I have just finished Steven Tyler’s autobiography and am still a bit unsure of what to make of it all. Problem is that Steven tends to be all over the place with his writing, although once you get over that, and his constant use of the ‘f’ word, this book proves to be an interesting read.
This is a book full of sex, drugs and even a little rock ‘n’ roll, as Steven recounts his life’s’ story. There is a lot of talk about drugs, and Steven is open and honest about his stints in rehab and his many attempts, successes and failures to get himself clean. The drug talk is very frank and open, although I’m not sure whether he fully understands the gravity of his drug problem.
Steven also talks a lot about sex in his book, and about his many infidelities and sexual conquests. Again he is quite open about this and about his inability to understand why his wives and girlfriends have not been able to accept this part of his rock n roll lifestyle.
Perhaps the bits of the book that I enjoyed the most are when he talks about his music and his band Aerosmith, as well as the relationship he has with the other half of the Toxic Twins, guitarist Joe Perry. Steven gives a very good insight into the songwriting process and the chemistry that is needed to be a part of a successful band. It’s obvious that even when the band was disintegrating in the early 80s, to more recent times when Aerosmith has tried to replace Tyler as lead singer due to his inability to remain clean, that there has still been a chemistry and camaraderie within Aerosmith. As Tyler says, Aerosmith are his ‘other’ family and Joe Perry is his soul mate and brother.
One thing that struck me is that despite the fame, sex, drugs and rock n roll, Steven Tyler is a lot like me. Offstage, when he is not playing the rock star, he is shy and reserved and a very thoughtful and caring person who wonders about the mysteries of the world. He has a great curiosity about things. He also seems like the type of person who despite his fame is quite accepting of people from all walks of life. You often hear about famous people who are assholes, but Steven sounds like the type of person who would be anything but arrogant and would be enjoyable company.
I do recommend this book if you are a fan of Aerosmith and yo want to know the ups and downs of America‘s greatest rock ‘n’ roll band and their charismatic lead singer. However if you have discovered Steven Tyler more recently as the crazy old man whose a judge on American Idol I would avoid this, as his life has been anything but wholsome and you will be shocked.