I swore internally that I'd never write about American Idol again, let alone would I ever watch it. But once again, my wife is watching it and that means that even if I'm doing something else at the same time, I'm watching it. As an aside, if there is a television on in the same room where I'm at, I'd be hard pressed to pay attention to anything else except the screen. This is true no matter how I feel about the quality of the program or how my friends might judge me for it. But that's my issue.
Tonight was the premiere episode of this season and the new host is Steven Tyler who is also the lead singer of a band called Aerosmith. There's been controversy about his decision to do the show, as not only have Aerosmith fans voiced complaints (Tyler Interview from 2011/01/19, Tyler Interview from 2011/01/17), but also his friend and band mate Joe Perry (Perry Interview from 2010/09/08, People Complaining On An Internet Forum: Because It Helps).
It's [Tyler's] business, but I don't want Aerosmith's name involved with it,Perry told the Calgary HeraldIt's a reality show designed to get people to watch that station and sell advertising.…
What? Okay, listen. I know I have complained copiously about too much advertising. And I have nothing but respect for Joe Perry as a musician and guitar player, but he's a bit off base here. I'm not going to say the show is the highest form of entertainment out there, but there is nothing wrong with being associated with it in this tangential way. Although Perry admits during the interview to the fact that several Aerosmith songs have been played on the show and that was okay, apparently he forgot all about his own guest performance on the show.
All that aside, I think the real issue for Perry is the current friction within the band. To him, this is just another symptom. Whereas for Steven Tyler, he's just keeping his own options open and expanding his own career. Perry should be congratulating him, not berating him. But they are fighting like the married couple they are and perhaps they'll work out their issues or perhaps they won't. I hope they do, because I freakin' love Aerosmith!
As far as tonight's episode goes, I had my headphones in and missed most of it. But when I asked Lisa about how it was going, it is clear that none of the three judges this year is as being "mean" as we've come to expect, which was possibly a draw for a good portion of the viewers. Just how much of a jerk was Simon Cowell going to be this week? It's possible the show has jumped the shark long ago anyway. But even if this is the last season ever, I've come around to the idea that Steven's decision was the right one.
If you need convincing that Tyler's decision to be part of Idol is a good idea, look no further than the plethora of other rock stars who came to his defense.
- Nikki Sixx Defends Steven Tyler as 'American Idol' Judge
- VINCE NEIL Defends STEVEN TYLER's Decision To Judge American Idol; Video Available
- Gene Simmons Defends Steven Tyler's American Idol Move
My wife had mentioned previously that Gene Simmons was on KSHE's morning show defending Steven Tyler. If she and I can paraphrase, he basically said that Tyler was doing the right thing keeping himself out there in the public eye. It's something you have to do if you want to stay famous. The way I see it, a regular gig on a weekly show is more steady reliable work than being a singer in a rock band NO MATTER HOW CLASSIC AND SUCCESSFUL that rock band is. I know there are other issues that are causing friction within the band, many of them probably more important. I will be sad if they stop being a band, but I will be one Aerosmith fan smart enough not to blame American Idol.
Stay famous, Steven Tyler. Stay famous.