Neil’s Unmistakable Vibe in JR Flood Demo from 1970
A 1970 demo tape from one of Neil Peart’s first bands, JR Flood, is available on YouTube. Thanks to RushIsABand for the head’s up. The music sounds a lot like The Doors and the musicianship is unmistakable. Neil’s playing is powerful, versatile, and imaginative even at the age of 17. Lyrics were written by Neil and the singer, Gary Luciani. Other musicians in the band were the late Bob Morrison on organ, Paul Dickinson on guitar, and Wally Tomczuk on bass.
The prominence of the organ and the singer’s rigid use of the modal voice give the music a very different vibe than Rush, but the playing is accomplished.
As Ed at RushIsABand points out, Neil talks about his JR Flood days in a 2010 post on his blog called Time Machines. In that post, Neil describes his playing as a little over enthusiastic—“give that drummer a valium“—is how he puts it, and he credits the other musicians for helping him master his craft. “All of those guys were pivotal in my musical development,” he says.
Enjoy the almost 60 minutes of music:
Track list, as interpreted by others:
01 Retribution #1 3:31 00:00
02 Retribution #2 3:46 03:46
03 Gypsy 4:22 07:01
04 Life’s Illusion 3:51 11:22
05 Come Inside 4:04 15:02
06 Lost Dreams 3:46 19:15
07 Rolling Tide 5:48
08 Flaming Blackbird 4:22
09 Giant Killer (take 6) 8:51 33:19
10 Polar Bear 9:57 41:52
late organist – Bob Morrison
guitarist – Paul Dickinson,
bass guitarist – Wally Tomczuk
singer, lyrics – Gary Luciani
drums, lyrics – Neil Peart