BU Today features a story about BU’s role in the Boston rock scene, and opens with a story of “five guys who didn’t exactly go to college” renting a Comm Ave apartment and playing gigs around Boston University. Those five guys–Aerosmith, and how amazing is it that Aerosmith’s original lineup is still intact?–were common sights around West Campus during my freshman year at BU. They were friends with Jeff Green, the resident grown-up in the first tower. The first time I saw them was in the dining hall one Friday evening. They trailed Green through the food line and are together at a table while everyone else wondered “who ARE those guys?” They were high profile. Imagine Steven Tyler and Joe Perry (who I also encountered once in the appliances department at the defunct Lechmere in Cambridge, shopping for a refrigerator) and the rest looking 36 years younger and not as healthy as they do now, wearing full rock-star garb, carrying plastic trays loaded with mac & cheese, Cokes, and frosted white cake, sitting in the dining hall surrounded by young college students with mouths agape. Jeff Green also let them practice in the basement rooms off the tunnels connecting the West Campus dorms. You’d go down to check on your laundry and hear Train Kept a Rollin’ reverberating off the cinder blocks. In the spring of 1974, when Aerosmith had a major Boston presence and were on the cusp of going national, they played at one of the Wednesday night dance concerts–“BU Boogies”–in the George Sherman Union. They’ve always been great in concert.
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