Band History


Aerosmith History Timeline
 For a quick jump in history click on a year.
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- Steven Tyler forms his first "serious" band, The Strangeurs, in Sunapee NH in which he is the band's drummer. Tyler would later change the band's name to Chain Reaction, writing songs with their keyboard player, Don Solomon (with whom he co-wrote "Woman of the World"). The band also covers Beatles, Stones, Animals and Yardbirds



- At the age of 18, Steven Tyler enters the studio for the first time with his band Chain Reaction. They record two singles:

"The Sun / When I Needed You" (Date) and
"You Should Have Been Here Yesterday / Ever Lovin' Man" (Verve)

- Meanwhile, Perry and Hamilton form a combo, "Pipe Dream" in Sunapee, NH which by 1969 had become the blues-based, free-form "Jam Band"

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- March - Chain Reaction opens 4 shows for the Yardbirds. One of the Yardbirds' set, at New York's Anderson Theater, is recorded and released as the controversial "Live Yardbirds"

- October - NYC - Tyler, still with Chain Reaction, guests in the studio on backup vocals with The Left Banke, who had a hit with "Walk Away Rene"

"He was hungry and a good singer, so I put him on there"

- Tom Finn - Bass Player, The Left Banke

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- Chain Reaction play occasional high profile gigs, opening for The Byrds (the County Center in White Plains,) The Beach Boys (Iona College,) and the last lineup of Yardbirds with Jimmy Page (Staples High School in Connecticut)

- Chain Reaction and the Jam Band both play gigs at Sunapee, NH's "The Barn". Tyler witnesses the Jam Band playing Fleetwood Mac's "Rattlesnake Shake"

- "They did this song so well that I knew if I could get together with these guys, we could pull the same feeling off with some songs I wrote, so I got together with them...I loved Joe's style. He always played out of tune and real sloppy and I just loved it."
- Steven Tyler interview Circus Magazine 6/75

- Aerosmith's most vital and (often) most overlooked element was synthesized in this union. The Jam Band's wild, unadulterated improv-ability was successfully merged with Chain Reaction's tight, disciplined control to produce the furious but steady blast we know as Aerosmith

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- Aerosmith is well received at their first public appearance, playing at Nipmuc Regional High School in Mendon, MA in the late fall

- The newly named Aerosmith play gigs outside of Boston University's Student Union building, recognizing that getting close to their fans is the key to success. Sharing an apartment at 1325 Commonwealth Avenue in Boston, the band defines itself in the best possible conditions for a young rock n' roll band to do so


"There were six of us in the group, some of us were living in the kitchen, eating brown rice and Cambell's soup. Those days, you know, when a quart of beer was heaven. It was hard times and it was really good. During lunch we would set up all our equipment outside of BU, in the main square and just started wailing. That's basically how we got billed. We never got much publicity in the magazines and newspapers."

- Steven Tyler interview Circus Magazine 6/75

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- Guitarist Ray Tabano leaves the band to return years later as a member of the crew, then Director of Marketing, during which time he launched the first Aerosmith fan club and worked on developing their merchandise

- Tabano is replaced by Brad Whitford who cut his eye-teeth in rock n' roll at age 16, playing with Teapot Dome, Earth, Inc. and Cymbals of Resistance

- At this point the band is earning about $300 a night and dodging eviction notices and stealing food from supermarkets to survive. Still an unsigned local band, they compete for local press with others like J. Geils and The Modern Lovers

- The band's formative years are not without that most needed element in any successful rock band's history - sheer luck. They had worked damn hard and the payoff was on its way

- John O'Toole lets Aerosmith practice free of charge in the Fenway Theater. He takes a liking to the band and brings in his friend Frank Connoly, the first person of some commercial significance to have more than a passing hunch about the band's potential -

"Frank was the first guy who knew, he was the one who said we were on to something"


- Brad Whitford

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- Steven Tallarico changes his name to Steven Tyler

- Summer - Aerosmith lands a $125,000 deal with Columbia, following a show an New York's Max's Kansas City, when Clive Davis saw them play. The song "No Suprize" chronicals this event

- The band enters Intermedia Sound studios to record Aerosmith their classic self titled debut LP, produced by Adrian Barber. The album was recorded and mixed in just 2 weeks

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 - January - The first album, Aerosmith, is released on Columbia Records.

- The band begins touring in support of the first album, opening for the likes of Mott the Hoople, The Kinks, Hawkwind and Mahavishnu Orchestra

- The first LP sells faster than any other album in Boston at the time and gets an outstanding review from Creem Magazine, while going largely unnoticed by other mainstream media

- June - "Dream On" / "Somebody" released as a single. "Dream On" gets #1 song of the year at 2 popular Boston radio stations (WVBF - Framingham, and WBCN - Boston)

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- March - The band finish recording Get Your Wings at the Record Plant in New York and release the first single, - "Same Old Song And Dance" / "Pandora's Box"

- Circus Magazine gives Get Your Wings the first mention as one of the year's "Ace Albums"

- Circus Magazine runs an article on Aerosmith

- April - Letter to the Editors of Circus Magazine -

"Let's have more on a fantastic group called Aerosmith. They are very well-known in Boston and New York. Their hit single "Dream On" is the number one song of the year on two popular FM stations. They were also recently on tour with Mott the Hoople, and they put on an incredible show! Lead singer Steven Tyler really knows how to please the audience, and I hope in coming issues I'll hear more about them.


-Ann Marie Foley, Waltham, MA

- September - "Train Kept a Rollin'" / "Spaced" (a leftover from their days performing as Chain Reaction) is released as a single

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1975 - 76

- Early '75 - Get Your Wings goes Gold

- February - "S.O.S. (Too Bad)" / "Spaced" is released

- April - Toys in the Attic, recorded in NY at the Record Plant, breaks The Top 20

- May - "Sweet Emotion" / "Uncle Salty" is released, charting into Billboard's Top 40

- August - "Walk This Way" / "Round And Round" is released

- November - "You See Me Cryin'" / "Toys In The Attic" is released

- Aerosmith continues touring heavily as the venues get larger. Press coverage begins to blossom

- Aerosmith plays before a crowd of 80,000 in the Detroit Lion's Stadium, Pontiac Michigan

- Cover of The Boston Phoenix runs a picture of Steven Tyler in a black lace top with the accompanying headline; "Boston's Biggest Export"

- Aerosmith becomes a headlining act, and along with ZZ Top and KISS, one of the top concert attractions in the country

"We were America's band, we were the garage band that made it really big - the ultimate party band. We were the guys who you could actually see. Back then in the seventies, it wasn't like Led Zeppelin was out there on the road in America all of the time. The Stones weren't always coming to your town. We were. You could count on us to come by."


- Joe Perry

- February - Fueled by their recent success, the band begins recording their fourth album Rocks at The Wherehouse in Waltham, MA and Record Plant Studios, New York

- May - Rocks, the band's fourth album, often heralded as their finest, is released and immediately goes platinum

- Cover of Rolling Stone has Steven Tyler lying in bed flashing his "Ma' Kin" tattoo. The issue features a 6 page article: "Aerosmith's Wrench Rock, Music for The New Stone Age."

- The band embarks on 58 City tour of U.S.

- Aerosmith gets voted #1 favorite band and Rocks gets #1 favorite album in the Reader's Poll, Creem Magazine

- May '76 - "Last Child" / "Combination" is released

- August - "Home Tonight" / "Pandora's Box" is released

- November "Walk This Way" / "Uncle Salty" is re-released peaking into Billboard's Top 10

- November "Dream On" / "Sweet Emotion" is re-released

- "Dream On" reaches #3 in the Billboard Charts

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- Early '77, band begins its first tour of the Far East in Japan.

- March - "Back in the Saddle / "Nobody's Fault" is released

- The band sets up headquarters in a quiet, converted 300 room convent known as The Cenacle to record their fifth album, Draw The Line

"Sixty acres with a great big house, I don't know how much it cost but it was outrageous. We had motorcycles and Porsches and we'd go cruising around the countryside terrorizing everybody. We had all our friends up there and we'd go shooting off all these guns at the shooting range, just blasting away. We had a great time up there."


- Joe Perry Creem Magazine

- Driving back from the studio one night, Joey Kramer crashes his car

- Summer - Aerosmith begins their second European Tour

- October - "Draw The Line" single is released

- December - Draw The Line, released on Columbia Records goes platinum faster than any previous Aerosmith album

- The band embarks on "Draw The Line Tour" which lasts through 1978 and early 1979

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- Summer - Aerosmith co-headline "California Jam II" with Ted Nugent, the biggest rock festival of the mid to late 70's, and are featured on the double album release of the concert

- Aerosmith pays $ 3,650 in bail-money to free fifty-two fans busted for violating a No-Smoking ordinance during a show at Fort Wayne, Indiana

- The band continue their ruthless touring schedule throughout the year

- Aerosmith wraps up the tour playing a show at Boston's "Paradise" as "Dr. J. Jones and the Interns"

- Tracks recorded live at this show found their way onto Live! Bootleg

- October - Aerosmith make their Hollywood debut with an appearance in Robert Stigwood's "Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band" movie as the "Future Villain Band"

- Live! Bootleg is released on Columbia Records

 "What Live! Bootleg does make clear, as it highlights the best of their past work, is that Aerosmith really is one of the best hard rock bands that the U.S. has ever produced. I don't think that they set out to be an important group: no great messages to get across, no big causes to champion. They just wanted to be one hot Rock 'n' Roll band, rooted in the second generation guitar-calisthenics-plus-frontman approach of their heroes."

- Billy Altman - Creem magazine

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- Aerosmith finally slow down after seven solid years of pummeling the globe

- Aerosmith begin work on their seventh album Night In The Ruts

- After some internal turmoil with the band, Joe Perry leaves Aerosmith to further pursue "The Joe Perry Project"

- Jimmy Crespo, formerly of Flame replaces Perry on lead guitar

- Aerosmith goes on tour with the new line-up to support Night in the Ruts

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- Aerosmith release Greatest Hits on Columbia Records

- The Joe Perry Project release their debut Let the Music do the Talking, which earns the band a minor hit with the title cut

- Internal strife continues to plague Aerosmith's progress as Brad Whitford leaves the band

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- Guitarist Brad Whitford teams up with Derek St. Holmes, who had previously played with Ted Nugent, to record Whitford / St. Holmes

- Rick Dufay replaces Brad Whitford on guitar

- Joe Perry Project releases I've Got The Rock n' Rolls Again

- Steven Tyler spends much of the year recovering from a motorcycle accident

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1982 - 83

- August - Rock In A Hard Place is released on Columbia Records

- The band sets off on the "Rock In A Hard Place Tour" with Jimmy Crespo and Rick Dufay on guitars. The tour continues into early 1984

- Joe Perry Project Records Once a Rocker, Always a Rocker for MCA Records

- Brad Whitford reunites with Joe Perry to play live at several shows

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- February - Valentine's Day, after a long period of well-publicised estrangement between Perry and Tyler, Perry and Whitford visit their old band backstage following an Aerosmith show at Boston's Orpheum Theater. The wounds start to heal...

- April - The announcement is made that the original Aerosmith will reunite and tour  - The band teams up with A&R man, John Kalodner, who then signs them to Geffen. Kalodner continues to be involved to this day

- The reunited Aerosmith begins rehearsing at the Glen Ellen Country Club in Millis, MA.

"You should have felt the buzz the moment all five of us got together in the same room for the first time again. We all started laughin' - it was like the five years had never passed. We knew we'd made the right move."


- Steven Tyler

- Aerosmith launches their 70-date "Back in the Saddle" tour

"I know everybody's gonna' ask if we got back together for the money, and of course we did. No, it's fun to have the money come in, but the reason is definitely the pleasure we get from playing together again."


- Joe Perry in a Rolling Stone interview.

- After interviewing the band, one writer observes,

"Hearing Perry and Tyler rap about their career, their enthusiasm for good, fast, hard, rock 'n' roll, and their good-natured comraderie, will dispel any notion that they're just doing it for the money. Clearly, they are brimming with enthusiasm over their new material, and the chance to have another crack at being in the center ring of the rock 'n' roll circus."


- Jim Moran Sweet Potato

- America's radio and TV airwaves are inundated with countless young, second-wave heavy metal bands, many admittedly indebted to Aerosmith

"We paved the road, so to speak, so why not fucking get in our cars and drive down it again?"


- Steven Tyler

"The Quiet Riot's and all those guys with the leather and studs and the stacks of Marshall amps that aren't turned on better watch out. We are the band your mother warned you about."


- Joe Perry

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1985 - 86

- New Year's Eve - Aerosmith culminate their "Back in the Saddle" Tour with a legendary two-night stand at Boston's Orpheum Theater

- July - Aerosmith enters the studio to record Done With Mirrors with Ted Templeman producing

- November - Done With Mirrors is released on Columbia Records. Aerosmith set out on a world tour in support of their new album

- The band is generally ecstatic about being back together and touring again

"I feel like it's ten years ago again. I feel like the band never was and here we are starting out at the beginning again."


- Steven Tyler

- Aerosmith re-enters the charts for the first time in six years, teaming with Run-DMC for a Rick Rubin-produced re-make of "Walk This Way", a track that the rappers had been burning up the clubs with for some time.

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"We crawled out from under our problems and got in touch with ourselves."


- Brad Whitford
- Aerosmith release their ninth studio album Permanent Vacation. Going Triple-Platinum, the album deservedly restores Aerosmith to a dignified position in the music business and, more importantly, in the ears and hearts of the listening public - the fans

"Aerosmith forfeited none of their bad-boy image, and their live shows were among the best of their long career. Even critics liked them better the second time around."


- Rolling Stone Encyclopedia of Rock and Roll

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- September - Aerosmith win their first MTV Music Awards for:

- "Rag Doll" and "Angel" land Aerosmith on the Billboard Charts with "Angel" peaking at #3, tying with "Dream On's" 1976 re-released as their highest charting single

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- September - Pump, their 10th studio album reaches # 5 on the charts and goes Multi-Platinum

- September - Aerosmith receive MTV Awards Nomination for Best Heavy Metal Video - "Rag Doll"

- The Making Of Pump - longform video is released
- Things That Go'Pump' In The Night - is released

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- Aerosmith takes a well-deserved break and begins writing new material for the next album

- "What It Takes" hits #9 on the Charts

- August - Donnington Park, England - Aerosmith is joined by longtime hero Jimmy Page to jam with them onstage for "Train Kept a' Rollin'", an old Yardbirds classic which Aerosmith had covered in the Seventies.

- Aerosmith plays a 'secret' gig at London's Marquee club. Jimmy Page joins them onstage for 6 songs

- September - Aerosmith receives two MTV Music Awards for:

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- Aerosmith inks a new record deal with Sony Music

 - Aerosmith receives a Grammy for "Janie's Got A Gun"

- "Pandora's Box", a 3 CD Box Set, is released

- Aerosmith makes an appearance on "The Simpsons"

- Aerosmith are inducted into The Boston Garden Hall of Fame

- September - Aerosmith wins MTV Music Awards:

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- Aerosmith wins, "Outstanding Rock Band" and "Best Rock Video" at the Boston Music Awards

- In the fight against censorship, Aerosmith gives $10,000 to the List Visual Arts Center at MIT in Boston, to fund a sexually explicit exhibition of photographs and sculptures for which the National Endowment For The Arts had pulled support

- Aerosmith shoots the "Rock The Vote" video for a massive, national TV campaign encouraging America's youth to vote in the Presidential elections

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- Get A Grip is released, shooting to #1 on the charts and selling over 5 million copies

- September - Aerosmith plays Long Island's Jones Beach Theater and New York's Madison Square Garden, inspiring Newsday's Ira Robbins to write:


"Whatever it is that fuels Aerosmith's unforgettable fire after all these years (carrot juice? pasta? Milk of Magnesia?) must have been plentifully stocked backstage. The band's live sets at the time were only building more momentum as their new lifestyles fired them into a natural oblivion on stage."

- Sony/Columbia reissues all twelve of the band's Columbia releases in Box of Fire box set

- Aerosmith wins MTV Music Awards:

- The band scores Billboard hits with "Livin' On The Edge", "Cryin'", "Crazy", and "Amazing", putting the band back in its rightful place as one of the most popular bands in the world.

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- August - Aerosmith gives a stunning performance at Woodstock '94 headlining Saturday nights' show, which also featured Metallica, Blind Mellon and Nine Inch Nails, in a torrential downpour that was followed by a spectacular fireworks display.

- 'Get A Grip' World Tour steamrolls through North America, Canada, Europe, and Japan

- Aerosmith performs "Livin' on The Edge" at the Grammy Awards with the song winning "Best Performance by a Duo or a Group"

- Cryin is voted #1 All Time Favorite Video as voted by MTV viewers - "Cryin'"

- Aerosmith honored at "People's Choice Awards"

- Aerosmith honored at American Music Awards

- Aerosmith stars in their own video arcade game, Revolution X

- Aerosmith tours Latin America for the first time, headlining the Hollywood Rocks Festival in Rio in addition to playing their own stadium shows in Argentina

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- Aerosmith win their Third Grammy at the 37th Annual Grammy Awards for "Best Performance By A Duo or Group with Vocal" - "Crazy"

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- Aerosmith's album, entitled Nine Lives, debuts at number 1 on the US Billboard charts in its first week of release

- Aerosmith's Official Website, debuts with 550,000 hits in its first 24 hours

- Band releases Nine Lives as a CD Extra allowing the user to play along with three of the songs on the album

- Worldwide tour kicks off in Newcastle, England May 8th

- Within 4 weeks of release, album goes gold in 6 countries, platinum in 1 and double platinum in 2

 - Aerosmith wins MTV's Best Rock Video Award for "Falling In Love Is Hard On The Knees" (the first single released from Nine Lives)

- Aerosmith is the recipient of the 1997 Nordoff Robbins Silver Cleff Award, and raises in excess of $800,000 for the foundation

- Official Aerosmith biography 'Walk This Way' released September 10, published by AVON

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- Aerosmith nominated for 2 Awards at the 1998 Grammy's.

- Aerosmith win award for Best Rock Album, and Steven Tyler for Best Vocalist at the 1998 Boston Music Awards

 - British and Japanese versions of the official Aerosmith biography 'Walk This Way' released January 15, 1998 and February 25, 1998 respectively

- Aerosmith complete a sold out Dome tour of Japan as part of their Nine Lives World Tour in March 1998, the first ever by an International Artist.

- Aerosmith complete a 5,000 person chat from Japan on Yahoo

- Aerosmith's 12th studio album Nine Lives certified double platinum in the USA

 - Due to a knee injury sustained by Steven Tyler on stage in Anchorage, Alaska, (April 29, 1998), Aerosmith are forced to postpone 18 North American shows and cancel 20 European dates. This is the first time in Aerosmith's history that multiple dates have had to be re-scheduled.

- Due to 2nd degree burns sustained by Joey Kramer in a freak gas station fire (July 15, 1998), the planned commencement of the summer run was postponed once again until September 9, 1998. 13 shows were re-scheduled.

- April  - Aerosmith record the lead track for the film Armageddon: The Album, entitled "I Don't Want To Miss a Thing". The record explodes at radio around the world.

- Armageddon: The Album was released in the U.S. on June 23, 1998 featuring 4 Aerosmith tracks: "I Don't Want To Miss a Thing", "What Kind of Love are You On?", "Sweet Emotion", and "Come Together". All are featured in the movie.

 - Armageddon: The Album reaches #1 on the Billboard Top 200 albums chart one week after it's debut at #4. The #1 position was retained for 2 consecutive weeks. Within four weeks the album was platinum.

- Aerosmith perform at the 'Armageddon' World Premiere at The Kennedy Space Center, June 29, 1998. (Steven Tyler takes the stage in a full leg brace).

- Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Aerosmith exhibit erected April 1998.

- August 1998 - "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing" from Armageddon: The Album reaches number 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 singles chart. The first ever number one for the band.

- Aerosmith win two awards at the 1998 MTV Music Video Awards, attending the ceremony to collect them in person:

- October - Joe Perry makes his acting debut on the NBC TV series "Homicide - Life on the street"

- October - The 2-CD live Album "A Little South of Sanity" is released

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"The thing that really stands out in my mind about Aerosmith  is that we're still fucking together. Whatever we've done together and whatever we've become, is second to the fact that we're still doing this. I'm still in love with these guys. I'm not saying it didn't take a lot of work because drugs will take you and pull you apart. But it wasn't anything we shot up or put up our noses that gave us the edge- it was Joe Perry's fuck-all, being as abrasive as that motherfucker is, and Brad Whitford's ear, Tom Hamilton's well-aimed simplicity and Joey Kramer's solid bed of backbeat. Keeping this band together has been the hardest and happiest thing we've done in our lives. It's been a long time coming. So for all the music and all the other stuff that comes from Aerosmith, the most amazing thing is that we're still playing and still having some fucking fun."


- Steven Tyler


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