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Dream On – A Visit With Steven Tyler

Last night I finished watching the 2 hour interview on OWN about Steven Tyler from Aerosmith.  Oprah has a new show – where she in true Barbara Walters style, is interviewing famous people one-on-one in their homes.

I have to say this: the thoughts below are my  personal opinion only.  I have a somewhat different view, because I grew up when bands like Aerosmith were at the height of their popularity – and like so many other bands of the era – they became the soundtrack of my childhood and teenage years.

I actually haven’t been a fan of Oprah until recent years – it was after all the controversy stirred up about her being “anti-God” and even “trouble because she’s so rich and powerful”.  I decided to watch, listen and decide for myself – not just take everyone’s word for it.  I was pleasantly surprised to find her open, generous to a fault, teachable, and gracious.  She has helped so many people – been an inspiration to thousands, maybe millions of people and is on a personal quest to find the good out there – and celebrate it.  I can’t speak about her spiritual condition – but if we judge her on her what she has done to help others – then I would have to say that her life speaks for itself and God is the only judge.  I like her.  I can’t help it.  She’s so down to earth and a really nice person, I feel like if I knew her personally, she would be a friend.

I also like Steven Tyler.  I can’t help it.  He’s such a nice, kind and gracious person.  I feel like if I knew him personally, he would also be a friend.  He has paid his dues as a rock star and all that comes with that title – and he’s still a really nice person – at the end of the day.  He’s stayed grounded, had a good support system, was intensely close to his parents and sister and stayed true to himself in the midst of years of drug abuse and pain.  Every interview I’ve ever seen of him in his recent years has been one filled with regret and it’s changed him and made him a real person, humble and open.  He was always a great performer – but now he’s just a really nice person who really cares about making a difference and not taking anything for granted.  He’s a judge on American Idol – and his humorous ways keep the show “light” and give a human touch.  He’s known to be outrageous and out spoken – I find him refreshing and real.

The interview was a glimpse into Steven and why he has come to be the way he is today.  It is wonderful to hear him say that each day is a gift – he wants to give back and not take anything for granted – that drugs are empty and he wishes he had not given into their seductive play in his life – he regrets the people and family he’s hurt and has spent much time trying to regain what he’s lost and to be a better Dad to those four kids that suffered at his absence.  He does not speak specifically about personal faith – but it is right under the surface of things he expresses and his life, attitude and actions prove that something has indeed changed him.  I loved it when he said that God is in the music he hears – and Oprah said, “maybe God IS the music” – it was a rich moment.

As a child of the 70’s – I appreciate the “old school” bands like Aerosmith – because they are classic and no one has ever been able to duplicate their unique sound and talent in all the years since.  Drug abuse was rampant in the 70’s and 80’s in most of the mainstream bands.  It was a way of life – an empty life of false promises and real heartache and pain after the fact.  Those alive today are grateful and take nothing for granted.

The older I get, the more grace I have for others that have made mistakes and bad choices.  I am not perfect – have blown it more times than I can count – and have found God’s grace rich, intense and always there for me.  I appreciate it when others are real about their mistakes, shortcomings and sin – and are willing to turn and go another direction with God’s help.  Even very wealthy rock stars and talk show hosts.  God’s grace has no limit on race, color or circumstance and is there for anyone who asks for it.  It is not for me to prejudge another person’s heart and life – that is for God alone.

Steven wrote “Dream On” when he was in his twenties.  The lyrics and melody came to him while he was in his home  – in the same place where Oprah was interviewing him – and  it has been Aerosmith’s signature anthem ever since.  My favorite Aerosmith song of all time – here it is.  It is a glimpse into his early talent as a songwriter, singer and performer.

Enjoy and God Bless

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