Song of the Day #3,214: ‘Vultures’ – John Mayer

John Mayer has a knack for making me like genres I don’t usually dig.

Take ‘Vultures,’ a song from Mayer’s excellent 2006 album (Continuum), which sounds like a lost Steely Dan track.

I hate Steely Dan. OK, that’s a bit strong, but I definitely don’t like them. And yet I love ‘Vultures,’ and the rest of Continuum, which has the same general vibe.

I feel the same way about Mayer’s Clapton-esque guitar solos. Guitar solos usually bore me, but not when he does them.

Ironically, I think the reason his songs work for me is the same reason he turns off a lot of other people. He repackages traditional mellow jam band sounds into tight pop song packages. People who love 15-minute, pot-fueled, free-form songs call that selling out. I call it good songwriting.

[Verse 1]
Some of us, we’re hardly ever here
The rest of us, we’re born to disappear
How do I stop myself from being just a number?
How will I hold my head
To keep from going under?

[Chorus]
Down to the wire
I wanted water
But I’ll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I’ll come through
Like I do when the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

[Verse 2]
How did they find me here?
What do they want from me?
All of these vultures hiding
Right outside my door
I hear them whispering
They’re trying to ride it out
Because they’ve never gone this long
Without a kill before

[Chorus]
Down to the wire
I wanted water
But I’ll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I’ll come through
Like I do when the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

[Guitar Solo]

[Verse 3]
Wheels up
I got to leave this evening
Can’t seem to shake these vultures
Off of my trail
Power is made, by power being taken
So I keep on running
To protect my situation

[Chorus]
Down to the wire
I wanted water
But I’ll walk through the fire
If this is what it takes
To take me even higher
Then I’ll come through
Like I do when the world keeps
Testing me, testing me, testing me

[Outro]
Ooh, ooh, ooh
Whatcha going to do about it? (x3)

Don’t give up, give up
Don’t give up, give up, give up
Don’t you give up
Don’t give up, give up, give up

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2 thoughts on “Song of the Day #3,214: ‘Vultures’ – John Mayer

  1. Dana says:

    Hate Steely Dan, dissing Clapton and praising Mayer? Oy, we really do live in an alternate musical universe sometimes!

  2. Clay says:

    I like Clapton just fine. 🙂

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