The Aerosmith song Steven Tyler thought would ruin his career.

Steven Tyler

Aerosmith has never been shy showing off their inspirations. Listening to the band’s iconic work on albums like Rocks, it’s obvious that Steven Tyler and Joe Perry took inspiration from the wells of bands. The bands like The Rolling Stones and Led Zeppelin, but with an Americanized twist. The band was in ruins after Perry stepped down. But Tyler was unconvinced that a reunion would put them back on their feet.

However, considering everything they were up against, the fact that Tyler and Perry were able to come to terms with their disagreements is almost a miracle. Throughout the late 1970s, Tyler grew increasingly jealous of Perry’s relationship with his wife, Elyssa. It resulted in an argument backstage after a show during which Perry suddenly resigned.

Steven Tyler self-medicates with as much cocaine as possible, while Perry launches his project, The Joe Perry Project. Both bands could sell out good venues across the world. But it wasn’t until manager Tim Collins introduced them that they realized they needed each other.

When the band reformed for the album Done With Mirrors, they were in rare form once more, only for the record to fall short due to its lack of inspiration. Fresh off their work with rap group Run-DMC on their transfer of ‘Walk This Way,’ the band walked into the studio to collaborate with additional songwriters to change their sound.

After meeting songwriter Desmond Child, the band recorded a few of their first significant singles in years. They recorded the songs like ‘Dude (Looks Like a Lady)‘. While they were momentarily back on top, Tyler had second thoughts about one of the band’s defining ballads.

Tyler and Child created a soft-spoken piano ballad named ‘Angel’. While they were putting together the rest of Permanent Vacation it eventually split the band. While the song was appealing, Tyler believed that recording it would be the end of his career, as producer/A&R man John Kalodner said in Walk This Way, “Tyler says that I ruined his career by making him write ‘Angel’ with Desmond.”

In the beginning, Tom Hamilton was not a fan of the song. Behind the Music he says, “The song was just too wimpy.” Then, when we arrived on the road, I had these tough bike dudes telling me, ‘Play ‘Angel‘. I love ‘Angel’ dude. Oh, yes. So there goes my argument”. Tyler was concerned about the song. But it opened the way for an excellent dynamic with other musicians over the next few years.

Outside of Child, Aerosmith would collaborate with musicians like Tommy Shaw of Styx and Diane Warren to create even bigger successes, pushing them into the 1990s with songs like “Amazing.” Aerosmith may have been regarded as a grizzly rock and roll band early in their existence, but with party songs and ballads under their belt, they stood tall as hair metal’s elderly statesmen.


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