Taylor Momsen: 'Hate me if you want'

The Pretty Reckless
Taylor Momsen fronts her new band The Pretty Wreckless

There are many faces of Taylor Momsen.

There's Taylor the fashion icon: The gum-chewing, torn-stockings wearing Maryland-born 16-year-old splashed over the British and Americian glossies.

There's Taylor the actress: Playing the squeaky-clean-gone-bad-girl Jenny Humphrey in American drama Gossip Girl alongside heart-throbs Chace Crawford and Ed Westwick.

And finally there's Taylor the rock star: The Courtney Love-esque sneering frontwoman of metal-pop band The Pretty Reckless.

Music priority

In her mind, she's pretty sure on which of the above she prefers.

Taylor Momsen
Taylor Monsen plays Jenny Humphrey in Gossip Girl

"I love acting and I'm doing it forever but music is my heart," she says.

"It's what I live for, to say the least - it's kept me alive. Music is who I am. It's the priority at the moment - it's the focus.

"It's not a pop record - I'm sure people were expecting one."

Indeed, producers of the LA-based glamour series have given Momsen time off to concentrate on her new band The Pretty Reckless. Their single Make Me Wanna Die has already featured in blockbuster Kick-Ass, and they're readying their debut album.

"I'm finishing," she says cryptically, without giving much away. "They're being very supportive with my music career."

With the conclusion of the third series fast approaching - it's not entirely sure whether this will be the last fans of the show will see of her character, socialite Jenny Humphrey.

"I'm not allowed to say much, but I can tell you it's very dramatic," she says of the season's finale. "Particularly with Jenny's character - there's a very dramatic ending, which I think will shock many people."

She says everyone has been "super supportive" of her desire to follow her music career full-time with a few members of the cast coming to see her shows.

Tabloid darling

She is though, less enamoured with the coverage she receives in the American tabloids and glossy magazines - obsessing over her weight and style choices.

In the UK she's also currently the face of a large high street outlet's spring/summer range.

"I don't read them," she says over her tabloid presence. "I don't even care, at all. If you read them and you care then it'll just destroy you. It's stupid to care about any of it.

"My whole thing is feel free to hate me - I so don't care if you hate me, but meet me, and listen to my record, and know me before you hate me.

"Don't hate me for what tabloids write about me, because I guarantee it's a lie."

'Lazy' style

Taylor Momsen
Monsen is touring the world with her band this year

She's also become an unlikely fashion icon, snapped up by New York based modelling agency IMG (home of Kate Moss) a couple of years ago. She's nonchalant about her new found status though.

"I really just put on what's clean," she shrugs. "The easiest thing to find in the morning because I'm usually running late.

"It's just turned into style - I just don't bother, I'm just too lazy."

Constantly balancing her career in music, fashion and acting means Momsen hasn't really experienced the 'normal' lifestyle of a girl her age growing up.

"I've done a lot but I'm still a teenager," she says finally. "I still chew gum in interviews."