On a recent episode of the History Channel’s “American Pickers,” hosts Mike Wolfe and Frank Fritz discovered an awesome piece of rock ‘n’ roll history. Buried deep in the woods in Chesterfield, Massachusetts, about 100 miles West of Boston, the antique scavengers found the 1964 International Harvester Metro van that served as iconic rock band Aeromsith’s very first tour bus in the early 1970s.
When Aerosmith founding member Ray Tabano got a look at the now rusted-out old van, he confirmed that the vehicle was, in fact, the one he and his bandmates traveled the area in during their early days as a group. @jaggerrae wrote on Twitter: “Waaaaaa!! It’s a match!! Ray T confirmed.”
Waaaaaaa!! It’s a match!! Ray T confirmed 🤘🏽🤘🏽 pic.twitter.com/ByJkwSrrJ1
— Rae® OIIIIIIIO (@jaggerrae) July 31, 2018
“I’m afraid to say how long it is, but it’s been like 40 years since we’ve been in this thing,” Tabano told the show’s hosts in the episode and showed a photo of himself in the van back then as proof.
“We just got a piece of American rock ‘n’ roll history!” https://t.co/cL3ous2bzr
— American Pickers (@americanpickers) August 9, 2018
The owner of the land where the vehicle was found, identified on the show only as Phil, says the van was there since he bought the land from someone with a connection to Aerosmith. Phil scored a cool $25,000 when Wolfe and Fritz bought the incredible piece of rock ‘n’ roll memorabilia from him. @RockWalkLondon even posted a throwback photo of the band aboard the van, prompting nostalgia for the members and fans alike:
With all their fortune and fame, the band’s old tour bus, which Tabano says took them to gigs where they barely made $3 a piece, serves as a powerful reminder of just how far they’ve come in their decades-long career.
“It just reminded me of the humble beginnings and I look at where (the band has) gone today — it’s just amazing,” Tabano said on the episode.
And perhaps Aerosmith captured that feeling best in one of their first hit songs from their debut album, “Dream On!”
Aerosmith was in the news a few months ago when frontman Steven Tyler opened a shelter for abused girls in Atlanta.
Tyler’s charity, Janie’s Fund, which is named after Aerosmith’s hit song “Janie’s Got a Gun,” opened the shelter, along with Youth Villages. The shelter can house 30 girls and provides both therapy and medical care.
“I’ve never written a song as beautiful as Janie’s house,” Tyler wrote on Instagram. “This was two years in the making!! Spending the day with these girls…I’m just so proud of them! I’m just relieved they have a safe space to be who they are…to grow into amazing young women who will do great things in the world…#JANIESGOTAFUND.”