SKF NOTE: I had this Neil Peart memory today.
Inside Maine State Prison, which is the State of Maine’s maximum security prison, there is a music room where prisoners play keyboards, guitars, and drums. Yes, access to instruments is limited and linked to good behavior.
The music room is built of concrete blocks painted glossy white. And one day, in my capacity as Communications Director for the Maine Department of Corrections, I visited the room and was surprised by a giant mural painted on one glossy white concrete wall.
It was a mural of Neil Peart behind his “Snakes and Arrows” drumset, painted by one of the prisoners.
I snapped a photo of the mural with my iPhone and sent it to Neil. He, in turn, replied saying nice things about the mural. If I can ever find the email or letter I will add Neil’s exact words here.
But when I was next at Maine State Prison I was able to track down the prisoner painter and let him read Neil’s email. He was thrilled. It was a nice gesture from Neil which really brightened a day for a prisoner who probably didn’t see too many bright days behind the razor wire, iron bars, and chain link fence.