John Mayer
Being a big John Mayer fan for a long time it was a great pleasure to be able to finally get to one of his gigs. The anticipation had set in earlier in the day and I was “up for it”. Awesome seats, 3rd row middle balcony gave a great view of the stage. I’ve never sat down at a gig but I was liking the feeling of a Roman Emperor at the Colosseum (in my strange fantasy world). A great night was to be had.
John Mayer
The support, ‘Codeine Velvet Band’ were a little superfluous and the crowd demonstrated this as they chanted for John during the intervals of their songs.
John Mayer
Up steps the man himself. The stage goes green, the lights black out and he approaches the front of the stage like an airplane approaching the runway, the roadies guiding him by torch light. The crowd goes wild. I feel like I’m in a special box at an opera, everyone around me claps quite posh – “oh spiffing John has arrived on the platform of entertainment, scoff scoff scoff”.
John Mayer
Dressed in black (a modern day ode to Johnny Cash?) he kicks off with ‘Heartbreak Warfare’ quite a simple track from his new album ‘Battle Studies’. His new songs have a more contemporary country feel to them. Not the blues fiend John I fell in love with. At one point I felt like I was listening to U2 with his delaying guitar riffs. John Mayer’s set up is pretty impressive and has grown some from the days as a trio. The new band comprises of two (amazing) female backing singers, an extra two guitarists, one being Robbie McIntosh ‘The Pretenders’ fame, Not my kind of music, but yeah… a bass player, keys and last but not least Steve Jordan on drums.
John Mayer
As he continues through his set one things becomes evident – it’s flawless. Everything from his musical and vocal ability through to his stage presence is extremely tight and professional.
John Mayer
“Whoever wanted Slow Dance, thank the girl over there!” states Mayer pointing to a young lady in the audience holding up a banner reading “play Slow Dance!”. ‘Why Georgia’ and ‘Vultures’ – two of my personal favourites from ‘Continuum’, follow and are performed with aplomb, enjoyed by the crowd and the band alike.
John Mayer
Ever being one to please the audience, the singer shows his comedic side taking every opportunity to have a little natter. Very funny! The main set ends with ‘Gravity’ and the crowd duly go wild shouting and hollering their appreciation. During the 3-4 minute gap, a slow hand clap ensues and Mr Mayer gladly obliges with a stripped back acoustic version of ‘Edge of Desire’ this acoustic version is personally a lot nicer than the full band version on the album, it was nice to have that personal touch in the show. The band return to the stage as John plays a hillbilly skittle style intro of ‘Who Says’ the band come in and join him briefly before taking it away nicely. This leads seamlessly into the crescendo of ‘Friends, Lovers or Nothing’ the perfect closer.
John Mayer
All in all a fantastic gig, I can’t say a bad word about John. I personally hope he gets back to his blues roots sooner rather than later, but I’m sure he will keep making great records and being loved by his many fans. I for one can’t wait to see John and the gang when they make their way back to the UK in May.
John Mayer
Words by Jimi Heru
Photography by Bianca Barrett

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