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John Mayer says that he was “really humiliated” by Taylor Swift’s song “Dear John,” which the country-pop star allegedly wrote about him. “It made me feel terrible,” Mayer says in the new issue of Rolling Stone, on newsstands Friday. “Because I didn’t deserve it. I’m pretty good at taking accountability now, and I never did anything to deserve that. It was a really lousy thing for her to do.”
Swift’s song, which appeared on her best-selling 2010 album Speak Now, was released shortly after Mayer went on a two-year hiatus following his controversial interviews with Rolling Stone and Playboy. “Dear John, I see it all, now it was wrong / Don’t you think 19 is too young to be played by your dark twisted games, when I loved you so?” Swift sings on the tune, a staple of her live set.
Swift and Mayer were romantically linked before the song’s release, and in an interview conducted shortly after, the singer indicated that the song’s subject would be apparent. “There are things that were little nuances of the relationship, little hints,” said Swift. “Everyone will know, so I don’t really have to send out emails on this one.”
Mayer now tells Rolling Stone that he learned about Swift’s feelings directly from her song. “I never got an e-mail. I never got a phone call,” he says. “I was really caught off-guard, and it really humiliated me at a time when I’d already been dressed down. I mean, how would you feel if, at the lowest you’ve ever been, someone kicked you even lower?” When asked about the song’s line, “Don’t you think I was too young to be messed with?” Mayer says, “I don’t want to go into that.”
Mayer also takes issue with “Dear John” as a musician. “I will say as a songwriter that I think it’s kind of cheap songwriting,” he says. “I know she’s the biggest thing in the world, and I’m not trying to sink anybody’s ship, but I think it’s abusing your talent to rub your hands together and go, ‘Wait till he gets a load of this!’ That’s bullshit.”
For a few months in early 2010, John Mayer was infinitely (and oftentimes, offensively) quotable, sharing his thoughts on Jessica Simpson’s skills in the sack and confessing that he had never really gotten over Jennifer Aniston. Amid much backlash, the singer-songwriter went silent.
“I lost my head for a little while. I lost touch and I didn’t want to ask for directions,” Mayer, 34, tells Ellen DeGeneres in an interview airing Tuesday. “I did a couple really dumb interviews and it woke me up.”
Calling it “a very strange time,” a chastened Mayer says the conscious decision to step back for two years was the right choice, crediting it with “rocketing him into adulthood.”
“I’m glad I actually stayed out of the spotlight,” he notes. “Back then I would’ve said, ‘Let me get out and do Ellen and explain myself.’ It was like, ‘No, idiot. Go away – be 33 and 34 instead of 28 for the fourth year.’ ”
The time off was productive, leading Mayer to write and record Born and Raised, out May 22. Unfortunately, the return of a granuloma in his throat after surgery last October means Mayer is unable to sing, forcing the cancelation of his tour and necessitating another surgery, set to take place this fall.
“It’s not a health concern whatsoever but it has taken me out of singing,” he explains. “Tried to beat it the first time and couldn’t. They cut this thing out, then they inject your vocal cords with Botox which freezes [them] so [they] can heal without smacking up against the other side. I just need more Botox next time.”
In the meantime, Mayer has moved to the Bozeman, Mont., area and begun work on his next album.
“I can’t sing, so I’m writing,” he tells DeGeneres. “I live in Montana – middle of nowhere. It’s really excellent. You get to a certain age where you prepare yourself for happiness. Sometimes you never remember to actually get happy. I remembered to get happy.”
I have no idea how to introduce this post, so I’m skipping the first paragraph.
During rehearsal on Tuesday, it came to mind that I should see my throat doctor because something didn’t feel/sound right. I went in for a visit on Wednesday and a scope of my vocal cords revealed that the granuloma has grown back where it had mostly healed. This is bad news. Because of this, I have no choice but to take an indefinite break from live performing. Though there will be a day when all of this will be behind me, it will sideline me for a longer period of time than I care to have you count down.
I want to explain this a bit more in depth than I have in the past, because I know there’s some confusion as to what this condition is; a granuloma forms and continues to snowball because it’s in a spot where the vocal cords hit together and there’s no way to really give it a chance to heal without a good stretch of time and some pretty intensive treatment. In short, it’s one giant pain in the ass.
Okay, so here’s the plan… Born and Raised will be released as scheduled, but because I don’t make a very good anything-other-than-a-musician, I’m going to begin writing the next album very soon. I feel really vibrant as a writer at the moment and there’s no reason not to begin the next album project in the time I would have been touring. Somewhere in all of this is another surgery and a very long chemically-imposed period of silence, so I hope you’ll understand that I have to really pick that date carefully.
I’m pretty emotionally burnt out at the moment, but please know how hard I tried to resolve this and how disappointed I am that I can’t perform this record yet. I’m completely bummed, especially for all of you who started making plans to see a show. Nothing feels worse than having to break the stage down before the performance, and I mean nothing. I love this band you were going to hear, I love the guys and girls I work with, and the only thing that stops me from devolving into a puddle of tears is knowing that it’s a long life, and the greatest gift in the world is being able to create music no matter what the circumstances. So these are the new circumstances, and I’ll find a way to make it mean something. That’s all you can ever do.
JohnMayer.com has posted up the official tracklisting and release date for John’s fourth studio album! The album will be released on May 22nd. You can see the cover HERE.
Tickets for John’s Spring 2012 Tour go on sale tomorrow and you can purchase tickets HERE by the corresponding tour dates.
1. Queen of California
2. The Age of Worry
3. Shadow Days
4. Speak for Me
5. Something Like Olivia
6. Born and Raised
7. If I Ever Get Around To Living
8. Love is a Verb
9. Walt Grace’s Submarine Test, January 1967
10. Whisky, Whisky, Whisky
11. A Face To Call Home
12. Born and Raised (Reprise)
Tony Bennett has been on a bit of a tear supporting his new album of all-star duets. Now, Bennett is premiering his video for “One For My Baby (And One More for the Road)” with John Mayer exclusively on Mashable.
The track appears on “Duets II: The Great Performances,” to be released March 6. The DVD, which features duets with stars such as Aretha Franklin, Lady Gaga, Willie Nelson, Michael Bublé and more, is a follow up to “Duets: An American Classic” and the album version of “Duets II,” where the iconic music-man sang through American hit songs through the ages.
Bennett’s follow up album veers closer to his jazz and classic repertoire and also features one of the last recordings and music videos from Amy Winehouse, “Body and Soul,” before her death on July 23, 2011.
The silver-haired singer launched his career in the 50s following the Second World War. Bennett, a laid-back crooner, always had a predilection for jazz and show standards but faded out of popularity in the 60s due to substance abuse problems and the rise of rock music. Bennett has slowly made his comeback, with “Duets,” released in 2006, was Bennett’s best selling album of all time and earned him three Grammy Awards.
“Duets II” clearly treads familiar ground with Bennett and co. cruising through hits from the American Songbook. Bennett and his team have embraced the digital side of the albums by releasing a set of music videos on Bennett’s VEVO page. The videos are mostly just Bennett and his guest standing and delivering as if capturing a recording session. The intimate feel helps deliver the nostalgic tone of the project as well as reveal the respect and friendship between Bennett and his co-stars.
It’s a charming project with plenty of surprises: like Bennett sharing a microphone with Lady Gaga as she takes an honest crack at “The Lady is a Tramp.”
The above video captures that same sense of shared respect and joy in music.
Have a look and a listen and let us know what you think; did Mayer pull it off? Does Bennett still have it?
The consistency with which John Mayer combines word craft and melody has earned him rarefied status as a respected songwriter and musician. As one of few musicians to achieve both critical acclaim and popular appeal, the seven-time Grammy Award winner has earned accolades for each album release while selling in excess of 17 million albums worldwide.
Known as a musician who defies genre boundaries, John Mayer is well known for collaborations with a range of artists. From rock to blues, hip-hop to jazz to country, Mayer has performed and/or recorded with Eric Clapton, BB King, Buddy Guy, T-Bone Burnett, Herbie Hancock, Dixie Chicks, Jay Z and Alicia Keys.
John has been writing and recording a new album expected to be released in the coming months. The release will coincide with a residency theater tour of major markets. A bit of a return to his grassroots, expect this project to demonstrate more of an organic, singer/songwriter vibe than his most recent releases. See him perform live this March when he makes his first return to SXSW since performing in a career changing showcase back in 2000.