Tag: jason mraz

Awesomeness: Jason Mraz in Zürich

Alright, firstly I want to apologize for all the errors that will be in this text (I hope none of them grammar or spelling errors, though), since I (unfortunately) don’t remember everything exactly, and did not tape the show, which, looking back, I should have done.

So, me and a good friend of mine went to the Jason Mraz concert in the “Kaufleuten”, which is a renowned club and lounge in Zürich, we arrived just early enough to place ourselves somewhere in the middle of the first two thirds of the hall, with some hundred other exited people (some more than others).

Jason Mraz in Zurich

Image courtesy by evamaria_n

Opening (on 19:30) for Jason Mraz was Ingrid Michaelson, a New York-based indie-pop singer-songwriter (according to Wikipedia), she talked and joked a little and played some of her songs, I heard her for the first time and was quite impressed, she has a beautiful voice and her music is the style I like. She played (Please feel free to comment, if I have missed a song or when the order is wrong):

Be OK

Keep Breathing

Giving Up

Somewhere Over The Rainbow

Jason Mraz in Zurich

Image courtesy by evamaria_n

After that (and a short wile of waiting) Jason Mraz came on stage, together with Toca Rivera and Ian Sheridan. Here’s what I remember of the songs they played, the order is somewhat random, though I tried to order them correctly, that means, the songs are somewhat in the right place.

Make It Mine

Unfold

Conversation With Myself

Peg (A song by Steely Dan)

Remedy

Lucky (with Ingrid Michaelson)

Live High

Dynamo of Volition (A song by )

Mary Jane (A funk-song they had been experimenting on just before the show, so I guess it was the first time they played it.)

I’m Yours

Ain’t Got No Dope

You And I Both

Life Is Wonderful

If It Kills Me

Butterfly

And lastly some unordered impressions:

  • During the whole show there was this guy somewhere in the back, and he was always shouting stupid stuff, he didn’t sound drunk but he acted as though he was, which was kinda funny at first but became annoying very fast. ;)
  • There was a girl in the front who apparently had birthday just that day and her friends were shouting, that it’s her birthday, Jason finally noticed them and stated that it was a tradition for all the birthday girls on his shows to come on stage and get naked, which she then sadly didn’t do. ;)
  • The last forth of the concert Jason played Ingrid’s Ukulele (Oh, did a mention that? Ingrid played all her songs, except one, with an Ukulele) instead of his acoustic guitar. (Here’s a video of that.) And I was always hoping he wold begin to play Smells Like Teen Spirit.
  • Jason talked about our modern patchwork religions, using the analogy of a salad buffet, where anyone can choose a little of anything he likes and put it together and finally have his own kind of salad and be happy about it.
  • There are some videos on YouTube, but the turnout has been way smaller than I expected.
  • It was the first concert of Ingrid Michaelson outside the US.

So that’s all for now. I am still hoping that there are more videos out there, so I’ll keep searching and I’ll put them on here when I find them. I’m also hoping, that someone taped the show, because it was simply great, and I though I saw some one tapeing, so if it turns up, I’ll be posting it here as well.
I would also, very much, like your comments. If you have something to add or to correct, please feel free to write, thanks.

Review of “Live at Lestats (April 15, 2004)” - Jason Mraz


This picture is not actually from the 15. April 2004, but hey, it’s at Lestats too, at least.

This is probably the best live bootleg I know of a Jason Mraz show. It’s a little short but the sound quality is flawless, Jason’s voice is perfect as always and the songs are mostly live debuts and very good as well. Additionally there are some funny intermezzi, which make this album even more enjoyable to listen to.

You can get it here.

5/5

1. Intro (0:36)

01 - Intro

A little intro with Mraz saying “I’ve been in my apartement for a long time and I’ve been singing these new songs. You never know If a song is good until you leave your apartement.”

2. Flying My Guilt Over A Quilt (4:22)

02 - Flying My Guilt Over A Quilt

Later known as “Plane” a song about his (at that time) current girlfriend and their long distance relationship. This definitely is one of my favorite versions of “Plane”, its wonderfully clean and raw and very exciting and powerful at the same time. It’s just Mraz playing his acoustic guitar and singing, no other distracting instrumentation. I also love the variation of the tempo and volume.

3. “Your clapping totally threw me off” (0:43)

03 - 'Your clapping totally threw me off'

Mraz begins playing for the next song, but has to stop, because the clapping of a viewer throws him off. And Mraz jokes around a little. Very funny to listen to.

4. Warming Up (4:38)

04 - Warming Up

A very relaxed, more intro-like (though too long for that) song. This is the only recording I have seen this song on, so you could say it’s a rarity. It’s also the first time Jason played this song in front of a larger (in this case about one-hundred people) audience.

5. Fine Dining (4:28)

05 - Fine Dining

Another first recording, and again the only recording of this song I know of, which, in my opinion, is strange, since this song is one of my favorites of all songs I know of Jason Mraz. It’s overall very mraz-like, incredibly funny lyrics, a catchy melody, gorgeous acoustic instrumentation (just the guitar again).

6. “I brought some CD’s” (1:01)

06 - 'I brought some CDs'

Intro to “Song For A Friend”, but in the middle of it Jason remembers, that he brought some CD’s of covers he did, which he wasn’t allowed to sell, as turned out, so he’s giving them away to the audience.

7. Song For A Friend (4:25)

07 - Song For A Friend

A song Jason wrote for one (I don’t know if any in particular) of his male friends. Again, very clean, overall a beautiful acoustic version without any ballast.

8. What It Takes (4:34)

08 - What It Takes

A version of “Life is Wonderful”, probably also my favorite version of this song (so you see, this recording is, though short, quite excellent)

Review of “We sing, we dance, we steal things” - Jason Mraz

jason mraz - we sing, we dance, we steal things - front

jason mraz - we sing, we dance, we steal things - rest

I would not say, that “We sing, we dance, we steal things” is Jason Mraz’s best album yet. It is just so hard to pick a favorite. I would say it most certainly is Jason’s cleanest album, maybe also his most varied (with many influences, from funk, jazz, R&B, folk, rap and electro), although “Mr A-Z” was quite varied already. The tracks on this album differ quite a bit from what you would hear live from Jason, much more than they did on the previous albums, perhaps it is just because his style is changing (or expanding), and I’m not quite sure how I like it. Don’t get me wrong, all the songs are great, I love this album. Like many great albums it needs some investment to really love, but the songs are steadily getting better, the more you listen to them, this is a quality that is very rare, especially concerning pop albums, so I’m glad Jason pulled it off.

5/5

1. Make It Mine (3:08)

A very clean, optimistic, upbeat song, nicely instrumented, an inspiring trumpet (?) solo (did I mention, that I love solos?). There certainly is no flaw in this song.

2. I’m Yours (4:04)

The already famous “I’m Yours” (from Jason’s live performances), the lyrics are just ingenious and so funny, the first time I heard the song live (in Lucerne) i had to laugh. This version is not as playful, as others I’ve heard, never the less a great song, extremely catchy melody, there’s very sunny, almost Jamaican feel to it. A live gem, that finally got the attention it deserved.

3. Lucky (3:10)

A smooth, harmonic duet (with Colbie Caillat) about nothing less than the perfect love. I especially like the flow of this song and it’s kind of “old” feel to it.

4. Butterfly (5:00)

An ode on sexual chemistry. Very funny lyrics again, this song just rocks, underlined with a fitting brass section, quite funky and extremely catchy. I just love those horns.

5. Live High (4:12)

I’ve heard this for the first time as a version that Jason sung walking through some French city, and absolute loved it. This version of course, is not as acoustic, not as raw, but it still is quite brilliant. An empowering refrain, cool background choruses. Overall: Strong, at times almost ecstatic and very optimistic.

6. Love for a Child (4:06)

A wonderfully melancholic track about having your parents divorce. “And they never to check to see my grades, what a fool I’d be to start complaining?”. With this song Jason once more proves how good a storyteller he is. With this song he proves once and for all, that it’s not just all about the wordplay.

7. Details in the Fabric (5:46)

It starts off a little like “Plane” (maybe it’s just because of the distorted (radio-like) voice) and becomes a guitar-heavy ballad. Sometimes it sounds like Damien Rice, or David Gray. It is somewhat too depressing a first, but I find it gets better as the song progresses.

8. Coyotes (3:38)

Just another new facet, Jason and electro-pop, certainly not my taste, but oddly enough it fits. In the end there are actually some kinds (or so it sounds to me) singing (or rather shouting) with him, which is just great, and gives this song just so much more power. (The multiple choruses in general do.) And there is also some opera singing (like in Mr. Curiosity)

9. Only Human (4:03)

“The planet’s talking about a revolution”, Jason’s hint in the direction of environmentalism, but without blaming anyone, it makes you think though. Primarily it’s just a good song, with a great chorus.

10. The Dynamo of Volition (3:37)

Definitely my favorite. Another tongue twisting wordplay.

I do not keep up with statistics
I do not sleep without a mistress
I do not eat unless it’s fixed with
Some kind of sweet like a licorice
My home is deep inside the mystics
I’m known to keep diggin’ on existence
I’m holdin’ in the heat like a fish stick
And my phone it beeps because I missed it

Just ingenious because of the mad and sometime unexpected rhyming, (this is modern poetry).

11. If It Kills Me (4:34)

I’m never quite sure whether this piano ballad (highlighted with strings) is optimistic (I find it is at most times) or melancholic - I suppose it’s a little of both. But I certainly like it.

12. Beautiful Mess (5:36)

A beautiful ballad, a little like “Please Don’t Tell Her”. Jason’s flawless voice turns this song into a masterpiece.

Some new CD’s

I’ve recenty recieved some long longed for CD’s and decided to take a picture of them - aren’t they beautiful?

9cds

There are two albums from Gavin DeGraw: The extraordinary “Chariot” and the latest addition “Gavin De Graw” which I will review soon. Then there are also two albums from Tristan Prettyman, the beautiful “Tristan Prettyman” (What is it with Singer-Songwriters and self-titled albums?) and her newest album “Hello…x” (Which I will review soon, too.). There is a Sister Hazel album (”BAM!”). Then there is the long awaited third studio album from Jason Mraz “We dance, we sing, we steal things” (Which will get a review as well) and there are three albums from John Mayer, two live albums: “the Village Sessions” (You guessed it, review…) and “as/is” (Maybe review…) and his dive into blues with the “John Mayer Trio” one of his best albums “Try!”.