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Last week Steven Tyler, vocalist for the big-name American rock group Aerosmith, was spotted wandering around Osaka without escort. The band is currently in the midst of a world concert tour with stops in a few of Japan’s major cities. Apparently, the big-mouthed “bad boy of rock” decided to spend some time out on the town between shows in Osaka. Not only did the rock star allow fans to approach him as he explored the city, he even joined a band of jazz musicians performing on the streets for an impromptu jam session! Frankly, I’m not sure whether to be inspired by or intolerably jealous over the experiences of those who encountered the rock legend in person.

Aerosmith is a rock legend all the world over, even in Japan, where I have yet to meet a single person who can’t wail their way through “I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing” at the karaoke parlor. The band members may be exponentially older than Japan’s popular teen idols, but they still have what it takes to run a very successful tour spanning Tokyo, Nagoya, and Osaka, not to mention the rest of the world! With so much fame to their name, Aerosmith’s members may seem untouchable. I’d say that Steven Tyler, in particular, has a metaphorical pedestal as high as the impressive notes he can nail.

That’s why when Steven Tyler appeared at Don Quijote, a discount supermarket, in an obscure part of Osaka, the girl who encountered him didn’t quite believe he was real. Twitter user kachan4269 posted this picture on August 14, with the caption, “This appears to be the vocalist for Aerosmith, but I wonder if he’s just a fake?? Why would the real deal come alone to Donki??”

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Responders confirmed that she had, indeed, met the one true rocker. Most expressed jealousy over her awesome luck and no small amount of surprise. In Japan, even if you encounter a famous person on the streets, it’s unlikely that they’ll let you take a picture, especially not one where you’re posed together. Exclusivity is an important characteristic of Japan’s idol industry. In other words, all public images of the celebrity in question are controlled by the person’s talent agency and fan interactions only ever happen at special events.

Oh, but Steven Tyler’s encounters with the people of Osaka didn’t stop with a shopping trip! In the evening on August 15, Steven Tyler suddenly appeared at a street performance by a start-up jazz band playing on the sidewalk near Umeda Station. He even went so far as to join the group’s performance and invite them all to Aerosmith’s concert the following day!

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In the end, the band of friends was able to not only attend the concert, they were invited backstage, where they relished another jam session with Steven Tyler playing the ukulele. For a group that does not consider itself at all popular and is barely scraping by, being backstage with Aerosmith was like living a dream. “[Steven Tyler] praised our music and gave us all hugs. It brought me to tears,” one of the young musicians commented.

Jealous Japanese commenters pounced upon the news. Many, once again, were confused as to why Steven Tyler would go out of his way to do such a thing. “Was he bored?” asked one person.  “He came and went so fast!” cried another, though most were just impressed by the generous attitude he had toward his fans. “Of course, real stars are something special.” “He’s a genuine rocker.” “So easygoing.” “He’s like a regular, carefree sorta’ guy.”

I wouldn’t be surprised if Steven Tyler won himself a few new fans for making himself so approachable. Makes me wonder when I’ll get my chance to meet a big name musician. For now, I’ll just Dream On

Source: Jin115, Itai News (Japanese)
Top image: kachan4269 on Twitter

▼ Here’s a few bonus pictures of Steve Tyler spending time with the street performers.

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▼ The group backstage at Aerosmith’s concert.

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▼ Impromptu ukulele jam!

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