LOS ANGELES — The 39-year history of [artist id="1028"]Aerosmith[/artist] has had more than its share of ups and downs. Between the successes and failures, the drug use and recoveries, the legendary bad-boy behavior and the tours all over the world, "America's Greatest Rock Band" has enough material to fill a half-dozen biopics. But those four decades seem almost quiet compared to the hostile events of the past few weeks. And now, with the band on the verge of being torn apart, a visibly displeased Joe Perry told us at the American Music Awards that he and Steven Tyler aren't even close to making up.
"Um, well ... I don't know," he shrugged, admitting that the future of Aerosmith is in doubt. "You guys know more about it than I do. Everything is through the press."
Everything has been through the press lately, from details about Tyler's desire to go solo to Perry's belief that the lead singer was quitting the band to Tyler's surprise appearance onstage recently with the Joe Perry Project.
At that show, Tyler told the crowd that he wasn't leaving Aerosmith. "Well," Perry explained, "he says he's not."
As proof of just how bizarre things have become between the legendary Toxic Twins, the duo address each other only through the media these days — or onstage, they essentially speak only to the crowd. "Actually, he sat in. For one song," Perry said of that appearance with the Project. "Yeah, but we didn't talk or anything."
Getting beyond Tyler, Joe Perry insisted that the rest of the band — Brad Whitford, Tom Hamilton and Joey Kramer — want to keep the train a-rolling. "I think that you just have to listen to what's going on in the press. Because that's the only thing I know," he explained. "All I know is that the four guys want to work. I'm working with my band, playing the House of Blues all across the country. And we're rocking out and having a good time."
"The band's going to be working," he said of Aerosmith's plans, with or without Tyler. "I'm working, right now."
But, when it comes to his bandmate of 39 years — with whom he became sober, shares more than 80 songwriting credits and even once owned a restaurant — Joe Perry answered in no uncertain terms when asked if they're speaking to each other.
"No," he said of their non-communicative status, repeating it a second time for emphasis: "No."