Last fall, seven-time Grammy® winner and Berklee alum John Mayer returned to his alma mater to give an intimate and informative clinic exclusively for Berklee College of Music students. He talked about his experiences at Berklee and in the industry, performed some of his most popular songs, and handed out incredible nuggets of advice to aspiring musicians.
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John Mayer's Video Clinic Series
Berkleemusic is proud to provide our online students with the same access to exclusive interviews, clinics, and performances previously available only to students at our physical college.
01. Information & Inspiration from Berklee
"There was something happening. There was this definition of my self, of my identity. All of a sudden, I found this perfect balance with Berklee. Here's the information coming in, here's the inspiration going out."
02. Defining Your Expectations
"Everyone in this room wants to make it but I question how you would recognize making it. What is making it? What do you want to be? Who here wants a record deal? What does a record deal look like? Do you want to sell a million copies, two million copies?" Watch John perform "Who Did You Think I Was."
03. Turning Information into Inspiration
"'Stop this Train' was a magic moment for me. I was in between homes and living in a hotel room. There is something to be said about solitary confinement, or as I say, solitary refinement. That's what this trip [to Berklee] is for me, too. Selfishly, I needed this, as well, to get back to the basics, get back inside." Watch John perform "Stop This Train."
04. Economy in Songwriting and Playing
"A lot of times you hear a song that doesn't have vocals on it yet. It's sort of like a jump rope going around. You're thinking about how you're going to get into it. How am I going to sing over it? That in itself is an art form."
05. Working Up to the Dynamic Ceiling of Your Solo
John jams out some blues with Berklee guitar professor Tomo Fujita. Watch them perform "Waiting on the World to Change."
06. Honesty in Songwriting
"Taking a walk because you know you have a song and you're going to come back after dinner and finish that bridge. That is the high of all life. You've created something for free that will give you identity and purpose and the feeling of being awake in every way. And it will happen. But in the meantime, get the house ready for it."
07. The Songwriting Process
"You do compromise your art for success. When people say, 'You go in that office and you don't compromise a thing,' you're going to walk out with nothing. Really what they mean to say is, 'Don't compromise the things you can't live without.' You learn to compromise that which you can give away and defend that which you can't."
08. Getting Started
"I knew I had to sing my own songs when I couldn't imagine anyone else singing them. I was a singer by default because I was starting to make observations that didn't belong to anybody else and it would have felt dead wrong."
09. John Mayer Performs
John concludes his Berklee clinic by performing "Gravity" and unveiling a new, unfinished song.