According to TMZ, Aerosmith drummer, Joey Kramer is suing the band.

According to the papers filed, Kramer suffered minor injuries in Spring 2019, but was ready to return for the band’s Vegas residency shows by Fall.

Instead of being welcomed back as expected … Kramer claims he was subjected to a brand new band policy he did not approve of, where he would have to audition to prove he was “able to play at an appropriate level” in order to regain his drummer role.

Kramer claims this has never happened to any of the other band members in Aerosmith’s 50-year history … all of whom at one time or another had to step away for a time.

Kramer claims the band asked him to perform a series of solo rehearsals against a “click track” — not even live with the other four members — as his audition … and they would listen to the recordings to decide whether he was viable for return.

The drummer claims the stress of the ordeal had “significant repercussions” to his health and that [he] ended up in the hospital in November, which required him to cover the cost of a replacement drummer … and delayed his audition to join the band. BTW … Kramer declares he paid the replacement drummer $20k a week for performances and $10k a week for rehearsals.

According to the suit, Kramer finally and begrudgingly auditioned with the “click track” in early January, and despite his 50 years of experience and believing his performance was on par, the band prohibited him from rejoining.

He claims the reason he was given is he “did not have enough ‘energy’ in the recordings.”

Kramer says this “freeze-out” will result in him missing major and historical events coming up, including a performance at the 2020 Grammys and the band’s upcoming residency in its 50th year.

He wants the court to order him back in the band to avoid “irreparable harm” to him if Aerosmith is allowed to squeeze him out.

Aerosmith’s response to TMZ was, “We would be doing a disservice to Joey, to ourselves and to our fans to have him play without adequate time to prepare and rehearse. Compounding this, he chose to file a lawsuit on the Friday night of the holiday weekend preceding the Grammys with total disregard for what is our limited window to prepare to perform these important events.”

The statement continues, “Given his decisions he is unfortunately unable to perform, but of course we have invited him to be with us for both the Grammys and our MusiCares honor. We are bonded together by much more than our time on stage.”

Joey tells TMZ, “Being prohibited from playing with a band that I have given 50 years of my life to supporting, is beyond devastating. This is not about money. I am being deprived of the opportunity to be recognized along with my peers, for our collective, lifetime contributions to the music industry. Neither the MusiCares’ Person of the Year Award nor the Grammys’ Lifetime Achievement honors can ever be repeated.”

He continues, “I hope our fans can understand that all I’m trying to do is get back to playing with the band that they love – and that’s Aerosmith with all five original members. The greatest magic and success of Aerosmith happens when all the band’s founding members are together in the house.”

Finally, Joey says, “To be removed from my rightful place on stage to celebrate our success – a success that acknowledges my own life’s work, is just plain wrong.”

Joey’s legal team made a request Monday to get a judge to allow him to rehearse with Aerosmith, but no final decision was made … the case will be heard again Tuesday.

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16 Responses

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  • MikeyMan on

    Wow, won’t let him play a whole 3 minutes at the Grammys?

    Petty s–t here, reminds me of the Bill Ward situation.

    Definitely not following the Def Leppard example of standing by your guy!

    • Dana on

      Well, I LOVE DEF LEPPARD, but I am sure Pete Willis would beg to differ with that comment. However, the way they stuck by, and supported, Allen is highly commendable.

    • Tyger of Pan Tang on

      I think the logic behind Leppard policy of “keep Rick, fire Pete” is that Pete had been taking actions that made it impossible for them to operate. A tiny guy + intoxicated combativeness = nightmare for those around him. By the time of the accident, Leppard had the financial resources to see it through with Rick, and Rick was cooperative. They also had the means to be more patient with Steve, and I understand that his abuse went inward rather than outward.

      Same with Mustaine’s claim that Metallica was hypocritical for firing him when they were alcoholics too – a destructive drunk like Mustaine impairs a band’s ability to function in a way that goofy drunks like the other guys doesn’t.

    • Dana on

      I get it, but loyalty is loyalty, They should have tried to get Willis to go into rehab, and then if it didn’t work, parting ways seems perfectly reasonable.

    • MikeyMan on

      My comparison to Leppard was about physical injury.
      Drunk and/or druggie is a different situation.
      But, imagine how much greater DL would’ve been had they straightened up Pete.
      That’s what I’m talkin’ ’bout, Willis!

    • Dana on


  • RTunes68 on

    The only thing missing from this story is Sharon Osbourne….

    As for Joey wanting a court to order him back in the band, that’s just not going to happen. Even a judge who’s an Aerosmith fan, legally cannot compel the band to take him back. At best, he’ll be awarded damages and severance.

    There’s a lot more to this story than either side is revealing to the press….

  • Harold Taint on

    Welp, that sucks.

  • Doug R. on

    I’m with Kramer all the way on this one! This is complete and total bullsh-t! Nobody knows us better than we know ourselves, if Joey says he can play, I believe him! I can’t believe Tyler, Perry, Whitford and Hamilton could treat Kramer like this after all these years and after everything they’ve been through. Kramer is the engine that pulls Aerosmith, and without him, there is no “Train Kept A Rollin’!”

    • elliot goldberg on

      I think Tyler Perry’s got some nerve. He’s not even an original member!

  • Michael Monet on

    Who will be performing the drum duty? Eric Singer? No, let me stop. These elderly drummers are really having a rough go of it lately. They’ve really become expendable. You have to give THE ROLLING STONES credit. They’re not leaving town without Watt and he voted for Abraham Lincoln!

    • Doug R. on

      LOL! Ah C’mon, Charlie Watts ain’t that old! He’s only 78! He wasn’t around during the dinosaur era! 😉
      As far as Aerosmith goes, nobody watches the Grammys anymore anyway, so it really shouldn’t be a big deal.

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