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Primus Announce Rush Tribute Tour With Wolfmother, The Sword & Battles


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Confirming the previous rumors, Primus will indeed be covering Rush‘s “A Farewell to Kings” album on their spring/summer tour which has been christened the ‘A Tribute To Kings Tour‘. The album performance will be part of a nightly two-set performance from Primus on the run with the other to find them playing a set of their own fan favorites.

Interestingly, the wheels were in motion on the tour last year, long before the death of Rush drummer Neil Peart this past January to brain cancer. Speaking with Rollingstone.com about the run, Primus frontman/bassist Les Claypool revealed that they had initially planned to do the tour last fall until the opportunity to tour with Slayer came up.

As to how it feels to now undertake the tour with Peart having since passed away, Claypool told the aforementioned publication:

“Well, it makes the plans a little more.…We’re trying to be as sensitive as we possibly can, so it doesn’t appear like we’re just jumping on the, “Hey, a superhero has died — let’s go out and do a tribute to him” type thing. So we’re trying to be sensitive to that, and also Neil was a very, very, very private person, so I don’t know how much he would want this or his family would want us talking about a lot of this stuff anyway.

So I had known he had been sick for a while. Stewart [Copeland] was pretty close to him up ’til the end, so I would get little reports through Stewart every now and again as to what was happening. So it wasn’t a huge surprise, but it’s still a very jolting thing. When your heroes and friends start to leave the planet, it snaps you to.”

Regarding why they chose the “Farewell To Kings” record, he responded:

“Well, like I said, originally we’d always kind of joked around about doing ‘Hemispheres‘. That record has always had a very big place in my heart and head. But as we got to thinking about the record and how to tackle it — because it’s not going to be an easy feat, on many levels: A) I gotta try to sing Geddy Lee shit [laughs].

His older stuff is up in the stratosphere. I was texting with Geddy and saying, “Man, is any of this falsetto, or…?” And he was like, “Nope, that’s my full voice.” So I might need some help from the audience on some of this stuff. I gotta play the keyboard parts.

But we settled on Kings, because A) it was the first Rush record I ever heard and B) it contains “Cygnus X-1,” which has always been my favorite Rush tune. It seems to be a good one for us to tackle; ‘2112‘ seemed a little obvious.”

Claypool also released a statement regarding the tour which can be read below:

“A little over one year ago, Ler LaLonde and I started kicking the idea around of Primus performing a series of shows featuring an iconic Rush album from our youth

Being that ‘A Farewell to Kings‘ was the first Rush record I ever heard, and that it contains my all-time favorite Rush tune, “Cygnus X1“, the choice narrowed quickly.

Years ago, I had done something similar with Colonel Claypool’s Fearless Flying Frog Brigade, when we covered Pink FloydAnimals‘ in its entirety. It was an insane amount of work, but ended up being one of the most enjoyable live endeavors I’ve ever done.

Dubbing the tour ‘Primus: A Tribute to Kings‘; it was originally scheduled to be performed in the Fall of 2019, but when we were asked to support Slayer on their Final Campaign, the “Tribute to Kings” tour was postponed.

Geddy, Alex and Neil had been superheroes to Larry, Herb and I in our teens, so when we all became pals while touring together in the early 90’s, we were pretty delighted; partially because of the musical geek-out factor, but mostly because the three guys whom we had admired so much from afar, turned out to be truly great, down-to-earth humans, and like us, a tad eccentric.

The “Tribute to Kings” tour will be just as it is implied, a respectful and loving tribute to three spectacular musicians, songwriters, legends and friends.”

The dates for the trek can be found below with Wolfmother, The Sword and Battles among the openers on select dates:

With Wolfmother & The Sword:

05/26 Irving, TX – The Pavilion at Toyota Music Factory (tickets)
05/27 Houston, TX – Revention Music Center (tickets)
05/29 Austin, TX – ACL Live at the Moody Theater (tickets)
05/30 New Orleans, LA – Saenger Theater (tickets)
06/01 Asheville, NC – ExploreAsheville.com Arena (tickets)
06/03 Orlando, FL – Hard Rock Live Orlando (tickets)
06/05 Atlanta, GA – Coca-Cola Roxy (tickets)
06/06 Charlotte, NC – Charlotte Metro Credit Union Amphitheatre (tickets)
06/07 Raleigh, NC – Red Hat Amphitheater (tickets)
06/09 Cincinnati, OH – PNC Pavilion (tickets)
06/10 Columbus, OH – Express Live! – Outdoor (tickets)
06/12 Manchester, TN – Bonnaroo Arts And Music Festival (tickets)
06/15 Richmond, VA – Virginia Credit Union LIVE!
06/16 Baltimore, MD – MECU Pavilion (tickets)
06/17 New York, NY – Beacon Theatre (tickets)
06/19 Philadelphia, PA – The Met Philadelphia (tickets)
06/20 Asbury Park, NJ – The Stone Pony Summer Stage (tickets)
06/21 Essex Junction, VT – Midway Lawn at Champlain Valley Exposition (tickets)
06/23 Boston, MA – Rockland Trust Bank Pavilion (tickets)
06/24 Wallingford, CT – Toyota Oakdale Theatre (tickets)
06/26 Sterling Heights, MI – Michigan Lottery Amphitheatre at Freedom Hill (tickets)
06/27 Cleveland, OH – Jacobs Pavilion at Nautica (tickets)
06/28 Pittsburgh, PA – Stage AE – Outdoor (tickets)
06/30 Toronto, ON – RBC Echo Beach (tickets)

With Wolfmother:

07/02 Lafayette, NY – Beak and Skiff Apple Orchards (tickets)
07/03 Westbrook ME – Main Savings Pavilion at Rock Row (Primus only) (tickets)

With Wolfmother & Battles:

07/06 Indianapolis, IN – The Amphitheater at White River State Park (tickets)
07/07 Milwaukee, WI – BMO Harris Pavilion (tickets)
07/08 Minneapolis, MN – The Armory (tickets)
07/10 Chicago, IL – The Chicago Theatre (tickets)
07/11 St Louis, MO – Saint Louis Music Park (tickets)
07/12 Kansas City, MO – CrossroadsKC (tickets)
07/14 Denver, CO – The Mission Ballroom (tickets)
07/15 Salt Lake City, UT – The Complex (tickets)
07/17 Berkeley, CA – Greek Theater (tickets)
07/18 Los Angeles, CA – Greek Theatre (tickets)
07/19 Las Vegas, NV – Pearl Concert Theater at Palms Casino Resort (tickets)
07/21 Boise, ID – Outlaw Field at Idaho Botanical Garden (tickets)
07/23 Bonner, MT – KettleHouse Amphitheater (tickets)
07/24 Redmond, WA – Marymoor Park
07/25 Troutdale, OR – Edgefield
07/28 Spokane, WA – Riverfront Park Amphitheater
07/29 Bend, OR – Les Schwab Amphitheater (tickets)
07/31 Paso Robles, CA – Vina Robles Amphitheatre (tickets)
08/01 San Diego, CA – Cal Coast Credit Union Open Air Theatre at SDSU (tickets)
08/02 Phoenix, AZ – Arizona Federal Theatre

Artist pre-sales will go on sale tomorrow, February 19th, at 10am local time. The general public on sale will go up this Friday, February 21st, at 10am local time.

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