We sometimes think strange thoughts about our heroes. I had pondered that question every once in a while about one of my heroes, Neil Peart, who loomed large as the most important drum teacher in my life. Not in person, of course. But via Rush’s extensive catalog, I – along with tens of thousands of other drummers – grew and learned a vast vocabulary under the tutelage of my “virtual” professor.

Sadly, the question that I had asked myself periodically over the years was answered all too abruptly last week when I learned, along with the rest of the world, that Peart had passed away from brain cancer on January 7 at 67 years young.