Anthony Joseph "Joe" Perry (Born September 10, 1950 in Lawrence, Massachusetts), is the lead guitarist and a contributing songwriter for the longstanding rock and roll band Aerosmith.
Perry, was born to the children of Portuguese and Italian immigrants. His grandfather changed the family's name from Pereira to Perry upon arriving in America. He has a younger sister, Ann-Marie.
Joe Perry joined Aerosmith at its formation in 1969. While initially dismissed as Rolling Stones knock-offs, the band came into its own during the mid-1970s with a string of hit records. Chief among these successes were Toys in the Attic in 1975 and Rocks in 1976, thanks largely to the prevenlance of free-form, album-oriented FM radio. The group also managed hit singles on the AM dial with songs like "Dream On", "Same Old Song and Dance", "Sweet Emotion" and "Walk This Way".
During this time, Perry and Aerosmith vocalist Steven Tyler became known as the "Toxic Twins", for their notorious hard-partying and drug use.
Following Rocks, the group began to stumble - drug use escalated and the creative-process became hampered by strained relationships within the band. They managed another hit record in 1977 with Draw the Line, but by all accounts this is where things started to unravel; while recording their next album (Night in the Ruts), Perry and Tyler had a spat that resulted in Perry finally leaving the band.
By the end of the year, Perry had formed his own band - The Joe Perry Project. Their debut record, Let the Music Do the Talking, reached #47 on the Billboard album charts, selling 250,000 copies domestically. While sales and reviews were respectable, the group mainly thrived as a live act. It managed to do so even after its sophomore effort, I've Got the Rock'n'Rolls Again, went largely ignored.
In the end, the Project never solidified a line-up; all three studio releases would feature a different lead vocalist, and the entire roster was replaced before their final effort (1983's Once a Rocker, Always a Rocker.) Even a brief stint with then-former Aerosmith rhythm guitarist Brad Whitford failed to ignite things again, and the group found themselves with minimal label support by 1984.
In 1984, manager Tim Collins worked to get Perry back in contact with his former bandmates in Aerosmith. He was eventually invited to re-join the group, which he did - along with the also-estranged Brad Whitford. This restored the band's classic line-up, and resulted in a lucrative 'reunion' tour.
Perry and Tyler collaborated with Run-DMC in a remake of their 1975 hit "Walk This Way", which brought their band renewed mainstream attention.
After completing drug rehabilitation, Aerosmith went on to collaborate with various big-name songwriters and producers to launch their true comeback. Another string of successful albums (most notably the triple-platinum Pump in 1989) and many hit singles followed. Perry and Tyler resumed their tight friendship, again co-writing songs and performing very close together on stage.
In 1998, Perry helped conceive the group's first number one single, "I Don't Want to Miss a Thing", with pop songwriter Diane Warren. It appeared on the soundtrack to the hit film Armageddon.
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