8 albums to listen to if you love 'Songs About Jane'
Songs About Jane proves to be one of the best R&B-rock crossover albums of the 2000s
When you ask a Maroon 5 fan what their favorite Maroon 5 song is, their response will most likely be "Sunday Morning" or "She Will Be Loved". What do those two songs have in common? They're both from the band's debut album Songs About Jane, an album that solidified the band's career and did so by the eclectic mixture of genres, such as the brilliant blue-eyed soul on the songs "Sunday Morning", "Secret", and "She Will Be Loved", the hard-funk elements on "Harder to Breathe" and "Through With You", and the pop standouts "This Love" and "Sweetest Goodbye". The albums is arguably a one-of-a-kind and there were not a lot of albums like it in the last 20 years. However, there have been at least a few albums that are up Songs About Jane's alley and are (almost) as pleasing.
Somedays you just want to jam out to Maroon 5's incredible early work and not have to listen to the more dance-poppy stuff from the last few records, and listening to Songs About Jane over again and again isn't helping your satisfaction as their is only so much material. So, here is a list of amazing SAJ-esque albums that you will for sure enjoy.
Something to Be, Rob Thomas
Rob Thomas stepped outside his comfort zone writing for himself after taking a break from his alt rock band Matchbox Twenty when he recorded his debut solo effort Something to Be, which was released in 2005 to positive acclaim. It was a No. 1 albums for a week on the Billboard charts and contains the pop rock anthems "Lonely No More" and "Ever the Same". The album's opening track, "This Is How a Heart Breaks" echoes the same funk-rock tones heard in Songs About Jane's opening track "Harder to Breathe", with aggressive lyrics and awesome riffage. "Ever the Same" sparks similarities to "The Sun" and "Must Get Out" and Thomas' "Streetcorner Symphony" is the sister-track to Maroon 5's "Sunday Morning", without a doubt.
Best track: "Streetcorner Symphony"
Waiting for My Rocket to Come, Jason Mraz
A more sonically-freeing album than Songs About Jane, Jason Mraz's debut effort Waiting for My Rocket to Come is definitely one of the best pop rock jams of the 2000s. The album was released literally months after SAJ and both were critically acclaimed for similar reasons. Mraz's hit "The Remedy (I Won't Worry)" attests to Maroon 5's hit "This Love" and its extreme bright-spirited and feel-good funkiness. The album's fifth track "Curbside Prophet" reflects similar sounds as heard in "The Sun", with the step-by-step, head bobbing lyrical rhythm. If you like fast-spoken lyrics and acoustic guitars along with your daily cup of Songs About Jane, then you'd love this record.
Best track: "The Remedy (I Won't Worry)"
Dreaming Out Loud, OneRepublic
Although different in a certain nature, OneRepublic's 2007 debut album Dreaming Out Loud has very similar vocal styles from lead vocalist Ryan Tedder and guitar licks as Songs About Jane. Both albums were very much inspired by the 90s works of Timbaland and other R&B-hip hop anthems from that decade. The disco-like guitars in "Say (All I Need)" will meet your expectations, further exceeding them, with its similar "This Love" guitar work. "Stop and Stare" attests more towards Maroon 5's 2007 era, however still has Songs About Jane moments. Tedder would later go on to work with Maroon 5 on their recent albums and create the hits "Love Somebody" and "Maps" in 2013 and 2014, respectively.
Best track: "Say (All I Need)"
Chariot, Gavin DeGraw
Another stand-out pop rock album from the early 2000s is Gavin DeGraw's debut Chariot, which hit shelves in July 2004 with praise. You cannot deny that Gavin and Adam Levine's vocals are similar in nature and both are very pleasing to the ear. Their story telling are also almost indistinguishable at times. Chariot has more piano-pop breakout moments similar to some cuts off of Songs About Jane. Gavin's debut hit "I Don't Wanna Be" easily demonstrates equivalent elements of unabashed funk rock heard in "This Love" and even "Tangled".
Best track: "Chariot"
For Me, It's You, Train
For Me, It's You is possibly Train's most alternative-driven albums, taking less of a roots rock approach and more of a funk-esque pop rock sound. The band also took on a more singer-songwriter approach and draws similarities to Songs About Jane's "She Will Be Loved" and "Secret".
Best track: "Cab"
The Script, The Script
Perhaps one of the most similar-sounding albums on the list, the 2008 self-titled debut album from Irish pop rock outfit The Script draws comparisons to Songs About Jane in more ways than one. First off, the album's flow is similar, starting with agressive tracks such as "Before the Worst" and "Talk You Down", and leading up to the fourth track which is more vulnerably-composed, "The Man That Can't Be Moved". The albums concludes with a cheeky-titled "If You See Kay" and a dreamy-acoustic guitar ballad titled "I'm Yours", similar to "Not Coming Home" and "Sweetest Goodbye", respectively.
Best track: "The Man Who Can't Be Moved"
How to Save a Life, The Fray
How to Save a Life was monumental for its time. The Fray definitely brought something incredible to the table with their big-shot debut and brought a similar alt rock value that Songs About Jane did. "Look After You" is a dreamy-pop rock power ballad that is an infectious earworm just as much as it is a lyrical beauty, akin to Maroon 5's "Must Get Out".
Best track: "Look After You"
Andy Grammer, Andy Grammer
A blue-eyed soul rollercoaster, Andy Grammer by Andy Grammer is a bop. Matt Wallace, who co-produced Songs About Jane, produced the entire album and helped bring back that familiar poppy rock sound we miss in SAJ.
Best track: "Fine By Me", "You Should Know Better"
What other albums do you love that are similar to Maroon 5' Songs About Jane? Share with us!
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