Geddy Lee, giving an emotional interview with Warner Bros. Poland, talked about the experience of his parents — both of whom were Jewish natives of that country and prisoners of war together during World War II.
They found love despite crushing circumstances under the iron fist of Nazi rule over the Poles, and eventually reconnected after enduring the horrors of one of the war’s most notorious and deadly concentration camp.
“They had met in the camps in Poland,” Rush’s longtime frontman tells Roman Rogowieckiego of Warner Music Poland, in a newly posted video. “They were from two different towns, but they were in the same camp. They met and they fell in love. So, it’s kind of a nice story, in a way. They were both in Auschwitz together.”
Auschwitz, the largest of the German stalags, was actually a network of camps operated on Polish land overrun by the Third Reich. As many as 1.3 million people reportedly died in these camps alone, with some 90 percent of Jewish descent.
Their early relationship, Lee says, was one of small gestures. Only later, after his father tracked down the woman who would one day become his wife, did their relationship blossom.
A host of rock and prog fans have to be thankful that he did.
“My father would somehow find shoes, and bribe the officers to send shoes to my mother,” Lee says. “My mother was liberated eventually in Germany, as was my father — and they found each other again after the war. Even though there was this horrible background, this horrible time, after the war my father found my mother and they got married. So, out of this horrible thing came — me!”
Bassist Lee, drummer Neil Peart and guitarist Alex Lifeson just released Clockwork Angels, Rush’s first new studio project since 2007’s Snakes and Arrows.
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Upcoming 2012-2013 dates and venues for Rush …
Thu, Nov 15: HP Pavilion, San Jose, CA
Sat, Nov 17: Honda Center, Anaheim, CA
Mon, Nov 19: Gibson Amphitheatre, Universal City, CA
Wed, Nov 21: Vally View Casino, San Diego, CA
Fri, Nov 23: MGM Grand Hotel, Las Vegas, NV
Sun, Nov 25: US Airways Center, Phoenix, AZ
Wed, Nov 28: American Airlines Center, Dallas, TX
Fri, Nov 30: AT&T Center, San Antonio, TX
Sun, Dec 2: Toyota Center, Houston, TX
Wed, May 22, 2013: Manchester MEN Arena, Manchester, England
Fri, May 24: The O2, London, England
Sun, May 26: Birmingham LG Arena, Birmingham, England
Tue, May 28: Motorpoint Arena, Sheffield, England
Thu, May 30: SECC, Glasgow, Scotland
Sun, Jun 2: Ziggo Dome, Amsterdam, Netherlands
Tue, Jun 4: Lanxess Arena, Cologne, Germany
Thu, Jun 6: O2 World, Berlin, Germany
Sat, Jun 8: Sweden Rock Festival, Solvesborg, Sweden
Mon, Jun 10: Hartwell Arena, Helsinki, Finland