If you told me back in high school that one day I would sit down with Jason Mraz for an interview I would have never believed it. But that actually happened this year. Looking back on it, Jason Mraz was also the soundtrack of my college years. My roommate had “I’m Yours” as a ringtone on her phone and even when her phone wasn’t ringing his music could be heard being played throughout our house.
So, I’ll admit when I sat down to chat with Jason Mraz I was nervous. Strangely enough, the most nervous I’ve been in quite some time for an interview. Once I asked the first question those nerves went away thankfully. Throughout our entire 30-minute chat I couldn’t believe how relaxed he was. While he talked, he had this calmness that I couldn’t help but think he would make an excellent yoga instructor. An excerpt from our chat is below and the video above.
Jason Mraz is calling his fifth studio album Yes! his “first acoustic album,” but he promises it packs a pretty big punch with eclectic instrumentation that includes cello, sitar, ukuleles and other small stringed instruments. But even though Jason may have broadened his sound for this new one, he still stays true to the songwriter he’s always been.
“The themes on the album are very much the same themes I’ve written about: optimism, hope, love, joy, healing, faith, acceptance, gratitude,” he explained. “This is a conscious decision because I always feel a song should be an affirmation of some kind. It should get you through the present moment and into a more loving or realized future.”
From “I Won’t Give Up,” off his previous record, 2012’s Love Is A Four Letter Word, to “I’m Yours,” off 2008’s We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things., Mraz has always found his sweet spot writing about love. And his upcoming release is certainly no different.
“I always had this idea that love was this really strong thing and I needed to find exactly what it was. Sometimes I thought I had it and then I’d actually end up screwing someone over and realize, ‘Oh, that’s not it,’” Jason, who broke off his engagement to singer, Tristan Prettyman in 2011, admitted. “Music for me has always been my first love. It’s always been a way for me to shut down the rest of the world, shut down the mental chatter and really connect with one voice. I think I’ve just wanted others to have that same experience where they would lose that mental chatter and they just feel loved.”
And what about that infamous song, “I’m Yours?” When asked if he ever wished he changed lyrics to his songs when he heard them on the radio he admitted he does, specifically with “I’m Yours.”
“There’s a lyric in ‘I’m Yours’ that says, ‘It’s our God forsaken right to be loved.’ That was written very quickly and basically just turning a phrase. Over time, I sing it now and I say, ‘It’s our God-intended right to be loved.’ I’ve been singing it that way for years and years but of course the audience still sings the lyric that’s been recorded.”
For my complete interview with Jason Mraz, visit Radio.com.