Steven Tyler: "Left to My Own Devices... I'd Probably Be Dead"

Steven Tyler opens up about his troubled past, his stints in rehab and why American Idol is the only high he needs

As the longtime frontman for Aerosmith, Steven Tyler has made quite the name for himself as a diehard partier, unapologetic badboy and a lightning rod for controversy. But thanks to his gig as a judge on this season of American Idol, Tyler is finally flaunting his lovable side -- and winning over a whole new generation of fans with his notoriously kooky comments. Now, in new interviews with People magazine and Rolling Stone, Tyler is opening up about his kids, his multiple stints in rehab and his life-changing experience on American Idol.

Sober for a year-and-a-half now, after a lifetime of hard partying, a troubled relationship with his bandmates and many stints in rehab, Tyler tells People, "Left up to my own devices, I probably would have been dead several times over." He adds, using his typically colorful imagery: "If you think going out in front of high-def cameras and millions of people I'm not high on adrenaline, you're crazy... I'm stoned when that curtain drops. I just don't snort the curtain dropping. I don't snort J. Lo either, though I do breathe her in."

One wonders what Jennifer Lopez might have to say in response, but there's no denying that the three American Idol judges -- Tyler, Lopez, and Randy Jackson -- have bonded into a cohesive unit -- and the show's boffo ratings prove it.

But while Tyler and his Idol co-judges are getting along famously, things are still a bit strained with those aforementioned Aerosmith bandmates who, in the past, have tried to expel Tyler from their ranks. "Did I take this job to show the band?" he says in the interview with Rolling Stone. "F***, yeah. Not to show them, but that I can't be held hostage anymore. I will be my own hostage. The band can't throw me out."

Not surprisingly for a man with so many stories, Tyler has written a memoir, titled Does the Noise In My Head Bother You?. It hits shelves May 3, and is sure to be packed with plenty of mind-boggling anecdotes. Around the same time, he'll also be releasing the first solo single of his career, a pop tune called "Feels So Good." We would have to agree.

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