Ashlee Simpson: La La or Blah Blah? Pt. 2

Leah Bowers

The day of the concert, I belted out “You make me wanna la la in the kitchen on the floor …” in the shower. Soap burned my eyes, but I didn’t care. I had free tickets to Ashlee Simpson that night.

Of course there was one catch. I had to attend the concert with none other than pop star-hater extraordinaire and DKS designer, Jon Daley, who I thought I could potentially persuade into loving the black-haired beauty.

I styled my hair in a high ponytail with my bangs pinned back in a wave just like I had seen Ashlee do in her hit MTV show, of course. With the application of a little — OK, a lot of — black eyeliner, I was out the door to pick up Jon.

We arrived at State Theatre in Cleveland just in time for the opening band, Pepper’s Ghost, but I wasn’t too interested. Ms. Simpson was the only person I had come to see.

I led Jon to the bar next door, figuring a drink or two might loosen him up. If only I had brought my Ashlee-flavored roofie to slip in his double rum and coke, I thought. A few fruit fusion martinis later, I was even more fired up for the show.

Our seats put us up in the balcony away from the teeny boppers and the rest of the underagers, but they were hard to ignore. Hordes of girls wore matching homemade Ashlee T-shirts that said “Ashlee holds the pieces of me” in pink and blue puffy paint and glitter. Jon looked annoyed but seeing them kind of made me wish I had the time to put together even more of an Ashlee-friendly ensemble. If only I could remember where I put my puffy paint!

The lights dimmed and the pulsing guitar beats rang out loud and clear. “Autobiography,” the title of Ashlee’s self-penned CD and first track, was spelled out on the large screen above the stage. The crowd rose to its feet, eager with anticipation.

Stylishly clad in a long black-and-gold-sequined jacket, Ashlee stepped onto the stage. The words “You think you know me…” came out strong and clear. I was immediately giddy and gave Jon an “I told you she could sing live” look. He just shook his head. I could tell he knew I was right.

She moved around the stage with a spontaneous attitude. She jumped down to her knees when belting out a note and hopped back up without missing a beat. Who needs choreography when the audience cares more about what she is saying in her songs, rather than how good she can pop-and-lock like Howie D. from the Backstreet Boys?

Strutting around the stage in a red feather boa and black stilettos, she began a slower, sultry version of her latest single, “La La.” Ashlee suddenly kicked off the shoes, threw off the boa and jumped right into the real rockin’ version of the song. The crowd went crazy.

Then Ashlee left the stage and the lights went low, but I knew it couldn’t be the end. A scene from Napoleon Dynamite appeared on the screen. Napoleon’s D-Qwon dance moves flashed on the screen. It was obvious the girl’s even got good taste in movies.

Jon admitted that Ashlee “sounded a lot better than (he) thought she would.” Well, duh.

As we left the theater, we saw a young girl going hysterical as she talked to her dad on her cell phone.

“Dad! She reached out and touched my hand!”

I asked myself, “Would I be acting that way if it had happened to me?”

Yep, there’s no doubt.

Contact Ashlee Simpson fanatic and design director Leah Bowers at [email protected].