There's No Changing Steven Tyler's Stripes

Photo: Steven TylerPlayABC News
WATCH Another 'Creepy' Moment From Steven Tyler

Just like a tiger, Steven Tyler isn't about to change his stripes.

A day after Fox's (faux?) apology for his "outrageous behavior," the freshman judge on "American Idol" was back to his old tricks.

This time, Tyler ogled contestant Heidi Khzam. While she performed a mesmerizing belly-dance routine, Tyler turned into a human beat box, complete with "ah's" and 'um's." Randy Jackson joined in, rapping the beat on the table. Jennifer Lopez sat in the middle, a wide smile plastered on her face, leaving us to wonder what she was really thinking.

Then, after crowing like a rooster, Tyler seemed to remember this was a singing competition and turned serious. "You got something you could sing for us real quick?" he said to Khzam.

As it turned out, Khzam made it through to the next round.

For the most part, Thursday's Los Angeles auditions focused less on the talented and more on the terrible:

Tynisha Roches may have been the first woman to chase Jackson around the room as she screeched half-remembered lyrics in an ultimately futile attempt to persuade the judges.

Matt "Big Stats" Frankel claimed to be a music producer who helped "bunches" of artists, including Chaka Khan, while proudly displaying his Los Angeles Transit bus pass, but his audition had little to do with singing.

There were a couple potential shining stars. The affable Gutierrez brothers, Mark and Aaron, won over the judges with a soulful rendition of "Lean on Me."

"It was God-like, the way you guys sang," Tyler told them. "After today, it was just what we needed."

Karen Rodriguez, who auditioned via MySpace and was then flown to LA, also impressed the judges with "You Give Good Love." Lopez was especially moved after Rodriguez reminded her that they had met before on MTV's "TRL," where Lopez told her she had a good voice.

"You're going to make me cry," Lopez said.

But the moment that late-night comedian Jimmy Kimmel was talking about last night belonged to Tyler. He featured Tyler and belly-dancing contestant Khzam in a segment called "The Steven Tyler Creepy Leer of the Night."

"That's why he's known as the world's horniest beat box," Kimmel joked.

'American Idol' Apologizes for Steven Tyler

Tyler has been grabbing the headlines this week.

At the start of Wednesday's show, Fox ran an apology for its most unrestrained judge: "American Idol would like to apologize for last week's outrageous behavior by Steven Tyler."

It was followed by a second black card, which read: "Mr. Tyler has been warned and assured us it will never happen again."

Although many people had speculated earlier on what "it" was, the Fox producers were making amends for Tyler's comment last week when he joked that a contestant's last name rhymed with a profanity.

When Jake Muck introduced himself, Tyler, 62, said, "You know what Muck rhymes with, don't you?" When Muck replied, "Duck," Tyler responded, "Read my lips."

The comment reportedly drew complaints from viewers.

But skeptics reportedly believe the apology was just another joke; this time from producers.

Fox declined to comment about the apology, and the show's producers did not immediately respond to's request.

But, why would they apologize for that and not the first episode, when Tyler came under fire for hitting on teenage contestants young enough to be his granddaughter?

"American Idol" producers are smart enough to know that they have found a new star in judge Tyler. The more off-the-cuff remarks he makes, the more headlines he generates and the more -- producers hope -- viewers tune into the show.

Even before the 10th season started, Tyler was making headlines for comments he made about snorting Lunesta and partaking in a backstage three-way. Based on his comments, it was clear the Aerosmith frontman had not signed a morals clause with the family-favorite show or even been coached on what not to say.

On the season premiere, Tyler quickly upstaged fellow freshman judge Jennifer Lopez.

He punctuated the auditions with his signature scream, sometimes singing and tapping along with the contestants.

Steven Tyler Already in Trouble

The show also played up Tyler's reputation as a ladies man with a montage of his comments directed at some of the more attractive female contestants.

"You're Italian with a tattoo?" he said. "I love you already."

To another contestant, he flirted, "Where is your pitchfork, you little devil."

His off-the-cuff remarks occasionally veered toward seamy. When Lopez sent through a sweet Southern 16-year-old girl, complimenting her on her skirt, Tyler quipped, "Yeah, just the right amount showing."

The rocker has also shown his softer side. Last week, he provided one of the tear-jerker moments of the show. After contestant Chris Medina sang an emotional rendition of the Script's "Breakeven," then wheeled his brain-damaged fiancee Juliana Ramos into the room to meet the judges, Tyler leaned close to Ramos and said, "I just heard your fiancee sing and he's so good. You know, because he sings to you all the time. I could tell."

Then Tyler kissed Ramos on the cheek, like he would one of his daughters, and whispered, "Oh, baby, that's why he sings so good because he sings to you."

On the show's premiere, after greenlighting the first contestant for Hollywood, he said, "We have to water this flower."

And when another woman got down on her knees, danced, cried and begged the judges to send her through to the next round, Tyler caved.

"That was unbridled enthusiasm," he said. "I'm going to personally work that into something good."

From the looks of things, Tyler is working something into the aging talent show, whether it's good may be in the eyes of the beholder.