Concerts

Jason Mraz Belatedly Kicks Off Summer at White Oak Music Hall

Jason Mraz, and the Houston humidity, brought summer to White Oak Music Hall on Saturday night.
Photo by Jennifer Lake
Jason Mraz, and the Houston humidity, brought summer to White Oak Music Hall on Saturday night.
Bless you, Jason Mraz!

Yes, summer, for Houston purposes at least, began about three months ago. But, as summer concerts go, Jason Mraz kicked things off in front of a packed house at the White Oak Music Hall lawn on Saturday night.

Mraz, reveling in the summer sounds, blistered through a two-hour, 22-song set that had the crowd enjoying what we lost during the COVID-19 pandemic. That included a mix of the old and new on a night in which Mraz, and many in attendance, acknowledged the summer swelter.

“I’ve only worn shorts at a show once before this,” Mraz opined, “the other was in Brazil.”


Friend, welcome to Houston in late July, a few hours after a nice little rain.
click to enlarge Summer is winding down, and in some ways, it's only just begun. - PHOTO BY JENNIFER LAKE
Summer is winding down, and in some ways, it's only just begun.
Photo by Jennifer Lake
Rarely does a performer sound live like they do on record, but Mraz is the exception. Coupled with a backing band that included backup singers, a brass section, guitarists galore and a keyboardist, Mraz put on the ideal summer show before a jam-packed lawn at White Oak.

Mraz blared through a set that balanced the new and the old on a humid night in the Houston Heights. That included radio staples like “The Remedy (I Won’t Worry),” “I’m Yours,” “Make it Mine” and “Lucky,” combined with newer singles like “Look for the Good,” “More Than Friends,” “You Do You” and “Wise Woman.”

My first post-COVID show a couple of weeks ago had me thinking live music wasn’t quite back just yet. But, as Mraz and his talented crew of backing musicians proved on Saturday night, maybe we’re closer than we originally thought.
click to enlarge Diana Aquino and Anderson Kith got engaged during Jason Mraz's performance of "Lucky." Congrats! - PHOTO BY JENNIFER LAKE
Diana Aquino and Anderson Kith got engaged during Jason Mraz's performance of "Lucky." Congrats!
Photo by Jennifer Lake
So, How Was the Opener?: Didn’t get a chance to catch Southern Avenue, but the crowd seemed to be enjoying them as we walked into the venue. Was a great night for live music, and it’s only going to get better.

Overheard in the Crowd: “I sweat through my shirt.” This was a common refrain on Saturday night, as the July humidity coupled with an up-tempo live concert. Oh well, the Houston weather is good about eight months a year.

Random Notebook Dump:
This was my first outdoor show in about two years, and man, was it welcome! … White Oak puts on one hell of a lawn show … Looking forward to other lawn shows from the likes of Deftones, Cypress Hill and the Brothers Osborne moving forward ... The new HBO Max documentary on Woodstock 1999 is really good, apropos of nothing.