When John Mayer discovered he was being inducted into his old high school’s Hall of Fame last Thursday, he decided to put in a surprise appearance at the ceremony. But when he showed up at Fairfield Warde High, in his hometown of Fairfield, Connecticut, the singer-songwriter was taken to the principal’s office and then escorted to his car.
The school cited security concerns and concerns for the students’ “welfare” as the reason for ejecting their star alumnus. Mayer, 27, graduated from Fairfield Warde in 1995, and his parents Margaret and Richard are a retired schoolteacher and principal, respectively.
Mayer has made a habit of reaching out to high schools this year, treating students at Pennsbury High in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, to a last-minute performance at their senior prom. “It was great to get back to the simplicity of just showing up somewhere and playing,” he said of the experience. “But the best part is realizing that not a single drop of that moment is going to be lost on these kids. It will be written on their brains for the rest of their lives. It was really exciting. I’m thinking I should start doing six proms a night.”
Mayer had planned to donate a guitar he’d used on tour to his alma mater before he was booted from the premises.
Mayer is set to play an acoustic set at the first Musicians on Call benefit at Sotheby’s in New York on January 31st. Profits from the auction — of guitars signed by Bruce Springsteen, Avril Lavigne, Dave Matthews, No Doubt and Elvis Costello, and a miniature piano from Alicia Keys — help to bring live and taped music to people in healthcare institutions.
Mayer’s song “Daughters,” off his recent album Heavier Things, is nominated for a Grammy for Song of the Year. The singer-songwriter previously won a Grammy in 2001 for best male pop performance for “Your Body Is a Wonderland.”