Drummer John Rutsey was born on July 23, 1952, as John Howard Rutsey.
Rutsey was born on July 23, 1952. He was the first drummer of the band "Rush", who played on their debut album on March 1, 1974.
Listening to the band's first album shows that Rutsey was not a bad drummer at all, and whoever watched the band's video recordings from his time, could say he was a very charismatic figure who also knew how to sing and make background sounds, lead the band behind the drum set and even present the songs.
Rutsey attended St. Patrick’s School, where he met Geddy Lee and Alex Lifeson.
The first band he formed was "The Projection", which he co-founded with Alex Lifeson.
He later became one of the founders of the band "Rush" and was a member of it from its earliest days in 1968 until his departure in July 1974, shortly after the release of his debut album.
While Geddy and Alex were more attracted to "Genesis" and "Yes" progressive rock, Rutsey pulled more toward hard rock. He was also responsible for the band's glam costumes at the beginning of its journey.
Rutsey was the one who led the band in its early days and was the "serious" in the bunch who insisted on having regular rehearsals of the band. The band's technical staff members noted years later that without Rutsey Rush would not have existed.
Not only that, but Rutsey's brother, Bill, was the one who suggested "Rush" as the band's name.
On 7/25/1974, two weeks before Rush's first US tour, Rutsey left the band, in part due to diabetes he contracted. The band auditioned for several drummers and finally selected legendary drummer Neil Peart as his replacement.
Rutsey died on May 11, 2008, in his sleep, of a heart attack that is a complication of diabetes, and he is only 55 years old.