Old Song and Dance

A one-act play reveals backstage secrets at Friday's most star-studded concert

[Backstage. The five members of Aerosmith sit at a deli table, each with a small plate of healthy snacks. A cooler of bottled water and sodas rests by STEVEN TYLER, and a nearby monitor shows LENNY KRAVITZ playing his last encore.]

JOE PERRY: Anybody know what the Dow closed at today?

TYLER: Just over 10, I think.

JOEY KRAMER: It's the S&P 500 I'm more concerned about. Most of my portfolio is in technology.

PERRY: Huh. Someone remind me to call my broker tomorrow.

[Another minute of silence ticks off.]

TYLER: Anyone care to make a friendly little bet on the big game?

KRAMER: My therapist warned me not to replace my drug addiction with a cross addiction, especially gambling.

PERRY: Hey, Steve, pass me another bee--uh, bottled water.

TYLER: OK, but go easy. Don't want you heading backstage to piss during "Mama Kin" again. You know what they say, you don't buy bee--uh, water--you rent it.

PERRY: That doesn't make sense.

KRAMER: Hey, did anyone catch Survivor last night?

[Stirring an iced tea, TYLER absently taps the edge of his backstage laminate against a pile of spilled sweetener. He deftly scrapes the sweetener into five perfectly parallel lines; the motion takes him less than a second. After gazing at them fondly for a moment, he wipes them off the table and sighs. KRAVITZ bursts in, one blonde and one brunette in tow. An unlit joint the size of a middle finger dangles from his lips.]

KRAVITZ: Gentlemen. Any of you seen a box of...um...you know...

[All five smirk and shake their heads.]

KRAVITZ: Damn. The rider clearly states "One box of purple Trojan Magnums." Where the hell is it? I'll go ask my manager if he knows.

TYLER (to the blonde): Hey, sweetheart, want some Coke?

BLONDE: Yeah!

[TYLER grabs a bottle of Coca-Cola from the cooler and slides it toward her.]

BLONDE: Oh, umm, never mind.

KRAVITZ: See you guys after your set. Actually, probably not.

[KRAVITZ nods at the band, then walks backward and exits behind the groupies.]

KRAMER: I hear it might finally rain. Or it might not.

[TYLER bolts upright and flips over the deli table, sending cold cuts, vegetables and cans of Fresca flying.]

TYLER: Who gives a rat's ass? "Who's gonna win the big game? Where'd the Dow close?" Blah, blah, blah. Whatever happened to "Let's mix coke and angel dust! Where's the bong? Is that chick legal?" Jesus. Remember that time in N.Y.C. when we went through an entire 8-ball after the show and--

PERRY: Now, Steven, we've all agreed to stop glorifying the drug years.

KRAMER: He's right. No war stories.

TYLER: Oh, yeah, "war" stories. Yeah, getting high and getting laid was really "war."

PERRY: Stevie, think about what we've accomplished since we've been sober. I mean, stupid old blues rockers like "Walk This Way" and "Sweet Emotion" can't compare with the new stuff like "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing." Imagine a world without that song emphasizing your daughter's mixed emotions during the climax of Armageddon.

[TYLER sighs and nods.]

TYLER: You're right, Joe. You know what? Tonight let's just play stuff from since we've cleaned up. Hope our fans are ready for the greatest song trilogy since "Rock 'n' Roll, Parts 1 and 2": "Amazing," "Cryin'" and "Crazy." Yow!

 
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