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The Statesman

The Student News Site of Stony Brook University

The Statesman

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    Mr. A-Z Live At Radio City

    Radio City Music Hall opened its legendary doors Saturday to singer/songwriter Jason Mraz, whose North American fall tour kicked off just two days before in Scranton, Penn.

    Irish artist Lisa Hannigan opened the show, but her raspy voice and strange dance moves didn’t quite do it for the audience. In fact, she received the most applause when she said she would be singing her last song. Sadly, she was memorable for nothing more than being boring.

    As the crew broke down Hannigan’s stage set for the man of the hour, the crowd’s anticipation grew. The Music Hall was abuzz with chants and screams. The crowd roared when the lights went down and Mraz walked out.

    Mraz, clad in a white shirt, jeans and his trademark fedora, was barefoot throughout the concert. He opened with the upbeat “Make It Mine,” the first track off of his new album, “We Sing, We Dance, We Steal Things.”

    Accompanying Mraz on stage was a drummer, bassist, percussionist, and a three-part brass band (sax, trumpet and trombone) that performed choreography reminiscent of the du-wop era. Mraz continued his set with “The Remedy,” one of his hits off of his early album “Waiting for My Rocket to Come.”

    His vocals were superb, his band tight and his performance entertaining. He didn’t just stand there; he danced around, interacted with his band and really put on a show. He continued his set with the crowd favorite and perhaps his most mainstream hit, “I’m Yours.”

    As the show progressed, Mraz pulled out a few more stops.

    On “Live High,” a tune off his latest album, he brought out a gospel choir to sing alongside him. He flashed a picture of Barack Obama as he sang about change and hope.

    Most of the crowd cheered, but some grunts of dismay and opposition could be heard.

    Mraz also covered an oldie, but always a crowd pleaser, “Build Me Up Buttercup.” He demanded that the crowd get up and dance to “Dynamo Of Volition.” The song’s chorus actually had a few dance moves that went with it. The crowd remained standing for the rest of the concert.

    Mraz and his band left the stage, but of course returned for an encore. Unfortunately, he brought Hannigan back for a duet, “Lucky,” which features Cobie Callait on the album. He played “Butterfly,” an upbeat, sexy track from his new album that had the crowd going nuts. He ended with a gracious thank-you to the audience and to his band and with “Song For A Friend” which he did solo on guitar and vocals.

    Mraz is not only a talented vocalist and guitarist, but also a talented showman.

    He took Polaroids of his band as he introduced them, and threw them out to the audience. He took one of himself and threw it out to girls who fought over it like vultures fighting over a carcass.

    The show was incredible — with no dull moments. The music was energized and exciting, and Mraz was consistently on top with his vocals, guitar and dance moves.

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