Aerosmith frontman and American Idol judge Steven Tyler has been open about his battle with drug and alcohol, and while he has been clean and sober for some time now, the bizarre and unexpected nature of his shower tumble this week nevertheless raised a couple eyebrows among his loyal (and concerned) fans.
Yesterday morning, Tyler phoned in to the Today show, where Matt Lauer cut right to the chase: fall in the shower or fall off the wagon?
Thankfully, it was the former—and only the former—though the 63-year-old willing to acknowledge the bizarre, head-scratching nature of the accident.
“I get that people think that,” he said of the speculation. “It still bothers me a little, but it’s something that I have to deal with for the rest of my life.
“Being in the program, it’s something we have to expect. People thinking that is natural and normal. We flew last night from Paraguay after that incident and we’re in Argentina for two hours. And anyone who knows anyone who uses substances wouldn’t be up at this hour having a talk with Matt Lauer and the rest of America.
“It’s nothing I don’t understand. It makes me a little upset. But people think that.”
Though that seems perfectly clear to us, apparently Lauer was looking for a definitive yes or no and wasn’t going to let up until he got it: “So you’re clean and sober? That’s not the issue?”
“No, it’s not the issue,” Tyler said.
The rocker, who joked that the fall was his version of “Montezuma’s revenge,” resulted in four stitches to the eye, some reparative plastic surgery and two dental implants, all of which were done at the same “one-stop shop” hospital referred to his manager by the U.S. Embassy.
“Frankly, I just passed out,” he explained of what, if not a relapse, led to his injuries. “I was in the shower and I got nauseous and I started to get sick and I just fell on my face. I just passed out and woke up with the water on.”
Ever the consummate pro, he was also back on the road within days—something he said his fans have come to expect.
“Short of having my legs taken off, people are going to expect me on stage no matter what,” he said. “It’s all about playing to the people. We rocked out. Not only did I break my face, but we broke a house record, so life is beautiful, Matt.”