UPDATE 1/21/2020 4:00 PM ET: Joey Kramer has issued a statement to TMZ regarding his lawsuit against Aerosmith.
Kramer said, “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.
Kramer continued, “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. 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.”
TMZ also reports that their sources close to Aerosmith said the band “tried actively for months to get Joey back — and would have loved to have had him join the Grammy performance — but he just couldn’t get it together in time and left the band with no other choice.” These sources also said that this lawsuit wasn’t a big surprise due to Aerosmith’s upcoming Grammy performance and “Joey clearly wanted some TV time.”
Joey Kramer has filed a lawsuit against his Aerosmith bandmates accusing them of not letting him back into the band after he recovered from injuries in the spring of 2019.
In documents obtained by TMZ, Kramer alleges that once he recovered from his injuries, he was forced to audition “to prove he was able to play at an appropriate level” before rejoining Aerosmith on stage. The audition consisted of a number of recorded solo rehearsals with a click track, not with the band, and then the band would listen back to the recordings to determine whether he would be allowed back in the band.
Kramer says no other bandmember has had to go through an audition process like this in the history of the band, despite each member having to step away from the band at some point during their five decades together. Kramer said he would eventually go through with the audition and says that despite delivering a good performance, his bandmates thought otherwise and said his audition recordings “did not have enough energy.”
Aerosmith has not commented on this lawsuit, but the band is currently slated to be honored this Friday (January 24) at the 2020 MusiCares Person of the Year gala and is set to perform at the Grammy Awards taking place this Sunday (January 26.)