I always found titles important. They are the first thing we read, and colour our expectations of the words that follow. They are central, highlighting significance, signalling purpose. These seem to be lacking in my own perspective these days and is one of the many things that just turn me off writing. So numbers will take their place till I find some sense of purpose in my life.
A few months back I’ve wrote that I don’t believe in positive expression any more. But I’ve come to realise that, in the same way as one or two other things, it’s not about whether I do believe in something but more so about whether I need to believe in it.
So with no title, with no purpose, what do I write about now? Something familiar, positive, safe and neutral enough for me to venture into without allowing the green eyed monster to corrupt.
I don’t think enough fans see the significance of Jason Mraz’s newest album clearly enough. (Ha! I’m writing about Jason Mraz. Bet you didn’t see this topic coming.)
The album itself is popular enough. Peaking top 2 in the US and Europe charts, number one in Canada, and spawning yet another wave of covers all over Youtube, Love is a Four Letter Word contains its own ear-easy tunes that appeal to many. That much is undoubted.
But at the same time, each song in the album points to a small departure from Jason Mraz’s discography from 2007 and back. Love songs are of course the staple here, but his messages have taken on a different angle if one just takes the slightest bit of effort to notice. Before, his vocabulary was flamboyant and expressive in showing the first sensation and joys of love - Butterfly and Bella Luna serenade beauty, even perfection.
That’s hardly the case in these songs. What happens when love goes wrong? Any speculation about how the songs can allude to his relationship with Tristan Prettyman will just be that - baseless speculation. But it is clear that there’s a more mature side to his own preachings on love now - Who’s Thinking About You Know, I Won’t Give Up and most clearly The Woman I Love all show the importance of perseverance when the initial fervor and excitement of love is lost. In his own words during his concert, it is all about us “loving [him] back into the person he was” when things go awry, or when taken in another perspective sometimes can mean knowing how love persists in different forms. Love is not drawn or lured by beauty, attractiveness and perfection; Like what Paul Coelho writes in the Alchemist (whose annoyingly optimistic philosophy is something I find myself surprisingly unagreeable with… not a good topic for today), “one is loved because one is loved. No reason is needed for loving.”
Love simply is. And that’s the depth and maturity I love.
Which probably also explains why his magnificent hidden track - coloured with a withheld desire of love long gone - is just a hidden track. Odd that it still made it into the album, but I won’t start to guess the purpose because it sure as hell is amazing.
I had more in my head, but this is about as much as I can get out of it before my mind falls into a chronic mini depression that happens on most Sunday nights. Hopefully I persist in this exercise which I sense an importance in, but cannot place a finger firmly on.