I find it hard to believe that through almost 4,000 Songs of the Day I have yet to do a theme week or two on ‘Best Debut Albums.’ It seems like such an obvious and rewarding topic. I’ll put it on the list for later this year. Plus, it would lead nicely into ‘Best Sophomore Albums’ — I can get a whole month out of this.
At any rate, without question John Mayer’s Room For Squares would rank highly on that list of best debuts. Over 14 tracks and nearly an hour, he leaps out of the gate with a winning collection of pop-rock gems and doesn’t take a wrong step. That’s enough to make it #2 on my list of 2001 albums.
Happy Birthday to my beloved wife!
John Mayer released his seventh album, The Search For Everything, over the course of several months, putting out two 4-song EPs before dropping the full 12-song set. To me, that’s a little like watching 2/3 of a movie before it finally gets a theatrical release. But I’m old-fashioned.
Rollout strategy aside, The Search For Everything is a strong return to the soulful pop of 2006’s Continuum, probably still his best album though he hasn’t released a bad one since.
It’s time for a little romance on Day 14 of the 30 Day Music Challenge, as we are called on to name ‘A Song That You Would Love Played At Your Wedding.’
I’ve been happily married for 20 years so I have a few options here. I can imagine I’m planning my own wedding all over again, but with 20 years worth of additional music from which to choose. I can imagine that my marriage has ended and I’m getting married again, say to Gugu Mbatha-Raw, Rashida Jones or Gal Gadot. Or, and this is how I’ve decided to play it, I can imagine that my wife and I are renewing our vows in a celebration including our current friends and family.
The next Montauk Madness Round Two battle is a bit of a laugher, particularly for readers of this blog. I’ll be surprised if John Mayer manages more than a single vote (my wife’s) against Elvis Costello.
Costello got here by taking out Carly Rae Jepsen, who did manage to pick up 33% of the vote. Mayer narrowly defeated Beck, 55% to 45%. Had Beck triumphed, the Beck/Costello matchup would have been interesting. Both have proved adept in multiple genres and are masters of the unexpected. Continue reading
Our next Montauk Madness matchup pits somebody it’s very cool to like against somebody it’s very uncool to like. Beck, meet John Mayer.
I’m a big fan of both of these guys, so I’ll try to keep the hipness factor out of my vote. I realize that appreciating John Mayer is not great for my street cred, but I think anybody who dismisses his musical chops or his songwriting ability is mistaken. Sure, the guy can be a smug prick and some of his songs veer too close to maudlin, but so many more are spot-on.
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.