And then, it's meeting time and, coincidentally, time for the second Shakespearean Aside of the episode!
"I haven't even spoken to these guys since our falling out over my advance. I am dreading this. I don't want to burn a bridge, but I can't let myself be walked on. The lesson I learned the last time around is that sometimes the music business is more about business than music…and that just sucks."
Given his past experience, I'm surprised that Ashley even knows that a thing called "music" exists. Oh poor, naïve Ashley. The worst part of all this is that despite myself, I actually kind of like him a little.
The players all sit down at the meeting. Larry begins by saying that Soul Power asked for the meeting, and that Ashley was negative on the meeting from the beginning, but agreed to it in the spirit of hearing everybody out and trying to do the right thing. Ashley says that his creative and personal relationship with Soul Power was completely destroyed by how he was treated over his advance. He doesn't feel like he can come and be creative and make music with them anymore. I think to myself, "Praise Jesus," but then realize that this probably only means he will get other producers. Curses. He says that he was at a breaking point in his life, and the light at the end of the tunnel was his great record deal offer with a half-million-dollar budget. I am truly appalled that someone would dump half a million dollars into a record by Ashley Parker Angel. Since Ashley wasn't working another job, he didn't have a plan B. And then, the relationship between Ashley and Soul Power was felled, as so many are, by issues over money.
Ashley was facing unreturned phone calls and his lawyer said he'd never seen anyone refuse to negotiate an advance. Soul says that if he and Ashley had sat down mano a mano to work out the advance, they wouldn't have fucked it up, but the stupid attorneys ruined it all. Ashley is a puss for not bringing all of this up, like, a year ago, but Soul is also full of shit. Ashley says that he did call Soul in dire straits, what with pulling eviction notices off of his front door and finding out that Tiffany was pregnant. The day he learned that you don't, in fact, get money for nothing and that chicks aren't free must have been quite a blow for little Ash. Soul said that he would handle everything. Guess that was a lie. Soul again tries to blame it on a fight between their attorneys. Ashley doesn't buy it. Soul wants to work it out. He says that he understands that Ashley's upset, but doesn't want him to make things worse than they already are. Ashley feels that their friendship was damaged beyond repair, that the way he was treated was unforgivable, and that he won't be able to get over that.
Soul Power associate Alex Cantrall says that they had a great time making the record for the period of one year. Alex picked Ashley up every day, they laughed and joked and said it was the best experience. Ashley said that at that time they weren't dealing with the advance situation. I don't understand what the real deal here is, but I am most certain that it's very boring. Again we hear how Ashley was poor, eviction notices on the door, blah blah blah, and Soul Power did nothing to help him. Alex says that one day Ashley is going to look back and realize that Soul Power fought for him when he had nothing. Ashley says that he's not feeling it and at the end of the day thinks Soul Power is not the right producer for him, and the relationship is over. That's his nice, calm, professional way of telling them to fuck off, right there.