Today, April 1st, turned out to be a beautiful sunny day on the island. Spring days like these make me instantly long for summer – and I know I’m not alone. As I was paying close attention to the lyrics of this John Mayer tune, I noticed it was the perfect anthem for summer romance…
“River’s strong you can’t swim inside it
We could string some lights up the hill beside it
Tonight the moon’s so bright
You could drive with your headlights out
‘Cause a little bit of summer’s what the whole year’s all about
You look fine, fine, fine
Put your feet up next to mine
We can watch that water line
Get higher and higher
Say, say, say
Ain’t it been some kind of day
You and me been catching on
Like a wildfire
Don’t get up just to get another
You can drink from mine
We can’t leave each other
We can dance with the dead
You can rest your head
On my shoulder if you want to
Get older with me
‘Cause a little bit of summer makes a lot of history”
I like some pop music, and for me, John Mayer’s pop sound has just gotten better and better with each new album. It’s hard for me to know where exactly Paradise Valley will land on my year-end “best of” list, but I know with singles like “Wildfire” and “Paper Doll”, it’s going to be on there somewhere.
There was a ton of great music this year, but as I mentioned before, I wasn’t as adventurous musically as I have been in the past. I decided to keep the list short, and these 10 albums were clear standouts. I can think of some other artists/songs/albums that did catch my attention this year, so I’ll talk close calls later this week…
1. Dr. Dog – Be the Void
2. Alabama Shakes – Boys and Girls
3. Bahamas – Barchords
4. Mumford & Sons – Babel
5. Delta Spirit – Delta Spirit
6. The Tallest Man On Earth – There’s No Leaving Now
7. John Mayer – Born and Raised
8. JD McPherson – Signs and Signifiers
9. Fiona Apple – The Idler Wheel…
10. Ben Folds Five – The Sound of the Life of the Mind
I hope you had happy holidays! I’ve been thinking about all the music that came out over the course of the year. Due to a few factors, I definitely didn’t have my normal musical appetite in 2012, so my list will be short…but I still really enjoy choosing my favorites!
This first album is probably the one that surprised me the most. I wouldn’t call myself a huge John Mayer fan, and the first single from this album (“Shadow Days”) really didn’t do anything for me. But, when I heard the other singles, I was pulled right in.
From start to finish, the album is beautifully produced (Don Was is co-producer with Mayer). The guitar work is sensational and John Mayer’s voice and presence has a certain warm and relaxed vibe to it. The album was completed and released after Mayer had surgery and a long rest last year to repair granuloma in his throat. Unfortunately the condition returned this year and more tour dates were canceled. I can imagine Mayer is facing some seriously dark times with all of this as an artist unable to perform. He wrote, “the only thing that stops me from devolving into a puddle of tears is knowing that it’s a long life, and the greatest gift in the world is being able to create music no matter what the circumstances”.
In his last few albums, John Mayer has had this way of being slightly inappropriate without being completely offensive. I’m thinking of “Who Says” from Battle Studies where he sings, “I don’t remember you looking any better, but then again I don’t remember you” and of course, “who says I can’t get stoned, call up a girl that I used to know, fake love for an hour or so, who says I can’t get stoned?”.
And here, with this track from the new album Born and Raised, he somehow manages to be desirable to millions of woman while singing, “Well Olivia is taken, but a look like hers can be found from time to time. I’m thinking something like Olivia is what I need to find”. I’m falling for it at least…I love this song!
I like a lot of what John Mayer does, but I can’t say I’m a huge fan of the single “Shadow Days” from his new album Born & Raised. Well, we added the second single into rotation this week, and I’m much more into it…definitely makes me want to check out the album in its entirety:
SO MUCH GREAT MUSIC! Here are some new tunes that I’ve been diggin’ lately. I’m sure to have another one of these up very soon because there’s a bunch more I want to share with you! This NEW Music Preview is nice and tight…under 2 and 1/2 minutes. Enjoy!