Steven Tyler (left) and Joe Perry will be honoured on
Wednesday with the American Society of Composers, Authors
and Publishers founders award for songwriting. REUTERS/Fred
After 40 years with one of the biggest rock bands in the
United States, Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler and guitarist
Joe Perry are finally being honoured for their songwriting.
The duo, dubbed the Toxic Twins in their drug-fueled early
years, co-wrote many of the bands' biggest hits like "Walk
This Way" and "Back in the Saddle," which catapulted
Aerosmith to fame in the mid-1970s.
After winning multiple Grammys and other accolades, Tyler and
Perry will be honoured tomorrow with the American Society of
Composers, Authors and Publishers founders award for
songwriting. They will be also inducted into the Songwriters
Hall of Fame on June 13.
Tyler and Perry will miss the ASCAP ceremony because they
will be on the Australasion leg of the band's "Global
Warming" world tour, which brings them to Dunedin on April
24, in support of their first album of new material since
The duo told Reuters they draw much of their inspiration from
each other, although Perry admits the process may be a bit
tamer than in the 1970s and 1980s when he and Tyler turned
out some big hits while under the influence of drugs.
"Taking drugs can be a shortcut to that place of creativity,
but it will kill you in the end because it stops working,"
"We had to figure out how to change the way we did things,"
said Perry, 62, who is working on an autobiography and a solo
Tyler, the son of a classical pianist, formed Aerosmith in
Boston in 1970 after meeting Perry and bass player Tom
Hamilton a year earlier.
They signed a record deal in 1971 and what followed were four
often tumultuous decades filled with thousands of concerts,
band break-ups, well-chronicled bouts of drug abuse, glorious
comebacks and sales of more than 150 million albums
"We all just get together in a room and inspire each other,"
said Tyler, 65, who at 17 wrote the signature Aerosmith hit,
"Dream On," before meeting his future band members.
"The secret is to overwrite. I like to write 19 songs if I
only need 12," said Tyler, who quit last year after two
seasons as a judge on "American Idol" to refocus on
Asked how his writing methods have changed over the years,
Perry said he now loves composing songs with the help of his
smartphone recording device.
"Bottom line, I always have a studio with me. It's called an
iPhone," said Perry.
He said he also likes to have a guitar in every room of his
home in case inspiration strikes, often pausing the TV while
watching late at night to lay down a new musical phrase or
riff that comes into his head.
"I just feel like that there are too many rhythms that
haven't been explored in my head. Even in the narrow confines
of rock 'n' roll, there's an infinite amount of places to
go," Perry said.
Tyler said he has a lot of new material to work on, including
some songs he began but did not complete for the band's
November release "Music from Another Dimension."
"I have 30 thumbnail sketches I haven't finished, including
four without any lyrics," Tyler said.