Rush – Closer to the Heart

This was the first hit single by Canadian hard rockers and prog rockers, Rush, in 1977. It was made famous again for being played by a character on the television series, “Trailer Park Boys,’ in which guitarist Alex Lifeson also “acted” and performed.

The lyrics present contrasts between people in different occupations, such as blacksmiths, artists and philosophers, but that all must be doing what they do with their heart in mind. They also may suggest that those in positions to lead should do so, while others should accept this oversight. Everyone should find their part in the world, and work to make it a better place.

The band was a guest of the Canadian parliament in May, 2012, and many politicians, while debating, couldn’t resist slipping in references to the band.

As reported in the Hill Times newspaper (May 7, 2012), minister Tony Clement was asked about his limousine expenses, and responded by quoting this song: “And the men who hold high places must be the ones to start a new reality closer to the heart.” Clement also charged that another question posed to him was “fly by night,” the title of another Rush album.

Rush singer Geddy Lee found Question Period “very interesting,” a characterization likely often applied to his unique singing voice. And no doubt his band has been political; it has dedicated an album, 2112, to philosopher Ayn Rand.

This video has “Bubbles,” the Trailer Park Boys character, helping Rush perform the song, along with another Canadian musician from the Barenaked Ladies, Ed Robertson:

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