Steven Tyler Makes First Public Performance in Two Years With the Return of His Annual Grammy Viewing Party

Steven TylerJoe Scarnici/Getty Images for Janie's Fund
Joe Scarnici/Getty Images for Janie's Fund

On Sunday night, Steven Tyler’s annual Grammy Awards Viewing Party was back in action after a 2021 pandemic pause. As always, the evening benefited the iconic rocker’s Janie’s Fund, a partnership with Youth Villages aimed at helping girls overcome abuse and trauma. The evening raised massive funds to support the cause, which included Aerosmith’s touring “Dream On” piano being auctioned off for a whopping $700,000 and a fan bidding $100,000 to have his photo taken with Tyler on site by celebrity photographer Andy Gotts.

Prior to the festivities, Tyler told Variety how glad he was to be able to gather in person for the sold-out soiree, which took place at the Hollywood Palladium. And just like everyone else, he admitted to having spent the depths of the pandemic doing his share of soul searching. “It was strange and I was on an island somewhere out to sea,” he said. “I was just as scared as anyone else. I went through a lot of things myself. It wasn’t all honey and let’s go get some yogurt and go swimming and see the sharks. It was a lot of stuff going on.”

He was beyond grateful for those who came out to support his cause, which included celebrities like Richie Sambora, Dee Snider, Ashlee Simpson, Evan Ross, Tia Carrere, Billy Gibbons and Ashley Benson, and lit up at the mention of getting back to Vegas with Aerosmith for a new leg of the band’s Park MGM residency in June.

Caitlyn Jenner arrived, raving about becoming a grandparent for the 20th time. Her son Burt Jenner’s girlfriend, Valerie Pitalo, recently gave birth to “little Goldie Brooklyn Jenner.” “She’s two-weeks-old now!” she proclaimed. If she has it her way, there will be 10 more grandkids down the line. “I’m going for 30!” she announced. “The girls aren’t too excited about it though,” she added, with a laugh. For now, Jenner is enjoying spoiling the ones that she has: “That’s my job. That’s the best part and then I hand them back to the kids.”

Melissa Joan Hart, who later spoke inside the event, has been a longtime supporter of Youth Villages. “I won $1 million for them on ‘Wheel of Fortune,’” she recalled. It was the first red carpet Hart has been to in some time and she joked that she was still working out the kinks. “I have lidocaine on my feet just in case they start to hurt. I have some ballet slippers in my purse.” Hart also touched on her recent statements about the “Clarissa Explains It All” reboot hitting a standstill, explaining that when the studio executives changed, the show got canned. “It’s a bummer,” she said. “But I leave it all to God on if it’s meant to be or if it’s not meant to be.” She said she can’t go anywhere these days without people hounding her both about that and a “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” revamp, and reveals that she’s ready for reboot culture to fizzle. “Everybody just seems to be redoing everything instead of coming up with an original idea. I’d like to find an original idea,” she said. For now, she’s focusing on spending time with her kids and growing her directing career.

Inside the gala, guests dined on short ribs and sea bass and watched the 64th Annual Grammy Awards. Tyler toasted from the crowd and later took the stage to talk about the important work Janie’s Fund is doing to make a difference in the lives of girls across the nation. He thanked his loyal supporters, then made his return to the stage with his first public appearance in two years, sitting at the piano and mesmerizing the crowd with “Dream On.”

Jessie J filled in for Miley Cyrus, who was set to headline, but tested positive for COVID-19 in the days leading up to the event. Jessie was backed by Cyrus’ band and explained that due to an issue with hearing loss in one ear and some throat problems, she has only been doing acoustic performances for some time. “This is my first performance with a full band in three years,” she said. She pulled it off with a mere one-hour rehearsal the day before. Jessie kicked off her set with “Bang Bang” before diving into “Price Tag” and then treating the crowd to a dose of Cyrus with “Party in the U.S.A.,” which turned into a giant singalong. She then sang “I Want Love” and “Domino.” Tyler joined her on stage to close out the night with “Walk This Way,” which brought the entire crowd to its feet.