February 17, 2020
Aerosmith is celebrating their 50th Anniversary of being a band this year. Although they did not release their first record until 1972, the original five members: Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Brad Whitford, Tom Hamilton and Joey Kramer first joined forces in 1970.
The Bad Boys From Boston have decided to set up shop in Las Vegas at the Park MGM for a multiple month residency.
We got the opportunity to check out their last show on February 15 before they take a break and then return in May to extend their residency.
Before the show started, there were several characters from various Aerosmith album covers, like Just Push Play and Nine Lives, walking around the front of the stage interacting with fans while sounds of train stations and airports filled the arena.
Right at 8:00, a timer appeared at the bottom of the screen at the front of the stage letting the audience know that there were 30 minutes before the show started. While the timer was counting down, a retrospective video of the band played using each members voice along with photos and video clips.
Finally, at 8:30, the curtain dropped and all five members appeared from a riser at the back of the stage.
Joey Kramer went right to his drum kit and the band launched into “Train Kept a Rollin’” a song that they have not played during their residency.
Each band member got to take their turn in the spotlight. Yes, all eyes are usually on Tyler because you never know what the spry 71 year-old might do. Tyler not only keeps his body in tip top shape, but his vocals are also still one of the best in the business.
Brad Whitford took center stage to play lead guitar on “Last Child” a song he co-wrote with Tyler back on 1976.
Tom Hamilton was front and center as he played an extended funky intro to “Sweet Emotion” before the rest of the band tore it up.
Tyler was all over the stage, dancing, prancing and twirling around. The energy this man exudes at 71 is still a sight to behold. Several times he jumped into the pit to get close to the fans who paid the big bucks for those seats. At one point, he also walked around the entire lower level to interact with fans.
Joe Perry got in on the act as he took center stage to sing “Viva Las Vegas” and Fleetwood Mac’s “Stop Messin’ Around.”
Joey Kramer’s drum riser was brought out to center stage so he could take the spotlight on “Love in an Elevator.”
My only complaint for the entire show was out of the 16 songs the band played, four of them were covers. And that’s not counting the snippets of “Golden Slumbers” Led Zeppelin’s “Heartbreaker” and James Brown’s “Sex Machine” that were sprinkled in the set.
I came to hear Aerosmith play Aerosmith songs. How about “Kings and Queens” or “Lord of the Thighs” or some other classic Aerosmith songs?
The only real deep cuts they played were “Chip Away The Stone” and “Toys In the Attic” and I was happy to hear them.
The band sounded fantastic even though Joe Perry and Steven Tyler were battling the flu. These guys are professionals and they gave it everything they had.
An all female string section came out and joined the band for their only number one hit, “I Don't Wanna Miss A Thing” and later reappeared to play on "Dream On."
The show ended with “Walk This Way “ as Tyler and Perry walked up a cat walk that extended into the balcony.
This is a band, that even after 50 years is still at the top of their game. There is no reason for them to slow down.
If you happen to be in Vegas in May, I highly recommend you check them out!
Cell phone photos and review by Greg Drugan