Rush guitarist arrested in Florida

The story:

Guitarist with rock group Rush arrested


NAPLES, Fla. – The lead guitarist for the rock band Rush skirmished with sheriff’s deputies, spat blood on one and was arrested on New Year’s Eve after his son refused to leave the stage at a fancy hotel, authorities said.

Deputies said they had to use a stun gun on 50-year-old Alex Zivojinovich - known on stage as Alex Lifeson - for what they described as drunken, violent behavior at the Naples Ritz-Carlton hotel.

Zivojinovich was released from Collier County jail Friday afternoon. Also arrested were his son Justin Zivojinovich, 33, and his son’s wife, Michelle Zivojinovich, 30.

Gerry Berry, an attorney representing the Zivojinovichs, declined comment and referred all calls to SRO Management in Toronto. A telephone message left with SRO was not returned Friday.

Justin Zivojinovich said deputies broke his father’s nose.

The son said he went on the stage where the house band was performing so he could sing.

“I was singing Happy New Year’s, that’s all I was doing, singing to the whole crowd. That’s all I said, ‘Happy New Year,’” Justin Zivojinovich said. “Everyone was enjoying themselves. That’s when someone apparently started yelling for one of the security guards. There was no violence on our part.”

According to authorities, the scuffle began when Justin Zivojinovich refused to leave the stage.

The guitarist spat blood on a deputy’s face and pushed a deputy down a hotel stairwell during the struggle, a police report said.

Justin Zivojinovich disputed that account, saying the deputy tumbled down the stairs as she pushed the guitarist down the stairwell.

Charges against Alex Zivojinovich include aggravated battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting an officer with violence, and disorderly intoxication.

Rush’s hits include “Tom Sawyer,” “Limelight” and “The Spirit of Radio.”

They had to use a stungun on my boy, Alex… a lifelong Rush fan I HAD to stand and applaud when I read that!

Seriously, though… this is quite against the grain for any of the boys in Rush. They are quite famous for going out of their way to avoid attention… strange for a rock band, but there you have it.

Although I have met Alex and Geddy, I do not claim to know them well enough to make the statement I am about to make… even so I am still disinclined to believe that Alex just went nutso and attacked a buncha cops. I mean this ain’t Tommy Lee, fer cryin’ in a bucket!

I like the way “Zivojinovich” sounds better than “Lifeson.”

Yeah, but that last ‘h’ doesn’t belong.

Very out of character for any of them. Sad day.

And I dread reading The Smoking Gun next week.

Didn’t even have to wait for it.,2071,NPDN_14940_2547066,00.html


Verbena, you’re not an idiot, but you seem to be acting like one. You applauded because police had to waste their time on a drunk man that you happen to be a fan of?

I’ve spit blood before, but I was injured at the time…

Sonny sounds like as asshole who got drunk and made a fool out of himself. Odds are, the cops showed up, got a little rough when Sonny wouldn’t calm down, and Alex had to step in and he took a pop in the nose.
Sounds reasonable…

Chill, Gadfly. He’s just saying, to quote RTA in the Cafe Society thread, “That my all time favorite guitar virtuoso has, at the age of 50, the gumption to brawl with the cops…”

It’s been a while, but given my personal interaction with Florida’s finest, I’d give the benefit of the doubt to the other side. If someone’s spitting blood then surely someone else made them bleed. There will almost certainly be an “excessive force” suit filed in this one, and no shortage of witnesses. As for being drunk in a hotel on New Year’s Eve, if one is to be drunk then that’s certainly the best place for it.

Too bad Justin didn’t just, ahem, exit… stage left.


Alright, fine. I still think it’s a bit silly, though.

Gadfly… ummm… the reason I started that second paragraph with “Seriously, though” is because I was being facetious… as in not being serious.
so… yeah… silly.

[ Capt. Jack Sparrow] umm, Pirate! [/ Capt. Jack Sparrow]

Sorry you missed the humour.