28 January, 2007, 1215 am
Filed under: Music

There was something about hearing “Needle in the Hay” on “The Royal Tenenbaums,” especially its placement, that made me start to adore the song. Of course, I’d heard it before, on my own without any guidance–I mean, do you really need guidance to start to listen to Elliott Smith? I can’t say I loved it, though. The irony at its positioning in the movie, though…in the midst of an attempted suicide scene–and we all know how Elliott went down–it would almost seem tasteless, but it’s like a tribute that was before its time. And it’s such a gorgeous song.

Bright Eyes, though, is sold out, and probably have been since minutes after the tickets started to sell. I think Sufjan will put on a better show, but we’re not going to that one, either.

Because of talk in the forums (know that I can see ’em, and I’m pleased that someone linked this page), I feel like I have to justify myself in something, even though I know already that I don’t have to. Jason Mraz is wonderful, but–and I may sound biased for saying this, but it’s the utter truth, try to prove me wrong–he’s not Conor Oberst or Bright Eyes or any of that. He’s creative, he’s interesting, colourful, and he’s got great people skills (just watch that MadTV episode where he plays/acts–he is damn good at interacting with the crowd there), as well as fast-talking skills. He takes “Love is Real” to a different level. But is it just as genuine and sincere as Bright Eyes’s original? It has a different meaning to Jason Mraz from Conor Oberst’s intentions. And that’s fine–Bright Eyes has some good and not-so-good covers out there, and he always takes things at least slightly differently from the originals. “Love is Real,” though, is a song that’s very personal and hits close to the heart. You’re likely to like the one you heard first the best. Jason Mraz has earned the title “pop artist” by being played on pop stations–it’s nothing intended to be insulting. If you wanted to, you could call the Strokes pop, and I probably wouldn’t argue. Honestly, I wouldn’t be too impressed if Bright Eyes covered a Jason Mraz song unless they did it similarly to the original, and stylistically, they’re very different artists, so that’s unlikely. Over the months since, though, I’ve found ways to appreciate Jason Mraz’s version, although admittedly, I don’t listen to either one much anymore. Download Jason Mraz’s version below, si vous desirez, and enjoy.

Jason Mraz | Love is Real Cover


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