Please, please, let Ashlee’s career be over now


The last time I blogged about Ashlee Simpson’s Milli Vanilli debacle on SNL it was pure schadefreude.

I didn’t even re-type the blog entry that I lost about Conan’s spot for memorial quarters for each of the new states (“New York: Where Ashlee Simpson’s Career Died” - with a graven image of Ashlee’s offence to the word “dance”). I thought Conan might have been prematurly using the word “dead”. I was right.

Her performance during last night’s Orange Bowl really, really, really, needs to put a big wooden stake in the undead beast that is her career. Much like a van Helsing , for the creatures own good it must be laid to final rest.

So the rest of the post, it is not about my joy in watching Ashlee get maimed for the fact that her asshole-manager-father pushed her into the limelight riding on the coattails of her sister – no it’s about something else.

The music industry is hard and brutal. People who “come up” work day and night surviving on grift, spaghtti-os, and waiting tables. In their dark, cramped apartments they work out their dreams and sing to empty theatres. They get strong, the develop a stage presence.

Under the best of circumstances they, like the butterfly, use struggle to make their wings strong.

Were you to assist the butterfly by cutting open its chysalis, its wings would be weak, it would fall to the ground, and return to biomass.

Ashlee’s career is the same. Her first “gig” at the Knitting Factory in LA happened after she had gotten signed. Huh? What? The Knitting Factory is a hard gig to get because many people want it, it’s the place people go to get signed (else they have a loyal local following which they use to stake a claim to KF’s stage). T

The fact of the matter is that her ‘reality show’ life is her main occupation and this career was insured and assissted by the other client her manager-father manages - her sister Jessica.

I’m pretty sure the meeting went like :

“Newlyweds was a runaway success, if you’d like it for another season, you need to help launch my other act. She’s really great and a reality show that would help kick start her musical career would be great.”

:: negotiating happens, contract signed ::

Ashlee’s reality show about her “new career” is signed to.

A record company is approached,

“Ashlee has a reality show on MTV, this will guarantee records of a certain amount, and we’ve got her in ads with hot commodity Jessica Simpson, whaddaya say you make some guaranteed cash?”

:: negotiating happens, contract signed ::

A chewing-gum company is approached,

“Ashlee has a record contract and a reality show and she’s acted a bit, what do you say you cast her as “female companion 1” to hot commodity Jessica Simpson in your ads?”

:: negotiating happens, contract signed ::

How many years and #1 hits of proven success did Michael Jackson bring before he finally got a Pepsi ad? How many #1 hits did Ashlee have before she launched her ads?

Someone tried to help her short-cut the developmental process associated with becoming a real recording artist and the chickens have come home to roost.

So at the Orange Bowl she was booed, gave a horrible performance (leaving the Graceful Bobcat’s jaw agape), and was booed some more. At this point it’s impossible not to have a little human pity enter the picture.

Who to blame? The greedy promoters who wanted a hot at the start of football season to be there. The greedy MTV producers who wanted a chance to get more Jessica? The fame-hungry father who gets his rise from commanding hot commodity daughters?

I don’t know, but this flame-out, had the machinery of the illusion of ‘reality stars’ in actual reality functioned properly Ashlee might not be in this state.

I daresay, in parallel to Janet Jackson, Ashlee has suffered a reality malfunction.