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Steven Tyler Does Karaoke, Aerosmith Auditioning New Singers

Late last month, Aerosmith‘s Steven Tyler entered a drug rehab facility for pain management and his addiction to prescription painkillers fueled by 10 years of onstage injuries. Then, on Jan. 19, Tyler was apparently in good spirits when, according to reports, he waltzed right into the Tilted Kilt Pub in Palm Desert, Calif., with his management team by his side for a little karaoke.

Reports claim Tyler dropped in to the Tilted Kilt, where staffers and revelers were asked not to snap pictures of the Aerosmith singer. Of course, pictures have emerged nevertheless from Tyler’s trip to Tilted, and he even sang one of his 1998 hit ‘I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing’ for the crowd.

According to the bar’s DJ, Tyler stayed for much of the night’s karaoke competition, even applauding performers who took the mic. He was “very gracious and very kind,” the DJ explained. When two amateur singers informed Tyler they’d be tackling ‘I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing’ Tyler reportedly gave his blessing before interrupting the debacle.

“All of a sudden, near the end of the song, [Tyler] grabbed the mic and started singing,” the DJ says. “The whole frickin’ bar surrounded him, and he just started singing the whole thing.” When Tyler finished, the DJ announced to the stunned crowd that “Karaoke will never get better then that.” Tyler’s presence obviously had people texting and calling friends, which triggered Tyler’s early exit.

Meanwhile, the rest of Aerosmith have launched a search for a singer who could replace Tyler. It’s not clear whether they’re looking for a permanent fix or just a temporary fill-in. According to guitarist Joe Perry, the band’s “already getting the word out there. The word’s been out there for a while.”

Next month, Perry says Aerosmith will “start having some auditions, making some phone calls. Hopefully, we’ll have found a new singer by the summer, and Aerosmith will be able to go back out on the road.” While Tyler recovers from his addiction and has not been fired as frontman, it seems the rest of Aerosmith isn’t willing to rest on their laurels, as they prepare for their 40th anniversary in 2011.

“It’s kind of hard to get a straight answer about what’s going on,” Perry says. “He has to have leg surgery and foot surgery and it’s basically going to take him out of the picture for about a year, year and a half. So, in the meantime, the rest of the band wants to play. And I want to play with the other guys in Aerosmith. So the four of us are just making our plans. We’re gonna find somebody to get in there and fill that spot. Just like when Tom was sick — we got David Hull to come in and play bass. When Brad was sick, we got somebody else to come in and play for him. That’s basically how I look at it; we need another singer to fill in.”

While expressing hope for Tyler’s eventual return, Perry says a new configuration of the band would continue as Aerosmith. “I’m ready to write with him, to play on stage with him anytime he’s physically ready and wants to do it,” Perry says. “But it’s really up to him … And the last things he said to the press were that he wanted to work with the band and sing with the band, so we’ll see.”

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