Aerosmith guitarist Joe Perry hopes frontman Steven Tyler will return to the group sooner rather than later - because he feels they've "let the fans down".
The Walk This Way hitmakers were thrown into chaos last year (09) when Tyler reportedly quit, and he has since baffled his bandmates by refusing to confirm whether he plans to continue as their singer or go solo.
They have now decided to audition for a new frontman while Tyler, who was recently admitted to rehab to fight a painkiller addiction, takes time off to undergo a series of operations which will leave him unable to perform for at least a year.
And despite seeking a new bandmember, Perry believes their struggles will be worth it if they manage to get Tyler back full time.
He says, "I've put a lot of time into it. And there's no four other guys on the planet who have been through what I've been through. It would be great if Steven would come back and be the same guy he was 10, 12 years ago. The rest of us are. And we really want to get back to rocking and doing what Aerosmith does best. I think we owe our fans who have stuck by us for 40 years.
"That's the one thing that gets left out of all this talk; we owe the fans a real big debt for all the support they've given us. That's what I think of first. And I'm bummed out about what's happened because I think we've let the fans down."