Here's the thing about John Mayer: There are a lot of things about John Mayer. He is a guitarist, an Instagram genius, a member of Dead & Company, a friend to rappers and pop stars, and a thoughtful entrant into cannabis life. And he is not a dick. In fact, according to an entertaining new profile on Mayer, written by Nick Catucci and published at Billboard this morning, Mayer has not been a dick in some time.
"Some people still say, 'That guy’s a dick,'' acknowledges Mayer. "And I go, 'Well, any of that data you’re working off of is really old.' I mean, I can tell you for sure that I haven’t been a dick in many years. That’s a really outdated take."
In essence, John Mayer is no longer telling magazines that his penis is racist. That's an old data set—decades old. John Mayer is no longer that boy. John Mayer is a man now. John Mayer is a man who recently blew up a Winnebago.
Last year, for his 40th, Mayer and some pals blew up a Winnebago. This was in Montana, a little ahead of his actual birthday. Chad Franscoviak, Mayer’s longtime sound engineer, arranged the whole thing, a surprise dinner theater-type excursion in which Mayer and some other “good guys” jumped in a vehicle loaded with paintball guns to chase some “bad guys” to their hideout -- the vintage Winnebago, tucked in a quarry. Mayer and Franscoviak loaded it up with actual explosives, Mayer fired an actual 50-caliber rifle into it, and … kablooey. Then they sent their cars off a cliff.
John Mayer is a man who soundtracks breakfasts, and he's fine with that.
"I would love to make music for the club," says Mayer, the same way he says most things: in a patient, matter-of-fact tone, with a hint of amusement at his own complexity. "I make music for the omelette on the Sunday after the club, and I’ve got to be OK with that, and I am OK with that."
John Mayer is a man who thinks about Mason Ramsey "a lot."
He lights up talking about the 11-year-old Walmart Yodeling Boy, Mason Ramsey, whose Instagram handle is @lilhankwilliams: “An interesting case … What if he’s singing about, like, having money stolen from him? Him with 14-year-olds—14 being the oldest person in the band—and they’re singing about shooting dice and breaking a bottle over someone’s head? Yo, I’m in."
Yes, John Mayer stares into the abyss. But only when his phone dies.