Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Steven Tyler Begins on American Idol

Some question now whether or not Steven Tyler is softening in his old age, accepting a chair to sit behind a different microphone with no trademark scarves, at the table at American Idol. Can the Boston Bad Boy live up to his “Screamin’ Demon” image, saying words of encouragement to pop star hopefuls?

One of my earliest rock memories was sitting on a dock in summer camp listening to “Dream On.” I remember first hearing of a band that the DJ on an old transistor radio called, “The Bad Boys of Boston,” when I was probably six or seven. I remember the camp counselor saying that song wasn’t their current hit and I really needed to hear “Walk This way,” which later became one of my all time favorites. I remember him praising the group. “These guys are ahead of their time. Some people call Steven Tyler a “Mick Jagger” rip-off, but they will all be wrong, because Aerosmith is a bad-ass local band that will rock forever.”

He was right. Forty years later, they are still touring hard. However, Tyler’s new gig is making heads turn.

Stephen Victor Tallarico, better known to the rock world as Steven Tyler, has one of the most distinct voices in the music industry. He is a credited songwriter, with more hits than most bands will ever see. His high-energy performances in bright, colorful outfits with trademark scarves hanging from his microphone stand pump the crowd like no other. Can he sit and make comments on the next William Hung act and keep his hard rock legendary status?

He has been on the record to say he will not just tell someone, “You suck!” in a Simon kind of way. What will he be like then?

Time will tell. In my opinion, it could be really cool for Aerosmith fans to see him in a different light. I’m not a big American Idol fan, but I will check it out to see how he comes off.

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