Ashlee Simpson had wanted to start 2005 with a clean slate, but as her first appearance of the new year demonstrated, not everyone is as eager to put her "SNL" snafu behind her as she is. You'd think being booed in such a public forum as the Orange Bowl would be traumatic, but the singer/actress insists she's unfazed.
"There was some booing that went on after the halftime show was finished," she said. "If they didn't like the performance, and that's what it was about, then sorry to them."
Some have said Simpson was booed at Miami's Pro Player Stadium because the rowdy crowd of 72,000 wasn't the same age bracket as Simpson's teen audience. Others have said it was payback for "SNL," for her being a bad sport, walking off the stage and later blaming her band for a miscue (see "Ashlee Simpson's 'SNL' Excuse Bolstered By Rehearsal Tape"). Still others have complained that she just sounded bad. But Simpson has a few theories herself about why boos were heard following the closing line of her song "La La," "I want to hear you scream!"
"Maybe they were booing at me, maybe they were booing at the halftime show 'cause the whole thing sucked," she said. "I was facing [the Oklahoma Sooners], and I was rooting for USC, and they played a clip of it, so maybe it was that those people didn't like me. You never know. But I can't make everybody happy."
Simpson also pointed out that for this performance, the circumstances were less than ideal.
"There were no ear monitors when we went onstage," she said. "No floor monitors. And trying to sing in a stadium where you can't hear yourself is kinda hard. My sister [Jessica] was like, 'I don't know how you just did that! I performed in stadiums, and if I didn't have my ears, I would have freaked.' "
Still, Simpson said she's learned a lot from both the "SNL" and Orange Bowl experiences (see "Ashlee Identifying With 'Wannabe' Character, Says She's Over 'SNL' Episode"), with the biggest lesson being that she has to "keep pushing forward and being really strong, and no matter what you go through, fight through it." After all, she said 2004 wasn't all bad — her reality show was a hit, as was her debut album, Autobiography, which ended up being one of the top 10 best-selling albums of the year (see "Usher's 'Yeah!' Was Most Played Song Of 2004").
"I go from having a #1 album and things going great and all of a sudden something like 'SNL' happens and boom! You're faced with how mean people can be and criticizing you and stuff," she said. "But I've learned a lot about myself through all of this. It's like, I'm not perfect and I'm not going to be perfect. I'm still 20, and a new artist, and I will only grow. And I look forward to continuing to not listen to what one person says and making good music."