Metal Music

Steven Tyler Takes The Colosseum in Rome by Storm, All Without the Aid of an Electric Guitar

Each time “Walk This Way” plays, my mind immediately goes to the Run DMC collaboration video. I envision Steven Tyler breaking through the thin wall of the studio with his microphone stand, revealing himself to the neighboring rap group. However, a fresh image may soon take its place. Picture Steven Tyler, in 2017, performing on stage at the Colosseum in Rome, an orchestra behind him, flanked by cellists energetically playing to mimic the song’s legendary guitar riffs. Still, I have a feeling another memory might overshadow this.

In “It’s About Relationships: Building a Life that Matters,” Jimmy Walker shares a story about Tyler’s performance at the Colosseum during the Andrea Bocelli-hosted Celebrity Fight Night in Rome. Walker, who insures celebrities like Muhammad Ali and Michael Jordan, co-founded Celebrity Fight Night, which has generated over $132 million for charities, with Ali and Bocelli. Here’s the Tyler performance:

Walker highlights a moment I would’ve missed: Tyler, chewing gum as he walks into the Colosseum. Before starting Aerosmith’s hit “Dream On,” he casually sticks his gum under Elton John’s piano, which he was about to play—a detail Walker suggests Elton John wouldn’t appreciate. Now, the tunes “Dream On” and “Walk This Way” might forever bring to mind Tyler’s gum antics and Elton’s piano.

Tyler was accompanied by cellists Luka Šulić and Stjepan Hauser, also known as 2CELLOS. They joined him for “Dream On” and “Walk This Way,” and also performed the “Game of Thrones” theme and “Funiculi Funicula” with Bocelli. Azucena Pe commented on 2Cellos’ Facebook, praising the concert aired on Rai1 TV and expressing admiration for Tyler’s performance and the joy of the cellists playing alongside him. Here’s another highlight from the event:

This marked the grand finale of the Celebrity Gala at the Colosseum, featuring Tyler and Bocelli’s rendition of “Imagine,” with David Foster on piano, Sharon Stone, and other celebrities like Renato Zero and Zara in attendance.

The 2017 Colosseum concert was a pinnacle of Celebrity Fight Night’s week in Rome, entertaining philanthropic guests and stars like Sharon Stone and Antonio Banderas. The event, reported by Wanted In Rome, offered a €70,000 luxury experience including exclusive dinners and concerts in historical Roman palaces, capped with a cocktail event at Palazzo del Quirinale with President Sergio Mattarella. It leaves one to ponder how long Tyler’s gum might have stayed under Elton John’s piano.

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