Aerosmith took the GRAMMYs stage with Run DMC on January 26 for a special collaborative performance during the 2020 Grammy Awards. While Aerosmith, led by frontman Steven Tyler, took the lead on the live performance, which began with their hit song “Living on the Edge,” Run DMC emerged onto the stage to help execute their joint rendition of “Walk This Way.”
Aerosmith and Run-DMC’s reunion was one of the Grammys’ few “throwback” moments, taking pause to acknowledge and pay respect to recording artist greats on a night that often focuses on only the most recent hits. According to Rolling Stone, Run-DMC retired in 2002 following the death of member Jam Master Jay, so the performance was a special and infrequent reunion for the remaining two members.
During the performance, Rev. Run held up a Los Angeles Lakers jersey, with the number 24 and “BRYANT” on the back. The gesture was in honor of former NBA star Kobe Bryant, who died in a helicopter accident hours before the Grammy Awards.
“Walk This Way” was released by Aerosmith in 1975 as part of their album Toys in the Attic. In 1985, Run-DMC released their own version, featuring Aerosmith, in the form of a music video. The music video currently has over 77 million views on YouTube.
Aerosmith Performed at the GRAMMYs Without Drummer Joey Kramer
The current members of Aerosmith are Joe Perry, Brad Whitford, and founding members Steven Tyler, Tom Hamilton, and Joey Kramer. Although Joey Kramer is still listed as the band’s drummer, he did not perform with the rest of Aerosmith at the GRAMMYs. A fill-in drummer took his place.
Kramer was turned away from Aerosmith’s GRAMMYs rehearsal at the Staples Center days before the show. He told TMZ “The band waited until January 15th to tell me that they weren’t letting me play at the awards ceremonies this week. I can hold my head high knowing that I did the right thing — to fight for my right to celebrate the band’s success that I have dedicated the better part of my life to helping build.”
Kramer attempted to sue the band for not letting him perform with them on the GRAMMYs stage, but the judge ultimately ruled against him, deciding that “Given that Kramer has not played with the band in 6 months and the dearth of available rehearsal time before the upcoming performances, Kramer has not shown a realistic alternative course of action sufficient to protect the band’s business interests.”
Aerosmith Was Honored at MusiCares Days Before the 2020 GRAMMYs
Aerosmith was awarded “MusiCares Person of the Year” leading up to the 62nd annual Grammy Awards. When sharing the announcement, Grammy.com wrote “In the midst of celebrating 50 years as a band, Aerosmith will be recognized for their considerable philanthropic efforts over five decades and undeniable impact on American music history. Over the years, Aerosmith has shown support for a number of charity organizations around the world, including MusiCares and vocalist Steven Tyler’s philanthropic initiative Janie’s Fund, which supports young women who’ve suffered the trauma of abuse and neglect.”
The group posed for photo ops and performed during the event, which was held on January 24.
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