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by Suzanne

Steven Tyler

Interview with Steven Tyler of "American Idol" on FOX 1/18/11.

FBC PUBLICITY: American Idol Conference with Steven Tyler
January 18, 2011/1:00 p.m. EST

I'm very annoyed at myself for missing this one...but I honestly don't know if I would have gotten the chance to speak with him, anyway. When it's a big star, sometimes I sit there for an hour and listen and don't get to ask questions.  He's very awesome, though, and this is a great read.

Alex Gillespie Ė FBC Publicity
Steven Tyler Ė Host, American Idol


Moderator Welcome to the American Idol interview call with Steven Tyler. Iíll now turn the conference over to Alex Gillespie for opening remarks.

A. Gillespie Good afternoon everyone. Thank you for joining us for the Steven Tyler conference call. Just as a reminder, American Idol begins tomorrow night from 8:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m. on Fox. If you need any photos or any video, you can go to our press Website called

Without further ado, Iím going to turn the call over to Mr. Steven Tyler who will be available to take your questions.

Moderator Weíll go ahead and take the first question from Reg Seeton with

R. Seeton Can you talk about some of the concerns that you had stepping into such a popular show, and what it was like to find your own identity as a judge?

S. Tyler None whatsoever. I got such an identity with this band and for all the videos that Iíve done I figured itíd be a shoe in. The part thatís a little difficult is judging young kids that I think they all have a voice, but actually being honest and open. So it took me a couple of minutes to get into the role of that, but Iíve grown accustomed to it and itís fun, and I get to sit next to J. Lo and Randy taking the you know what out of everybody, and itís been good.

I donít take whatever happened to me this morning or last night or with the band or with exes, I donít take that into judging kids like some other people might have. I kind of take what Iíve grown up with, which is being a very harsh judge of myselfómy own vocals, my own bandóand kind of laid that across the talent that comes across my view.

Moderator Weíll move on to Anthony Jones with Celebrity News Service.

A. Jones Iím a huge Aerosmith fan, so Iím a little bit more interested in what youíre going to be doing when youíre not at the judgeís table. Are going to be planning on working on the new album when youíre out there in L.A.? Itís going to be the first one since Just Push Play, which is ten years now.

S. Tyler Yes. As a matter of factówell you know we did Honkiní on Bobo. Weíve done a bunch of things since and weíve certainly been writing. I know Joeís got the licks and I got a bunch of songs that Iíve written for solo and/or Aerosmith. Next Saturday we start with the guys are coming out to L.A. where I will be flying out of New York tomorrow and be back in L.A., watch the premier Wednesday night. I get Thursday off, and Friday Iím writing with Marti Frederiksen, and Saturday weíre into a writing program with the band. Weíre already booked for a tour November/December thatís to be South America and Japan. I mean what you hear in the press about Aerosmith getting in the way of American Idol itís just isnít so.

Moderator Next, weíll go to Hal Boedeker with The Orlando Sentinel.

H. Boedeker What do you think you do for American Idol, and what does being a part of the show do for you?

S. Tyler You know Iím not sure. Iím just a judge. Before we say anything Iíd like to say thank you for the Kennedy Center what you said about that, but I think Iím not going in there to be a harsh judge or an overly bearing judge. Iím just bringing my Italian on how to work a room, Aunt Phyllis honesty, 40 years that front guy in Aerosmith whoís judged the hell out of himself and kind of made a good career out of it, and with hopes to find some kids in America here for American Idol to take the stage and no more, no less.

I think itís funny. I think thereís love up there youíll never seeó Certainly, thereís camaraderie that you havenít seen in 10 years. About that Iím really happy that I get along with Randy so well. J. Lo is a fox, sheís also street, sheís also got a good big heart. Weíve seen a lot of people this year and weíve got our top 40, so weíre ready to go.

Moderator Next, we have Rodney Ho with the Atlantic Journal Constitution.

R. Ho Have you said anything so far as to any of the contestants during the auditions that youíve regretted immediately afterwards?

S. Tyler Yes. I made some harsh comments the first week, and they snapped back and said, ďWhat do you mean?Ē But I only did two of those. There were only two of those because I didnít want that to happen again. I couldnít say that you were no good without substantiating why, and a couple times that I said, ďYou know you just donít have it,Ē they did ask me why, and I couldnít tell them why.

I just heardóItís like Iím looking for that certain something. Well I heard that certain something in a negative way. I didnít see the star. I didnít see this and I didnít have the Ö to tell them that. I hadnít ever really watched the show, and I wasnít really versed in that type of judging. Iíve got three daughters, so itís hard for me. Those two times after that I was ready to go and I jumped back in both feet.

Moderator We have a question from Rachel Maresca with Life & Style Weekly.

R. Maresca You recently opened up about your past. Do you have any big regrets? You have one year sober. Do you have a new outlook on life?

S. Tyler Yes. You know what Iíve got no regrets. Everything that came my way has cut me into what I am today, and what I am today is Iím grateful, recovering drug addict/alcoholic. Iím not without my faults and my marks and my scars. Iím proud of them. I show people them. I have for 40 years. Thatís why they love my music because Iím honest and I got no regrets. Things have been good. I thought you meant you listened to Howard Stern this morning because after that life will never be the same for me. Nor will it be tomorrow night after this show

Look, Iím always ready to take it up a notch. Iím not sure if itísóit used to be my Ö but now itís Iím addicted to adrenalin. I still like a good challenge, and Idol was with the best people. Itís with the best network. I get to meet all these Fox people. Someday Iíll have my own show calledódifferent type of Survivor. I donít know what. Theyíll put me in a barrel and throw me into the ocean. Itíll be called Message in a Bottle. Theyíll put me in a giant bottle and see what shore I land on. Then Iíll marry the person and weíll see what kind of kids look like. I donít know but Iím ready for anything.

Iím ready for anything, and nothing has been more convincing that Iím ready for anything than this last year with Aerosmith. Yes, weíre getting ready to launch a tour November/December; itís already booked. The song writing starts next week. So everything you hear is just hearsay and a lot of muck thatís been thrown around and thereís no validity to it. Iím here to tell you that.

Moderator Next, weíll go to Jed Gottlieb with the Boston Herald.

J. Gottlieb Iím curious about bringing things a little slightly local and thinking of like Siobhan Magnus, sort of a rock type performer, and seeing if youíre going to bring a little more of a rock element, less of a pop element, to the show. Something that has a little more edge, a little more personality than sort of just a crooner.

S. Tyler You know itís interesting. Itís like again that would be my judgment call on what rock is, and I havenít heard a lot of it, but what I have heard Iíve come out through the worm hole. Remember itís got to go through two other judges and for every week that Iíve run along someone that I thought was great the next week after they were given the wrong song in the wrong key, so we had to drop them. Thatís the beauty of this show, which I didnít know before, and itís also the heartbreak.

Thereís one kid there thatís got a rock element about him. Heís totally off the wall, and I donít know which rock star ever wasnít, but Iíve got hopes that he makes it through. His voice is ridiculous; itís so crazy and great. I hope he can stretch out and use the voice that I heard.

But will I bring a rock element? Yes, my personality but Iím also veryóIíve got a good ear for all music and thatís what I thought I would take this. Itís not just a one phase type judging. Iím good for all different music and listening to voicing, and the spirit of, and the imperfections of someoneís voice because not all great singers make great rock stars. Itís some of those voices that arenít the best that make the best rock stars I mean to say. So itís been fun. I donít take this too seriously and I take it seriously, so itís been a real hoot for me.

Moderator Weíll go next to Gary Kennedy with the L.A. Times.

G. Kennedy Do you feel adding someone of your stature gives the show an extra layer of credibility it might not have had before?

S. Tyler I like to think so. Itís interesting; I was just saying Iím not bringing some grumpiness or something in my life thatís not been good. Iím not bringing that to the table, and letting that cloak my judging of these kids. Iím taking what they give me, cutting it up in three different pieces: One is can they sing? Are they in pitch? Two, do they have character? Three, do they have a star quality about them? Kind of folding that all into one but that would be my expertise, and J. Loís got her own singing style. But donít forget Iím a drummer. Iíve got the pitch from my father, Juilliard, my own. Iíve got the drumming sensibility and thereís a tonality and harmonic stuff, and I think Iím going to take it up a notch.

Moderator We have Jonathan Takiff with Philadelphia Daily News.

J. Takiff Do you think as a road dog that you can be as sympathetic to some guy whoís been working in a gas station as you can to some guy whoís been out playing every night for the last three or ten years at Joeís Roadside Tavern?

S. Tyler Thatís a great question. Iíve been sympathetic to that because it did color my opinions in the past about someone who didnít go through the clubs, and didnít walk the gauntlet in order to get their start. Iím listening to these kids regardless. I listen for that certain something that someone might haveó I mean look it I remember what I had before I was allowed in the doors of this club. Itís an incredible thing to be able to come out with the stars that causes me to have character, but if theyíre good to begin with Iím hoping to see that. Itís certainly not a coloring my thing. Iíve got my own melodic sensibility thatís judging theirs and regardless of whether youíve sung in church, and sometimes most people that have put their time in church have a great sense of blues or time or melody more than the other ones. Iím hoping Ö really close.

Moderator Next, we have Jill Sergeant with Reuters.

J. Sergeant I wondered, Steven, how long have you signed up to this gig for? I mean is it something you seeó Do you haveóif I can askóyou have more than a one year contract or is it something youíre just going to do for a year or so and then move onto something else?

S. Tyler I have more than a one year contract, but as you know things are what they are, but I have more than a one year contract. Iíll give you that one. Can I elaborate? No, I canít.

Moderator We have Jason Lipshutz with Billboard Magazine.

J. Lipshutz When you were deciding whether or not to be part of American Idol last summer, did it matter who else was in or out? Did Jennifer Lopezódid her involvement influence your decision?

S. Tyler It did at first. At first, I was told she wasnít, she was out, and I was a little bummed, but I met Randy first before, and Randy was the Ö. I loved Randy. I thought he and I got on within the first five minutes. It was like we were separated at birth, and we had so many similarities, and the music curriculum and program. Whatever heís been through Iíve been through, and we mentioned names and we knew everybody and it was like how we hadnít met before was beyond me.

But no and then when Ióand yes on the way from England to America, I saw J. Loís movie Back-Up Plan and I fell in love with her. Iím watching going, ďOh my God, itís Jennifer Lopez,Ē and I went, ďAlright Iíll watch the movie.Ē I watched her and I fell in love with her because the way she played that to a guy that was just falling in love with her, the way she played her part I could so relate to and I thought anybody that could be this open and honest even acting Ö. All I can tell you is when I met her she was exactly all that and I was grateful that she got the part.

Moderator Weíll go next to Michael Lopez with MTV Tr3s.

M. Lopez Just curious if you had been a fan of Idol from years past and if you had a particular favorite idol that had been selected from all past few seasons.

S. Tyler Yes, Carrie Underwood. A great friend of mine wrote her hit so Iíve been following her, and of course Kelly who Iíve done photo shoots with and am enamored by the song that sheís put out, hugely so.

Moderator Next, is Allonna Diamond with

A. Diamond I would love to know what kind of reaction do you expect from long time Aerosmith fans as you venture into this new part of your career as a judge.

S. Tyler Well like, Iíve studied this so far. Itís been 15 weeks already Iíve been in it, and all the TVís getting is just that other side of me. It would be like if there were reality cameras in the house when my kids were growing up. Thatís the side of me theyíre seeing. If Aerosmith fans donít like that then all they saw was the ominous, dark, or open, however you choose to see me on stage with whatever lighting when Aerosmith comes to town. Itís kind of bigger than both of us type of thing, that Aerosmith thing, but here I get to be more vulnerable, more honest, more open, more in the moment and less colored by the songs I wrote and listening to the songs that they sing.

A. Gillespie We have time for one more question.

Moderator That will come from Lindsey Parker with Yahoo!

L. Parker One of the, I think, most overdone songs on American Idol is ďI Donít Want to Miss a Thing,Ē which is a song that I donít think anyone can sing as well as you can. Aerosmith songs get covered actually a lot in the show sometimes with good results a lot of times with bad. Iím just wondering are you going to call moratorium on Aerosmith songs on the show. If not, how would you be able to judge a song that you had sung yourself so well?

S. Tyler How would I have judged myself singing, ďDonít Want to Miss a Thing?Ē

L. Parker No, someone else singing a song that is basically your song.

S. Tyler Well they have to sing it good, and a moratorium youíre calling, how do you know? They must have sung in the 7 weeks they probably got 15/16 ďDonít Want to Miss a ThingĒ and a bunch of Ö song by Pinkóthey sang that song as well. It was hard for me because it always seemed to me when they said they were going to sing it I knew that someone at home wouldóďIf you sing this song Tyler will be enamored.Ē When I didnít like it I felt a little ill at ease to tell them, ďYou know what you didnít really sing it good,Ē but after the third or fourth, like I said I got into it.

I think if anyoneís got anything bad to say about me this season it will get better the next season, and I take that back. It will be easier for me to judge live on TV because Iíve been through this mine field of teenage entitlement with all the songs they brought, but specifically for the Aerosmith songs, wow. I wish they would have sung like a little something else but ďDonít Want to Miss a ThingĒ is definitely a hard one especially when they have no accompaniment. They would stand in front of me all by themselves and sing it, but if any of them sing it now remember weíre down to 20 great people, so if they did it would be nothing but good.

So there you have it you all. Thank you so much for listening.

A. Gillespie Thank you everyone for joining us. That concludes our conference call with Mr. Steven Tyler.

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