Death to Cuteness!

By Ellison, Jesse | Newsweek, January 30, 2012 | Go to article overview

Death to Cuteness!


Ellison, Jesse, Newsweek


Byline: Jesse Ellison

Indie-pop darling Ingrid Michaelson is done singing the same old song.

Ingrid Michaelson is ready to make a change. The folk-pop singer has built a lucrative career--and extensive fan base--on quirky little love songs and an air of accessibility. But, she says, she's done with being the ukulele-strumming girl in the glasses.

It's been five years since Michaelson was discovered via MySpace, and in that time, the Staten Island-raised 32-year-old has achieved enviable commercial success. She may not yet be a household name, but her songs are all over the place: the catchy little ditties in Old Navy ad campaigns; the background music in weepy episodes of Grey's Anatomy and Parenthood; and, most recently, the sweet, melancholic soundtrack in the trailer for last year's other indie darling, the film Like Crazy.

But her fans--and they are a besotted bunch--adore her for her openness as much as for her infectious little love songs. She is famously chatty during her live shows. And there's an endearing intimacy about her online presence: she posts photos of her dog's paws, writes status updates riddled with exclamation points and emoticons, and tweets about getting crumbs in her bed. It all reads as if written by a friend you've had forever--the one who's mildly obsessed with baked goods.

Last fall, she took to the Internet to deliver a more serious message, in the most adorable way imaginable. She donned a sock puppet--also named "Ingrid"--wearing a purple beret. "I wanna talk about my new album," "Ingrid" said. "I've got some serious dark shit in me. …

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