By Kristi Kates
2010, so far, has been quite the year for singer-songwriter Jason Mraz.
Not only has his most recent album, We Sing. We Dance. We Steal
Things, gone platinum, but he also snagged two Grammy nods for songs
from that same set.
His single, Im Yours, with its soulful acoustic feel and Hawaiian
rhythms, holds a record for most weeks spent on the Billboard singles
And now, Mraz is bringing his modern rockin, ethnic folk-meets-pop
sound to Interlochens Kresge Auditorium, where hell take the stage
on September 30.
SING DANCE AND STEAL
This album, Im so excited to share it with people, Mraz said via
his website; but this time around, hes taking the promotions for his
newest lineup of songs a little slower than the touring frenzy that
hits most musicians when they become part of the music business hits
I cant see myself getting too lost out there on the road, he
explained. There are certain new rules Im playing by. Every couple
of weeks, Im going to go home, do my laundry, say my thank yous, and
then Ill go out and do some more.
Mrazs latest set is the second follow-up to a major label debut disc
(Waiting for My Rocket to Come) that saw his tracks Remedy (I Wont
Worry) and Curbside Prophet hit the charts with a rocket-worthy
bang. In between that album and the current one was the
also-Grammy-nominated Mr. A-Z, which sent his tune Wordplay back up
the charts; and Mraz toured most of this time, garnering rave reviews
for his upbeat, informal, and well-performed live shows.
LOVE AND PEACE
For those unfamiliar with Mrazs sound, he is reminiscent of several
other current folk/pop singer-songwriters--Jack Johnson, Ben Lee, and
Ben Harper being a few examples--yet unlike many of them in that he
also adds in hip-hop, jazz, and bossa nova to his music.
His next album, which hes currently working on in London with
producer Martin Terefe, among others, will include more of those same
influences, although Mraz has also said that the overall feel of the
album is still up in the air, with additional elements including
reggae and richer production than previous efforts.
Whats for certain is that romantic subject matter will still play a
part, as many of Mrazs songs focus on how couple-hood is a great
thing - that two are always better than one. One of the working
titles so far for the album, as a matter of fact, is actually The Love
Album - but another of the working titles (as Mraz mentioned recently
to Spin magazine) is Peace Canoe - so who knows where that moniker
WILLIE AND MILTON
In the meantime, while fans wait for the new Mraz set, they can
download/purchase some of Mraz other current musical projects, of
which there are several.
His duet with Willie Nelson, The Way is Love, (theres that subject
matter again), is actually an unreleased Roy Orbison song that Nelson
and Mraz brought both of their talents to, while Simplesmente Todo
(Simply All) is another tune that Mraz recently recorded in an
international duet with Portuguese musician Milton Nascimiento.
As for Mrazs own aforementioned in-progress album, he plans to return
to the studio mid-October, with the hopes of wrapping up recording by
early November so the new set can get mixed, mastered, and into stores
- and Mrazs busy road schedule can start up again.
But that tour wont get moving until 2011 - so snag those Interlochen
tix and catch him while you can.
Jason Mraz will be performing at Interlochen Center for the Arts on
September 30 at 7:30 p.m., with special guest Luc and the Lovingtons;
for tickets, visit http://tickets.interlochen.org, or call the
Interlochen Box Office at 800-681-5920 or 231-276-7800.