The inaugural tour for Jason Manns’ Dogwood Events concluded on July 27th, where Manns and fellow musicians Briana Buckmaster, Billy Moran, Paul Carella, and Hayden Lee played to a sold out crowd at Eddie’s Attic in Decatur, GA. So, as our Post-PBJ Tour Spotlight Series continues, we want to shine a very bright spotlight on the one and only Jason Manns.
Many would characterize him as a very talented, yet down-to-earth musician, and he is definitely both of those things. But there is so much more to Jason Manns than what meets the eye… or the ear. On top of releasing his solo albums which include Move, Soul, and his self-titled Jason Manns, he has released three collaboration albums featuring many guest artists from The CW’s Supernatural. The albums, Covers with Friends, Christmas with Friends and Recovering with Friends include songs that run the gamut of musical genres, ranging from The Beatles’ “Come Together” (feat. Rob Benedict) to Etta James’ “I’d Rather Go Blind” (feat. Briana Buckmaster) to The Band’s “Up on Cripple Creek” (feat. Jensen Ackles, Mark Pellegrino, Rob Benedict and Richard Speight, Jr.). He sings with such emotion that, whether you’re watching him live or listening on your own, his rich voice soothes your soul.
During the PBJ Tour, Jason flexed his vocal muscles and serenaded every crowd with covers as well as original songs from his catalog of music. Crooning some of his most popular covers, including Solomon Burke’s “Cry to Me,” Ben E. King’s “Stand by Me,” and Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah”, with an assist from his tour mates. Each leg of the tour was a little different, but no matter which songs he chose to sing, whether it be “Another Number” or “Perfect Spot,” crowd interaction was always high. During the last show at Eddie’s Attic, Jason performed fan favorite “Down” with a beatboxing intro that got a huge reaction from the crowd, proving once again just how multi-talented he really is.
Aside from his own projects, Manns has produced albums for both up-and-coming and established artists, including Briana Buckmaster, Gil McKinney, Hayden Lee, Left on Laurel and The Station Breaks (a band of which he is a member, along with Louden Swain’s Billy Moran and Rob Benedict). He is currently producing Richard Speight, Jr.’s debut album, which is tentatively scheduled to come out before the end of the year. He manages to tackle all of this along with the annual Rockwood Events festival in Germany, which hosts an array of indie artists performing in an intimate setting for fans from all over Europe, as well as the Creation Entertainment convention circuit, where Supernatural fans first met and fell in love with his talent.
Manns has dedicated a lot of his time to charitible endeavors, using his musical talents to assist in raising money for numerous causes throughout the years. In a recent collaboration, Manns and Justin Guarini produced the single”A Change is Gonna Come,” in which the single’s proceeds went to benefit the Dreams 2 Acts program in Nicaragua. And this past May, he performed at the Random Acts’ #RANoHungryChild Food Drive in Virginia. Most recently, his Dogwood Events has announced a benefit concert at Rockwood Music Hall in New York on September 30 to benefit Random Acts as well.
It was incredible to see the camaraderie among all of the musicians on the PBJ Tour and how much fun they had together. “My favorite part of the tour was probably the hilarity of trying to drop off Briana at the ATL airport,” said Manns. “Luckily we were early but literally the last few minutes of tour, everyone’s a bit road weary and loopy and all of us were trying to figure out the signs to [international] drop off and couldn’t figure it out. None of us could. And it was hilarious. We were driving in circles and laughing deliriously.”
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When we asked Manns if he favored big venues, like festivals and conventions, versus smaller intimate shows, he stated, “I haven’t yet played the big music festivals, but I’ve played quite a few 1000-3000+ rooms with the SPN conventions and a few other events, and the small rooms are always unique in that I feel personally connected to every person in the room.” Manns went on to explain what the most challenging part of the tour was, as well: “The most challenging part was probably trying to remember that as a performer I personally like the tour organizers to be less laid back than I am. Translation… I try not to go with the flow and be in the moment when I’m organizing the tour. Instead, I try to be schedule-oriented and organized… jury’s still out whether that worked or not…but I’m getting there!”
Fans are often drawn to Jason, not just for his musical abilities, but for his intriguing and genuine personality. He has a way of making every fan feel completely included, whether it be during a performance or after the show while he’s mingling with the audience. He always takes time to ask about the individual and divert some of the focus from him as the performer. His innate ability to go from a talented singer/songwriter on stage performing for large crowds to a humble, gracious man who fully values the opportunities music, hard work, and a supportive fanbase have given him is a joy to watch. In essence, Jason Manns is a regular jeans-and-t-shirt kind of guy who just happens to have fans around the world waiting to see what he has in store next.