The Blessed Unrest: What Music Inspires Sara Bareilles?

She encourages her fans to be “Brave,” but what songs give Sara Bareilles the courage to dance like no one is watching? In addition to breaking down all 12 tracks on her new album, The Blessed Unrest, Sara is sharing the music that’s made her feel strong, calm, and inspired throughout her life.

VH1 sat down with Sara in New York last week to get the full list of jams that have been most influential to her over the years. Read on for the first five of her picks.

1. “No Woman, No Cry,” Bob Marley

Sara Says: “This is the song I could listen to on repeat probably for the rest of my life, and feel like it would raise my vibrations in a really good way.”

2. “Don’t Worry, Be Happy,” Bobby McFerrin

Sara Says: “I think it’s simple, it’s to the point, and any time I hear it I want to sing along with it. It just sort of lightens the mood.”

3. “Vision Of Love,” Mariah Carey

Sara Says: “It was such a cool moment in music to see the entrance of this powerhouse that was so clearly establishing herself on the scene.”

4. “Thriller,” Michael Jackson

Sara Says: “It’s so musical, it’s so accessible, but it’s so smart. And it just made me want to dance–and then be scared of him at the same time.”

Oh really?

5. “Imagine,” John Lennon

Sara Says: “That song is a prayer. It’s just beautiful; it comes from a pure place.”

In case you missed it, here’s Sara Bareilles’ Track-By-Track for The Blessed Unrest, in two parts. If you’d like to watch the whole series (or if you’re on a mobile device), you can see all 12 of her The Blessed Unrest commentary videos here.