leave your inhibitions at the door
Although I gushed about the quality of acts at Lollapalooza, there are Guilty Pleasures to be found. One of the biggest ones in past fests was 2005’s Billy Idol. Most people don’t know this, but in 1987 he was flash-frozen by cryogenic scientists in Arizona. He was on a tear with “Dancing with Myself” and “Eyes without a Face” and wanted to put out an album of Ratpack-era standards. Management decided it was better to freeze him than to suffer the embarrassment of singing crappy Sinatra songs. They defrosted him briefly for The Wedding Singer, just to test for cell damage and then again in 2005 for Lolla. He came out on stage looking exactly the same as he did in the 80s – same leather clothes, bleached spiked hair, jumping around and snarling.
This year’s Lolla GP comes courtesy of Pretty Reckless, the heavy metal/Led Zep-influenced rockers fronted by Taylor Momsen. For those of you unfamiliar with Momsen, at the tender age of 9 she played Cindy Lou Who in The Grinch.
She’s also one of the stars of Gossip Girl, which I’m still proud to say I’ve never seen.
There have been many instances where a musician has successfully made a transition to acting – Frank Sinatra, David Bowie, Will Smith, Jennifer Lopez, DMX. But when actors go to singing, the results are mostly laughable – David Hasselhoff (apologies to my German fans), Keanu Reeves, David Soul, William Shatner, etc. Even when there are ones who are somewhat talented – Gwyneth Paltrow, Jeff Bridges, Jared Leto – their talent always gets qualified with “not bad for an actor”.
Of course, Momsen claims that rock was her first love and that Gossip Girl was a good-paying gig. I call poser bullshit – the show was the only reason she got a band and she’s milking it for all it’s worth. In previous performances she’s up on stage slutting it out in lingerie and grinding with other chicks. Recently, she channeled Wendy O. Williams of the Plasmatics with the electrical tape pasties.
Doing all of this, having not yet reached age 18, makes for some notoriety aka perfect publicity for a rock band. Unfortunately, since she’s lost her official jailbait status, I fear that it’s all downhill from here.
Let’s put aside all this nastiness aside and enjoy this…