Pop & Miscellaneous The best music site on the web there is where you can read about and listen to blues, jazz, classical music and much more. This is your ultimate music resource. Tons of albums can be found within. http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/pop-miscellaneous/3293.html Thu, 22 Feb 2024 07:06:14 +0000 Joomla! 1.5 - Open Source Content Management en-gb John Mayer – Born and Raised (2012) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/pop-miscellaneous/3293-john-mayer/12400-john-mayer-born-and-raised-2012.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/pop-miscellaneous/3293-john-mayer/12400-john-mayer-born-and-raised-2012.html John Mayer – Born and Raised (2012)

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01 – Queen of California
02 – The Age of Worry
03 – Shadow Days
04 – Speak For Me
05 – Something Like Olivia		play
06 – Born and Raised
07 – If I Ever Get Around To Living
08 – Love Is a Verb		play
09 – Walt Grace’s Submarine Test, January 1967
10 – Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey
11 – A Face To Call Home
12 – Born and Raised (Reprise)

    John Mayer – vocals, guitars, harmonica, keyboards, percussion, production
    Sean Hurley – bass
    Aaron Sterling – drums, percussion
    Chuck Leavell – keyboards


By now, it comes as no surprise that Mayer shifts directions once more. This time, it’s not only the music that has changed, but also his appearance. His new image as the lonely cowboy earned him the “Johnny Depp look-alike” status among fans. But this style switch is not unjustified, since it goes hand in hand with his new music. The pop-blues tunes that fans grew accustomed to are pretty much absent from this record, their spot being taken by folk-rock songs - sometimes tapping into country - focusing on composition, melody and feel rather than virtuosity. So don’t expect blistering guitar solos or a flashy production…this time around, there’s just John with an acoustic, pouring his heart out to whoever is willing to listen.

Mayer’s latest effort starts off with an optimistic vibe, present all over “Queen of California”, where he says goodbye to cold, rain, sorrow and shame, and welcomes beauty and wonder. The third track and also the first single, “Shadow Days”, which employs a lap steel guitar, does not change the mood, hinting at better times to come: “Now I'm right here, and I'm right now/ And I'm hoping, knowing somehow/That my shadows days are over”. “Something Like Olivia” is definitely a toe-tapper, infusing a happy mood and featuring a great solo to top it all off.

As the record progresses, the overall atmosphere changes quite a bit, John being now more bittersweet and heavyhearted. In retrospective, he sings in the title track, accompanied by a hauntingly beautiful harmonica: “I still have dreams, they're not the same/They don't fly as high as they used to”. "Walt Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967" could be considered the odd track here (probably thrown in for good measure), telling a strange story that could easily fit into one of Bob Dylan’s songs.

As autobiographical as the rest of the songs are, John saves the most heartfelt one for the end: “Whiskey, whiskey, whiskey” is a perfect blend of melody, arrangement and lyrics, carefully crafted to make one of the highlights of the whole album. Although he confesses: “The stage was set, the words were mine/I’m not complaining”, the chorus – “Whiskey, whiskey, whiskey/ Wake up, shake it off/ And repeat” over some well-chosen chord changes – brings a whole new dimension to the song, suggesting a routine that slowly drains the life out of the idolized pop-star.

All of Mayer’s favorite singers could be viewed as influences here, from Dave Matthews to Sting, from Ryan Adams or David Gray to Bob Dylan. Production-wise, Mayer and Don Was made a clear, straight-forward mix for a straight-forward record. Just like with “Room for Squares”, his other acoustic guitar-driven album, there are some tracks that don’t really stick. But the fact that John Mayer matured is undeniable…or so it seems. --- Mihnea Sechely, mayerreviews.blogspot.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (bluelover) John Mayer Sat, 23 Jun 2012 17:09:23 +0000
John Mayer – Paradise Valley (2013) http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/pop-miscellaneous/3293-john-mayer/14812-john-mayer-paradise-valley-2013.html http://www.theblues-thatjazz.com/en/pop-miscellaneous/3293-john-mayer/14812-john-mayer-paradise-valley-2013.html John Mayer – Paradise Valley (2013)

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01 – Wildfire
02 – Dear Marie
03 – Waitin’ on the Day
04 – Paper Doll
05 – Call Me the Breeze
06 – Who You Love
07 – I Will Be Found (Lost at Sea)
08 – Wildfire (feat. Franck Ocean)
09 – You’re No One ‘Til Someone Lets You Down
10 – Badge and Gun
11 – On the Way Home

    John Mayer - vocals, guitars, keyboards
    Aaron Sterling - drums, percussion
    Sean Hurley - bass
    Chuck Leavell - keyboards ( 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 9, 10,11)
    Paul Franklin - pedal steel guitar (2, 9, 11)
    Zane Carney - guitar (1, 2)
    Rami Jaffe - keyboards (1, 8)
    Lisa Fischer - background vocals (7, 11)
    David Ryan Harris - background vocals (4)
    Bernard Fowler - background vocals (7)
    Frank Ocean - Wurlitzer, vocals (8)
    Katy Perry - vocals (6)
    Larry Williams - tenor saxophone, flute
    Dan Higgins - tenor saxophone, flute (6)
    Gary Grant - flugelhorn (6)
    Bill Reichenbach - tenor trombone, bass trombone, EB alto horn (6)


Close your eyes. Erase your mind. Forget about Taylor Swift, Katy Perry and the various extracurricular activities that have hobbled singer-guitarist-romantic John Mayer’s reputation off the playing field. Breathe, and think about the guitar while inhaling fresh air and electrified guitar licks. As a Wyoming wind blows through your hair, imagine that the John Mayer Cruise never happened.

For many -- but by no means all -- such a Mayer reboot is necessary. Doing so in earnest before popping on his new album, "Paradise Valley," will offer payback for those yearning for peaceful, well-imagined guitar rock as earlier crafted by bands including the Eagles, the Flying Burrito Bros., the Grateful Dead and “Nashville Skyline”-era Bob Dylan. The guy’s apologized for his past media indulgences, and “Paradise Valley” makes a strong case that those of us overly annoyed should let it go. ---Randall Roberts, articles.latimes.com

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administration@theblues-thatjazz.com (blueslover) John Mayer Sun, 22 Sep 2013 15:41:21 +0000