Joey Kramer won't play with Aerosmith at the Grammy event this weekend.
Massachusetts court ruled against Kramer, making him unable to perform with the band on the Grammy's. As Rolling Stone reports, in the lawsuit Kramer filed, he claimed that the band unfairly excluded him from rejoining the group following temporary injuries he suffered.
In Wednesday’s court ruling, the judge denied Kramer’s breach of contract claims. The judge ruled that Kramer won't be allowed to perform with the band at the MusiCares Person of the Year gala on Friday or at the Grammy Awards ceremony on Sunday. The ruling cites, “As Kramer concedes, nothing in the parties’ Agreement creates specific rights or obligations with respect to the procedures to be followed when a member of the band desires to return from a temporary incapacity or disability. The Agreement is simply silent on that issue.”
In a statement to Rolling Stone, Kramer said, “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,” Kramer continued in his statement. “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.”
It is claimed, in the Kramer's lawsuit, that he suffered a minor injury last spring, which made him unable to participate in the band’s Deuces Are Wild Las Vegas residency. Kramer claims that by the fall he was ready to rejoin, but the suit alleges he was rebuffed in ways that were inconsistent with the terms laid out in Aerosmith’s band contract. He was allegedly asked to reaudition for the position of the drummer; to record himself performing a solo to a click track. This was, Kramer says, never asked from other members after their injuries.
In the court ruling, the judge wrote, “Notwithstanding Kramer’s assertion that the band’s past practice has been to permit a member to return with no questions asked, the parties’ affidavits suggest a good faith dispute whether it’s in Aerosmith’s best interest to allow Kramer to participate in the unique MusiCares and Grammy Award performances, which will occur in mere days. The defendants have expressed a willingness to allow Kramer to return to the residency performances in the spring, following an adequate opportunity for the band to rehearse.”
The rest of the Aerosmith band members said there was not enough time for Kramer to rehearse and rejoin the band for the Grammy performance. Kramer also addressed his bandmates in a statement, saying that their decision to let him attend only the red carpet photo ops is hurtful to him. “I am a professional musician who is eager to return to my rightful place with Aerosmith. he added.
Aerosmith will perform at the 2020 Grammy Awards on January 26, as well as during a tribute show in their honor, January 24th, as they accept the MusiCares Person of the Year award.