30 Day Blog Challenge
Your favourite musician and why?
I remember it like it was yesterday – I had a spare hour during my drama class in 11th grade and I had nothing better to do, so with one of my buddies I roamed through the hallways of my high school. One of my other friends saw us walking in boredom and she called me into her yearbook classroom so that I can listen to this new artist that she discovered and thought I might like too.
The song was You and I Both by Jason Mraz. It only took me about a minute or so to fall in love with his unencumbered numbered words. That was eight years ago. I’m 24 now and I haven’t looked back since.
I made a mental note of his name and proceeded to watch some of his music videos and small gigs on YouTube (because back in 2003 not everyone had mp3 players or iPods; I think most of us were still rocking the portable CD player).
I kind of became obsessed with his first record, Waiting for My Rocket to Come, followed by his sophomore record Mr. A-Z. Apart from his boyish good looks and awesome choice in hats, he was refreshingly different than any other singer-songwriter or band of that time. His versatile voice won me over. It could go from sunny pop, to quick-witted rap, to operatic falsetto; the kid could do anything.
Unfortunately for me, Mraz mostly played in smaller 19+ venues in Vancouver and I was still underage. And the fact that I didn’t hear any new Mraz songs between 2005 and 2008 didn’t help either. I had no choice but to listen to crapass music and as a result I had altogether forgotten about the awesomeness that is Jason Mraz.
By the Spring/Summer of 2008, Mraz had fully resurfaced into my life and in everyone else’s by the end of 2008 with that little song I’m Yours. Yes, THE song that just about everyone has heard of a zillion times today. I had forgotten how good Jason, the Curbside Prophet, made me feel. After listening through his third album We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. just once through, I immediately fell in love with the man all over again.
With styles borrowed from pop, rock, folk, jazz, opera, hip hop, bossa nova …I could go on and on … It would be impossible to label Mraz into a single genre. He would need his own genre entirely. Uniquely, not only does his style vary from song to song, but it also varies within the song too sometimes.
Aside from his talented voice, he’s got some pretty sexy dance moves, he can freestyle, and best of all he knows how to interact with a crowd. I had the pleasure of attending two of his concerts; one in November 2008 and the latest in September last year. Even though he played to tens of thousands at a larger arena last year, he somehow was able to effortlessly make it feel like an intimate gathering. That’s a skill many artists and bands lack these days.
As of right now, I have almost every song Mraz has released including collaborations and covers. That’s close to 170. Although I love every song of his (really, there is not one song I dislike), I prefer to listen to his older stuff versus his newer releases. His years at Java Joes were the best. He was young, his voice was raw, and those were time times that you can tell his talents were about to be uncovered. UncleCrispy has uploaded a lot of Jason’s early years to his YouTube channel.
If you were to ask me which is my favourite album or song of his, I would not be able to tell you. I can’t choose a favourite as it changes everyday, sometimes even part way through a day. Depending on my mood, there’s a Mraz song to fit it. His music has helped me through some really tough times and oftentimes have made my day even more enjoyable and sunshine-y. I don’t know what it is, but there’s just something special about him that I can’t describe into words even though I tried to the past few paragraphs above. All I can say is if you haven’t heard of any of Mraz’s songs or you didn’t think I’m Yours was that great after all (which by the way, isn’t my most favourite song – though at one point it was my favourite; see how I change so often?), you should give him another chance. You might unfold something you might like.
But for now, I leave you with this…
Gypsy MC (Mudhouse) – Jason Mraz