LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler joined estranged bandmate Joe Perry on stage in New York in hopes of setting the record straight about the future of the feuding rock group.
"New York, I want you to know I'm not leaving Aerosmith," Tyler told fans in a surprise appearance on Tuesday night at a concert by Perry's solo side project, music web site NME.com reported.
Tyler, 61 and Perry, his songwriting partner of 40 years, then launched into a version of "Walk This Way", one of Aerosmith's biggest hits, NME.com said.
The future of the band has been in doubt since a North American tour was cut short in August when Tyler fell off stage, and relations between Perry and Tyler deteriorated to a low this week with bitter Twitter messages and cryptic asides about whether Tyler is still with the band.
Perry, who said earlier this week that the band was "positively" seeking a new singer, indicated on Wednesday that all was still not well in the band. In an interview with Rolling Stone, he referred to Tyler as an "acquaintance."
"He wants to take two years off from the band," Perry told the magazine. "The rest of the band wants to keep on working. We have so many different options to fill up that time. Anything is possible at this point. Basically, any communication that we've had over the last couple of months has been through managers, so that's been pretty strange."
Tyler, on the other hand, told celebrity web site TMZ.com after Tuesday's appearance that "There is absolutely no validity to the rumor that Aerosmith is breaking up."
Perry told Rolling Stone that he was just as surprised as the fans when Tyler showed up at the venue, and asked to sing the encore tune.
"Being an acquaintance of 40 years, I said, 'Why not?'" Perry said. " So he came up and sang and that was the last I saw of him."
Reporting by Dean Goodman: Editing by Jill Serjeant