11/14/06 Bangin’ with Ashley Column from WWE.com

WWE Diva Ashley MassaroWell, it’s been a little longer than usual, but I’m back in full effect.

Been crazy busy with SmackDown and some other cool projects, like hosting MTV’s Celebrity Death Match and working on some awesome photo shoots, so keep an eye out.

I got to go to one of the most amazing shows I think I’ve ever experienced – Peeping Tom at Irving Plaza (one of my favorite venues of all time). I even got to hang with my best bud, WWE Tag Team Champion Paul London, and our friend, Erin. Actually, Paul was the one who recommended the show. Well, it was amazing. The singer, Mike Patton, is one of the most musically talented people I’ve come across in a long time. You may remember him as the frontman of Faith No More. Anyway, it was a sick show. Rahzel performed. He does this human beat box thing – it is the CRAZIEST thing. He’s able to construct a whole song, bass line, background vocals, main vocals – everything all at once. Look him up. He’s freaking incredible. So crazy. One of the best nights out I’ve had in a long time. So check out Peeping Tom’s albums or any of Mike Patton’s other work. I’ll get into those another time, but I guarantee you’ll be impressed.

On to other subjects…. A TON of new albums recently came out that you NEED to know about. Where shall we start? Senses Fail’s Still Searching just hit – its pretty good. The single, “Calling All Cars” ain’t bad. My Chemical Romance’s The Black Parade also was just released, and in my opinion is an awesome album. You’ve probably heard “Welcome to the Black Parade” because I’ve even been catching it on the radio. I LOVED it when I first heard it, but alas, like all good music, they’ll play the crap out of it ’til I can’t stand it anymore. You should also check out the new Trivium called The Crusade, and Killswitch Engage’s As Daylight Dies. If you’re a downloader from iTunes (like myself), check out the singles “Daylight Dies” and “For You” off Killswitch – my faves, both solid. My friend, Erin, just caught the show in Texas and said it was amazing. Wish I could have gone. Matter of fact, I may be headed to the Papa Roach show tonight – my friend is going and asked if I’d like to tag along. I’ve been told the guys are pretty cool and actually have come to a few WWE events, so I think I may go. Anybody that digs WWE is cool in my book.

Anyway, Lita gave me a copy of her new band’s CD, the Luchagors, recently, and I was extremely impressed. I think when you guys finally get the chance to check it out or go see her live you’re going to be blown away. I wasn’t sure what to expect, but her songs were completely solid, and I truly was taken aback by how good it was. I’ll be doing an interview with her after the Europe tour, and will give you guys all kinds of info on the band – where to check ’em out, how to hear the goods and when you can expect it. “You’ll have it all right here with Bangin’ with Ashley!” (Insert overenthusiastic radio host voice.)

I have been on a complete ’80s monster ballads kick this month. Basically that includes Poison, Whitesnake, Firehouse, Bad English, Foreigner – total hairband cheese, but I love it. My faves are “Love of a Lifetime” by Firehouse and “Wind of Change” by Scorpions. I definitely go through phases. I won’t see an old CD or playlist in my iPod for a while, then come across it and get excited for it all over again. Motley Crue and Guns N’ Roses don’t count in this monster ballads playlist because they are constantly on in my iPod. I don’t get sick of GNR, period. Or Crue. Hehe, I’m such a nerd. Sometimes I’ll be on a Frank Sinatra kick, or even a Rod Stewart kick (usually around Christmas) – you guys would be surprised. But I’m majorly musically diverse. Everyone at WWE jokes because there is never a time I’m not humming or singing something throughout the halls. Or if some totally random song is playing in an airport, elevator or at the arena, you can bet your ass I know the words. Some strange talent, I suppose. Too bad I can’t do a whole lot with it, besides karaoke. Ha. Why is it I can remember all kinds of words to songs, but never anyone’s birthdays? Wow, where’d this blog turn to? Let’s get back on track….

So, I spoke to Nick Wheeler, guitarist from All-American Rejects the other day. Turns out they’re wrestling fans just like the rest of us. Check it out:

Ashley: First, tell me where are you right now at this exact moment and what are you doing?
Nick: Today we’re in Maryland playing in some college gymnasium…. I think I’ll eat some crab today. But in the grand scheme of things, we’re gettin’ ready for Tournado! It’s gonna be the biggest tour of our lives!!!

Ashley: Your song “Move Along” was the official song of the 2006 $250,000 Diva Search, as well as Layla’s, the Diva Search winner’s theme music on SmackDown. How does that feel? Any thoughts?
Nick: I grew up watching wrestling…WWE, WCW, etc., so it’s an honor to be a part of it! I’ve had so many people come up to me and say they’re a fan of our band because of WWE. That feels really good!

Ashley: Have you or any of the guys in the band watched wrestling? Now or as a kid? Any faves? Superstars and Divas alike 😉
Nick: My favorites were the Ultimate Warrior, Bret “Hit Man” Hart, The Legion Of Doom, etc. Whenever I watch nowadays, it makes me happy to see guys like Undertaker and Shawn Michaels still wrestling!

Ashley: What’s coming up for the All-American Rejects? Can we come out and see a show? What’s the rest of the year look like for you guys?
Nick: Tournado 2006!! October 23 through December 20!!! All of the United States and
Canada!!! It will be the tour to see this fall, guar-an-teed!!!

Ashley: Have you seen any of our shows live? We’d love to have you! There’s nothing like coming to a WWE live event!
Nick: Whenever WWE would come through Tulsa or Oklahoma City, I would go with
my dad – they were so bad ass!!! Those guys were rock stars to me, ya know?! I’d love to attend Raw, or even SummerSlam or WrestleMania. That’d be HUGE for me.

Ashley: Lastly, any funny stories of being on the road? We’re on the road almost all year long, and I know I’ve got a few myself. Crazy things that have happened? Stalker fans? If you have any feel free to share…
Nick: There are a lot of crazies, a lot of repeat offenders. Some bring cookies, and some call us on our birthdays cuz they work for an airline and get all of our info out of their system. I’m sure there are plenty more…

Anyway, that was my interview with Nick from All-American Rejects – check them out on the fall Tournado Tour!

Have you guys heard that song “Lips of an Angel” by Hinder? I kinda dig it. A few times when I’ve I heard it, I’ve liked it. I kind of identify with it and I think that’s why, only on the opposite end – which is the girlfriend asleep in the next room – unfortunate, but whatever.

So I was able to track down one of SmackDown’s newer Superstars to find out what he has running through his iPod, and that would be – your boy and mine – Jimmy Wang Yang! Jimmy says he’s really into a new up-and-coming Atlanta-based band called The Sixth Hour. Two of his favorite songs to work out to by them are “Degeneration 06” and “Out of My Reach.” They are southern rock, sounding similar to Life of Agony (one of my personal faves) and Clutch. He also enjoys working out to Stuck Mojo. Their new CD, Southern Born Killers, is awesome Jimmy says. Before a match he plays “When I Burn” and “Metal is Dead” to get pumped up. I’ll have to check some of these out. Sounds good. Thanks, Jimmy.

In the next Bangin’, get ready for an interview with Lita, a report on another show I’ll be attending next week and another one of your favorite Superstar’s musical preferences. Until then, keep rockin’.
Dirty Diva

A-Tunes of the Day
“Send the Pain Below” – Chevelle
“Ape Dos Mil” – Glassjaw
“Make like a Door and Shut Up” – Secret Lives of the Freemasons
“The Kill” – 30 Seconds to Mars
“Good F’ing Bye” – Alkaline Trio

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