12/17/2013 07:00 PM EST
The consistency with which John Mayer combines word craft and melody has earned him rarefied status as a respected songwriter and musician. As one of few musicians to achieve both critical acclaim and popular appeal, the seven-time Grammy Award winner has earned accolades for each album release while selling in excess of 20 million albums worldwide. Known as a musician who defies genre boundaries, Mayer is well known for collaborations with a range of artists. From rock to blues, hip-hop to jazz to country, Mayer has performed and/or recorded with Eric Clapton, B.B. King, Buddy Guy, T Bone Burnett, Herbie Hancock, The Rolling Stones, Dixie Chicks, Jay Z and Alicia Keys. Mayer was honored by the Recording Academy in 2012 for his work on behalf of U.S. military veterans. His longtime commitment to veterans includes a partnership with the Northern California Institute for Research and Education on programs designed to combat the effects of post traumatic stress.
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John Mayer is an American musician. Originally from Connecticut, he attended Berklee College of Music before moving to Atlanta, Georgia in 1997, where he refined his skills and gained a following. His first two studio albums, Room for Squares and Heavier Things, did well commercially, achieving multi-platinum status. In 2003, he won a Best Male Pop Vocal Performance Grammy Award for "Your Body Is a Wonderland". Since then, John Mayer tickets have been a hot commodity. For, not only are his songs very popular and relatable, John Mayer's concerts are full of top-notch musicians that know how to use a stage.
Mayer began his career performing mainly acoustic rock, but gradually began a transition towards the blues genre in 2005 by collaborating with renowned blues artists such as B. B. King, Buddy Guy, and Eric Clapton, and by forming the John Mayer Trio. The blues influence can be heard on his album Continuum, released in September 2006 - as well we seen in John Mayer's scheduled performances. At the 49th Annual Grammy Awards in 2007 Mayer won Best Pop Vocal Album for Continuum and Best Male Pop Vocal Performance for "Waiting on the World to Change". Mayer's career pursuits have extended to stand-up comedy, design, and writing; he has written pieces for magazines, most notably for Esquire. He is also involved in philanthropic activities through his "Back to You" fund and his concern over global warming.
Soon after Mayer got his first guitar, a neighbor gave him a Stevie Ray Vaughan cassette, which began intense love of the blues - again, perceptible in John Mayer's concerts. Despite the reservations of his parents, Mayer became consumed with playing the guitar, and after two years of practice, he started playing at blues bars and other venues in the area, while in high school. In addition to performing alone, he was in a band called Villanova Junction with Tim Procaccini, Joe Beleznay, and Rich Wolf.
When Mayer was seventeen, he was stricken with a cardiac arrhythmia that sent him to the hospital for a weekend. Reflecting on the incident, Mayer said, “That was the moment the songwriter in me was born,” and he penned his first lyrics the night he got home. After graduation, he worked for fifteen months at a gas station until he saved up enough money to buy his first proper guitar—a 1996 Stevie Ray Vaughan signature Stratocaster.
His reputation began to build, and a March 2000 John Mayer scheduled appearance at South by Southwest brought him to the attention of "launch" label, Aware Records. After including him in the Aware Festival concerts and having his songs included on Aware compilations, in early 2001, Aware released Mayer’s internet-only album entitled, Room for Squares. During that time, Aware inked a deal with Columbia Records that gave Columbia first pick in signing Aware artists, and so in September of the same year, Columbia remixed and re-released Room for Squares. As part of the major label "debut", the album's artwork was updated, and the track "3x5" was added. The re-release also included reworked studio versions of the first four songs from his indie album, Inside Wants Out. That's when fans were lucky to get John Mayer tickets.
By the end of 2002, Room for Squares had spawned several radio hits, including "No Such Thing," "Your Body Is a Wonderland," and ultimately, "Why Georgia." In 2003, John Mayer performed as well as won a Grammy for Best Male Pop Vocal Performance for "Your Body Is a Wonderland." In his acceptance speech he remarked, "This is very, very fast, and I promise to catch up." He also figuratively referred to himself as being sixteen, a remark that many mistook to mean that he was only sixteen years old at the time.
Heavier Things, Mayer's second album, was released in 2003 to generally favorable reviews. Rolling Stone, Allmusic and Blender all gave positive, although reserved, feedback. PopMatters said that it "doesn't have as many drawbacks as one might assume". The album was commercially successful, and while it did not sell as well as Room for Squares, it peaked at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart. Mayer earned his first number one single with the song "Daughters" as well as a 2005 Grammy for Song of the Year, beating out fellow contenders Alicia Keys and Kanye West. He dedicated the award to his grandmother, Annie Hoffman, who died in May 2004. He also won Best Male Pop Vocal Performance, beating Elvis Costello, Prince, and Seal for the award. In his February 9 2009 interview on The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Mayer said that he thought he shouldn't have won the Grammy for Song of the year because he thought that Alicia Keys' "If I Ain't Got You" was the better song. Because of this, he removed the top half of the Grammy and gave it to Keys, and kept the bottom part for himself. At the 37th Annual Songwriters Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony in 2006, Mayer was honored with the Hal David Starlight Award.
Phillip LaDon Phillips, Jr. is an American singer-songwriter from Leesburg, Georgia. He won the eleventh season of American Idol on May 23, 2012.