Jason Mraz Picks a New Anthem for Virginia
In State Songs Revisited, we ask a musician to pick a new official song for their home state, or at least the state where they launched the career. It can be as literal, metaphorical, or nonsensical as they want—as long as it represents what the state means to them.
Virginia is currently a state without a song, which makes revisiting its official anthem not only fun, but mandatory. We’re hoping the legislature considers the song choice of singer-songwriter and native Virginian Jason Mraz, who wrote and recorded some of his freshly minted album, Yes!, in his home state.
“A couple songs were written on a dusty road just outside of Charlottesville,” he says. “With a couple of goats. Virginia still inspires.”
Jason Mraz’s Pick: “The Best of What’s Around,” Dave Matthews Band
“The song was written in the heart of Virginia, right smack in the center of Charlottesville, and the title—I could use that as a catchphrase for the state. You’ve got the mountains, you’ve got the coast, you’ve got the sea, you’ve got surfing, you’ve got history, you’ve got major sport teams, you’ve got Yogaville—you’ve got essentially a spiritual center there. You’ve got farms, organic farms, vineyards. [You’ve got] amazing schools, [so] you’ve got the future there as well, the other side of history. Virginia: it’s got the best of what’s around.”
Photo courtesy of Jen Rosenstein. Illustration: Jess Duff, Groupon.