Neil Peart’s iconic Rush drum kit sells for $500,000 at auction

Peart’s iconic chrome Slingerland set shattered the $100,000 price tag it was originally expected to fetch

The drum kit played by Rush drummer Neil Peart between 1974-1977 has sold at auction for just over $500,000 (£379,000).

Peart’s iconic chrome Slingerland set, which he used for recordings and live performances, went under the hammer as part of Bonhams’ Music Memorabilia auction last week, ending on Thursday (December 10).

The coveted kit, which features dual blue heads printed with Rush’s logo and Neil Peart’s name, as well as chrome-wrapped Tom-toms with an original head signed by Peart himself, was expected to fetch somewhere between $104,000 (£77,695) and $157,000 (£117,290).

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That estimation, however, was shattered as the drummer’s hardware was sold for just over half a million dollars — $500,312, to be exact.

As the Bonhams listing explained, the kit was purchased by Peart in 1974 from Toronto’s Long & McQuade music store shortly after he joined the iconic band.

Neil Peart of Rush
Neil Peart of Rush. CREDIT: Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic

Peart used the kit for his first performance with the band on August 14, 1974 and it acted as his main drum set until 1977.

Albums such as ‘Fly By Night’, ‘Caress Of Steel’ and ‘2112’ were all recorded with the kit, alongside the band’s first live album ‘All The World’s A Stage’ during Rush’s three-night residency at Toronto’s Massey Hall.

A decade later, the Rush drummer donated the prized kit for a Modern Drummer giveaway. Winner Mark Feldman later sold the kit to the person who put it up for auction last week.

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Peart, who was widely considered to be one of the greatest drummers of all time, passed away in January after a lengthy battle with brain cancer.

Leading tributes from famous fans, Dave Grohl called Peart “a kind, thoughtful, brilliant man.”

“Today, the world lost a true giant in the history of rock and roll,” he said. “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.”

He added: “I still vividly remember my first listen of ‘2112’ when I was young. 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.”

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