Wednesday, 14 October 2009

John Mayer: Who Says

He may have the fame, the money and the models, but it’s still the hard-knock life for John Mayer. Or so he tries to convince us in his new “Who Says” video, the latest entry into the fame-is-a-drag genre.

“Who says I can’t get stoned?” Mayer sings in the latest single off his upcoming Battle Studios. “Plan a trip to Japan alone / Doesn’t matter if I even go / Who says I can’t get stoned?” From the sound of his laid-back drawl, it appears Mayer ignored whoever gave him the no-pot advice. Throughout, the swoon-inducing croon chips away his white-boy rebellion – Mayer seems too eager to please his preteen fans (and record label) to really fight the power.

“Who Says” was directed by Anthony Mandler, the man behind recent hit videos like Rihanna’s “Disturbia” and Jay-Z’s “Run This Town.” To accompany Mayer’s irony-free sincerity Mandler discards his trademark sex-goth dungeons, phoning in a generic guy-playing-guitar clip instead. Unfortunately, even Mayer’s chiseled jaw cannot hold viewer interest for three-plus minutes on its own and slow-burn shots of him singing, posing, or just staring pensively at the camera soon wear out their welcome.

The video tries to capture troubled-artist alienation, but if Mayer’s got 99 problems, boredom sure ain’t one. Apparently a day in the life of John Mayer involves drinking with friends, performing stand-up, and going skinny-dipping with a bevy of beautiful ladies. And we’re supposed to feel bad for this guy?

If you just want to get stoned all day, John, maybe stop running around an amusement park snapping pictures of your girlfriends. If you do need a break from all the excitement, can the rest of us maybe take your place?

Verdict: 1/5 stars

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