Neil Peart, drummer and songwriter for Canadian rock act Rush, died of brain cancer at the age of 67, reports bbc.com.
The musician, who is considered one of the greatest rock drummers, passed away on January 7 in Santa Monica, California. Surviving members of Rush, where Peart has played for 45 years, confirmed the death of a colleague on Twitter days later. The statement said that Peart had suffered from brain cancer for three and a half years.
"It is with broken hearts and the deepest sadness that we must share the terrible news that on Tuesday our friend, soul brother and band mate of over 45 years, Neil, has lost his incredibly brave three-and-a-half-year battle with brain cancer," the band says.
Ranking fourth in the list of the best drummers of all time according to Rolling Stone magazine, Peart was well known for his technical proficiency and animated live performances.
He joined Rush in 1974, drawing inspiration from hard rock, jazz, and heavy metal. In 2015, he left the band after its final tour, saying that it was time to take himself "out of the game".
The band, which also featured bassist/singer Geddy Lee and guitarist Alex Lifeson, is known for such hits as "The Spirit Of Radio" and "Tom Sawyer". The band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.