John Mayer’s music can be simplified to a combination of fairly basic chord progression, funky baselines, and a raspy voice. All in all, not incredibly unique. These days anyone with minimal experience and technology skills can produce a tolerable single. The true difference between the artist and the machine becomes outstanding ability in a musical category that is not easily duplicated by a computer program. Ultimately, it is John Mayer’s achievements in the realm of lyrical composition that sets him apart from the rest of the cut-and-copy “talent” out there.
Unlike the majority of lyricists, John doesn’t adhere to the trend of creating artfully crafted lyrics that mimic true feeling without knowing what it actually is. You hear a song of his and you KNOW he gets it. John effortlessly communicates vulnerability, inviting us to join him in connecting with something deeper. At times he can lull you into a sun-kissed memory of a familiar relationship and in the next moment you become uneasy with the level of emotional exposure, like you are being forced to watch some intimate interaction play out in front of you. It’s genius. There’s a reason why Jill and I always end our personal versions of “Music and the Spoken Word” with a Mayer set. Because once all that can be said is said and you just want to be overwhelmed by the feels, you turn on John. He keeps you locked in his riptide of raw emotion; you signal for assistance from the lifeguard and simultaneously luxuriate in the sensation of drowning.
(Some) Favorite Lyrics:
**Caveat: For obvious reasons I am not including the most popular John Mayer songs. If you need me to recite Slow Dancing In A Burning Room to inform you of how good it is then you weren’t going to like this post anyway.**
I’m Gonna Find Another You
When I submit my own set of YouTube videos for speculation, the first of the set will be my rendition of this song. Whenever it comes on in the car my Diva hand automatically rises, taking its position inches away from my face. My dear friend Rob doesn’t like this song. “It’s a sad song… He’s obviously still in love with the girl he isn’t with. He’s looking for a replacement!” Jill and I look at each other and roll our eyes, as if on cue. Some people just don’t get it. Luckily for us, Johnny does.
When I was your lover no one else would do. If I’m forced to find another, I hope she looks like you and she’s nicer too.
Half Of My Heart
Although I do not need much to prove that Taylor Swift is mentally retarded I think the fact that she accompanied John on this song and STILL thought that she could be in a functional relationship with him is the nail in her coffin.
Half of my heart’s got a real good imagination. Half of my heart’s got you. Half of my heart’s got a right mind to tell you that half of my heart won’t do.
Half of my heart is the part of me who’s never truly loved anything.
Split Screen Sadness
I would post this whole song if I could. It is incredibly underrated which means that I get away with tweeting stanzas and having people think it’s my own words. Yeah, I live my life on the border of copy write infringement. Once I texted Jill a line from this song and she responded, thinking that it was of my own construction, “Cait. Sell that shit.” Go look up the song and read the whole thing with a box of tissues. If you can’t relate then you are an emotionless robot.
It stings when it’s nobody’s fault ’cause there’s nothing to blame at the drop of your name. It’s only the air you took and the breath you left.
I called because I just need to feel you on the line.
This song is pure poetry. An insightful look into the woes of the twentysomething’s quarter-life crisis. Something is missing; we’re all unhappy in some new way that our parents weren’t, probably because they were too busy being productive and just doing life instead of wallowing in an existential stupor (see Mayer’s “New Deep” for further reference).
I searched for joy, but I bought it all. It doesn’t help the hunger pains and a thirst I’d have to drown first to ever satiate.
I can’t be sure that this state of mind is not of my own design.
I wish there was an over the counter test, for loneliness like this.
How come everything I think I need, always comes with batteries
What do you think it means?