Neil Peart grew up in a small town in Ontario. His parents first got him his drum set when he was around 5 years old. He loved to drum and when he was old enough, he moved to England to see if he could join a band during the heyday of progressive rock. He didn't find anything that suited him so he returned. When drummer John Rutsey of Rush felt that he wanted to focus on other things, such as body building and other forms of rock other that Rush, he left, leaving a position in the band open. Neil auditioned and he quickly formed a musical kinship with bassist Geddy Lee, both being the rhythmically oriented players of the band. A close relationship with Alex Lifeson soon followed and the band became as tightly knit as their complex, musical rhythms. His arrival gave their new album Fly by Night, a strong rhythmic base. Neil uses drumsticks by hitting with the handle end and not the regular end, resulting in a very deep, strong sound. He is known to hit the drums incredibly hard and incredibly accurately. A roadie testifies that his snare drum has only one small, quarter sized area of pock marks. He is very fill-oriented, playing a very complicated fill between nearly every measure. For their next album Caress of Steel, Peart showed a new aspect to his talents by writing some lyrics. They were very Tolkien-based and showed off his knowledge of literature. For their next album, Peart helped to write an epic song based on Ayn Rand's novel Anthem. The song 2112 featured his readings in Rand's objectivism, although he has said he is not a fanatic believer of her philosophy. He has gone on to write songs based on science fiction and fantasy such as Xanadu and Cygnus X-1. He continues to tour and record music with Rush today. Other projects include a tribute album to jazz drummer Buddy Rich and a video on the art of drumming.