WEST HOLLYWOOD, CA - APRIL 17: Recording artist Sammy Hagar performs onstage during the John Varvatos 13th Annual Stuart House benefit presented by Chrysler with Kids' Tent by Hasbro Studios at John Varvatos Boutique on April 17, 2016 in West Hollywood, California.

Sammy Hagar knows a thing or two about replacing iconic singers: he accepted one of the toughest job offers in rock and roll history a quarter of a century ago when he took the lead singer job in Van Halen, after the band split with David Lee Roth. And against the odds, it was an incredibly successful union: all four Van Halen albums with Hagar hit number 1 on the Billboard charts.

But Aerosmith’s Joe Perry suggested in a new interview with Ultimate Classic Rock that in the 2000s, that Boston’s bad boys were considering having Hagar replace Steven Tyler!

“You don’t keep a band together without a lot of bumps,” Perry said, with perhaps a bit of understatement.

“Over the years, everybody has to bust out and do what they want. I remember Steven doing that TV show,” he said, obviously referring to Tyler’s stint as a judge on American Idol. “I thought that was great. I just knew he had to do something like that, and doing that solo record that he did.” He’s referring here to Tyler’s not-especially successful attempt to break into the country music world with his solo debut, 2016’s We’re All Somebody from Somewhere.

“So the band wasn’t that tight, there was talk and there were so many people involved – lawyers, different managers… I thought Steven wants maybe to take four years off, do what he wants to do. And so the whole looking around for another lead singer thing, just as soon as that happened, that raised its head.” Loudwire reports that some of the potential replacements included Chris Cornell, Billy Idol, Lenny Kravitz, Paul Rodgers, and Hagar.

Loudwire reported that Hagar confirmed the story. “Joe Perry tried to get me to join that band, and the management asked me to go to South America and try it out.” But he noted, “The problem is, I would have taken the toxicity out of the whole thing,” a possible pun on Steven Tyler and Joe Perry’s unofficial moniker, “The Toxic Twins” (which is a take on “The Glimmer Twins,” the name for Mick Jagger and Keith Richards). “It probably would have bombed because I’m not a toxic kind of guy. When the arguments start, I’m outta here. I can’t be in a bad situation like that.” He likely felt, “Been there, done that.”

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