Rush will soon be joining the likes of Neil Young, Sarah McLachlan and Simple Plan as recipients of the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award, sponsored by Bell Media and one of the special achievement honors associated with the Juno Awards. Since 2006, the award recognizes Canadians who have made charitable contributions to the country through their art and philanthropy.
The prog-rock trio has been honored numerous times over their career for their charitable contributions to the field of rock, having been recipients of several Juno Awards as well as having been inducted into the Canadian Music Hall of Fame in 1994 and Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2013.
“We are sincerely grateful to be recognized as this year’s recipients of the Allan Waters Humanitarian Award,” the band said collectively in a statement. “We are proud, honored and humbled to be in the company of all Canadians who find it within their hearts to help those in need.”
Historically, the band has often found time to donate both their stage shows and money to worthy causes both in Canada and abroad. In 2003, they performed at SARSfest in Toronto, a benefit concert that helped reenergize the city’s weakened economy following a SARS outbreak. Alongside the likes of B.B. King, Bonnie Raitt and Stephen Colbert, the band has been supportive of Little Kids Rock which helps provide music education to children who may not have easy access to it. And in 2008, they donated $100,000 to the Canadian Museum for Human Rights and have contributed $1 of every concert ticket sold to various charities.
Currently, the band is deciding whether or not to carry out a proposed “41st anniversary” tour this year, as guitarist Alex Lifeson had suggested last year. Last year the group released a 40th Anniversary live box set, R40, that featured unreleased material and all of their concert films.
Juno Week celebrations will take place from March 9th to the 15th, with a broadcast of the gala airing on CTV the final night.