Aerosmith: Livin' on the Edge

After 40 tumultuous years together, Aerosmith is one of the last great American rock bands standing. Despite years of infighting and drug use, the band is still filling stadiums.

The following script is from "Aerosmith" which aired on March 11, 2012, and was rebroadcast on August 19, 2012. Lara Logan is the correspondent. John Hamlin, producer.

(CBS News) After 40 tumultuous years together, Aerosmith is one of the last great American rock bands standing. But by the standards of rock music, the band should be long gone. Survivors of legendary drug problems and vicious arguments, the kind of which have taken down so many other groups of their generation. Yet, with the help of singer Steven Tyler's over-the-top personality and his two-year run as a judge on "American Idol" that ended in May, they remain one of the most popular concert draws in music.

As we showed you when we first aired this story earlier this year, they discussed all of it with us -- especially each other -- with brutal honesty, perhaps even hurtful candor, rarely heard on the record.

They travel with their kids, wives, future wives, even ex-wives. At first glance, it looked like one big, happy, 40-year-old family. Twenty million dollars for 10 shows in South America brought them together, and they arrived in each country like conquering heroes.

Lara Logan: How good a band is Aerosmith today in 2012 compared to the last 40 years?

Steven Tyler: This band is better than it's ever been.

Tyler: It's not because I'm old now and the band's been around forever and it's our last tour. Bullshit. It's because this band's that good.

Their music is guitar driven and melodic, with lots of sexual innuendo.

Tyler: We're going out, and we're wowing 80,000 people. To do that and do it well is really an art form.

It's the clothes, the rock star posing, the energy...all longtime Aerosmith calling cards, four decades in motion.

Singer Steven Tyler is now 64. Lead guitarist Joe Perry, 61.

Logan: You've been described as the greatest American rock band. Is that how you feel?

Joe Perry: We've been around long enough that we have seniority. I don't know, there have been other bands that have been great, you know, and come and gone. But we're still here.

Backstage, all five members make accommodations for their age before every show: 62-year-old drummer Joey Kramer tapes his hands to prevent blisters. 60-year-old guitarist Brad Whitford gets help loosening up a tight shoulder and 60-year-old bassist Tom Hamiliton protects his precious hearing.

Logan: Without those would you be deaf by now?

Tom Hamilton: I went for a long time, you know, playing, you know, standing next to Joey, our drummer.

Logan: Is he really loud?

Tom Hamilton: Oh, he is horrendous.

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