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Born and Raised This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine.


John Mayer, a man loved for his extraordinary music, but not so extraordinary personality, recently released his new album titled “Born and Raised.”

As an avid listener of his music, and a fan, I'll be the first to say that this album is very different from his others. Unlike “Continuum,” and “Battle Studies,” “Born and Raised” doesn't focus simply on heartbreak and love. It accentuates what happens after the heartbreak, and the crying, and the sadness. The songs focus on moving on and letting go. It's something fresh, something most of his fans haven't heard from him before.

After listening to “Born and Raised” for about a week, I've been able to grasp the meaning of each lyric. I've come to realize that as both a man and artist, Mayer is too hard on himself, and constantly beats himself up for the mistakes that he's made. In one of the most popular songs, “Shadow Days,” he sings, “I'm a good man with a good heart, had a tough time, got a rough start, but I finally learned to let it go.”

Many of the songs touch on the fact that he's had a bumpy past, and has lived with regret for far too long. Mayer is often criticized for his personality. It's hard to believe the tabloids when his music radiates such purity and soul. “Born and Raised,” to me, is John's way of asking for a second chance. In his heart, he knows that he's a good man, and that it's time to start acting like one. The album showcases this feeling, and his newfound focus on his life and his music.

Mayer has phenomenal talent, and his guitar skills are unique. The first song I listened to, “Queen of California,” had a country feel, which I originally disliked. However, the album has a variety of sounds, and I've come to love each song in different ways.

My personal favorite is “Walt Grace's Submarine Test, January 1967.” Mayer tells the story of an ordinary man with dreams of traveling the world in a submarine. This probably sounds silly, but the lyrics are really touching, and the song simply has a great meaning.

Overall, I definitely recommend listening to John Mayer's “Born and Raised.” Whether you've never heard his music, or think the album might not be for you, try listening. Pay close attention to each lyric, and be prepared to give John Mayer another chance, because the album is truly one of a kind.

This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.




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