MusiCares, the Grammys’ charitable arm, will honor the band Aerosmith this Sunday as 2020’s MusiCares Person Of The Year. Drummer Joey Kramer may be shocked to find his bandmates don’t care nearly enough.
The corporate entity trademarked as Aerosmith is preventing him from taking part in the event. Kramer, a member of the band since 1970, is suing his bandmates for preventing his return to the group after going on disability leave last spring.
According to the lawsuit, as reported by TMZ and other outlets, Kramer was ready to return for the band’s fall Las Vegas residency shows, but was asked to audition to a click track to prove he was “able to play at an appropriate level.” During Kramer’s recovery, the band also allegedly required him to pay his replacement $20k per week for performances and $10k per week for rehearsals. Eventually, Kramer gave in to the band’s request for the click track audition but was rebuffed when the group stated he was not performing with sufficient energy.
This is yet another issue in the long-running soap opera that is Aerosmith, starting with career-long dysfunctional relationships (primarily between singer Steven Tyler and guitarist Joe Perry). Both Perry and rhythm guitarist Brad Whitford left for 1982’s Rock In A Hard Place but returned for 1985’s Done With Mirrors. There have been many reports over the decades of drug and alcohol relapses. Famously, Tyler and Perry are known for not being particularly fond of each other outside of their business arrangement.
This is an ongoing story and Kramer may yet be included in Sunday’s Grammy Awards celebration to stem the rising bad press, but if anything is certain in Aerosmithland, it may get worse before it gets better.