NEW YORK — OK, not everyone has a sweet-16 birthday party that was sponsored by MySpace, was held at one of Manhattan's hottest venues and was DJed by MisShapes — and doubled as your new band's homecoming show after a stint opening for the Veronicas' North American tour.
But then again, not everyone is "Gossip Girl" star/ Pretty Reckless frontwoman Taylor Momsen.
[artist id="1620051"]Momsen[/artist] accomplished a lot in the first 15 years of her life, and, judging by the crowd at Tuesday night's party/concert, she's made a lot of friends too. Holding it down in the Hiro Ballroom's VIP section was the majority of the "Gossip Girl" cast — notably Ed Westwick (who was very close with Jessica Szhor) and Chace Crawford. The crew made their way to the front of the stage for one song to show support for their castmate before being whisked away from the screaming fans.
Arriving just in time for the concert was "NYC Prep" star Sebastian, who made sure to get front and center before sneaking away to the VIP lounge. Cheering Taylor on from downstairs included her onscreen best friend/ stepbrother, Connor Paolo and Matthew Settle, who sported a pair of glow-in-the-dark shades.
But this party was about the music, and Momsen and Pretty Reckless took the stage with authority. Backstage, Momsen warmed up by singing Britney Spears' "... Baby One More Time," and then the curtain rose to the sounds of thunder and lightning. The band thrashed through a loud, grunge-inspired and guitar-driven set; the boys wore eyeliner and Momsen channelled Hole-era Courtney Love in messy, peroxide-blonde hair and a hot pink slip dress. Her raspy singing voice sounded years beyond 16.
Momsen broke out her guitar for "Zombie," and the band closed its set with the catchy "Good Girls Go to Heaven" (a line that is followed by "bad girls go everywhere"). Not long after, Momsen's mother and sister surprised her onstage with a birthday cake (the audience got cupcakes!) and the band played one last song.