Reports of Aerosmith’s death have been greatly exaggerated. The group recently canceled a European tour, months after guitarist Brad Whitford publicly expressed doubts that they’d ever perform again, but they recently announced a resumption of their Deuces Are Wild Las Vegas residency at Dolby Live at Park MGM. It kicks off June 17, and 23 other shows are booked through Dec. 11. Tickets are on sale now.
Aerosmith haven’t played a gig since February 2020, and they kept a low profile during the pandemic. “I’ve just been trying to stay busy,” Joe Perry tells Rolling Stone. “Every once in a while, my wife Billie and I will pull out two suitcases and pack like we’re going on the road, and then a day later, we’ll unpack and put the suitcases back, just to keep the vibe going.”
The set varies from night to night, but it always mixes hits like “Love in an Elevator,” “Dream On,” and “Walk This Way ” with fan favorites like “Let the Music Do the Talking” and “Hangman Jury” and covers like “Viva Las Vegas” and Fleetwood Mac’s “Stop Messin’ Around.” “One night we’ll throw one song in and then two or three shows down the road we’ll take that one out,” Steven Tyler tells Rolling Stone, “and put another new one in.”
The Dolby Live theater seats just about 5,000 people, roughly a quarter of the capacity of the basketball arenas that Aerosmith usually play. “It’s probably the best sounding venue we’ve ever played in,” says Perry, noting the site’s Dolby Atmos PA–designed system. “Sometimes we’ll listen to the playback of the shows just to hear it, and the mix sounds just like you’re on stage. It really blows my mind.
“For songs like ‘Hangman Jury’ and ‘Seasons of Wither,'” adds Tyler, “Joe and I take two chairs and bring them down to the front of the stage. I have a microphone and Joe sits next to me with his guitar and it’s a really special moment with fans that would be hard to recreate in a stadium setting.”
The band’s only shows for 2022 are the Las Vegas run and a September gig at Fenway Park in Boston. Their plans after that are still up in the air. “For now, our focus is on Vegas,” says Tyler, “but we’re excited to see what 2023 has in store for us.”