Steven Tyler made a special appearance at Fenway Park to perform “God Bless America” for the seventh-inning stretch on Major League Baseball’s opening night (April 4). But the rock star vocalist, joined by his fellow Bad Boys of Boston, will return to the famed ballpark before the end of summer for a much different reason.
During the April 7 Red Sox vs. Yankees game, Tyler and vocalist Peter Wolf announced that their Boston-based bands Aerosmith and the J. Geils Band will play a late summer concert at the historic stadium on August 14.
The J. Geils Band will perform the opening set for the concert, which is scheduled to start at 6 p.m. Fenway’s gates will open an hour earlier to allow ticket holders in.
Ticket sales for the concert will start April 17 through LiveNation.com and be available during business hours at the Orpheum Theatre box office in Boston. The ticket office at Fenway Park will not sell ducats to the Aerosmith show. Prices will start at $55.
The August 14 performance is expected to quickly sell out. But even before Wednesday night’s announcement, Boston-area publications were already speculating that an August 14 sell-out would mean the quick addition of a second concert date on Friday, August 13.
Publications like the Boston Herald also noted that the upcoming concert is likely a replacement for Elton John and Billy Joel’s now-ended Face 2 Face Tour. The two pop pianists were reportedly planning a round of stadium performances for the summer. But in early March, John told various media outlets that summer Face 2 Face concerts had to be cancelled when Joel decided to take a year off from touring.
The summer match-up of Aerosmith and the J. Geils Band is particularly interesting given recent statements from both groups.
Over the past few months, fights within Aerosmith were well publicized — including the reported break-up of the band and search for a replacement for Tyler. The band only recently patched things up, announcing in late February their plans for the reconciliatory Cocked, Locked and Ready to Rock Tour in Europe.
The touring future for the J. Geils Band was also recently in doubt. In an early year interview with Billboard, Wolf noted that a January 23 benefit concert in Boston would be the group’s last live show. However, his commitment to it actually being the “last” was vague, as he explained: “You never say never, but I can tell you in my heart of hearts that as far as I know — and I’m a pretty good source — there is nothing I can think of that’s planned. So this is basically it right now.”
With their impending Fenway engagement, Aerosmith and the J. Geils Band can now count themselves among the few recent performers to set up stage in Boston’s historic ballpark. In 2003, Fenway began hosting several summer concerts per year and has since featured Bruce Springsteen, Jimmy Buffet, the Rolling Stones, Dave Matthews Band, The Police, Neil Diamond, Phish and — most recently — Paul McCartney.
The image accompanying this story is from Aerosmith’s official Web site.