As a musician, Steven Tyler lived the rock and roll lifestyle to the fullest, with drugs and alcohol being a significant part of his daily routine. However, things eventually spiraled out of control, and Tyler’s addiction became a cause for concern among his bandmates, especially Joe Perry.
Perry, who had been partying alongside Tyler as the Toxic Twins, was aware that the addiction had gone too far and that Tyler needed help. So, he stepped up and gave Tyler an ultimatum – get into rehab and receive the help he desperately needed, or face the end of Aerosmith.
Tyler initially felt that his bandmates were trying to brainwash him and that he would lose his creativity if he stopped using drugs. However, Perry’s intervention turned out to be a lifesaver for Tyler. He went to rehab, got sober, and started living his reality instead of the one he believed to be true before he got clean.
“Oh, hell yeah. Of course! You have a shot of Jack Daniel’s, play Madison Square Garden, get offstage, and go clubbing with Jimmy Page—come on! After two encores in Madison Square Garden, you don’t go and play shuffleboard. Or Yahtzee, you know? You go and rock the f*ck out. You’ve done something you never thought you could, and you actually think you are a super-being.”
“It works for a while. But then things go wrong. You become addicted, it’s something you do all the time, and suddenly it starts influencing your greatness. We believed that the road to wisdom was through excess. But it got really bad in the ’80s.”
Tyler’s experience highlights the struggles of addiction and the importance of having people around you who care enough to intervene and offer help. It also shows that sobriety is a constant battle and that even after years of being clean, relapse can occur.
“It was an intervention with the band: If I don’t go away to rehab, then the shit’s over. [laughs] And it was interesting that I was being told by a bunch of guys still getting f*cked up. But I’m grateful that that happened because I would have never seen the light. I thought they were trying to brainwash me. I thought I would lose my creativity.”
“The confusion goes away. Your friends come back. You can keep a little money in the bank. You can plan things and make them work. You get physically healthy.”
“Once you start getting high and stay high, you’re in a different reality. And if you live in that reality long enough, that altered reality becomes your reality. And then when you’re sober, you find out that was a false reality.”
Last year, Tyler relapsed after having foot surgery and had to enter a treatment program voluntarily. While the relapse was a setback, Tyler taking control of the situation and seeking help showed that he genuinely wants to be sober.
Tyler’s story is a reminder that addiction is a serious problem that affects many people, not just musicians or celebrities. It’s essential to seek help when struggling with addiction and to have a support system in place to keep you accountable and help you stay sober. And for Tyler, it was Joe Perry who played a crucial role in saving his life.