What’s your all-time favorite Aerosmith song? If a fan vote was held, “Dream On” has to be the top contender for the ultimate Aerosmith song. The combination of Steven Tyler’s emotional delivery, the band’s build-up to the crescendo, and the inspirational lyrics makes it one of the definitive power ballads in rock and roll history. For MTV’s 10th Anniversary Concert, Aerosmith blew the doors off the building with a powerful take on “Dream On” backed by a full orchestra that gave everyone goosebumps! When you go to cover a song with such a rich history it’s easy to turn in a lame copycat version or reinvent the song too much and lose what made it special in the first place. Eminem “borrowed” the riff and chorus for his “Sing For The Moment” cover but both Perry and Tyler actually contributed to the record so it’s not technically a “Dream On” cover. So when it comes to who did the best cover version you need to look no further than Ronnie James Dio.
“DREAM ON” – Aerosmith (Orchestral Version)
In 1999, Ronnie James Dio (Dio and Black Sabbath) recorded a special cover of the Aerosmith song for a long out-of-print tribute album, “Not The Same Old Song And Dance”. Dio managed to inject new life into the song while maintaining the spirit of the original. If you can’t get Joe Perry on lead guitar how about replacing him with guitar virtuoso, Yngwie Malmsteen? Add in some of the greatest hired guns, Stuart Hamm on bass, Gregg Bissonette on drums, and Paul Taylor on keyboards and you’ve got a dream team collaboration. The Dio cover has a heavier tone than Tyler’s but it more like a new spice was added to the mix than a complete reinvention.
“DREAM ON” Ronnie James Dio with Yngwie Malmsteen