This was chosen as the album's first single because of the fan response to the song. His third major label album, Mraz originally released the songs on 3 separate EP's for a limited period of time. The first was titled "We Sing," the second "We Dance," and the third was "We Steal Things." (thanks, Bertrand - Paris, France)
A demo version originally appeared in 2005 on a limited release bonus EP Extra Credit, which Mraz put out to promote his Mr. A-Z album.
Since the release of the 2005 demo version of the track, hundreds of fans have posted versions of themselves covering the track on YouTube. Mraz told Billboard magazine: "I never instigated any of the covers. But I can see why people are drawn to the song, and because it is about generosity, I wanted to share it."
It's likely that We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things. is the first Billboard Top 3 album whose title is made up of three sentences.
According to the album's publicity materials, this song is "about finally giving into love and life's possibilities."
We Sing. We Dance. We Steal Things takes its title from a piece of art by Glasgow-based artist David Shrigley that Mraz saw in Scotland while traveling. The Virginia-born singer-songwriter explained on his record label's website: "What I love about mankind is that yes, we sing and we celebrate and we dance when we're foolish and we steal things. It's hard to have a new idea in music, in fashion, the land we walk on. It's all recycled. I think to say we stole it is a lot more fun." Shrigley, who is best known for his humorous cartoons was asked by Mraz to design the album art.
This hit #1 in its 28th week on the Adult Top 40 chart. It thus broke the record for the longest any song has taken to reach the top position on this list, surpassing the 27 weeks it took Daniel Powter's "Bad Day
" to land at #1.
Mraz told The Sun December 19, 2008 that this song is about "generosity. About giving yourself or your time to someone or something else."
This was a #1 song in several European countries including Norway, Sweden and Portugal.
This was the first song to top the Adult Contemporary, Adult Top 40, Mainstream Top 40 and Triple A charts.
In April 2009 this became the 22nd song to spend at least a year on the Hot 100. The previous song to achieve the same feat was Carrie Underwood's "Before He Cheats
," which spent 64 weeks on the chart in 2006-07.
On the chart dated August 29, 2009 this song logged on for its 70th week on the Hot 100, breaking the record for most weeks spent on that chart. The track surpassed LeAnn Rimes "How Do I Live
," which had a 69 week run on the survey between June 14, 1997 and Oct. 10, 1998. The song's longevity can be attributed to its saturation on a variety of different radio formats. Mraz told Billboard
magazine that initially he had "little expectations" about this song on the radio. He added: "But I was wrong. People just kept getting on board at both ends of the radio dial. I'm still blown away, humbled by the success of my happy little hippie song." The song finally departed the Hot 100 after 76 weeks.
The song's longevity record was broken by the Imagine Dragons,' "Radioactive
" which logged its 77th week on the Hot 100 chart dated March 1, 2014.
Regarding the song's multi-genre appeal, Mraz stated to Billboard magazine: "I think it's because it borrows from every one of those formats. Or perhaps the song is genre-less. The first two and a half minutes have so little production you could almost classify it as spoken-word. Yet it's rhythmic and melodic at the same time."
Mraz told Billboard magazine the story of the song: "It was written rather quickly, maybe 15 or 20 minutes. I was at home in my writing room, chugging along on my electric guitar, minding my Reggae influences, grateful for another sunny afternoon in San Diego. The melody just appeared out of nowhere while the words flew over my head as my thoughts were focused on surrendering to the moment. That is ultimately what the song is about - giving yourself or your time to someone or something else. I thought it was cool and had a nice bounce, and I began playing it live almost immediately. That was five years ago. After it had lived on the road for a while I decided to put it on a record to give it a home."
Mraz added: "When I finally recorded it, my fans were relieved that we didn't overproduce it. We kept the feel and arrangement true to how we play it live. And what I've noticed, the fans react in a way that shows the song isn't about me. This is a song that people sing to each other, or to themselves. It can be a love song or a personal song of empowerment. Its melody is not unlike a nursery rhyme, and the message is like reading fortune cookie after fortune cookie."
Mraz received song of the year honors for this tune at the 2010 American Society of Composers, Authors and Publishers' annual Pop Music Awards. The awards recognize the writers and publishers of ASCAP's most performed songs of the year.