So you’re in Moscow for the city’s 868th birthday celebrations, you’re moseying along the Arbat promenade, when you hear a busker playing a song that you made famous seventeen years previously. You know what it’s like? Do you keep in the background, do you politely listen, or do you join in and sing with the busker? For most of us, this situation is a flight of fancy. For Steven Tyler, this is what happened in September 2015.
Music Man readers will know that this wasn’t the first time that Tyler chanced on a busker playing an Aerosmith song in a foreign city. This time the busker was playing I Don’t Want To Miss A Thing. Written by Diane Warren, the power ballad was the theme song for the movie Armageddon (1998). Initially a radio-only single, the song was commercially released as a result of popular demand. It debuted at #1 one on the Billboard charts (the band’s first US #1). Now let’s watch Tyler and the busker:
Jaxxrs comments: This is a great compliment for Steven Tyler, knowing your music lives on even when you’re not the one performing it. For the street performer of course it’s an honor to have the actual creator of the song come up and not take over but actually sing with you! Steven Tyler, thank you for being you!” In case you’re wondering, Steven Tyler was in Moscow for an Aerosmith performance on an elaborate stage at the official City Day celebrations in Lubyanka Square on 5 September.2015.
Other City Day celebrations included the Moscow Triumphal Festival in Tverskaya Street (eight models of triumphal arches from the time of Peter I until the Soviet era) and the International Spasskaya Tower Military Music Festival which marched down Tverskaya Street. This raises a question. Why was Aerosmith participating in the militaristic Moscow City Day celebrations a year and a half after the 2014 occupation of Crimea? As a counterpoint, here is Kyiv Calling by Ukrainian band Beton.
Kyiv Calling is, of course, a cracking adaptation of The Clash’s London Calling. It was released in March 2022 to raise funds for Ukraine. Circling back to Aerosmith, the band’s Peace Out farewell tour has been interrupted after Tyler severely damaged his vocal cords during a concert at the UBS Stadium, Elmont, New York. The band hope to resume the tour in 2024, having delayed the remaining dates.