It was performance night last night (March 21) on 'American Idol,' and the contestants sang tunes from the Billy Joel songbook. But since so many kids these days don't seem to even know who the Beatles are, how many will actually be familiar with him? We shall see.

Also, not to give away too much, but Steven Tyler seems ready to shed his "nice" label and become the bastard his Aerosmith bandmates claim he is.

Steven, who's sung with Billy, opened the show by saying, "If you can't sing Billy Joel, you can't sing at all," adding that Joel's melodies are amazing and he's an "American icon." In other words, kids, don't mess too much with perfection or you will feel Steven's wrath.

Producer Jimmy Iovine shared mentoring duties with Puff Daddy or Diddy or whatever it is he's calling himself this week, who wasn't there as a Joel authority but rather as the expert he inarguably is on performance and what superstars are made of.

The kids all had consults with the show's new style guru, Tommy Hilfiger, who certainly has his work cut out for him with this bunch. Some contestants took his advice a little bit and some not at all, but others listened to the point where they're now almost unrecognizable.

In fact, Erika not only had her long hair cut super-short, she went from blonde to pitch black. It looks great, but those of us with long blonde hair flinched involuntarily when the stylist got busy with the scissors and dye.

Oh, and there was singing, too. As usual, the performances were all over the place -- good, bad, and somewhere in between. But nevermind all that. Let's get to Steven's semi-harsh words.

It started when this season's resident jokester, Heejun (who was charming for about a minute a couple weeks ago but that's over now), screwed around with the mentors, the stylists, and the song 'My Life.' By the time he was done treating his whole performance as an improv comedy routine, Steven, who had been staring unhappily the whole time, had a few things to say.

"Are you happy that you took the piss out of that song?" he asked Heejun, before sarcastically continuing, "You showed em, you told em. I'm glad you did, I hope it made you feel good inside. But they were right, the music business will kick your ass. At some point you've got to try and take it more serious."

We don't disagree with Steven at all, but when Joshua turned the quietly lovely 'She's Got a Way' into a screamy gospel gig, Steven was robbed of the chance to eviscerate him too. Turns out he simply never heard the song before (which seems unreal for someone who claims to be such a fan), so we yelled at the TV in his stead.

Oof. Painful. See you Thursday night for the results show.

Watch Steven Tyler Shred Heejun Han on 'American Idol'

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