 when I was young," Grohl continued. "It was the first time I really listened to a drummer. And since that day, music has never been the same. His power, precision, and composition was incomparable. He was called 'The Professor' for a reason: We all learned from him."
This isn't the first time the former Nirvana drummer has sang the praises of the band's 1976 album to Rolling Stone. Seven years ago, he said that "it f------ changed the direction of my life. I heard the drums. It made me want to become a drummer."
Grohl's words come alongside other rock legends, including Kiss founding members Paul Stanley and Gene Simmons, as well as The Beach Boys' Brian Wilson. Peart's former bandmates, Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson, also released a formal statement, offering their condolences to his family.
Peart passed away due to complications from Glioblastoma on Tuesday, though news wasn't made public until earlier today.
Considered to be one of the greatest rock drummers of all time, Peart played with Rush from their founding in 1968 until their farewell tour back in 2015. It was Peart's ongoing issues with chronic tendonitis that prompted his retirement from the stage to spend more time with his family. That same year, he told Drumhead Magazine that " it does not pain me to realize that, like all athletes, there comes a time to… take yourself out of the game."