Introducing Raining Jane and Jason Mraz. Since 2007, these free-spirited, dynamic, singer-songwriters have been in collaboration, co-writing songs together including hits such as “A Beautiful Mess” from Mraz’s platinum album, We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. Their latest album, Yes! features their co-written songs which were released on July 15, 2014 including, “Love Someone,” “Hello You Beautiful Thing,” and “Long Drive.”
…a night to remember forever.
On Oct 13, Raining Jane and Jason Mraz graced the stage with their powerful, mystical presence as they brought Washington DC’s Warner Theatre to a whole new vibrant dimension. With his charismatically warm personality, and a certain joie-de-vivre, Mraz knows exactly how to charm his friends into an evening of celebrating and embracing love, peace, joy, individuality, and life. A firm believer of opening the heart, and soul by “doing your own thing and being yourself,” Mraz’s intellectual quirkiness inspires heartfelt creativity Omni presently through his original music and lyrics. Teaming up with Mraz includes the epitome of girl power with Mai Bloomfield, Becky Gebhardt, Chaska Potter, and Mona Tavakoli as Raining Jane from the Los Angeles area. Known for their original Indie-rock folk vibe, Raining Jane’s infused harmonies and melodies explode to life through their unique instrumentation including the guitars, cello, cajon, sitar, and bass.
Several of their songs can be heard on “Grey’s Anatomy,” “Dancing With the Stars,” and “So You Think You Can Dance.” As an added bonus, Raining Jane established Rock n Roll Camp For Girls, Los Angeles, a non-profit organization dedicated to enriching the lives of girls through music education. Throughout the evening, Mraz and Raining Jane journey with the audience traveling from their originals to covers ranging from a pretty sweet rendition of Eurythmics’ “Sweet Dreams,” to Tears For Fears’ “I Know This Much is True,” to a brilliantly slick, and famous mix of “Mr. Rodgers’ Neighborhood Theme Song.”
The vocal chemistry and perfectly smooth balance dynamic between Mraz and Raining Jane is undeniably ethereal and mesmerizing. Bringing back songs from his sophomore album, Mr. A-Z, Mraz takes us back to his first scattin’ cool kid days in which he would make legendary Ella Fitzgerald proud. This lyrical, conversational genius marks his own as he zips into any improvised story through his song and lyrics. If Mraz were to make his mark within the musical theatre industry, I’d like to think of him as the Stephen Sondheim of today’s Broadway generation.
Throughout the performance, Mraz’s radiant humanitarian personality is naturally put on display as he discusses his love and passion for philanthropy in actively conserving the environment. Established in 2011 by Mraz, the Jason Mraz Foundation’s mission serves through advancing equality, promoting the arts, empowering through education and preserving the environment. Not only was he humbled enough in thanking his audience for attending the concert, Mraz made sure his stage crew received credited dues as he claimed that “it’s really about the men behind the scenes.” Some highlights throughout the show include “Lucky I’m in Love,” from album, We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things, “The Remedy,” from Waiting For My Rocket to Come, “Mr. Curiosity,” and “Life is Wonderful” from Mr. A-Z, as well as several others segueing into the end of the night. The audience response was incredibly receptive as they automatically began singing along to the lyrics of “Lucky I’m In Love,” with Mraz. “When I first started writing, I may not have had the vocabulary to convey my messages, but I had the joy,” Mraz tells the audience as he then proceeds to sing about the world being weird, hence “The Remedy.”
His emphasis in living through the heart is an empowering mantra, “which is easier said than done…some people want a quicker method so I’m gonna tell you how…I joined a girl band,” he claims within his sing-song-like story. Mraz’ existential philosophy of life is conveyed in another highlight, “Mr. Curiosity,” as yearning to be possessed by the constant evolving and learning about life’s new mysteries…in always searching for the higher meanings of love and life. His heavenly operatic mezzo-soprano sound thrown in the middle of the song is absolutely unreal. In “Life Is Wonderful,” Mraz emphasizes his truth, “It takes no time to fall in love…but it takes you years to know what love is,” mixed in with a little sensual Spanish guitar. Throughout the course of the concert, the background visual effects are executed beautifully.
At certain points in the performance, Mraz takes us into a spiritual globetrotting experience as we travel from background video images of his previous excursions in Antarctica displaying massive footage of “Happy Feet” penguins to a backdrop visual display of a traveling road giving us the gentle, romantic feel of driving with his date, (an audience member), in “Long Drive” from Yes! to a background northern lights projection display, along with shooting stars and planets sparking within a galaxy to boot.
Rumor has it that Mraz won’t be in the music industry much longer as he wishes to enter a new phase of possible future retirement to do more gardening, surfing, and donating to his favorite causes hence recently starting his campaign #RetiredAt40. If Mraz is truly retiring in the near future, the industry will be losing a rare gem. This natural born entertainer/performer and Renaissance Man along with his group of spitfire female artist friends in the tour provide a once in a lifetime celestial Zen experience that is sure to entertain a night to remember forever.
Running Time: Approximately 3 hours with a 20-minute intermission
Jason Mraz and Raining Jane was a one night only concert on October 13 2014 at the Warner Theatre in Washington DC. For tickets to all upcoming events at the Warner Theatre, click here.