In between life and his main gig, Rush’s Geddy Lee made a record that deserves much more credit than it gets. The recently re-released My Favourite Headache is a musical and poetic delight from the legendary bassist/vocalist. Lee composed the music with long-time K.D. Lang collaborator and producer Ben Mink. With multi-tracked layered bass parts, deep and heavy punctuated soundscapes (“Grace To Grace”) and contributions from many other talents such as drummers Jeremy Taggart (Our Lady Peace, Taggart and Torrens Podcast) and Matt Cameron (Soundgarden, Pearl Jam), My Favourite Headache deserves a rightful place in history as one of the best Canadian rock albums to be made.
Lee once commented in a 1990’s issue of Bass Player Magazine that he used to write all of the early lyrics for Rush. But they were “Just teen angst words”. It was understandable that Lee and Alex Lifeson would pass along any ideas to the professor (Neil Peart) to polish them off. Lee’s words on this record are far removed from the days of teen angst poetry.
“I watch the sea, it helps to anchor me.” This line from the title track invokes Stan Rogers for me. Rogers spoke of getting inspiration from the sea. I interpret Lee’s lyrics for this song as bring out a coping mechanism for chaos. The “best” headaches are the ones we can quickly escape from. So peaceful waters may just be the perfect medication and meditation for calm.
“Window To The World” in my view is the album’s standout track. It’s a catchy memorable piece that bounces along with enough of an edge to border on slightly heavy. So much sound permeates the whole backdrop that no space is left unfilled.
“Home On The Strange” is a quirky jam telling a story of someone who may or may not exhibit stereotypical Canadian outdoorsperson stereotypes, while carrying some non-sequitur characteristics. I know absolutely no one who sings Fa Fa Fa Fa Fa for absolutely no reason. Yet, I have no doubt we have a few people in this country who sleep with a chainsaw out of convenience. Because lumberjack or something…
Creating and enjoyment of art is therapeutic. Geddy Lee created a natural headache remedy with the release of this great record 20 years ago. A suggested title for his next solo record (if he were to do one) would be “Updated Prescriptions”…….
I’ll show myself out…..