As previously reported, Aerosmith’s Joey Kramer filed a lawsuit against his bandmates, claiming that they are keeping him from returning to the group. The drummer was trying to get the court to order him back in the band so he can perform with them at the Grammy Awards and MusiCares gala, but TMZ are now reporting that a Massachusetts judge has denied his request.
The judge said the following:
“Given that Kramer has not played with the band in 6 months and the dearth of available rehearsal time before the upcoming performances, Kramer has not shown a realistic alternative course of action sufficient to protect the band’s business interests.”
Kramer previously said that he sustained minor injuries in spring 2019 and was planning to rejoin the group in the fall. However, Aerosmith reportedly made him go through an audition in which he had to play along with a “click track” to prove that he was “able to play at an appropriate level.” After listening to his performance, the band allegedly said that he “did not have enough energy” to return.
Kramer issued a statement saying that the lawsuit was “not about money” and that he was “being deprived of the opportunity to be recognized along with [his] peers.” Aerosmith then followed up by telling People that Kramer’s “wellbeing is of paramount importance” and that “he has not been emotionally and physically able to perform with the band.” They also added that he “waited until the last moment to accept [their] invitation” for upcoming events.
This all led up to today’s (January 22) decision, which Kramer has since commented on:
“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. However, the band waited until January 15th to tell me that they weren’t letting me play at the awards ceremonies this week. 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 truth speaks for itself. Ever since I injured my foot last August and went through many hours of physical therapy to heal, not once did the band in its entirety offer to rehearse with me. That is a fact. I was also sent the full rehearsal schedule on January 18th and flew to LA the next day to rehearse and have many texts and emails stating the band can’t wait for my return. That’s also a fact. When I showed up to rehearse, I was greeted by two security guards who prohibited me from entering.
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; however, with a fill-in drummer playing on stage at two events honoring our collective musical contributions, it is extremely hurtful to me. I am a professional musician who is eager to return to my rightful place with Aerosmith.
I want to 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.”
It’s worth noting that TMZ have shared footage of the security guards blocking Kramer from entering the rehearsal space: