Steven Tyler On Choosing Aerosmith Over Led Zeppelin
Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler recently appeared in an interview with Louder Sound and opened up about the time he preferred to stay with his band instead of being a part of Led Zeppelin.
In the early 2000s, Led Zeppelin excited its fans with the triple live album entitled ‘How the West Was Won,’ ‘Led Zeppelin DVD,’ and the compilation record ‘Mothership.’ Later, the band reunited for the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert in 2007 at the O2 Arena in London.
That was Led Zeppelin’s first full-length concert as a headliner after almost 30 years following the passing of the drummer John Bonham. Bonham’s son Jason delivered the drums and some of the back vocals for the performance. The setlist included popular songs like ‘Good Times Bad Times’ and ‘Stairway to Heaven.’
The music critics praised the band’s performance, and people started questioning the possibility of a full reunion following this benefit concert. According to the reports, Jimmy Page, Jason Bonham, and John Paul Jones expressed their willingness to tour and create together again. However, Plant later stated that he would continue his touring commitments with Alison Krauss and that his schedule was not free to reunite with Zeppelin.
During that period, some speculations spread about Jimmy Page asking Aerosmith’s Steven Tyler to join the band’s tour and record new material. As Tyler revealed in a recent interview, this was not entirely accurate. Tyler mentioned that it was not an invitation to fully join the band, but he just auditioned for a few stadium shows.
When the singer went there, Page asked him whether he wanted to make an album with the band. After thinking about it for a while, Tyler told Page he could not leave Aerosmith. Although the vocalist sang all his favorite songs from Zeppelin during the audition, Tyler preferred to stay with his band. However, he added that it was an honor to be asked.
Steve Tyler said the following about his audition for Led Zeppelin:
“I went over and played with Jimmy and the rest of them in the summer of 2008. It wasn’t an audition to be in Zeppelin; it was an audition to play with Zeppelin. We were going to do a couple of stadiums. And then, while I was there, Jimmy spoke to me about maybe doing an album. I went home and thought about it for a couple of days, and I got back to him and said: ‘Look, Jimmy, you’re in an iconic band, and so am I. I can’t, in good faith, leave my band and be in your band.’
They let me sing every song I wanted – ‘Black Dog,’ ‘Stairway To Heaven.’ But it was just a week. And yeah, Jimmy asked me to do some stuff with him. But I didn’t want to be Coverdale/Page. Plus, I figured in the time it would take to do that, I could rally my own band together. So, was I going to be in Jimmy’s band? No. But what an honor.”
Ultimately, it was confirmed that the project was abandoned. Then Led Zeppelin’s concert film and live album ‘Celebration Day,’ which was recorded during the Ahmet Ertegun Tribute Concert, was released in 2012 and received many praises. The same year Aerosmith’s fifteenth and most recent album ‘Music from Another Dimension!’ came out as the first after eight years.