Jason impresses local fans
SOUNDS FAMILIAR - Baby A. Gil () - February 27, 2004 - 12:00am
It is a given that Jason Mraz would be an expressive vocalist and a wiz at the guitar. These guitar-toting singer/songwriters do have more to offer musicwise than those singer/songwriters/producers who rely on studio gadgetry to create their music. What comes as a surprise is how young he looks. He is 26 but looks 19, and how self-effacing he is about his talents. "I only learned to play the guitar when I was 18," he says, "and I started writing my songs shortly after that. When you lack the training and know that your skills are inadequate, you learn how to be inventive."

This inventiveness is what has taken aspiring musician Mraz from the small town of Mechanicsville, Virginia, where kids grow up to be blacksmiths, to the pop idol on tour in Asia in a little over a year since his first album Waiting for My Rocket to Come was released. "I love the traveling," he says as he mentions the many places he has gone to to promote his album. He was in town last Feb. 20 and 21 to perform in shows produced by Eventscape Manila at Dish in the Rockwell Power Plant Mall and at the Aliw Theater in the CCP Complex on Roxas Boulevard with local guitar-toting idol Paolo Santos. The girls swooned, ang cute niya, and the men were openly admiring, magaling siya talaga while Mraz was pleasantly happy to find quite a following in foreign-stars obssessed Manila.

The aforementioned inventiveness is what distinguishes Mraz from the current crop of rock artists. Having no rules to follow or limits to be careful about have given his music a raw edge that listeners find most accessible. His is the sound of ordinary guys who enjoy singing old songs like Seals & Croft’s Summer Breeze, or to Sleep All Day, who hang out on street corners "Curbside Prophet" dreaming of that big break that might never happen Waiting for My Rocket to Come. His poetry and the music that comes with it made him the breakthrough star of 2003. Jason who once drove a pickup truck from town to town to do free gigs just to get himself heard refuses to bask in the glow of his newfound success. "I don’t think much about it but I was really glad that people are not likely to misspell my name anymore." It is Mraz. It is not only spelled right nowadays, it is also pronounced correctly in many places around the world.

Jason is now getting ready to put together his second album. Hopefully, it will be more of the very personal stuff he had in the first. The songs might be simple. He may sound naïve. The popstar glamour might be absent. But I expect the soulful charm, the sincerity and insight into the hearts of young men like him will be present in large doses.
Super Fresh
If you want to find out how Mraz stands up against other rock acts, you might treat yourselves to a copy of Super Fresh. The album is touted as "the juiciest modern rock hits today" and is a joint compilation for the Asian market that features tracks from both Warner and Sony artists.

So maybe we can say that Jason with his The Remedy (I Won’t Worry) is among the Super Fresh acts of today. Others who got the same description are Linkin Park with Somewhere I Belong, Evanescence and Bring Me to Life, John Mayer No Such Thing, Red Hot Chili Peppers and By the Way, The Calling with Wherever You Will Go, Creed with My Sacrifice, Oasis and Little by Little, Staind and Price to Pay, Duncan Sheik and On a High, Blinded When I See You by Third Eye Blind and others.

Don’t forget to check out this album. Whether you agree that these tunes are Super fresh or not, this collection is still one of the best ever. This is the sound of rock music today. Grab a copy.
Current Favorites
Now take a look at this list of current favorites and you will also see that the novelty recording remains a strong presence in the airlanes these days. Bakit Pa Ba? by Jay R; Perfect by Simple Plan; Bulaklak by the Hot Babes; Milkshake by Kelis; Pamela by Vhong Navarro; Di Ko Kaya by Carmela Cuneta; Mandy by Westlife; She Will be Love by Maroon 5; Pito-pito by Willie Revillame; and Hey Ya by Outkast.

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