John Mayer’s Born and Raised


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(Originally posted May 23rd, 2012)

Okay, so as we all know, John Mayer has a new album out. I have to admit, I am a huge John Mayer fan. Well, okay, there are John Mayer songs that I absolutely think are just beautiful works of music. I’ve never been a fan of full Mayer albums, so I decided to listen to his new LP, “Born and Raised”, all the way through. Check out my track by track review below, and please don’t be afraid to let me know what you thought of it as well!
Queen of California – Good vibe, very folky – kinda like early 70’s rock … unlike mayer – lyics would bring any teenage girl to her knees, especially those on the brink of escaping parent’s home for the promised land of California. If you see her, say hello? Hello, Bob Dylan. I like the almost zydeco influence that’s on this song  – the mixture between the piano and the electric is actually really good – I like that you can hear each distinctly. Not a fan, but I can see the potential.
The Age of Worry – Kind of a Mumford and Sons vibe – I think this is his excuse song for his douche baggy behavior a few years back – “defend your innocence while you do everything wrong”. Huh.. Okay, John.  Ultimately, I like the lyrics and the message it sends. But I wouldn’t be playing it for myself because his voice with the chords does not mesh at all, and it’s almost too… nice? To be a John Mayer song.
Shadow Days – Music video – The opening chords for this song got me really excited, it felt kinda Steve Miller Band–ish. But these lyrics…. I’m really not a fan! This song is like the ultimate “hey, I sucked for a while guys. But really, I’m a good dude. Sorry about that other shit, I’m over it and you should be too”. I kinda dig this song, but I wish he’d used more of a range for his vocals on it. His guitar, as always, sounds beautiful and effortless. I wonder what he could do with a purely instrumental album? Hmmm..
Speak for Me – FINALLY music and vocals are lining up into something I can dig. This song is really beautiful, and I enjoy it. This is more of the John Mayer I liked, where his lyrics are something you have to think about and draw your own conclusions about. The other songs I’ve heard so far on this album are laid out in black and white, and that’s something I don’t get down with from any artist. Give me something I can interpret!
Something Like Olivia – I love this. Love, love, love. It’s bluesy, which is what he’s best at. I love this. Did I mention I love this?
Born and Raised –  Okay, harmonica in the opening… You know, I like it, minus the choir behind him in the chorus. Definitely a great song about growing up. I really love the harmonica, adds a different definition. Really enjoying this, the last line is gold, “Cause one of these days you’ll be born and raised/And it takes you on without warning”. I’m all about living life to the fullest (if you guys haven’t caught on already) and this song embodies that.If I Ever Get Around to Living – Folksy…  I kinda dig this one. When he harmonizes, it’s awesome. The lyrics are pretty spot on, although the music is what I think makes this song. The acoustic with the drum makes this a smooth song to drive to the beach to.  Seriously inspired by early 70’s rock, which I LOVE.
Walt Grace’s Submarine Test, January 1967 – This title just reeks of Beatles influence. The beginning of this song as well.  Also, the lyrics kind of remind me of Dylan’s 115th Dream, which I think is kind of cool. I like that this isn’t your run of the mill song. And his raspy, bluesy voice kind of comes through on this song. I like it. It’s not a jam, but it’s something to put on when you’re hanging around. I wish the chords had more depth to them, but ultimately it’s a cool song.
Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey – Harmonica intro – Lyrics solid – Love this song. Love love love. Whiskey, whiskey, whiskey, water, water, water, sleep. Sound like college? Blues comes through on this song – dig it entirely. Man I like this song. The bridge is awesome, I can see myself signing the chords in the car. You know what I’m saying? The repeated chorus at the end is John Mayer at his finest. It’s reminiscent of Stop That Train on Continuum. Love this freaking song. HARMONICA AT THE END IS GOLD! IT’S JUST GOLD! THIS SONG! GO TO ITUNES! But please don’t steal it; that is so irritating.
A Face to Call Home – This title speaks to all of us. We know what it’s like to have that one face that makes us smile when we see it, that makes us feel like we’re safe once again. This song… GREAT. I’m not big on like lovey dovey songs, but this song is a great kind of love song, that’s not too much of that gushiness. It’s just like he met a girl that made him want to forget his wild past, he’s seeing her and he’s seeing where he wants to stick. It’s great. The outro – great. Beautiful. Pure John Mayer. Oh my God, the outro. This is another golden song. You got a face to call home. Hey, let’s make that into a pick up line, too…
Born and Raised (Reprise) – This is horrible. Okay, like if I was sitting on my front porch, in a rocking chair, chewing snuff and listening to kids play the banjo and spoons, I’d dig this. But, I’m not. I’m sitting on my back porch, on my Macbook, eating toast, wondering what the hell he was thinking when he thought this would be cool to put on an album..
Fool to Love You – I actually turned the volume up on this one! This is sick, so bluesy, so southern. I am in love. I am a fool to love this song (hehe) This is awesome, harmonica once again. Kind of has a Clapton vibe, like circa wonderful tonight. Love this. Really, really, impressed with this last track.
Go Buy:           Something Like Olivia
If I Ever Get Around to Living
Whiskey, Whiskey, Whiskey
A Face to Call Home
Fool to Love You
What’d ya think? Check out the picture to go listen to samples of the songs!


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