Jason Mraz

I believe I’ve just found an artist whose work I truly love.

He’s been around for a while, (at least that’s what Wikipedia tells me) but well, I just heard one of his songs today morning, and have been on a listening spree since then.

To be honest, this is the first time I encountered one of his songs, long back:

That is Jeanine Mason, winner of Seaosn 5, So You Think You Can Dance, performing a Travis Wall choreography to ‘If It Kills Me’ by Jason Mraz.

I don’t know how anyone can listen to this song and not want to dance. I do not how anyone watching this performance cannot cry. And I don’t know how anyone performing this cannot fall in love with Jason Mraz.

This is music like I’ve never heard before. Even the songs of his I don’t like too much, I still want to listen. And coming from someone who doesn’t give a song more than 5 seconds to prove its worth, that’s A LOT.

I believe great art is one that shows you your own reflection within an artist. Perhaps its a narcissistic point of view, but there isn’t any other way to judge art. When Jason Mraz sings it’s almost as if he’s crooning to me. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not one to romanticize unnecessarily. What I’m emphasizing, is that every song seems like a private, impromptu performance. Like you were sitting in a room along with a guy who’s got a guitar and he goes, “Hey, you wanna hear something?”

Every one of his songs that I’ve heard so far has this quality. It isn’t rehearsed, it isn’t calculated. It’s effortless. It’s completely honest, bare-naked. It’s almost as if he’s making up the song as he’s singing it. Like he has no idea really what will come next, what note he is to hit, what solo he’s to play, how long he’s to pause, or anything like that. He just knows what he wants to sing about, and the rest, he knows, is just going to flow out of his body, come from his mind – like your lungs breathe or your heart beats or your blood flows.

Because it is a default function that your body performs out of the fact of being a ‘body’. So Jason Mraz thoughts turn to lyrics and lyrics turn to music – on their own, without any effort, as a default function of him being who he is. It’s almost as if he’s the music and the music is in him.

I guess this is the reflection I love and cherish. Because that’s how I write too. I don’t really rehearse or calculate my words and sentences. I barely ever edit what write. I just start with a thought. And then words flow. Sentences are formed. Paragraphs created. A Meaning Delivered. Without any real effort. I love everything I write because it’s honest, real, bare-naked. It’s unflinchingly, un-apologetically, unequivocally ME.

Not a girl, Not yet a woman — Britney Spears

For the record, I do not like Britney Spears. The woman can’t sing, period. However, common sense is generally not very popular with popular opinion, and the popular judgment capacity is highly questionable. Therefore, Britney has become what she has. However, two things I will add: Her uptempo numbers make very good dance tracks. Again, credit will go to her producer. However, other than that, she cannot sing — her voice has no depth, no power, no gut, no identity, except for that nasal twang that generates the pseudo-sexy voice that seems to go well with some dance tracks, but by itself is completely useless.

However, this song I like. I would have very much liked someone else to have sung it. Ideally, Shakira. What I specifically like are the lyrics. This, is the only other song by Britney to actually have good lyrics, and as such it justifies its existence — since it has something to say. So here goes: (sadly, for some reason, I cannot embed video/audio with the post.

I used to think, I have the answer to everything

But now I know, life doesn’t always go my way

Seems like I’m caught in the middle

That’s when I realised

I’m not a girl, not yet a woman

All I need is time, a moment that is mine

While I’m in between

I’m not a girl, there is no need to protect me

It’s time that I, learn to face up to this on my own

I’ve seen so much more than you know now

So don’t tell me to shut my eyes

I’m not a girl, not yet a woman

All I need is time, a moment that is mine

While I’m in between

I’m not a girl

But if you look at me closely

You will see it in my eyes

This girl will always find

Her way

I’m not a girl don’t tell me what to believe

I’m just trying to find the woman in me

All I need is time, A moment that is mine

While I’m in between

I’m not a girl, not yet a woman.

Flying Without Wings – Westlife

This song is by an Irish band called Westlife. They didn’t get much popularity in the US, but in Ireland and UK, they’re hot stuff. They were also the first Irish band to go international. Westlife specialised in ballads. They did try pop with a song called “When you’re looking like that”. Big Mistake. But their ballads were really good. Somehow the world doesn’t seem to be ready to listen to too many ballads yet. Anyhow, this song came from their very first album, and was their third single to be released on television. (More about “singles” in music, in a later post)

The reason I like this song is that it’s the best. The best song ever written, sung and in short created. Firstly, the song has a purpose. It was written because the writer had something to say, and no better way to say it. It expresses this purpose in it’s lyrics. Secondly, the music and melody exemplify that purpose, make it joyful. The music exalts the lyrics. Thirdly, it’s sung wonderfully. The end, wherein the writer brings his purpose of writing the song to fruition, reaches a crescendo that makes the whole song complete. It’s an absolute pleasure. Ladies and gentle men, presenting Flying Without Wings, by Westlife

Everybody’s looking for that something

One thing that makes it all complete

You find it in strange places,

Places you never it could be

Some find it in the face of their children

Some find it in their lover’s eyes

Who can deny the joy it brings,

When you’ve found that special thing

You’re flying without wings.

Some find it sharing every morning

Some in the solitary nights

You find it in the words of others

A simple line can make you laugh or cry.

You find it in the deepest friendships

The kind you cherish all your life

And when you know how much that means,

You’ve found that special thing

You’re flying without wings.

So, impossible as they may seem

You’ve got to fight for every dream

‘Cause who’s to know, which one you let go,

Would’ve made you complete.

For me it’s waking up beside you

To watch the sun rise on your face

To know that I can say I love you

In any given time or place

It’s the little things that only I know

Those are the things that make you mine

And it’s like flying without wings, cause you’re my special thing

I’m flying without wings.

And you’re the place my life begins

And you’ll be where it ends,

‘Cause I’m flying without wings

And that’s the joy you bring

I’m flying without wings.