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Judge denies Joey Kramer right to play with Aerosmith at Grammys

Click to play video 'Video purports to show longtime Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer turned away at practice' Video purports to show longtime Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer turned away at practice
Video released by the publicist of longtime Aerosmith drummer, Joey Kramer, purports to show him being turned away at practice on Jan. 19. – Jan 23, 2020

After filing a lawsuit last Friday which would enable him to perform alongside his longtime bandmates in Aerosmith, it seems drummer Joey Kramer has been told to Dream On by a Massachusetts state judge.

That’s right, despite his nearly five-decade run with the legendary rock band, the 69-year-old has officially been denied the right to play alongside Aerosmith this weekend as they accept the MusiCares Person of the Year (Jan. 24) and perform at the 2020 Grammy Awards (Jan. 26).

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Eight Canadian artists nominated for Grammy Awards – Jan 24, 2020

The decision was made on Wednesday afternoon by a Plymouth Superior Court judge, according to a representative of Kramer.

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Initially, Kramer was forced to sit out of the band’s then-upcoming residency tour in order to recover from a minor foot injury in 2019.

Joey Kramer, left, and Steven Tyler at ‘Steven Tyler and Live Nation presents Inaugural Janie’s Fund Gala & Grammy Viewing Party’ at Red Studios on Jan. 28, 2018, in Los Angeles, Calif.
Joey Kramer, left, and Steven Tyler at ‘Steven Tyler and Live Nation presents Inaugural Janie’s Fund Gala & Grammy Viewing Party’ at Red Studios on Jan. 28, 2018, in Los Angeles, Calif. Tommaso Boddi/Getty Images for Janie's Fund

That fall, after making a complete recovery, the drummer claimed that his bandmates had not invited him back to rehearse with them and additionally excluded him from playing alongside them at the upcoming performances, as shown in the legal filing which was obtained by Global News.

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In the wake of the court’s verdict, Kramer issued an official statement on Wednesday expressing his disappointment. He wrote:

“Although I’m extremely disappointed by the Judge’s ruling today, I respect it. I knew filing a lawsuit was a bit of an uphill battle considering that the corporate documents don’t reference any process for a band member returning from an injury or illness.

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“However, the band waited until Jan. 15 to tell me that they weren’t letting me play at the awards ceremonies this week.

He continued: “I can hold my head high knowing that I did the right thing — to fight for my right to celebrate the band’s success that I have dedicated the better part of my life to helping build.

“The band’s offer to allow me to participate in this week’s MusiCares and Grammy celebrations for red carpet photo ops only, is appreciated,” said the drummer, “however, with a fill-in drummer playing on stage at two events honouring our collective musical contributions, it is extremely hurtful to me.”

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Currently, Kramer’s longtime drum tech, John Douglas, is sitting in for him on the Aerosmith drum throne. He has helmed the position since last April before the much-beloved act kicked off its ongoing Deuces Are Wild residency in Las Vegas, Nev.

Furthermore, Kramer claimed that his bandmates — Steven Tyler, Joe Perry, Brad Whitford and Tom Hamilton — never offered to rehearse with him following the “many hours of physical therapy” he committed to in order to recover from his injury — “Not once,” he said.

“I was sent the full rehearsal schedule on Jan. 18 and flew to L.A. the next day to rehearse,” continued Kramer, “and have many texts and e-mails stating the band can’t wait for my return. … That’s also a fact.”

In this Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2010, file photo, Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer poses for a portrait in New Yor City.
In this Tuesday, Feb. 23, 2010, file photo, Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer poses for a portrait in New Yor City. AP Photo/Jeff Christensen, File

Then, upon his arrival to the Aerosmith rehearsal space on Jan. 19, Kramer was purportedly faced with two security guards who were ordered to stop him from entering the studio as per the instructions of the other four band members. (The interaction can be seen in the video above.)

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Kramer concluded his statement with a message of hope to his fans. He wrote:

“I’m a professional musician who is eager to return to my rightful place with Aerosmith. I thank my fans for the incredible outpouring of support and for sharing my goal of taking my place on stage as one of the five founding members of Aerosmith and continuing to play the music I love.”

As of this writing, Kramer’s future with the band is currently unknown.

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Aerosmith drummer Joey Kramer sues band – Jan 22, 2020

Whether it’s with the original drummer or not, you can catch Aerosmith’s Grammys performance live on Sunday, Jan. 26, at 8 p.m. ET.

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Their MusiCares Gala performance will not, however, be broadcasted.

READ MORE: Drummer Joey Kramer files lawsuit to enable him to continue to play with Aerosmith

Following the ceremonies, the Rag Doll rockers are set to return to Las Vegas and continue the critically acclaimed Deuces Are Wild residency.

Additional information, tour dates and updates can be found through the official Aerosmith website.

adam.wallis@globalnews.ca