.

John Mayer on the "Vulgar Relationship" Behind New LP "Battle Studies"

October 27, 2009 7:10 PM ET

John Mayer may not have set out to make a concept album, but as his fourth LP, Battle Studies, developed, he found the songs' war theme oddly appealing. "I was loving the war theme, the battle theme. The militaristic, vulgar, violent side of a relationship on the down slope," he tells Rolling Stone in an exclusive video interview. "The record starts out sort of like the sun is out, then it gets darker. And then the sun comes back out at the end."

Earlier this month, Mayer unveiled the video for the album's first single, "Who Says," which gives fans a raw look at one of his nights out on the town. In our Fall Music Preview, Mayer told Rolling Stone the song's first lyric, "Who says you can't get stoned?" was not about weed but, being "in control of the pleasure in your life," adding that the record — which also features a duet with Taylor Swift — as a whole is "the next step in the story of who I am."

Fans will get to hear that step on November 17th when Battle Studies hits stores, and pre-orders start today. Mayer has also lined up a string of dates to introduce Battle Studies to the world: a gig in New York on the day the record arrives, as well as stops in Toronto and Australia before New Year's Eve shows with RS Breaking Artist Mayer Hawthorne. Mayer also revealed the locations he'll hit on his 2010 Winter Tour:
Atlanta, GA
Austin, TX
Birmingham, AL
Boston, MA
Calgary, AB
Columbus, OH
Dallas, TX
Denver, CO
Detroit, MI
Edmonton, AB
Grand Rapids, MI
Houston, TX
Kansas City, MO
Los Angeles, CA
Memphis, TN
Milwaukee, WI
Minneapolis, MN
Montreal, QC
Nashville, TN
New York, NY
Oklahoma City, OK
Omaha, NE
Philadelphia, PA
Portland, OR
San Jose, CA
Seattle, WA
St Louis, MO
Toronto, ON
Tulsa, OK
Uncasville, CT
Vancouver, BC
Washington, DC

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“Road to Nowhere”

Talking Heads | 1985

A cappella harmonies give way to an a fuller arrangement blending pop and electro-disco on "Road to Nowhere," but the theme remains constant: We're on an eternal journey to an undefined destination. The song vaulted back into the news a quarter century after it was a hit when Gov. Charlie Crist used it in his unsuccessful 2010 campaign for the U.S. Senate in Florida. "It's this little ditty about how there's no order and no plan and no scheme to life and death and it doesn't mean anything, but it's all right," Byrne said with a chuckle.

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com