John Mayer: A Music Man With a Lonely Heart and Filter-less Thought Process

Musical wonder John Mayer just recently dawned the cover of RollingStone Magazine and in this lengthy article within he dispelled inner-dissonance and more importantly the things most people wouldn’t openly share with practically anybody.

I write this blog to kind of reflect on his “situation.” In the article, he seems to be loathing himself in a pool of self-pity. He is one of the most elite guitarist pop-stars in the world and he seems to be perpetually depressed. Musicians are known for being a little, well, off, but is Mayer too off? I mean, he discusses the details of his human functions on his twitter account for all the millions of fans to read. This is not normal, but the question then arises… Is he simply trying to dispense with the idolatry of present society over their pop culture heroes and show that he is the same, just a man, as the rest of us? This might be true. If so, is it really necessary to discuss those odd things, like his masturbatory endeavors, with the world?

He has a lonely heart, a lonely bed, and a lonely life. He is a brilliant musician and I would venture to say that he is my favorite contemporary artist. His lyrics are poignant and touching. His alum Continuum(2006), offered the reinvigorated bluesy pop style on the contemporary music scene that I had been longing for since I fell in love with the blues. He also offered a commentary on the political climate of the time, which is incontrovertibly missing from society, save Green Day’s American Idiot(2004), which offers a different type of commentary, but phenomenal in its own right nonetheless.

Mayer’s newest album, Battle Studies(2009), takes a look into the darker, yet still beautiful side, of Mayer’s mind and heart. The hurt and angst of yet another failed relationship, this time with Jennifer Aniston, was the most prevalent theme of the piece. With track titles like “Heartbreak Warfare,” “Half of My Heart,” “Assassin,” and “Do You Know Me” it is evident that this time Mayer’s heartache has translated into his music. I can personally attest to the frustration and depression that comes along with failed amorous endeavor after failed amorous endeavor, as I am sure most of you can as well.

Some people have taken shots at Mayer mocking his personal inner-affliction. Yes, he is a successful musician who seemingly wants for nothing, but I would venture to guess that his situation is unlike anything most, if not all of the readers of this blog can relate to. It is hard enough to find true friends, let alone lovers, who love you for you and not your fame, money, or anything else. If you had millions, wanted for nothing, and consistently failed at finding the one thing you wanted more than anything, a companion to share everything with, what would you do?

Mayer is without a doubt, rough around the edges. He is an artist and this is the label he gets from society for having the unique perspective on the world he has. Unfortunately, this is his curse. However, that does not mean we cannot appreciate his music. Allow me to show you a little, if you will…

“Heartbreak Warfare”

…Once you want it to begin,
No one really ever wins
In heartbreak warfare

If you want more love,
why don’t you say so?

Drop his name
Push it in and twist the knife again
Watch my face
As I pretend to feel no pain…

These lyrics offer such an eloquent metaphor for romantic quarrels. Anyone who has been in a failing relationship or even a romantic tiff can see the beauty and completely understand what he is saying. We do things to each other, things we know will get under the other person’s skin, because we know them so well. That is the danger of falling in love, for with the highs come the lows, with the pluses come the minuses. However, love is unique in that the positives always outweigh the negatives and that ecstasy of falling for someone is inexplicably beautiful. Once the “heartbreak warfare” starts, he is right, it is a slippery slope.

“Assassin”

…I was a killer, was the best they’d ever seen
I’d steal your heart before you ever heard a thing
I’m an assassin and I had a job to do
Little did I know that girl was an assassin too…

Regardless of the musical complexity, this song also gives us another great look into how Mayer sees himself, i.e. a lady killer or womanizer. Being a famous musician musn’t curb his style or luck in this area, but this song shows that he feels he has been had by a woman. Mayer got caught up in the womanizing prowess he thought he had and got had himself. “Little did I know that girl was an assassin too.”

Mayer’s music speaks for itself. He is obviously one of the best guitarists on the planet, but the one thing that he lacks seems to plague all other areas of his life, except music. It has given him some of the best material he has ever made to date. Although, myself and many would still hold Continuum to be his greatest work, this newest album offers the most of John Mayer in the raw, i.e. the real John Mayer.

I hope Mayer finds this missing piece and is able to move past this personal funk he seems to be in at present.

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