The life and times of Aerosmith has become a soap opera, just with wrinkly men instead of busty housewives. On the latest episode: Guitarist Joe Perry confirms that, yes, the band is indeed seeking a singer to replace Steven Tyler, who is currently in rehab for an addiction to painkillers.
Perry told Canada's QMI Agency that Aerosmith are "already getting the word out there, the word's been out there for a while." He added that the band will "start having some auditions, making some phone calls. Hopefully, we'll have found a new singer by the summer, and Aerosmith will be able to go back out on the road." The band hopes to tour in 2011 in celebration of their 40th anniversary. [Via Billboard]
But whether or not Tyler's replacement becomes a permanent member is still a question.
Perry added that Tyler is still working through rehab and needs to "have leg surgery and foot surgery and it's basically going to take him out of the picture for about a year, year and a half. So, in the meantime, the rest of the band wants to play."
"I'm ready to write with him, to play on stage with him anytime he's physically ready and wants to do it," Perry said. "But it's really up to him.... and the last things he said to the press were that he wanted to work with the band and sing with the band, so we'll see."
No candidates to fill Tyler's position have been announced yet, but Perry said that "as far as auditions go, we'll probably just sit around and have a couple of drinks and see if we get along. Because we're already gonna know that they can sing."
The latest news comes after a nasty battle between the band members. First, Tyler announced his departure from the group to focus on "something Steven Tyler: working on the brand of myself -- Brand Tyler." The rest of the Boston boys then started searching for a new frontman, but just days later Tyler unexpectedly joined Perry's solo group onstage in New York and announced, "I'm not leaving Aerosmith."
Days later, guitarist Brad Whitford claimed Tyler's irrational behavior was the result of his returned addiction to drugs. "This guy has a tremendous history of drug abuse, and you have to be suspicious that this is something that is probably going on with him," said Whitford. "I think that that's got to be a part of this irrational behavior."
And it sure was. A month later, Tyler checked into rehab for an addiction to painkillers, saying, "With the help of my family and team of medical professionals, I am taking responsibility for the management of my pain and am eager to be back on the stage and in the recording studio with my bandmates."
While Tyler won't be singing with his band anytime soon, the rocker did step onstage at the Tilted Kilt pub in Palm Springs, CA, earlier this week to sing karaoke to Aerosmith's "I Don't Wanna Miss a Thing," The Desert Sun reports. The pub is near the Betty Ford Clinic, where Tyler is receiving treatment.
So, SPIN readers, who could possible fill in for Tyler? Tell us in the comment section below. And check out our nominations, click here.