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Aerosmith Guitarist Joe Perry Says He and Steven Tyler Are Like ‘Two Silverback Gorillas’

Steven Tyler
Josh Shearer, Getty Images

From the sound of it, Aerosmith is still succeeding in spite of themselves. During Sunday’s in-depth interview on ’60 Minutes’, each band member talked honestly about their issues with one another, or more specifically with lead singer Steven Tyler. It’s clear that despite sobriety and plans for their first album of originals in 10 years, they still fight like dogs.

Or like apes. “Like two silverback gorillas and they tear branches, and rip up the ground and scream and yell but they never actually get any closer than this,” guitarist Joe Perry said, describing his often tumultuous relationship with Tyler. Towards the end he says the two have never come to blows, but jokes it’s because Tyler needs his jaw to sing. The crack upsets the ‘American Idol’ judge.

The interview portrays a band that only puts up with Tyler because he’s a genius, while he says they owe him more respect. In 2009, he agreed to judge ‘American Idol’ in part to spite them. “I was pissed off at the band for trying to find some other lead singer, I wasn’t sure I wanted to stay with the band because of their behaviors.”

“He wouldn’t be on that show if it wasn’t for the band, for him being part of Aerosmith,” Perry answers.

While appearing on the show, Tyler has been writing new music. He impresses reporter Lara Logan with his ability to write and drive at the same time. The enigmatic singer admits he’s A.D.D., but not O.C.D. The good news that fans can rest on is that it doesn’t seem like any amount of venom from one bandmate to the other will tear them permanently apart.

“I’ll put up with whatever I have to have this guy in my band,” Perry says of Tyler. “He’s a world class voice.” Hopefully he keeps that promise long enough for the band to complete their tour and release the new album.

Watch the Aerosmith Interview on ’60 Minutes’

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