That Time Rush Sampled Looney Tunes

Remember when Rush worked cartoon theme music into one of their greatest recordings?

In this epsiode, I’m digging into “La Villa Strangiato” from 1978’s Hempisheres, breaking down Geddy Lee’s wicked bass solo (and it’s Jazz connections) and showing you how pianist/composer Raymond Scott will always be linked to this epic prog rock instrumental.

Paul Thompson has been playing bass professionally for over 30 years, including recording and touring stints with trumpeter Maynard Ferguson and saxophonist Stanley Turrentine. Recent playing credits include Bob Reynolds, John Pizzarelli, Jeff 'Tain' Watts, and Bob James, among others. Currently, he can be seen playing in and around the Pittsburgh, PA area with the THOTH Trio, the Pittsburgh Jazz Orchestra, and many other musicians in the city's rich Jazz community. An educator of over 25 years, Paul currently teaches Jazz Bass at Duquesne University, West Virginia University, and his alma mater, Pittsburgh CAPA 6-12 Performing Arts School.

Connect with Paul on Instagram, Twitter, Youtube, and his website.

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Share your thoughts

  1. Good article, although I do like Rush I sometimes think the hype is a little bigger than the actual musicality of their compositions. Whoever it was very I nteresting none the least.

  2. I share your story! Rush and Geddy were my first big influencers . I love that music and you can hear that on my music.