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Aerosmith

Aerosmith gears up for comeback Global Warming Tour

By Jerry Beach

Few American rock and roll bands have risen from the ashes of their self-inflicted wreckage as often as Aerosmith has. But the Boston bad boys may be about to mount their greatest comeback yet.

Today, March 28, Aerosmith is scheduled to host a press conference in Los Angeles, during which the band is expected to discuss their forthcoming, as yet unnamed record as well as their upcoming Global Warming Tour with Cheap Trick. On Monday, March 26, 18 dates were released, stretching from June 16 at the Target Center in Minneapolis to August 8 at the Tacoma Dome in Tacoma, Washington, with the possibility of more dates still to come. Presales have just begun and general public onsales are scheduled to start Saturday, March 31.

As previously reported by TicketNews, Aerosmith seemed to be wheezing to the finish line during its last American tour in 2010, which came on the heels of several years of health woes for band members as well as plenty of internal squabbling. Aerosmith played to many empty seats in 2010 as the verbal — and perhaps physical — battles between lead singer Steven Tyler and guitarist Joe Perry escalated, with the two sparring over Tyler's decision to join American Idol as a judge.

But Tyler's role on the perpetually top-ranked reality show has once again revitalized Aerosmith by introducing the band to younger fans. Perry certainly doesn't seem to mind the association any more; He showed up as a "surprise" guest durint the March 22 show and played "Happy Birthday" in honor of Tyler, who turned 64 Monday, March 26.

"I think you'll see a resurgence with Steven Tyler now that he's introduced himself to a whole new generation of fans thanks to American Idol," Jim Holzman, the president of Boston-based Ace Ticket, recently told TicketNews. "My eight-year-old daughter knows who Steven Tyler is. I think it'll be interesting the positive effect it'll have on sales."

Today's teens and pre-teens are members of the third generation to discover Aerosmith. Their parents found the band during its revival from 1987 through 2001, when the band had six top 10 singles. And many of today's grandparents were the ones who came of age with Aerosmith's self-titled, double platinum debut album in 1973.

RollingStone.com reported Monday, March 26 that the Aerosmith record — their first rock studio effort since 2001's "Just Push Play" — is expected to be released in May 2012 and that the band may promote it by performing the lead single live on American Idol. Such an unveiling would give Aerosmith the opportunity to generate further interest in the tour as well as a chance to make a bit of chart history. The quintet has already had a top 10 hit in four different decades, with Tyler hitting the top 40 last spring after the video for his solo song "(It) Feels So Good," aired during American Idol.

"It's kind of funny — originally the band members didn't want Steven to do it but now they see this [bringing] people to their shows," Holzman told TicketNews. "An interesting measuring stick [for the tour] is how many times that song gets downloaded on iTunes. That would give you a good indicator."

Of course, the biggest factor in the success of the tour will be ticket prices. Aerosmith came under some criticism in 2010 when the $1 million guarantee the band received for headlining the opening night of the New York State Fair resulted in the highest "low" ticket prices in the history of the event and a crowd of just 10,000 fans at the 17,000-seat venue.

The early prices for the Global Warming Tour seem to be budget-friendly. Tickets to the tour opener in Minnesota range from $37.50 to $147.50, while the range for the Tacoma finale, counting service fees, is $48.32 to $143.63.

"It depends what they price it at," Holzman said to TicketNews. "Concert ticket prices, more and more, are out of reach and out of touch with reality. But if priced correctly, it will sell."

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