The Taylor Momsen Transformation: From Cindy Lou Who to rock goddess


If you’ve seen CW’s series Gossip Girl, you know Taylor Momsen. How could any of us forget Jenny Humphrey, the series good-girl-gone-bad? Whether you know her from Gossip Girl or from her role as Cindy Lou Who in The Grinch Who Stole Christmas, you were probably pretty surprised to see her crazy transformation. Innocent to sporting raccoon eyes and barely any clothing seemingly out of nowhere. So what happened? According to Momsen, nothing. She has always had a passion for rock.

Taylor Momsen gave up acting to pursue her rock band The Pretty Reckless, one of very few female-fronted bands in the genre. The band released their first album “Light Me Up” in 2010, when Momsen was just 17. Following this was the “Hit Me Like A Man” EP and the single “Kill Me,” which was featured on the series finale of Gossip Girl. In 2014, The Pretty Reckless released their second album, “Going to Hell,” which produced two huge hits: “Going to Hell” and “Heaven Knows”.

After two long years of touring, Momsen began posting on Instagram and Twitter early July hinting at the release of some new music and later announced that the band is planning to release an album on Oct. 21 this year. The Pretty Reckless recently released two tracks titled “Take Me Down,” which became the band’s fourth chart topping rock radio single, and “Oh My God” off the upcoming album “Who You Selling For.”

“Take Me Down” is a softer sounding and slower song while “Oh My God” is clearly more high-energy and full of sass, but both are complete with Momsen’s signature edgy, well-written lyrics and gravelly voice.

In “Oh My God,” the first verse reads “Oh my god/wish I was thin/Wish I was a normal human being/I’m just like them/Stuck in the dirt/I am a victim of my own self-worth.” The lyrics are very real and honest, and it makes the songs relatable to all ages. We’ve all had bad days and we’ve all been insecure. Her style has always been extremely true to herself; she’s never been afraid to say exactly what she’s thinking. According to Rock Revolt Magazine, her music is simply “oozing with attitude, rebellion and spunk.”

It can be assumed that when the new album does come out, The Pretty Reckless will follow their pattern and do another world tour. Touring is why she gave up acting in the first place. Music became Momsen’s full time job. To comment on why she chose to give up everything to pursue music, Momsen writes “I don’t do it for the fame. I do it because I love music. I like making records and if people like them then we’ll go along for the ride.” Whether you love or hate Taylor Momsen, it’s hard to deny that she can totally rock on stage.

Cynthia Reinert is a campus correspondent for The Daily Campus. She can be reached by email at

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