Ashley Tisdale Visits ‘Late Night’

visited ‘Late Night with Conan O’Brien’ on Thursday (February 8) to promote her debut solo album ‘Headstrong’. The ‘High School Musical’ star discussed being popular with the kids, a creepy older fan, doing Sunny Delight commercials, having a lunch meeting with ‘American Idol’ judge Simon Cowell, and buying her own CD. Read on for a rough transcript.

Conan: My next guest starred in last year’s huge hit movie, “High
School Musical.” She co-stars on the Disney Channel show, “The Suite Life
of Zack and Cody.” Just this week, her debut album “Headstrong” was released.
Please welcome Ashley Tisdale.

[ Cheers and applause ]

Conan: Thank you for being here.

Ashley Oh, thank you.

Conan: All right. Now, first of all, I don’t — you know, we were just
talking about this. Bob Costas and I were just talking about this before you came out. You’re a huge star with young kids. Just a massive star with young kids. How do they react when you’re let’s say walk into a mall. You go to the mall, just to buy some cheese doodles or whatever, and —

[ Laughter ] It’s what I do. And young kids see you. How do they react?

Ashley Oh, they’re so cute. I actually — I actually went to Palm Springs for vacation with my parents and my friends and — I was at the pool, and
the cutest thing was, this little 5-year-old girl comes up to me, and she goes, “Are you Ashley Tisdale? Because you have her face.”

[ Laughter ] And I was like, “You are so adorable.” I was like, “I am.”
And so she hung out with me the rest of the day.

Conan: Right.

Ashley Her family was right next to us, and she was eating my fries.
So she was awesome.

Conan: Actually, you were sweet about it, ’cause you could have answered that question another way. “No, I’m not her, but I do have her face!”

[ Laughter ]

Ashley No, she was —

Conan: “I stole it!”

[ Laughter ] You could have scarred that child for life. “I’m the face
stealer. Come here.” Okay, do you — so obviously, these young people go crazy when they see you. Do you ever encounter an adult fan? And if so, does that get weird?

[ Laughter ]

Ashley Yeah, sometimes. Actually, I just got off-tour with “High School Musical,” and at one of the meet and greets, they actually — this family came over to me, and they’re like — the mom’s like, “Oh, let’s go get daddy’s favorite” and took a picture of me. And the dad was like — I was like, “Okay.”

Conan: “Daddy’s favorite”?

Ashley Yeah, daddy’s favorite.

Conan: That’s not good.

[ Laughter ] Daddy’s 52 years old.

[ Laughter ] Daddy should get some help.

[ Laughter ] Yeah, that’s really not good. How about — there must be
people that — adults who don’t have kids, and they see everyone else going insane when you’re walking down the street, and they don’t know what’s going on. They don’t understand why.

Ashley Yeah, there was a guy that actually came up to me, and he was like, “What’s your name?” And I was like — I said, “Oh, I’m Ashley.” And he’s like, “What’s your last name?” I said, “Tisdale.” And he’s like, “Does that mean anything to me?” And I was like, “No, probably not.”

[ Laughter ] I’m like — didn’t know how to respond.

Conan: That’s just rude, you know?

Ashley Yeah, it was kind of rude.

Conan: I’ve kind of had that, too, where I’ve had, like, other people
recognizing me and one person — this is, you know, years ago, ’cause this couldn’t happen now.

[ Laughter ] But one person coming up and going, like, “I don’t know.
Who are you?” Like, they’re almost angry. You go like, “well, you know, I’m on late at night, and these people are excited to see me.” “Yeah, well, I’m not.”

[ Laughter ] And that’s when I spray them with mace, actually.

[ Laughter ] In the eyes. You’ll learn about that. You’ve done — you’ve done TV ads. You know, getting started in the business. You did television
ads. And my guess is that’s harder than it looks, you know, to do. I mean, there are a lot of people that probably think, “oh, that’s simple.” But it’s a lot of hard work.

Ashley Yeah, yeah. No, I started in commercials actually, though I always booked food commercials. I guess I was, like, really good at that — the
bite and reaction.

Conan: What’s — the “bite and reaction” is —

Ashley It’s like when you — when you, like, you know — for example,
you know, drink Sunny Delight, and you’re like, you know, drinking, and you’re like, “mmm — that’s good.” You sell the product.

Conan: Right. You have to be — yeah.

Ashley I was really good at selling food. I really liked food.

Conan: So you were really good at taking a sip and then, like, “wow!”

Ashley Yeah, that’s it!

Conan: I actually think they overdo it a little bit with Sunny D. You
know, it almost gets a little unrealistic with Sunny D. ‘Cause kids come home. They’re like, “hey, do you kids want some soda?” “We don’t want soda! We don’t want any of that!” “You want” —

[ Conan gasps ] “Sunny D!”

[ Laughter ] Yeah. “Wow, it’s orange juice, only somehow much better!”

[ Laughter ]

Ashley I was one of those kids.

Conan: Yeah. Well, you got me buying Sunny D.

Ashley Awesome.

Conan: I thought there was some drug in it. Do you ever get — ’cause
I know one of the things in the commercials, they make you, you know, like, if you’re doing — I’ve heard this — people that do a McDonald’s commercial, they’d have to bite — you know, they bite into the hamburger. And then, after like 500 takes, they’re just — they can’t eat.

Ashley Well, there’s a spit bucket, though. There’s a spit bucket.

Conan: There’s a spit bucket.

Ashley Yeah. Yeah, so like, you know, you eat it, and then you spit
into the bucket, usually.

Conan: Right.

Ashley But you know, I was young, and I actually — I enjoyed, you know, eating the food all the time. I would just eat it.

Conan: Right, right.

Ashley And eat it and eat it and eat it. And so Sunny Delight, for example, I was drinking so much of it — I loved it. You know, and my mom’s like,
“Well, maybe you should just, like, spit some of it out, so you don’t get tired of it.” I’m like, “I’m not getting tired of it. I love it. I love it.” And then the next day, you know — and actually, from here on, I’ve never really had Sunny Delight anymore.

[ Laughter ]

Conan: Well, they won’t be calling you again.

[ Laughter ] “And I never had it again.”

Ashley No. It’s great. It’s great. But I’m just, you know?

Conan: Yeah, I know. I don’t want to get you in trouble.

[ Laughter ] I was looking at all these teen magazines today. “Tiger
Beat,” “J-14.”

[ Laughter ] This is before I knew you were on. This is just — this
is what I do.

[ Laughter ] You’re daddy’s favorite.

[ Laughter ]

[ Cheers and applause ] And you are on the cover of every single magazine and almost on every single page of every magazine. And they’re just obsessed with you, and every, you know, part of your life and — the only thing
that’s really surprised me in this magazine, check this out. I was shocked to see this. I don’t know if you saw this.

[ Laughter ] Yeah.

[ Cheers and applause ]

Bob: It’s my effort to reach out to people who don’t know what tang

[ Laughter ]

Conan: Keep reaching, pal. Keep reaching. I know you’re a big “American Idol” fan. And you had a pretty exciting situation recently.

Ashley Mm-hmm.

Conan: You got — Simon — is this right? Simon Cowell asked to have
a meeting with you.

Ashley Yeah. Yeah, I had a lunch meeting with him. And it was really
funny. I’m a huge fan of “American Idol.” And I was always wondering, like, what Simon Cowell would think about me. And I was like, “oh, I wonder if I ever went on the show, like, what he would say.” So when I had a meeting with him, I was, like, really nervous. But I walked in. He was like, “Well, you’re much prettier in real life.” So I was like, “I’ll take that as a compliment.” He was like, “Yeah, yeah.” And then he said that he loved my character in “High School Musical.” And I thought that was really cool. So it was awesome.

Conan: He’s been here a bunch of times, and the dirty little secret
about him is he’s a very nice person.

Ashley He is really nice.

Conan: Very smart, very nice guy. And I mean, I think people like him
on the show because he’s actually – – he comes across as mean, and he can be very blunt, but he’s usually pretty honest.

Ashley: Yeah.

Conan: I think most times when you’re watching the show, you think,
“yeah, I think he’s right.”

Ashley: Yeah, and I — he was really sweet.

Conan: This is a big deal for you. Your CD, “Headstrong,” is out. And
are you superstitious? I mean, this is something you thought about for a long time. This is — you’re excited about this. The CD’s coming out. Is there anything that you do to sort of give yourself a little good luck when the CD’s coming out.

Ashley I did. I’m very superstitious. So I bought — actually, when it came out the release day, I bought my own for good luck. So hopefully it works.

Conan: You went to the music store and —

Ashley I went to the music store.

Conan: That’s cool.

Ashley Yeah.

Conan: Was that a neat experience to just walk in and buy your own CD?

Ashley I think they knew I was coming, ’cause they were playing the
music in the store. So I think they kind of — it was kind of set up that they knew I was coming there. ‘Cause they knew I wanted to buy one.

Conan: Right, right.

Ashley Did you have to pay for it, or did you just hold it up and went,
“I don’t think I’m buying this.”

[ Laughter ]

Ashley I did. I had to pay for it. I did.

Conan: That’s cool.

Ashley Yeah.

Conan: The money goes into your pocket eventually.

[ Laughter ] So it all works out. You should have just held up the money, and then put it in your pocket.

[ Laughter ] And walked out.

Ashley Well, I tell you, it is worth the money.

Conan: Yeah, yeah. I’m sure it is. “Headstrong” is in stores right now.
Ashley, thanks so much for coming.

Ashley: Thank you, Conan.

Conan: Yeah, yeah. Continued success for you. Ashley Tisdale.

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