Limelight Guitar Lesson – Rush

In this Limelight guitar lesson video, I will show you how to play all of Alex Lifeson's guitar parts to this Rush classic, note-for-note.

The tuning is standard tuning E A D G B E.

There are some great riffs to learn in this one. The opening riff is instantly recognizable and launches the full band into a cool groove using lots of chords using open strings to give it that airy yet punchy sound.

The verse is relatively easy to play, but you need to watch out for some of the rhythmic twists that Rush throws at you.

The chorus briefly switches everything to a clean guitar sound with lots of chorus effect on it. The chords used here are a little unusual and might feel a bit odd getting them under your fingers. Halfway through the chorus the gain is kicked back in and the rhythm becomes more aggressive.

Alex Lifeson's solo is one of his most well known. It contains liberal use of the whammy/vibrato bar with lots of bar dives and scoops. Parts of this solo are really hard to recreate exactly like Alex plays it. I will give you some pointers along the way.

Pay close attention to the ending chorus section since it uses some chord voicings that aren't seen earlier in the song. The ending is also really cool!

I hope you guys enjoy this classic from Rush!


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Limelight Guitar Lesson - Rush


  1. Paul Andrews on July 24, 2014 at 11:49 am

    Very cool to see a Rush (Alex) lesson. Think that’s the first one on your site? Registered my “Like” and sure hope to see the full lesson on this one. Hope to see some more Rush! Thanks.

    • Carl Brown on July 25, 2014 at 9:13 am

      Hey Paul, yeah it does seem to be the first Rush song on the site. Not sure why it took so long. Haha..

      I do think people are starting to see how this new way of doing song lessons works. I think most of these famous riff or solo lessons will have the song taught in full on the site very soon. 🙂


  2. michael whitley on January 1, 2015 at 3:45 pm

    Yeah I would love to learn the guitar solo to limelight. just do it.

  3. Drew Collins on October 6, 2015 at 1:13 pm

    Hi Carl, just wanted say thanks for all of the time you have put into your teaching lessons! Very much appreciated more than you know! Would like to make a special songs request would teach some more of rush classic songs like la villa Strangiato, with classical guitar intro, the trees, working man, closer to the heart! I know if you would teach these songs you will get many likes for it. Just a thought! please email me at Thanks again will be waiting to hear from you soon! Take Care! Your Friend, Drew

  4. Drew Collins on October 9, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    Hi Carl, would you please teach Triumph – “Fight The Good Fight” the whole lesson great song! please email me back and let me know much appreciated! Can’t wait to hear from you on my emails! Thanks Again! Your Friend,Drew

  5. Drew Collins on October 14, 2015 at 2:10 pm

    Hey Carl, just came across another song request would like to add, The Day That Never Comes! Metallica, When you get time would you teach this song? Thanks very much! Drew,

  6. Bill degroot on September 13, 2016 at 3:08 pm

    Thanks for the video Rush is very challenging hope to see more

  7. Drew Collins on January 3, 2017 at 7:33 am

    Hi Carl, hope everything is going well! Thanks for all of your help in my Lead Guitar Journey and Classical Finger Style… Will be contributing to supporting your site soon have been taking lessons with you for about 2 Years now and really have enjoyed your teaching you have taken me to new heights in my playing Intermediate, to even some Advanced Level of playing! Thanks again! Will be joining your Premium Lessons sometime soon… Would like to make a song request for you to teach (Killing In The Name Of God By Dream Theater!)… Would you email me back and let me know? Will be waiting to hear from you soon. Drew

  8. Bill degroot on November 26, 2017 at 4:31 am

    Please full song and more Rush

  9. David Wheeless on January 1, 2018 at 11:28 pm

    Greetings Carl and thanks much for the intro riff. Is there any possibility you would present the rest of the song since you have the ‘Likes’ needed? I’m a huge Rush fan and would really like to see your method of how this song is played. Thank you for your hard work.

  10. Kyle Grothouse on May 10, 2018 at 7:47 pm

    Full song lesson on this one soon?

  11. Stew Williams on January 1, 2019 at 9:36 pm

    Love this song, without a doubt one of my favs. I am still fairly new to playing guitar and this is right on the edge of my abilities, which is great. One favour, would love to hear what amp and effect settings you use at the beginning of your lessons. Getting the right sound makes all the difference I think. Looking forward to picking out something else to learn.

  12. EDWARD THOMAS on February 21, 2019 at 1:24 pm

    do you have the tabs for limelight?

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