When Aerosmith came to Portland on December 6, 1979, the night went on to be an infamous moment in Maine rock history. The band was here in support of the album Night in the Ruts, which had been out for just about a month.

It was a Thursday night in front of a sold-out crowd at the Cumberland County Civic Center. Steven Tyler collapsed on stage which brought the show to a halt.

During the performance of a song, he had to be carried from the stage and the show was over. Thankfully although the crowd was disappointed, they didn’t start a riot that night.

The nearly 8,000 Portland fans in attendance were invited back for a make-up performance the following month.

In a 2004 interview with Dateline on NBC.com, Steven Tyler said of this drug and alcohol addicted time...

“It stole us like a crook, it just raped us. It took every want and need to write a song, and what were you doing. The lost weekends were piling up. I lost my wife and my daughter and my band, and everything that I lived for up until that moment, and didn’t care.”

Aerosmith’s hardcore rock n’ roll lifestyle had chewed them up and spit them out.

This period really was the end of classic Aerosmith with first Joe Perry and then Brad Whitford leaving the band.

Joe Perry was replaced by guitarist Jimmy Crespo on the Night in the Ruts tour. Those were mighty big shoes to fill and he got the job done.

Later when Brad left, he was replaced by a great guitarist named Rick Dufay who joined the band after the 1982 release of Rock in a Hard Place.

Joe Perry and Brad Whitford reunited with their band after seeing them at Boston's Orpheum Theater in early 1984. The Back in the Saddle tour kicked off that summer. What was intended to be their comeback album, Done With Mirrors followed in 1985.

When Steven Tyler got sober in 1986, the rest of the band followed soon after. Then came their resurrection of Aerosmith with the release of the mega-hit album, Permanent Vacation in 1987. Aerosmith was truly back.

Tom Hamilton, Joey Kramer, Joe Perry, Steve Tyler, and Brad Whitford are currently celebrating their incredible 50 year career together. Their Deuces Are Wild residency in Las Vegas resumes on January 29, 2020. Here's the entire show from last Sunday night.

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