LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Rocker Steven Tyler said on Thursday he has decided to leave his job as a judge on top-rated television singing contest "American Idol" for the coming season, saying he wants to dedicate himself to his band, Aerosmith.
"I strayed from my first love, Aerosmith, and I'm back," the band's lead singer said in a statement.
Tyler, 64, had amassed numerous hits like "Walk this Way" and "I Don't Want To Miss a Thing" with his band since its start in the 1970s, but the group had reached a lull a couple of years back when the singer decided to join "American Idol" as a judge.
His addition to the judging panel, along with actress and singer Jennifer Lopez, in the season that began in January 2011, sparked great interest in the show that airs on the Fox TV network.
Mark Darnell, president of alternative entertainment for Fox, called Tyler "a terrific judge, a true friend, and great mentor" on the show.
"We are very sad that Steven has chosen to focus more on his music, but we always knew when we hired a rock 'n roll legend, he would go back to music," Darnell said in a statement.
(Reporting by Bob Tourtellotte; Editing by Jan Paschal)