OK, OK, he butchered the national anthem last weekend before the Patriots/Ravens game, but Steven Tyler has been mucking up a lot of bizness for everyone for quite a while.
All that said, as he rambled up to the song’s albeit gritty, screeching climax, lest we forget that most rock singers really can’t sing to begin with…to sound remotely good they typically rely on their sideman’s ax (cue Joe Perry), an extravagant light show and the fact that their middle-aged audience has been pounding Jager bombs since the babysitter showed up.
Also, Tyler is on another little shitshow we like to call “American Idol,” which also launched last week, squashing the hopes and dreams of thousands of mediocre to completely untalented teens who think that this may be a real career path for them, can I get a ‘Mer-Kuh, fuck yeah?
Here’s a quick recap of 10 things that Steven Tyler has ruined for me:
1. Last month, “O” the Oprah Mag, featured a very special interview with Oprah and Tyler. In it, the two strolled hand in hand next to his home in the New Hampshire woods, talking about drugs, getting off drugs, being bored, being bored on the road, finding redemption, and getting on “A.I.” Thanks for ruining my February issue of “O.” I was looking forward to another 3,000 word cliched expose on finding my true spirit, not a print recap of your “Behind the Music” special.
2.Once upon a time, before I started developing decent taste in music, there was a land. A land next to Omaha, Neb., where Aerosmith was a-coming to town with Jackyl (remember those idiots with a chainsaw?) opening. I had to go. It was the concert experience of the season!
And so, we purchased our tickets with our meager minimum-wage salaries, and I duly requested the night off work weeks in advance of the protocol. Even though I was attending school full-time and pretty much pulling close to 35-40 hours per week in work, my manager gave me shit about this. I had to swallow a ton of shit, in fact. For one lousy night off, I had to hear about my uppity need to go see Aerosmith. “Ooo, I guess someone has no work ethic…instead they need to go see Aerosmith..” And on and on this went.
I thought, this better be one hell of a fucking show.
No matter. A small amount of shit to take from a small-town, SuperValu cokehead, non-deoderant-wearing manager is a tiny sacrifice to go see the rock ‘n’ roll. We drove to Omaha. We sat up in the nosebleeds. We pretended to like the Jackyl guy swinging his chain saw around. Then Aerosmith came on. It was Ok. The End.
Which was probably one of my first lessons in overhyped, expensive, shit-eating things that you are told will be the Ultimate Experience Ever (see also Disney World; Nascar events; Super Bowl) you will want to do, and when you get there, you realize that you really need not ever do that again, a la David Foster Wallace style.
3. Dodge Truck Commercials (see No. 4).
4. Steven Tyler ruined Vegas Whores for me. Years later, I was reviewing the Aerosmith show in Las Vegas. Now this was some sort of re-re-invented Aerosmith. You know, past the drugged-out, spacy ’70s, past the whole Run D.M.C. ’80s resurrection, past the ’90s party jams for dumb boys resurrection. You know. Resurrected.
The entire show, I shit you not, was a commercial for Dodge trucks. Aerosmith signed some big sponsorship deal, and although I’d seen Microsoft banners and the like plastered all over the backstage at Rolling Stones, etc., never before had I seen the commercial become the actual concert. Dodge was everywhere, dripping from the ceiling, dripping from the stage. At one point, Aerosmith even busted out the song they wrote specially for a Dodge commercial while the ACTUAL DODGE COMMERCIAL played on a large screen behind them.
But the worst? The gave out these little glowy red keychains with the Dodge insignia on them and people were fighting tooth and nail to get a hold of them… the bathroom was a frenzied scene of botoxed Orange Co. moms and former strippers scraping their two-inch talons toward one another to grasp them. Women who were once enthralled to score some free stale coke and a nearly expired condom in the bathroom were now clamoring for Dodge glow-in-the-dark keychains. It was one of the saddest things I’ve ever seen in my life.
Also a testament to how easy it is to dazzle the idiot eye of American consumers.
6. Liv Tyler. I think I could have possibly enjoyed you somewhat as an actor-thingy. But your dad’s molesty-type use of you in his rock videos put the kabosh on all that.
7. Run D.M.C. (Just kidding! Nothing will ruin “It’s Tricky” for me. Nothing!)
8. My dream of becoming a grayed-out, drugged-up version of a crazy old rich person. Yep, you’ve ruined that completely for the rest of us.
9. Man boobs. Man boobs on fat bloke? Pure comedy. Man boobs on scrawny bloke? Tragedy.
10. Love in an elevator. You just try doing it now without hearing that song in your head.