Media Roundup: Women who rock, from newcomer to legend, and more

Add Ingrid Michaelson to the always growing list of indie musicians who have lent their tunes to play in the background of prominent national ad campaigns — at least in this case the original lyrics of the song were unchanged, unlike the Of Montreal Outback Steakhouse fiasco. Michaelson is grabbing a lot of attention with her song “The Way I Am” being used in Old Navy’s national campaign, in addition to other featured songs on the past season of television shows like “Grey’s Anatomy” and “One Tree Hill.” She is also gaining cred with a very important demographic — the techies — with her innovative use of social networking widgets that could be setting the trend for indie musicians to follow.

Shortly following her return to Madison (after headlining March’s sold-out Hotel Cafe show) headlining a show at the Barrymore on Saturday, June 7, she will be setting out to support the Dave Matthews Band in a number shows of their summer tour. Michaelson seems to be taking all of the attention in stride, however, even when the major labels come a knocking: “I’m definitely having a lot of luck right now; I don’t know that it’s the way it’s going to be for everyone from now on … [I’ve] decided that I wanted to remain independent, so I said no [to the major labels] — and they’ve kind of left me alone,” she recently said in an interview. “I don’t owe anything; I can keep my career going at the pace that I want it to be going.”

On the other end of the spectrum, Wanda Jackson — playing the High Noon Saloon on Wednesday, June 25 with her band the Lustre Kings — has been featured in the New York Times, Washington Post and other prominent newspapers over the past few weeks with her new documentary, “The Sweet Lady With the Nasty Voice” for the Smithsonian Channel. The documentary aired this past Sunday and told the 70-year-old rocker Jackson’s story, from dating Elvis Presley in the ’50s to paving the way for future generations of female rock stars with her hard-edged style. Both Michaelson and Jackson’s shows are not to be missed — representing bookends of achievement for women making it in the music industry.

Langhorne Slim, coming to town with his band The War Eagles on Monday, May 26, for a Memorial Day show at the High Noon Saloon, is featured as the lead act for a recent “things to do” roundup for the Capital Times, and also played last month on NPR’s World Cafe.

Stephen Marley, son of the late reggae legend Bob Marley, is currently in the midst of a national tour that will include a stop at the Barrymore on Wednesday, June 11. The show is a benefit for the Ghetto Youths Foundation, and will include the option of a $6 meal deal from Jamerica before the show. Marley’s shows have been noted for their honesty and passion: “I want to make a statement and continue this legacy, this musical legacy with my family,” he recently told a Charleston Post and Courier reporter. “Good music, good message, good vibe.”

Finally, check out the following reviews from recent shows in Madison, to find out what you might have missed:

“Alison Mosshart and Jamie Hince of The Kills took to The Annex stage on Saturday night, [May 10] with an unforgettable aural assault of bone trembling rock and roll.” — Dane101

Josh Ritter has a better time on stage (or at least appears to) that 89% of the bands I’ve seen this year. He actually seems to enjoy his work. Refreshing.” — Muzzle of Bees

“Last night’s show at the High Noon Saloon has entered the books amongst my all time favorites for the venue.” — Dooga Dooga

“My favorite part of the show, in fact, was about 5 or 6 songs in when the band departed and it was simply Josh Ritter and an acoustic guitar. It was amazing how intimate he could make the High Noon Saloon feel, even though it was a sold-out and anxious crowd…” — Dane101

“Thursday’s sold-out crowd at the Barrymore Theatre gave KT Tunstall an inkling of what kind of show she was going to have before she and her band ever played a note. ‘With all the seating, I thought you’d be sitting,’ said Tunstall as she scanned the audience that had risen to its feet and would stay there for the next hour and 45 minutes. ‘I’m impressed.'” — The Capital Times

That’s all for now. Have a lovely weekend!