Aerosmith has finished cutting the tracks for its new blues album, which will be mixed over the summer and fall and will most likely be released in January by Columbia, guitarist Joe Perry tells Billb

Aerosmith has finished cutting the tracks for its new blues album, which will be mixed over the summer and fall and will most likely be released in January by Columbia, guitarist Joe Perry tells Billboard.com. "All the basics are done, we're probably three-quarters done with the overdubs. And there really aren't many to do, because we cut the album basically live," he says.

Co-produced by the band and Jack Douglas, who helmed such Aerosmith classics as "Toys in the Attic" (1975) and "Rocks" (1976), the as-yet-untitled set will probably feature covers of Muddy Waters' "I'm Ready," Little Walter's "Temperature" and a couple of Mississippi Fred McDowell cuts, including "You Gotta Move."

Born out of sessions held in the basement of Perry's Boston-area home, the album will most likely include a couple of songs featuring Perry singing lead. In April, Perry told Billboard.com one such track could be the early Fleetwood Mac cut "Stop Messin' Round."

The album will also include a few new Aerosmith originals. "There's one song that we wrote in Hawaii," he says. "It's got a real R&B feel to it; it kind of has the same feel as 'Crazy.'"

Previously, Perry said the band was shooting for a September release date. Pushing the album back roughly six months ought to prove helpful, he says: "By having the record come out in January, it gives us a little more time, and if something else comes along, it will be real easy to cut it and throw it on there," he says.

The decision certainly seems like a reaction to the warm response with which fans have greeted the band's forthcoming, co-headlining tour with Kiss. Perry says that most likely, the tour -- on which Aerosmith will close each show -- will last until Christmas, moving from amphitheaters into arenas.

"We always figured we'd be on the road until Christmas," he admits. "And, apparently, in spite of what some of the other tours are doing, we're doing pretty well. There's certainly an offer for us to go indoors, and I think that we'll make that decision pretty soon."

The opening show, to be held Aug. 2 in Hartford, Conn., will mark the first time the bands have shared a stage in nearly 30 years. "Certainly following them is not going to be easy," says the guitarist, who guested on Kiss bassist/vocalist Gene Simmons' 1978 solo album. "They're certainly headliners in their own right. It's just gonna make for more inspiration. I don't think there are too many people that I wouldn't follow, just because of my natural competitive instinct, and how much faith I have in my own band.

"But that's the kind of thing that makes for a great show," Perry continues. "Any time you get to follow a band that, whether they've got great songs, or they put on a great show, ya know, there's something about them that gets the audience crazy. It always inspires us to go on and top it."

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