“PAINTED ON MY HEART” the Diane Warren song AEROSMITH denied ever recording!

“Painted On My Heart” is a song written by Diane Warren, who offered the song to Aerosmith after the success they had with IDWMAT. In April 2000 MTV News reported Aerosmith had recorded the song for the upcoming Nicolas Cage movie ”Gone in 60 Seconds”.

Columbia was supposed to do the soundtrack with Matt Serletic producing the track for Aerosmith, but the band suddenly decided that the song wasn’t for them and Columbia decided to step out of the soundtrack.

Aerosmith, at the time, said they never recorded the song (which may be true to a degree, explored below). One of the reasons may have been that they didn’t want to be associated with being “just a ballad band”. They got a lot of flack over IDWTMAT in it was rare they recorded songs that they had no writing composition in, apart from covers.

When the soundtrack was released in June 2000, the track, which opened the album, was now performed by The Cult. Nicolas Cage, who appeared in the “Gone With 60 Seconds” film, was a big Cult fan and maybe have been involved in the change of bands.

The Cult was the last-minute replacement but the soundtrack went to “Island Records” (The Cult is not on that label). The song got no promotion, so, it didn’t become a chart hit.

Nobody is saying why Aerosmith’s version is being cut from the film, although industry sources speculate that either the two camps (band and soundtrack) could not agree on financial terms, or that they could not agree on which label would distribute the soundtrack album.

MTV News 04/11/2000

To a degree, Aerosmith’s version may have been left un-used by the studio, rather than Aerosmith deciding not to put it on the soundtrack. But Aerosmith management was rumoured to be greedy at times and maybe dumped the deal for financial discrepancies, as hinted by the MTV report above.

However, Touchstone still released a Promo CDR acetate with the “Aerosmith” version to help promote the movie.

“AEROSMITH Painted On My Heart (2000 US 1-track demo Touchstone Pictures promo-only CD-R acetate as featured in the movie ‘Gone In 60 Seconds’ custom printed disc and title/track listing inlay stating Aerosmith demo for ‘Gone In 60 Seconds’).”

eil.com

The so-called “Aerosmith” version seems to be the first pass of Tyler’s vocals on top of a backing track produced by Diane Warren’s team at RealSong studios in early 2000. By the sound of the demo, Tyler recorded one lead vocal track (still sounding unsure of the melody) and a second layer harmonising (where he sounds even more unsure of the melody and lyrics).

It’s very slow, mellow and melodic. Tyler provides interesting harmonies, very different to anything he’s done, yet, somehow they feel anti-climatic. There are hints of Spanish Flamenco in style with the way the acoustic guitar is performed, some soft clapping and Tyler’s unusual vocals. It is different in mood to the sound of The Cult’s version, they did Tyler’s vocals attune with the sound than being upfront. The rest of the guitar work is very laid back and gentle.

The demo is not perfectly mixed or produced. Steven’s voice feels simply placed over the track, the drums are just a drum loop, some synth strings work, one acoustic guitar in the left channel and a few electric guitars fills here and there. The lack of vision and direction of this early demo could have given the movie studio a wrong first impression of what the final song could have been, there for cancelling it (speculation).

Yet, in 2011 Steven Tyler seemed to confirm that the band did record the song, stating in his autobiography:

Another song Diane wrote that we recorded was “Painted on My Heart.”
And I’ve still got your face
Painted on my heart
Scrawled upon my soul
Etched upon my memory, baby

“Painted on My Heart” was going to be taken by Johnny Hallyday, the French rock star. I gave him the stem mixes, I gave him my vocal, but at the last minute he didn’t do it. A stem mix is the basic track. You put your vocal on it so the band can play behind it. It’s a little like Guitar Hero, where you have the backing tracks and you leave space for the kid to play Joe Perry.

Does the Noise in my Head Bother You?, 2011

So, it’s confusing, we don’t really know if a version where all 5 Aerosmith members play exists. Other than the released promo demo with Tyler on vocals, Aerosmith could have very well recorded a fully produced version of the song during their Just Push Play sessions, which took place from April to December 2000 (this last bit is also just speculation, I guess time will tell).

Despite all the issues, it still stands as a very cool and dark ballad, with lots of potential for Aerosmith. It could have used more aggressive guitars, drums and demon of screaming trademark high pitch vocals, especially after the bridge section.

Painted On My Heart
I thought you’d be out of my mind
And I’d finally found a way to learn to live without you
I thought it was just a matter of time
Till I had a hundred reasons not to think about you

But it’s just not so,
After all this time, I still can’t let go

I still got your face
Painted on my heart
Scrawled upon my soul
Etched upon my memory, baby

And I’ve got your kiss
Still burning on my lips
Your touch in my fingertips
This love so deep inside of me, baby
I’ve still got your face
Painted on my heart… yea, painted on my

I’ve tried everything that I can
To get my heart to forget you
But it just can’t seem to

I guess it’s just no use
In every part of me
Is a little a part of you

And I’ve still got your face
Painted on my heart
Scrawled upon my soul
Etched upon my memory, baby

I’ve got your kiss
Still burning on my lips
Your touch in my fingertips
This love so deep inside of me, baby

I’ve still got your face,
Painted on my heart,
Painted on my heart,
Painted on my, yea, yea yea… yea…

Something in your eyes keeps haunting me
I’m trying to escape you
And I know there ain’t no way to
To chase you from my mind…

I’ve still got your face
Painted on my heart
Scrawled upon my soul
Etched upon my memory baby

I’ve got your kiss
Still burning on my lips
Your touch in my fingertips
This love so deep inside of me, baby

I’ve still got your face
Painted on my heaaaart…
Painted on my heart…
Paiiiinted on my heaaaart…
Painted, pai…, painted on my heart…
haaa, haaa, haaaooaaaoaaa…


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